Quinlan academic advisor wins 2015 Student Service Award
Matthew Rombach, academic advisor for Quinlan undergraduate students, was recognized with the 2015 Student Service Award by the Staff Council of Loyola University Chicago.
This year, Staff Council considered more than 150 staff members for its six Staff Recognition and Excellence Awards. The nominations pointed to countless acts of kindness, generosity of spirit, and stories of notable staff members consistently going above and beyond the call of duty. More on the awards→
“I am so pleased that the university has recognized Matt for his initiative, creativity, and continuous improvement to Quinlan undergraduate student services,” said Assistant Dean Susan Ries. “He is truly deserving of this award.”
Rombach joined the undergraduate advising office in December 2011, after serving as a graduate assistant in 2008 and 2009.
Q&A with Matthew Rombach
Here, we asked Rombach to talk about Loyola and his work with students.
What is your favorite thing about working at Loyola?
More than anything, I enjoy working with students each day—from quick check-ins on academic requirements and degree progress, up to solving bigger problems like helping them get back on track after a difficult semester.
What is your most memorable achievement as a Loyola employee?
Being honored with the Student Service award certainly stands out, especially considering my fellow nominees this year and the amazing work they do.
I also have a big milestone coming up: The first group of incoming first-year students I presented to at their orientation back in 2012 will be graduating this coming May. Though I work with most students only two out of their four years at Loyola, it means a lot to me that I’ll have been there from day one of their Loyola experience through to Commencement.
What does Loyola's mission mean to you?
What stands out most to me is the fact that we are a community. It’s unique that a university of our size in a city like Chicago can feel like home to students, staff, and faculty. And that’s important to me. I always feel a strong sense of community whether I’m in my usual space at the Water Tower Campus or at Lake Shore for a meeting, an event, or orientation. Even prospective students I’ve met with, who have spent maybe just a few hours on campus, are impressed by the atmosphere at Loyola and everyone’s willingness to help.
What motivates you to succeed each and every day?
Student success is my number one concern, and I feel like I succeed when I can provide students with guidance and resources to be successful in their education. My colleagues in Quinlan set a high standard that motivates me every day, and the opening of the Schreiber Center this year has brought a lot of new energy to campus that keeps me excited to see where we’ll go from here.
Tell us how you show your Rambler pride.
As an alum of Loyola’s MEd in Higher Education program and a member of the Quinlan team, I have a lot to be proud of! I’m far more likely to wear Loyola or Quinlan gear than University of Illinois (my undergraduate alma mater), even when I’m visiting Champaign-Urbana. I’ll take every opportunity I can to brag about Loyola, whether it’s to prospective students or higher education professionals at other schools.
Tell us something most people at Loyola would be surprised to know about you.
I have a pretty eclectic taste in music—one of the hardest decisions I’ve had to make was whether to see a Japanese heavy metal band or Toad the Wet Sprocket, who were playing on the same night. (I went with the metal band.) This past January I traveled to Colorado with my brother to see one of my favorite bands play a show in the supposedly haunted Stanley Hotel, the inspiration for The Shining.