VU receives national award for helping promising students create paths to success

VU receives national award for helping promising students create paths to success

Vincennes University Logo

November 23, 2020

November 23, 2020

VINCENNES, Ind. - A national organization is honoring Vincennes University for its commitment to helping young people build better futures for themselves.

Jobs for America’s Graduates (JAG) is awarding a National Educational Leadership Award to the University in recognition of the extraordinary leadership and support VU contributes to America’s most successful program in helping young promising students learn in-demand employability skills, pursue postsecondary education, and enjoy career advancement opportunities. 

Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb is a big proponent of JAG. He serves on the National Board of Directors and was formerly the Board Chair. 

Holcomb congratulated the VU JAG College Success Program on its efforts to help change the trajectory of lives.

“Vincennes University and Jobs for America’s Graduates are teaming up to keep young adults on the path to lifelong success,” Holcomb said. “This well-earned recognition highlights VU’s extraordinary dedication to supporting students as they develop and grow the skills needed to have great careers.”

An awards ceremony will take place via Zoom during the JAG Board of Directors Meeting in Washington D.C. on Dec. 3.

“We are grateful that JAG has honored us with this award,” VU JAG College and Career Success Program Manager Shaun Brames said. “We believe in empowering students to engage in and explore their educational goals. We focus on structuring student success in ways that best meet the individual needs of students and propels them to tap into their inner potential. I am extremely proud of the students for their hard work and determination during the challenges of the past year.

“I look forward to a very bright future for the VU JAG College Success Program. I am extremely grateful to be a part of this team at Vincennes University. They give me all the tools I need to help students be successful.”

JAG is a state-based national non-profit organization that helps young people remove barriers to success for them to achieve their fullest potential. It aims to give students an advantage that sets them apart from other youth in today’s emerging workforce through student-centered programs.

VU’s JAG College Success Program is a trailblazer in many ways. It is one of two programs of its kind in Indiana that draws students from around the state. The program helps students prepare to enter the workforce after graduation by offering adult mentoring, career guidance and counseling, leadership development, service-learning projects, social activities, emergency support services, remediation, and more. 

“I was a part of JAG in high school and was really excited to see it offered at the college level,” said Substance Abuse Counseling major Emily Carrico of Winslow, Indiana. “I really enjoy the social events and doing community service projects. I also know Shaun is available to help proofread papers and to help with career coaching.”

More than 50 students participate in the JAG College Success programs on the Vincennes and Jasper campuses.

“The Vincennes University JAG College Success Program has been an amazing experience for me,” said Special Education major Caleb Johnson of Lawrenceburg, Indiana. “Shaun keeps after me every day to make sure I am being successful. He works hard to help as many students as he possibly can, and he has kept me on track.”

VU also hosts the VU JAG Summer Academy yearly. It provides 200 college-bound high school students from throughout Indiana with a one-week immersive college experience.

“I enjoyed participating in the Vincennes University JAG Summer Academy. I got to make new friends and learn what to expect as a college student. I really enjoyed the fun activities and, of course, Holiday World. I have really enjoyed the social activities and the community service projects that Shaun Brames plans for us. I love being part of the JAG College Success Program and getting to work with Shaun. I can count on him to provide academic remediation all hours of the day,” said Conservation Law Enforcement major Mason Caudill of North Judson, Indiana.

Like Caudill, Grace Middleton, a World Language and Linguistics major from Huntingburg, Indiana, enjoyed attending the virtual VU JAG Summer Academy in July. She also values the high-quality academic support that the VU JAG College Success Program provides.

“As a real academic specialist, Shaun Brames has done a bunch to help me out this year,” Middleton said. “He was able to help me get started on my psychology research paper when I was having writer’s block. I can always count on him to help me get the job done.”

The JAG College Success Program is making a difference in the lives of our future leaders and heroes, especially during this unprecedented year. It will continue playing an integral role in creating positive outcomes for all.

For more on VU’s JAG College Success program, see Information about JAG Indiana is available at