Valeta Wensloff Earns Distinguished Academic Staff Award

Valeta Wensloff has received the 2024 Distinguished Academic Staff Award for her contributions surrounding curriculum development, outreach and teaching. Wensloff is a senior academic specialist with the Department of Media and Information, and the department’s undergraduate director and internship coordinator.  She has been with the department for 14 years.  With a background in television production and digital media art and technology, Wensloff is her team’s go-to graphic designer. 

“The types of things that I do are either curriculum related or outreach for the department,” Wensloff said.  “I might make a website; I've been working on the printed materials for our scholarships award ceremony…or I might help with event planning for (the International Conference on) Meaningful Play.  Anything basically that needs doing.” 

Wensloff also assists with the production of courses for the college’s Master of Arts in Strategic Communication, as well as helping create the curriculum for the online Master of Arts in User Experience program. 

“It’s always different,” Wensloff said.  “I might have to learn a new program or go to a new space that I haven't been to before.” 

Wensloff’s expertise in curriculum development extends outside her college.  She currently chairs the University Curriculum Committee

“It’s interesting because I get to see how classes are approved and why things are rewritten or not approved,” Wensloff said. 

But it’s not all work and no play for Valeta Wensloff.  One of her hobbies is portraying fictional characters, which led her to another leadership role at MSU. 

“Basically, one of the students in our department said, ‘I want to start a cosplay club,’” said Wensloff.  “I said, ‘Then I’ll be the advisor (of MSU Students Interested in Cosplay and Costuming) because I love to do cosplay and go to conventions in costume.” 

Wensloff is also co-advisor of the MSU Accafellas, the campus men’s a capella ensemble. 

The key to a satisfying career often comes down to finding one’s niche…and Wensloff is happy she’s found hers. 

Valeta Wensloff will be recognized with the MSU Distinguished Academic Staff Award during the All-University Awards Ceremony on May 1.  For her, the honor is an acknowledgment of the crucial niche she’s crafted in the service of Michigan State University. 

“I feel exceedingly fortunate,” Wensloff said.  “I enjoy what I get to do and I know how lucky that is.” 

By Kevin Lavery