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Nussbaum wins SDHEA’s Marcus Boesen award

March 20, 2017

Talk about making an impression.

When Bryce Nussbaum was awarded the Marcus Boesen Award at the South Dakota Higher Education Association (SDHEA) annual conference in February, he made a larger-than-life appearance on a video screen.

This was possible through the benefit of Skype technology; it was necessary because Nussbaum is currently deployed with the 153rd Engineer Battalion in Kuwait.

Nussbaum has made a big impression on the Dakota State University campus in Madison as well, where he is the DSU residence director for special projects.

Mandy Parpart, director of student activities and new student orientation coordinator, sent in the nomination packet. Nussbaum, she wrote, was “intelligent, genuine, and hard-working.  I am impressed by Bryce’s confidence, dedication, and positive attitude.”

Students who have worked with him echoed those sentiments. “He constantly would provide me with the resources and support that I needed to feel confident in my position and role as an RA,” wrote Kelly Brusven, a senior at Dakota State University. He was also “deliberative about supporting causes within our community,” she added.

Vaille Swenson, another DSU senior, wrote, “He masterfully created an atmosphere of family in a group of dozens of people from all walks of life. Bryce is an amazing mentor, leader, and friend!” 

“He taught me a lot about leadership by coaching me through some tough situations an RA encounters,” said DSU student Lindsey Pate. “He did so much more than just the job description of [a residence hall director]. He genuinely cared about each of his RAs, the residents within the residence hall and everyone around him."

Nussbaum was a Dakota State student himself, receiving a B.S. in Digital Arts & Design with a specialization in computer graphics in 2011. He earned a Master’s of Science in Counseling and Human Development with a specialization in college counseling from South Dakota State University in 2014.

Nussbaum was touched by the award, but credited his colleagues and students for their support, Parpart in particular. He posted on his Facebook page that it was because of this “wonderful mentor and friend whose guidance and encouragement are a main reason I could ever be considered for such an award.”

Of Parpart, the DSU students, and the school environment, he said “[M]y achievements rest on the shoulders of my mentors and a workplace home who believed that all voices have merit and worth.”

He also thanked the SDHEA leadership for the acknowledgement. The award’s namesake, Marcus Boesen, was a charter member of the SDHEA, and dean of students at Black Hills State University. The award in Boesen’s memory is given to a candidate “who shows outstanding contributions to the overall development of students, to their educational institution and to SDHEA and student affairs,” says the SDHEA website.