Provost Award

The Provost Award was established in 2014 to honor an outstanding graduating student who transferred to the University of Arizona from an Arizona community college. Criteria for the award includes perseverance and commitment to academic studies, contributions to the UA community and above-average scholastic ability, citizenship and leadership.

2018 Provost Award Recipients:
Maria Smith - Provost Award RecipientCynthia Sharon Burr
Cynthia Burr will graduate Summa Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Applied Science in Human Services and a minor in Cultural Awareness and Communications in Business and Society. Growing up in Phoenix, Arizona, Cynthia attended South Mountain High School for the Performing Arts, and in fall 1996 attended the University of Arizona. After a disappointing freshman year, Cynthia completed her general education requirements in the Maricopa Community College system.

Cynthia’s education was put on hold when her first son, Jayden, was born three and a half months premature. Spending his first months in the Neonatal ICU, Jayden underwent heart surgery, eye surgery, and suffered numerous complications, followed by years of intense therapies. Jayden is now 17 and doing well. Younger brothers, Braxton, 12,  and Jaxsen, 11, were also born prematurely. Cynthia and her sons have been active with the March of Dimes and were honored as the 2018 Ambassador Family for the greater Phoenix area.

After years of putting her own dreams on hold, Cynthia was determined to finish what she had started 20 years earlier and enrolled at Rio Salado College. She received her AAS as a member of Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society in May of 2017 and transferred to UA South.

Cynthia serves as steering committee Vice-Chair for Maricopa County’s Collective STEP (Support, Train, Engage, Prepare) for Youth, a coalition of more than 50 agencies working with at-risk youth. Serving as a representative of UA South has presented her the opportunity to administer a survey she developed to collect and evaluate data in order to create a tailored human service program, providing a pathway that encourages human service employees to further their education.  As a student worker, under the supervision of Dr. Sheena Brown, Cynthia has attended workshops, seminars, career fairs and collaborated with Maricopa Community College personnel to offer students a seamless transition to the University of Arizona.

Following graduation, Cynthia plans to continue working in higher education, focusing on outreach, collaboration, recruitment, and marketing, and intends to attend graduate school.