It’s our great pleasure to celebrate the outstanding work across our community of universities and schools each year via the CIS Higher Education Award. This year’s recipient was announced at our CIS Global Forum on International Admission & Guidance in Madrid! It’s an honour to recognize and thank the following individual for their exemplary service in the international admission and guidance community.
2022 CIS T. Michael Maybury Award
Congratulations Ruby Bhattacharya of Barnard College, New York, United States
The presentation of the CIS T. Michael Maybury Award is a tradition and an opportunity for us to honour a member of the CIS higher education community who merits special recognition for a high level of service and leadership.
Ruby is described as ‘a tremendous advocate for international students’ who ‘puts students at the center’ of their work. One nominator said Ruby's ‘approach to both parents and students comes from a place of sincerity and earnest engagement in enabling stakeholders to make the right choice.’
Ruby has a talent for seeing what gaps exist to support international students and finding ways to fill them. In one instance, that was helping to build programming to support students in China. In the words of one nominator, ‘as counselor in China, I have appreciated Ruby finding time to create a series of admissions-focused sessions with a group of other university admissions professionals during the pandemic in 2020. Her dedication made our community feel seen, heard, and not forgotten. I know she has continued this programming for other regions.’
In another instance, when a commonly used financial aid form used by international students applying to universities in the United States was no longer available, Ruby helped to spearhead an ad-hoc committee tasked with creating a replacement form. The new forms are free for students and universities to use, helping to reduce barriers and increase student access to university options.
Ruby is a leader in diversity, equity, inclusion, and justice (DEIJ) work within the admissions and guidance community. In the words of one nominator, ‘she continually reminds us of it by pushing and challenging us to have tough conversations about this topic.’ She serves on the Executive Committee of the International Association of College Admission Counselling (International ACAC). In the words of a fellow volunteer, she has ‘pushed International ACAC to wholly examine its centering of DEIJ work.’ She is a critical voice in the National Association for College Admission Counseling's (NACAC) Admissions Practices Committee and has helped to push for NACAC's Guide to Ethical Practices to be translated into languages other than English.
Those who know her say Ruby ‘serves as an unofficial mentor, organizer, and cheerleader for both students and other colleagues in the profession.’ She ‘makes newcomers comfortable as she ensures everyone's voice is heard equally, without bias.’ She is a leader who is inspiring and authentic and ‘inspires others by walking the talk.’
About the award:
CIS T. Michael Maybury Award—Mike Maybury, former Executive Director of CIS, devoted a lifetime of service to the promotion of international education and global understanding. During his years at the helm of CIS, Mike served us as a dedicated leader whose tireless work on behalf of higher education was instrumental in fostering the educational programmes we now carry forward. With this award, we honour a member of the CIS higher education community whose work continues Mike’s legacy and who has also made significant contributions to international education.
Congratulations to Ruby!
- School & university collaboration
- University admission & guidance