Huskers surprise faculty, staff with letters of thanks

· 3 min read

Huskers surprise faculty, staff with letters of thanks

David Fitzgibbon and Curt Bright | University Communication
Video: Karen Freimund Wills reacts while reading a letter of thanks from a student. Click the video to see this reaction and others.

Four Huskers, invited under the guise to discuss Women’s History Month as part of a University Communication video project, were surprised with letters from current and former students. The notes highlighted impacts the four have made on campus and beyond.

Click the video above to see reactions from the four — Karen Freimund Wills with UPC Nebraska; Jemalyn Griffin, assistant professor of practice with the College of Journalism and Mass Communications; Erynn Butzke, head coach of the Husker Spirit Squad; and Tiffany Heng-Moss, dean of the College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources. Complete text from each of the letters is listed below.

Karen Wills

Karen Wills made a tremendous impact on both my life and my college career. As my former UPC Nebraska adviser, Karen always pushed me to develop invaluable personal and professional skills. She encouraged me to take on tasks that were outside of my comfort zone, that in turn, helped me to grow as an individual and a leader. I know Karen’s office door is wide open when I need professional help, have questions or just need someone to chat with. Karen is so strong, empathetic and charismatic, and will continue to change the lives of so many students on the UNL campus!

Kaelie Kellner

Jemalyn Griffin

I cannot tell you of another time period in my life that I’ve ever felt this confident. Confident in myself, my strengths, my weaknesses and who I show up as each and every day. All thanks to her. There’s something really, truly special about her – she is absolutely brilliant, a creative genius and a fearless leader in every sense of the label. She stands up for what’s right, prioritizes inclusion above all else and empowers students to love themselves and love their work. The effect she has on everyone she meets is infectious – you never want to stop talking to her, learning from her or laughing with her. I hope I grow up to be just like her. Thank you for everything you’ve done for me, taught me and inspired me to pursue, Jemalyn. I am forever grateful.

Lauren Tritch

Erynn Butzke

Husker Nation sees the sparkly uniforms, the pom poms, and the stunts, but what they don’t see is the woman who makes it all happen. Erynn’s title is coach, but to me she is the epitome of resilience. She is the woman who saw my potential freshman year and was willing to give my overly eager self a chance. She is the woman who goes to bed late creating our packing lists only to wake up at 5:30 a.m. for our practices. When Erynn gives to something, she gives all of herself. What I admire most about Erynn is her work in the details — she leaves no Husker tradition behind. Under her direction, teams are pushed until ordinary is made extraordinary. Erynn is what gives the Spirit Squad the special Husker touch.

Morgan Holen

Tiffany Heng-Moss

Tiffany is truly someone who has the power of helping people to pursue their passions. Every encounter I had with Tiffany from my sophomore year of high school through receiving my master’s in entomology resulted in me becoming a better person because Tiffany truly invested in me. It is because of her that I have gained several leadership skills that will remain with me throughout my career.

Katie (O’Brien) Keller

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