Sarah Ho, Park Scholarships senior assistant director, was selected to receive the 2018 Award for Excellence for the NC State University Chancellor’s Unit. She was selected from a field of outstanding employees who contribute greatly to the university.
In the Park Scholarships office, Ho leads the execution of most of the Park Scholars’ developmental experiences, including two Learning Labs, two retreats, a year-long Freshman Seminar, Service Raleigh, and the Park Enrichment Grants. She also plays key roles in the selection process and in advising students.
Serving as the advisor to those students who plan Service Raleigh, a major city-wide event annually connecting about 2,000 volunteers with approximately 75 projects, she has made a significant impact with her guidance. Ashlyn Johnson ’17, who sat as co-chair for two years on the committee, nominated Ho last year for the Outstanding Student Service Award from NC State’s Student Government. Said Ashlyn, “Sarah not only formally advised us in successfully executing the event, but holistically advised us as she genuinely inquired about our workload and stress level. Not only does she counsel [me] and other student leaders when we have problems in directing our committees, but she goes above and beyond what is necessary for an adviser… In the bigger picture of Service Raleigh, she consistently went out of her way not only to ensure that the event went off without a hitch, but also that the students were growing, learning, and becoming better servant leaders from the experience.”
Professor Lisa Bullard, a Park Faculty Scholar, says, “Sarah’s exceptional planning and organizational skills ensure that complex student trips like Learning Lab I and II and the retreats run smoothly. Nothing is left to chance – the most minute details are carefully considered and scheduled, including confirmations with speakers, buses, airlines, hotels, restaurants, and all of the million details that go into executing such complex trips. She thinks through every contingency and prevents problems before they happen. In working with student planning teams, she also models and coaches students in best practices of planning to help them recognize and participate in the process.”
For years, Ho has also served as treasurer to our national organization, the Undergraduate Scholars Program Administrators’ Association (USPAA). In this role, she is responsible for all of the financial matters for the 75+ member group. Of her work in that profession, Dr. Charles Leonard, president of USPAA, says, “Sarah is always busy, but somehow cheerfully manages to squeeze in a request for help—almost seamlessly. And on complicated, thankless tasks—in our case dealing with the IRS for our professional group’s nonprofit status—she marches ahead without a complaint. I don’t know what we’d do without her.”
Ho’s commitment to making the university and surrounding community a better place can be evidenced through other tremendous endeavors. She currently works as the chapter advisor for a Greek organization at NC State and as a Big Sister to an at-risk child in Raleigh.