Deborah Maertens, assistant director of Faculty Immigration at NDSU, received the Region IV National Association of Foreign Student Advisers (NAFSA) Association of International Educators Distinguished Service Award. The award was presented at the bi-regional NAFSA conference held Nov. 15, in Omaha, Neb., which was attended by more than 500 international educators from 13 states.
The Distinguished Service Award is given to a member of NAFSA who is involved in association activities, has donated at least 10 years of distinguished service to NAFSA and has acted as a mentor to colleagues in all aspects of the field. In addition, the award may recognize an individual who has provided significant leadership at the regional or national levels, or has simply reflected the ideals and goals of NAFSA through professional commitment and dedication to the field.
When presented with the award, the association praised Maertens’ willingness to share her expertise in faculty and scholar immigration matters with other professionals in the field through teaching workshops at both the regional and national levels, presenting sessions, writing association training curricula and providing one-on-one mentoring through phone calls she often received from other members asking for advice. The award presenter also described Maertens as “a tireless proponent of international education” through her work with public policy education and initiatives.
Summarizing her contributions, NAFSA stated Maertens’ “indelible spirit is a constant presence at our regional and national conferences … bringing an enthusiasm and dedication to the process that continues to influence us at our annual meetings. In all she does, she sets a higher standard; one that we should all aspire to.”