Commencement Awards

2019 Award Winners

The ACM Prize for Service and Excellence in Computer Science:
Michael George Anthony ’20
Established in 2006 to recognize excellence in computer science and service to the Student Chapter of the Association for Computing Machinery or to the department.

The American Chemical Society Award:                       
Julia Reid Dorsheimer ’19
Awarded annually to the student who has made the most significant advance in his or her study of chemistry.

The American Chemical Society Award in Analytical Chemistry:
Kailyn Yun Cohen ’20
Awarded to a junior displaying an aptitude for a career in analytical chemistry. This award is sponsored by the Analytical Chemistry Division of the American Chemical Society.

The American Chemical Society Division of Inorganic Chemistry Undergraduate Award in Inorganic Chemistry:
Kailyn Yun Cohen ’20
Awarded to a student who has demonstrated excellence in inorganic chemistry and who has future plans that include a career in chemistry.

The American Chemical Society Division of Organic Chemistry Undergraduate Award in Organic Chemistry:
Julia Reid Dorsheimer ’19
Presented by the Organic Chemistry division of the American Chemical Society to the graduating senior chemistry or biochemistry major who has demonstrated excellence in organic chemistry based on a combination of research, coursework, and a desire to pursue a career in chemistry.

The American Chemical Society Undergraduate Award in Physical Chemistry:
Kailyn Yun Cohen ’20
Recognizes outstanding achievements by an undergraduate student in physical chemistry.

The Arabic Award:
Omar Elghawy ’19
Given by the modern languages department to honor an outstanding student in Arabic.

The BEAR Innovation Award:                                  
Brendan M. Cherrey ’20, Elena Ngo ’19, Charles Toranosuke Lyding ’19, Michael George Anthony ’20, Kathleen Moore Schultz ’22, Alexa Grace Lewis ’22, Samuel Lucas Isola ’19 
Established by board of trustees member Will Abele ’61 and awarded to the student teams that demonstrated the capacity to think and act entrepreneurially during the “Be Entrepreneurial and Roar” Innovation Competition, which is sponsored by the U-Imagine Center for Integrative and Entrepreneurial Studies.

The Cyrus E. Beekey Prize:
Jordan Alexander Carver ’19, Caroline Elizabeth Buckley ’19
Endowed by Viola Sweigart Beekey ’29 and her son, Cyrus E. Beekey Jr. ’64, and awarded to a senior who has been an outstanding premedical student.

The Berman Award:
Kalina Emiko Hieshima ’19
Awarded by the Philip and Muriel Berman Museum of Art for artistic achievement in the Annual Student Exhibition. 

The Dr. Frederick M. Binder Award:
Jordan Alexander Carver ’19
Established to honor the memory of Dr. Frederick M. Binder ’42, whose long and distinguished career exemplified Ursinus College at its very best. To be awarded to a graduating senior who, in the judgment of the faculty, offers greatest promise of high academic and professional achievement.

The Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Service Award:
Lilly Marie McQueen ’19
Presented to any Biochemistry and Molecular Biology student who has demonstrated extraordinary enthusiasm or service to the major.

The Biology Teaching Assistant Award:
Joseph Henry Cammarano ’19, Caprice D. Eisele ’20, Yoonjung Kim ’19
Awarded to an outstanding biology laboratory teaching assistant.

The Rachel Blunt Memorial Award:
Julissa Bonilla ’19
Established in 2013 by family and friends of Rachel Blunt 2014, this award is given to a senior who exhibits a passion for theater, showing consistent and exemplary contributions to productions in the Theater and Dance department during his or her time at Ursinus College.

The Boeshore Prize:
Emily Arabella McGarrigle ’19
Presented for excellence in the study of Greek.

The Donald E. Camp Award:
Sydney Elise Cope ’19
Established and selected by Donald E. Camp, professor emeritus of art, and awarded to the student exhibiting risk-taking in art in the Annual Student Exhibition.

Chapel Leader Award:
Shelby Renae Carmichael ’19
This Religious and Spiritual Life Award from the Office of the Chaplain is presented to a Chapel student who is fully invested in fostering religious life and community at Ursinus College.

Chemistry Laboratory Technique Award:
Yusef Gamal Ahmed ’19
Presented to the student chosen for exhibiting the best laboratory technique.

The Chinese Award:
Daniel Joshua Powell ’20
Given by the modern languages department to honor an outstanding student in Chinese.

