UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Karen McNeal, financial coordinator for the School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture in the College of Arts and Architecture, has been honored with the 2017 Award for Administrative Excellence.
The award, established in 1970, is given to a faculty or staff member whose performance, methods and achievements exemplify the highest standards of administrative excellence.
A nominator said McNeal has been an outstanding office professional and great mentor to the faculty and staff.
For more than 14 years, McNeal has been an integral part of the mission for the school. She is sole financial coordinator, managing more than 100 budgets, process reimbursements and other forms for faculty, staff and students.
In the past several years, the staff of the school has seen significant changes, including a merger and open positions due to retirements. Colleagues credited McNeal’s work ethic and attitude for guiding the staff through these transitions.
“McNeal is an exceptional individual and has single handedly maintained a professional atmosphere at the school through many transitions,” said a colleague. “We need to celebrate individuals like her and confirm our dedication to them, as they are dedicated to the institution.”
A colleague praised McNeal’s ability to excel at her own “very detailed and complex job” while pitching in on numerous occasions to assist in vacant positions.
“McNeal completes her work very well without fanfare, and we can always trust her to uphold the highest ethical integrity,” said a colleague. “In her more than 23 years at Penn State and over 14 years with our school, she truly exemplifies administrative excellence.”