On March 16, Xavier University won a JASPA award for Outstanding Campus Program for the third year in a row. JASPA is the Jesuit Association for Student Personnel Administrators.
This year’s winning program was the annual Men’s Club Volleyball competition with inmates at a local prison facility, Choices & Reflections: A Day with the Luther Luckett Flamin' Eagles. The program started in 2010 with an invitation from the recreation coordinator at the Luther Luckett Correctional Complex in LaGrange, Ky, which had recently started a varsity volleyball team. Xavier Club Sport teams are expected to dedicate a certain number of hours to community service each year, so, after doing its homework on the prison program the club nervously accepted. It turned out to be a lot of fun for everyone. Once the matches ended, several inmates spoke with the students about how wrong decisions resulted in their incarceration at Luther Luckett, but they also discussed how they were working to create a better life when they are released. The Xavier team, at first nervous coming into the prison, left with a better understanding of the men who inhabit Luther Luckett.
In 2012, Xavier’s Uncensored- Perform! Deliver! Produce! was recognized. A six-week professional development series, it is dedicated to workplace success strategies for students of various backgrounds. In 2011, the winner was Xavier’s Day of Solidarity. The day was comprised of 3 events: An open letter to the campus, “You Are Welcome at Xavier,” a daytime vigil remembering eight victims of suicide from bullying and distribution of resources, and an outdoor event called “Send Silence Packing” connected to Xavier’s student chapter of Active Minds, a national organization committed to mental health on college campuses.
The Ignatian Medal for an Outstanding Campus Program is awarded to an institution rather than to an individual. Student Affairs uses programs and services as tools to meet students' needs and to resolve campus conditions which impede the educational process. Program development is a creative process, one which requires a multiplicity of skills and talents. Good programs or initiatives are shared among campuses, and certain programs stand out from all others for their creativity, focus, adaptability to different campus environments, and proven effectiveness.