Professional News

Advisors Honored During This Year’s Ken Freedman Day of Recognition

Reward winners.
From left to right: Kayla Johnson, Shawn Stewart, Jordan Hoehler, Niamh Minion.

LEXINGTON, Ky. (May 16, 2022) ­– The University of Kentucky Advising Network hosted the Ken Freedman Day of Recognition with a luncheon honoring advisors for their work during the previous academic semester. 

Ken Freedman served as a professional advisor at UK for 15 years prior to his death in 2001. Freedman was one of the founders of the UK Advising Network in 1986 and instrumental in advising leadership on campus in the 1990s. 

In the spirit of keeping Ken Freedman’s legacy alive, the UK Advising Network’s Ken Freedman Day of Recognition highlights members’ dedication to the profession and the students they serve. 

During the luncheon, the UK Advising Network awarded advisors with the Outstanding New Advisor Award, Outstanding Advising Administrator Award, Ken Freedman Outstanding Advising Award (Primary Advisor) and Ken Freedman Outstanding Advising Award (Faculty Advisor).

While the Advising Network honors advisors each year during its Day of Recognition, this year was especially special Jennifer Stevens said, chair of the UK Advising Network and director of Academic Advising in the College of Public Health, as this year marks the 35th anniversary of the Network.

“A common misconception of academic advising is that it is just course registration. However, academic advisors provide support to students allowing them to explore their academic interests, develop plans for their educational goals and identify appropriate resources for their success,” Stevens said. “The Ken Freedman Day of Recognition is an opportunity to acknowledge this excellent work being done by UK’s academic advisors.”

The following individuals were recognized during this year's luncheon:

  • Shawn Stewart, Gatton College of Business and Economics – Outstanding New Advisor
  • Niamh Minion, Education Abroad – Outstanding Advising Administrator
  • Jordan Hoehler, College of Communication and Information – Ken Freedman Outstanding Advising Award (Primary Advisor)
  • Kayla Johnson, Ph.D., College of Education – Ken Freedman Outstanding Advising Award (Faculty Advisor) 

“Although we were only able to award four individuals, we had 105 individuals nominated and over 400 nominations submitted,” Stevens said. “This is a testament to the positive work happening at UK. It’s important to recognize people who work so hard for their students.”

To see the full list of previous Ken Freedman awardees, click here. To see a full recap of the day of recognition, click here.

The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.