CHICAGO, Ill. – Last month, Illinois Institute of Technology’s Student Employment office named its Distinguished Student Supervisors. Illinois Tech Athletics’ Director of Intramural and Recreation, Courtney (Budd) Priest, was one of four selected for the honor out of 133 nominated supervisors.
Distinguished supervisors are chosen for providing meaningful work experience, feedback, and support to their staff of student employees. Priest was nominated by six of her Recreational Sports and Fitness (RSF) employees, the second-most nominations received of any student supervisor on Illinois Tech’s campus.
“Courtney Budd instills passion about RSF in student employees and inspires us, listens to suggestions actively, and always respects each student’s availability,” said Parth Lineswala. “She trusts her employees completely for managing a sport, encourages us to give our best in what we do, and shows enthusiasm for everyone that participates in recreational sports.”
"It is always nice to be recognized for your work, but for me, it is particularly meaningful that my student-workers nominated me for this honor,” said Priest. “I am incredibly grateful to work with such great students. While it's important to me that my student-workers do their best to ensure great quality in RSF programming, I feel a responsibility to ensure they are gaining valuable experience that will prepare them for their next steps into their professional career."
Illinois Tech RSF has grown drastically since Priest’s arrival in January of 2015. Priest knows this in large part due to the hard work of her student staff and joy each employee brings to each program RSF has to offer.
“I believe that the quality of the leagues, tournaments, and events really reflect the effort and passion put forth by my entire student staff,” Priest said. “Many are willing to work a little longer than scheduled, pick up shifts last minute, and go the extra mile to ensure that whatever event they were working on was successful.”
Priest also strives to not only put together a strong RSF team, but also prepare each employee for what lies ahead in the workforce upon graduation.
“Over the next several years, our students will walk into many interviews and speak with people who are looking to invest in someone who will make their company better,” Priest explained. “While the academic studies here at Illinois Tech will put our students in a place to be successful, what sets someone apart from the rest of the candidates is the other skills they bring to the table. Our workers have had to deal with difficult situations, improvise, peer manage, and learn to communicate effectively with students from all parts of the world. I believe there is great value to the work our RSF staff puts in, which future employers will appreciate.”
Priest was one of five Illinois Tech Athletics staff members nominated for the Distinguished Student Supervisor award, as Jennifer Agosto (Director of Compliance and Athlete Services), Kyllian Griffin (Director of Aquatics and Assistant Facilities Director), Luke Stanczyk (Sports Information Director), and Ed Zeifert (Director of Event Management) also were nominated by multiple student employees.