Jacquie Brown receives 2020 Distinguished Service Award

Posted on August 25, 2020

“Sets the gold standard for staff”

“A rock-solid support for students”

“A heart full of caring”

Jacquie Brown

These are just a few of the phrases that people use to describe Jacquie Brown, the undergraduate programs assistant in the Department of Mechanical and Materials Engineering (MME). Her contributions and dedication to students are well known by Faculty members, and are now being recognized by the Queen’s community with a 2020 Distinguished Service Award.

Jacquie still remembers her first interview at Queen’s in 1978, arriving “in my flowery dress and my big hair with my Grade 12 diploma and Olivetti typewriter 35 wpm certificate in hand.” She has now supported nearly four decades of students, providing advice for their academics but also genuinely caring about them on a personal level.

Students who provided supporting letters for Jacquie’s award nomination stressed the importance of her compassionate approach and dedication to helping students succeed. One student wrote that “so much of what Jacquie does is behind the scenes, and I don’t think people truly understand the impact she has on students’ success and performance.” Another wrote that “her endless support, positivity and compassion are the reason Jacquie Brown is a household name in the Beamish-Munro Hall study rooms.”

Staff and faculty members also benefit from Jacquie’s knowledge and positive approach. Department Head Keith Pilkey remembers joining Queen’s as an Assistant Professor and recognizing immediately that Jacquie was the ‘gold standard’ for staff. “I always knew her to be exceptionally well-organized industrious and cheerful, but it wasn’t until I became Department Head that I recognized the full depth and breadth of the support she provides to students,” he says. “I’ve heard so many stories about her role in helping some of our most vulnerable students through personal challenges.”

Jacquie also has a significantly positive impact on the lives of her co-workers and faculty members. Her expert knowledge of the regulations and rules of academic life has helped so many faculty members navigate the procedures and workflows that they need to manage “In Mechanical Engineering, no matter who I called about a myriad of different undergraduate issues, the answer would invariably be... ‘we had better ask Jacquie’... or ‘I’ll check with Jacquie’.... or ‘Jacquie will know’,” says former Associate Dean Lynann Clapham.

Jacquie says she is deeply touched by the honour and the opportunity to work with so many wonderful colleagues over the years. “MME has been my rock, my family, my everything,” she says. “Each and every student holds a special place in my heart and being there for them is my passion!”