Thyra Briggs, vice president for admission and financial aid, is the recipient of the 2020 Henry T. Mudd Prize, an award that recognizes extraordinary service. The honor was announced at the College’s Convocation ceremony, held virtually via Zoom, Aug. 25.
Awardees receive $6,000, $3,000 of which is designated for use within the College at the discretion of the recipient. Briggs says she will donate her prize to the Employee Emergency Relief Fund, a new fund established to assist employees during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Henry T. Mudd Prize is awarded each year, typically at the College’s Commencement ceremony, to a member of the Harvey Mudd community whose service to the College and its mission is deemed exemplary. Henry T. Mudd (1913–1990), the son of Harvey S. Mudd, was instrumental in the creation and early development of the College named for his father. Henry Mudd served as a founding trustee and chair of the board for 23 years.
Upon receiving the award, Briggs said, “I just want to say thank you so much. The faculty, the staff, the students, everyone at Harvey Mudd has been so incredibly welcoming for the past 13 years. To someone who does not come from a math or science background, to be a part of a community that has taught me the beauty, the love, the elegance of math and science and the role that it plays in changing our world, I am so incredibly honored for the recognition. I’m so grateful to my cabinet colleagues and to my incredible admission and financial aid staff and all the support they have given me. I can’t wait to see how we can continue to transform the College and STEM education in the years to come.”
Briggs joined the Harvey Mudd staff in 2007. As vice president for admission and financial aid she is responsible for Harvey Mudd College’s student recruitment, admission and enrollment.
Following is the text of the citation that was awarded by President Klawe to Briggs:
For her selfless commitment to the mission of Harvey Mudd College for more than a decade, during which she has served with integrity, collegiality, kindness and good humor;
For giving unsparingly of her time, knowledge and energy, working tirelessly with both the administration and faculty;
For being a strategic leader, partnering with her staff to improve the gender diversity of the student body and to increase the number of first-generation students, while continuing to improve the College’s racial and ethnic diversity;
For her direct involvement in the life of every Mudder for the past 13 years;
For serving the greater community of higher education through her association with and leadership of national organizations such as the Common App and for her consortial collaboration within The Claremont Colleges;
For raising the College’s visibility through her national leadership, speaking at multiple professional conferences, talking at junior parents’ nights at high schools across the country and serving as a highly effective ambassador for Harvey Mudd College both nationally and internationally;
For her dedication to mentoring her staff, serving as a kind and thoughtful role model and friend, embracing and demonstrating healthy excellence, all while serving up delicious desserts for celebrations both within her department and at other campus meetings.
Thyra Briggs, vice president for admission and financial aid, is hereby designated as the 2020 recipient of the Henry T. Mudd Prize.