Alumni Awards

Recognizing Outstanding GCU Alumni

Georgian Court has always been proud of its Alumni, graduating seniors and others who demonstrate mercy values, leadership and service. Many GCU graduates go on to achieve outstanding achievements in their chosen careers and personal lives. Recognizing these individuals is a long-standing tradition at The Court, and for decades we have recognized these individuals during our reunion and homecoming weekend.

Student recipients are honored during commencement and student-athletes during the annual awards banquet. All recipients (student, athletic and alumni) are honored at the Alumni Brunch during Reunion & Homecoming Weekend.

GCU Alumni Awards

This award recognizes the alumna/us with a distinguished history over a lifetime of leadership, shared vision and extraordinary service to Georgian Court University and the community.

  • In what ways has the candidate served the University and its alumni?
  • Has this service spanned decades?
  • In what ways has this service been truly extraordinary?
  • How has this service benefited the institution?
  • What is the scope and/or depth of the candidate’s involvement in volunteer service beyond GCU?

Prior recipients of this award include:

  • 2019: Beverly Milyo ’69, ’83
  • 2017: Agnes Moore Higgins ’39
  • 2012: Maria Cordis Richey, RSM, Ph.D.,’50
  • 2006: Gertrude Turner Mahan ‘35

This award is given to the alumna/us who has demonstrated outstanding contributions and service to the University. Please note that nominees cannot be a full-time faculty or staff member.

  • Does the candidate serve as a Class or Affinity Agent, Alumni council member/committee chair/officer?
  • Does the candidate volunteer and participate in Alumni events (such as Reunion/ Homecoming, service projects, open houses, day of giving, etc.)?
  • Does the candidate volunteer, organize or participate in regional alumni activities, student activities, or campus administrative tasks?

Prior recipients of this award include:

  • 2019: Diane Szubrowski, RSM ’68
  • 2018: Joyce Goletz Heckman ’83
  • 2017: Amelia Alonso McTamaney ’67
  • 2016: Keri Tarantino Carlton ’99
  • 2015: Rosemary E. Jeffries RSM, Ph.D. ’72
  • 2014: Marjorie Murphy Hale ’68
  • 2013: Gail Gleason Milgram, Ed.D. ’63
  • 2011: Delores Parron-Ragland, Ph.D. ’66
  • 2010: Amy Joseph Habib ’60
  • 2009: Anne Grall  Reichel, Ed.D. ’74
  • 2008: Debbie Hanley Williams ’68

“I was the 2018 recipient of the GCU Alumni Service Award. I recall the day that I received the telephone call informing me that I was selected, and how overwhelmed and proud I felt. My four years at GCU were foundational years for me. I learned so much during my time at Georgian Court, beyond my course of study. I choose to stay engaged with Georgian Court because I deeply believe in the mission of the University. Although a service award was not needed to encourage me to continue to volunteer my time, it was meaningful for me to be recognized. On the day I was given the award, I was fortunate to be surrounded by family and close friends, which made that day even more special.”
– Joyce Goletz Heckman ’83, 2018 award recipient

This award is presented to the alumna/us who has excelled in their chosen field and has exercised exemplary qualities through career achievement. This award honors an individual whose achievements in their vocational fields have brought distinction to themselves, credit to the University, and a real benefit to their communities.

  • What are the unique professional achievements that brought distinction to the candidate and to Georgian Court University?
  • What are the recognized contributions made by this candidate that demonstrates a benefit to the larger community?
  • What professional competencies have lead to success and/ or contributions in their field?
  • How has the individual’s innovations or research led to the advancement of their profession/ field?
  • Has the individual received any awards and/ or accolades in their profession/ field?

Prior recipients of this award include:

  • 2019: Rodrigo (Rod) Colón ’95, ’17
  • 2017: Lisa Gambacorto, RSM, ’84

“The Distinguished Alumni Award means a great deal to me because I have the highest regard for the Institution that selected me to receive the award. I cherish all of the memories I have of my alma mater, the friendships, the faculty, and the Sisters of Mercy. I have studied throughout my career earning a number of master’s degrees and an Ed.S. degree, but no place felt like home the way GCU did. It is a special kind of school—unique, nurturing, and supportive. It was a wonderful place to learn and to grow into a strong woman.  I am proud to call myself a woman of the Court.”
– Lisa Gambacorto, RSM, ’84, 2017 award recipient

This award is presented to a friend of Georgian Court University that displays exemplary leadership and/ or service to GCU by a non-alumnus/a.

  • Does the individual exercise the mission of Georgian Court University through service to the University in their personal or professional life?
  • Does the individual go above and beyond to better the University, one of its programs, services or students?
  • Is the individual a pioneer in their profession or community while exuding the spirit and ideals of Georgian Court University?

This award acknowledges and encourages service to the University by alumni age 35 and under that exhibit outstanding achievements in promoting the University through volunteer support of and activities.

  • Did the candidate achieve an exceptional level of service while balancing the demands of being a recent graduate?
  • Does the candidate serve as a Class or Affinity Agent, Alumni council member/committee chair/officer?
  • Does the candidate volunteer and participate in Alumni events (such as Reunion/ Homecoming, service projects, open houses, day of giving, etc.)?
  • Does the candidate volunteer, organize or participate in regional alumni activities, student activities, or campus administrative tasks?
  • What life achievements contributed to the candidate being a pillar in the community?

Prior recipients of this award include:

  • 2019: Kristen Cladek ’14
  • 2017: Miriam Hunte ’16

“Receiving the 2017 Young Alumni Award from my Alma Mater was such an honor. Georgian Court is like a second home and the support that I’ve received there has been invaluable. When I received the email that I was selected as the recipient of this award, I was ecstatic! What an honor to be recognized for my service and leadership contributions after graduating. Service is a huge part of my life and I’m grateful for all that GCU has poured into me to help me flourish in this area. My hope is that every recipient of this amazing award would simply pay it forward and daily embody the Mercy Core Values of Justice, Compassion, Integrity, Respect, and Service”
– Miriam Hunte ’16, award recipient

This award chosen through GCU Athletics recognizes the graduating senior athlete that has, through their actions in the competitive arena of intercollegiate athletics, demonstrated good sportsmanship and citizenship in the Mercy tradition. The Sportsmanship Award will be determined through GCU Athletics and acknowledged during the Alumni Brunch.

The Outstanding Senior Award is awarded to the Julia Blake Alumni Award recipient from May Commencement. The Julia Blake Alumni Award is presented to the senior who has best displayed outstanding loyalty and service during the student’s GCU years.

Nominate Alumni for an Award

Do you know someone that has made an impact? We welcome your nominations.

Nominations must be written and should include:

  • At least two paragraphs describing the nominee’s contributions to GCU and reasons they deserve the award
  • The name and graduation year of the nominee

To nominate an alumnus for any of the awards above, email ude.naigroeg@inmula, or mail your nomination by May 1, to the Office of Alumni Relations, Georgian Court University, 900 Lakewood Ave, Lakewood, NJ 08701.

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