November 3, 2017

Fourth-year Family Science doctoral student Jenna B. Messman was awarded the Board of Regents’ Staff Award for Outstanding Service to Students in an Academic or Residential Environment. Messman received this award as Sexual Health Program Director in the University of Maryland Health Center. Messman has been working to advance LGBTQ+, specifically transgender, health care equity on campus for several years. She participates in the Health Center’s multidisciplinary approach to transgender health care for students seeking hormones, focusing on informed consent and the educational component.

These awards represent the highest honor bestowed by the board to recognize staff employees who have demonstrated excellence in one of five categories.

Messman’s work in transgender health care area led her to apply for and ultimately receive a Moving Maryland Forward grant last year. She used the grant to create the Mid-Atlantic Collegiate Transgender Health Networking group, bringing 24 health professionals from seven colleges and universities in the Mid-Atlantic region together to identify strengths, challenges, and training needs. She also hosted a Mid-Atlantic Collegiate Transgender Health Conference in June of 2017, which brought together 150 professionals from 30 different institutions and organizations to address those training gaps for collegiate health professionals.

Messman’s dissertation chair Professor Leigh Leslie had this to say about the award: "Jenna is a leader nationally in helping campuses be responsive to the physical and mental health needs of transgender students. We are very fortunate to have on our campus such a knowledgeable and dedicated advocate for the health needs of all students, and particularly those who are marginalized."

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Jenna Beckwith Messman, Leigh A. Leslie