Logo for the Trailblazers award with a computer and person leading a hike.The Trailblazers in Online Education Professional Awards recognize online support professionals who lead the way in designing engaging learning environments, facilitating best-teaching practices, and integrating cutting-edge technology to enhance course development and increase student engagement and learning outcomes. Recipients will be recognized at the annual Interface Conference. 

The five categories in which Trailblazers can be nominated are:

Going the Extra Mile 
Consistent in going above and beyond the call of duty 
This award celebrates those who expand the boundaries of their job description to create learning environments that are not just functional but transformative, leaving a lasting impact on the learning journey of students and the broader educational community. 

Commitment to Excellence 
Steadfast and dedicated to continuous improvement
This award recognizes individuals who champion the cause of continuous improvement in online course development. They actively seek opportunities for refinement and enhancement, advocating for best practices that elevate the overall quality of educational content.

Service Mindset 
Willing to provide support to colleagues and learners
This recognition celebrates individuals who consistently extend a helping hand, embodying a spirit of collaboration and support to empower educators in their quest to create impactful and engaging online learning experiences.

Creative Problem-Solving & Ingenuity
Innovative in identifying and incorporating strategies that elevate online teaching and learning
This award celebrates individuals who actively seek inventive solutions to overcome obstacles in the online learning landscape, identifying and incorporating strategies that go beyond conventional approaches. Their ability to think outside the box transforms challenges into opportunities, bringing about groundbreaking advancements in online teaching and learning.

Inspirational colleague who promotes camaraderie among peers, learners, and various online groups
Recipients of this award are champions of collaboration and camaraderie. They create a positive and inclusive atmosphere, promoting a shared sense of purpose among colleagues and learners alike. Their commitment to building community extends beyond the virtual classroom, influencing and inspiring a collaborative spirit that enhances the overall educational experience.


Award Eligibility

Eligible recipients are academic support staff who support online education at the University of Florida, but do not serve in an instructional role or instructional capacity. UF faculty and staff can nominate a person who has excelled in one of the award categories.


Application Window:

The application window is currently closed. Please check back in late 2024/early 2025.