The Nebraska Board of Regents presented present a KUDOS Award to Nik Stevenson, research technician and program coordinator for the NE STEM 4U project for the University of Nebraska STEM TRAIL Center.
Going above and beyond the responsibilities of his role, Stevenson has provided significant, impactful leadership for a vital academic center providing STEM education and training for educators and future STEM leaders.
As one example of Stevenson’s work, he helped recruit a highly diverse group of scholarship applicants funded by a federal grant. Whereas many STEM careers are male-dominated, Stevenson’s relationship building and individual touch points led to more than 50 percent of scholarship recipients being female and ethnically diverse as well, including representatives from Native American, Hispanic, Latino, and African American communities.
Additionally, Stevenson has served as a leader in enhancing UNO’s NE STEM 4 U out-of-school STEM education program. Not only has the pool of participants and educators expanded to be more diverse and representative, but trained student leaders to help keep the program sustainable into the future.
Stevenson is also a prolific researcher, supporting the STEM TRAIL Center’s mission of STEM education and literacy. This includes presentations at a recent National STEM Education Center conference, the Nebraska Get Connected Afterschool Conference, providing the keynote address for the launch of the STEM TRAIL Center in2 019, and working with faculty and students across the University of Nebraska system to publish research articles and being a critical team member to securing more than $3 million in grant funding from the NSF, NIH, and others.
In the interest of enhancing and supporting diverse voices, Stevenson has also recently taken upon himself to launch a reading club among the staff of the STEM TRAIL Center to better understand gender equity and advancement. Additionally, he is part of the inaugural Equity and Inclusion Certificate being offered at UNO.
“His tireless work ethic and willingness to dive in and improve the environment for all make him a joy to work with,” his nominator states. “Nik personifies integrity and excellence. He’s truly a Maverick—always pushing the envelope on how he can move us all forward in a meaningful way.”
KUDOS Award Nominations
The University of Nebraska KUDOS award recognizes the accomplishments of outstanding employees and is presented six times a year during NU Board of Regents meetings.
Is there an employee you feel is deserving of the KUDOS award? Nominate them today through the new People Are Everything software.
About the University of Nebraska at Omaha
Located in one of America’s best cities to live, work and learn, the University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO) is Nebraska’s premier metropolitan university. With more than 15,000 students enrolled in 200-plus programs of study, UNO is recognized nationally for its online education, graduate education, military friendliness and community engagement efforts. Founded in 1908, UNO has served learners of all backgrounds for more than 100 years and is dedicated to another century of excellence both in the classroom and in the community.