BC’s Miley brings home Gold Award

Published 5:05 pm Friday, October 8, 2010

UNIVERSITY SYSTEM of Georgia Chancellor Erroll B. Davis (center) awarded Bainbridge College faculty member Jenna Miley, left, the Gold 2010 Customer Service Award for an individual. BC Customer Service Champion Tonya Strickland, right, herself a recipient of a Governor’s Commendation for Customer Service, nominated Miley for the honor.|Marcia McRae

Jenna Miley of Bainbridge received the 2010 Gold Award in the Chancellor’s Customer Service Excellence Awards for the University System of Georgia (USG).

A Bainbridge College (BC) associate professor of computer science, Miley was named as the Institution Individual of the Year in recognition of her creating an electronic textbook to reduce costs to students and donating proceeds from its sales to a scholarship at the college.

She was honored by both USG Chancellor Erroll B. Davis and Gov. Sonny Perdue at the Sept. 28 awards ceremony at the USG Board of Regents in Atlanta.

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She was also chosen as a finalist for the Governor’s Annual Customer Service Awards, said BC Customer Service Champion Tonya Strickland, who nominated Miley and who received a Governor’s Commendation. Customer Service awards were created to recognize employees who go above and beyond their normal duties.

During the 2009-10 academic year, Miley earned customer service recognition at BC for her textbook-scholarship initiative and presented the first Miley Scholarship to Meghan Vickers of Bainbridge at BC’s Honors Night.

The textbook is for the computer fundamentals course required of all degree students, Strickland said, noting in her nomination that Miley’s solution to the rising textbook cost “was such a model of exemplary customer service that it even received a ‘thumbs up’ from a regional newspaper.”

The editorial noted that “one associate professor at Bainbridge College stands out as an incredibly special person.”

“Not only did Dr. Miley spend 400 hours writing the text, but she also diligently shopped for the best prices on CDs for delivery of the textbook and then spent hours copying it to the CDs herself to give to our Barnes and Noble bookstore,” Strickland said, adding that she then devoted more than 20 hours to work out details for delivery so that the price to the bookstore was $31.25 compared to the other book’s cost of more than $100.

“This action alone is remarkable, but then Dr. Miley chose to give every penny of the ebook sales back to students in the form of a scholarship,” Strickland said.

Then for Spring Semester, Miley edited her book so that it could also be used in the microcomputer concepts course in BC’s Technical Studies Division and put it on a USB drive instead of CD so that students had the book and a storage device.

The Miley Scholarship, which reached $7,000 in the spring, will benefit BC students for years and demonstrates how much BC faculty members care about the success of their students, Strickland said.

Miley has demonstrated customer service in many ways. When the Admissions Office asked about printing diplomas in-house to reduce costs, she set up the design in a software program, scanned the required graphics, prepared the mail-merge program, and printed each. Her contribution has saved more than $10,000 for the college and reduced the staff’s workload, Strickland said.

The professor also assists students with advising throughout the year, not just during registration, and assists the Admissions Office and the Academic Success Center during peak enrollment times.

With BC since 2002, Miley completed her Ph.D. in instructional design for online learning in 2008 through Capella University. She earned her Master of Arts in Computer Resources and Information Management from Webster University, her Bachelor of Science in Education from Southern Illinois University, and her Associate of Science in Education from Mohegan Community College.