Donald Nelson Award for Outstanding International Student Support

Molly Heidemann and Donald Nelson pose with 2019 award winners

Donald Nelson served in the Office of International Programs at Miami University for 42 years before retiring as Administrator Emeritus in 2003. He started his career in 1961 as Adviser to Foreign Students, a position that evolved over the years until he became Director of International Education, supervising an office responsible for international student advising and admissions, study abroad advising, the administration of student exchanges, and the distribution of funds to support faculty engaged in international travel and research projects. Nelson remains an active member of the Oxford community and an advocate for international education to this day. This award honors his legacy and will be announced annually in November during International Education Week.

Award Criteria

This award is designated for Miami University staff (classified or unclassified) who exemplify the following

  • Demonstrating a welcoming, inclusive, and supportive attitude toward international students
  • Going above and beyond to assist international students
  • Advocating for international students’ needs

Nominations will be accepted from students, staff, and faculty. Nominations from Global Initiatives staff will not be considered. Staff from Global Initiatives, American Culture and English, and the English Language Center are not eligible for this award.

The award is presented at the during International Education Week.

Nominate a Staff Member

Nominations are no longer being accepted.

Submission Deadline

November 1, 2021

Past Award Winners


Lucrita Osman, Food Service Assistant, Housing, Dining, Recreation & Business Services


Aaron Bixler, Senior Associate Director, International Enrollment

Jennifer Thach, International Admissions Coordinator, Graduate School