The Compton/Rose Prize:
Johnathan Thomas Myers ’19, Bridget Sherry ’19
Established by Barbara Rose Compton ’69 and Robert L. Compton Jr. ’68 in honor of their parents, Mrs. Eileen K. Rose and Mr. and Mrs. Robert L. Compton Sr., and in memory of the late Wilbur B. Rose. Awarded to an outstanding student majoring in business and economics.

The CRC Press Freshman Chemistry Achievement Award:
Christine Alexandra Heren ’22
Awarded annually, by the Chemical Rubber Company Press, to the freshman achieving the highest academic average in chemistry.

The Alfred L. Creager ’33 Prize:
Kieran Matteo DeMelfi ’19
Established by Ray Hamilton ’57 and awarded annually to the student who contributes the best work, either fiction or nonfiction, to a campus publication.

The J. Douglas Davis ’41 Prize:
Garrett Graham Bullock ’20
Established by Ray Hamilton ’57, the income to be awarded annually to an outstanding student in history.

The Louis A. DeCatur Prize:
Bailey Nicole Ludwig ’19
Established in 2000 by faculty colleagues and former students to honor professor Louis Aubrey DeCatur’s 30-year teaching career at Ursinus, and awarded to an outstanding English major for excellence in the study of language and literature.

The George Ditter Prize:
Corinne Marie Cichowicz ’19
Awarded each year to the graduating senior whose work in history and political science promises most to the perpetuation of democratic self-government. The prize was established by J. William Ditter in memory of his father and is continued through the generosity of J. William Ditter Jr. 1943.

The Geoffrey Dolman Prize in Creative Writing:
Kieran Matteo DeMelfi ’19, Julia Alexandra Stern ’19
Created in 1996 in memory of Geoffrey Dolman, the prize to be awarded to a student who demonstrates proficiency in creative writing.

The Duttera Prize:
Kevin David Leon ’20
Contributed by Mrs. Amos Duttera, and awarded yearly to the students attaining the highest standing in the study of church history.

The Ehret Prize:
Eric Edward Williams Jr. ’19, Bridget Sherry ’19, James Patrick Callaghan ’19, Clara Naomi Baker ’19
Established by bequest of the Reverend Harry J. Ehret 1900 in memory of his son, Robley W. Ehret ’39, and awarded each year to a student who has excelled in athletics.

The Excellence in Dance Award:
Donnay Naim-Atif Burden ’19, Jenna Marie Endy ’19
Awarded in recognition of outstanding contributions to the dance program in the areas of scholarship, research and/or performance.

The Faculty Prize for a Promising Sophomore in Computer Science:
Dalton Daniel Rothenberger ’21
Established in 2006 by the faculty of the Department of Mathematics and Computer Science, and awarded to a promising sophomore in computer science.

The Faculty Prize for a Promising Sophomore in Mathematics:
James Fredrick Haasis ’21
Established in 2006 by the faculty of the Department of Mathematics and Computer Science and awarded to a promising sophomore in mathematics.

The Faculty Prize for Outstanding Achievement in Academics/Scholarship in Neuroscience:
Sarah Luise Wonsidler ’19
Awarded for outstanding achievement in academics and scholarship.

The Faculty Prize in Biology:                                     Andrew Joseph Belville ’21, Damon Vernon Briggs ’21, Erin Amanda-Lynne Fowler ’20, Erin N. Saybolt ’20, Samantha Susan Garritano ’19, Jessica Robyn Taddeo ’19
Awarded to an outstanding biology or biochemistry and molecular biology major in each class.

The Faculty Prize in Computer Science:
Serena Schaefer ’19
Established in 1989 by the faculty of the Department of Mathematics and Computer Science and awarded to an outstanding computer science student.

The Faculty Prize in Mathematics:
Yuqing Liu ’19
Established in 1989 by the faculty of the Department of Mathematics and Computer Science and awarded to an outstanding mathematics student.

The Professor George C. Fago Prize:
William Joseph Wells ’19
Endowed by George Bause ’77, to be awarded to a graduating psychology major who has excellent scholarship in psychology and acceptance to a graduate school of social work, criminology or criminal justice.

The Philip H. Fogel Memorial Prize:
Kyla Ann Jermin ’19
Endowed by Mrs. Edwin J. Fogel in memory of her son and awarded each year to the member of the senior class who has done the best work in Religious Studies.

The French Award:
Emily Jayne Shiplett ’20
Established in 1976 by Dr. Albert L. Reiner, former chairman of the Department of Romance Languages, to honor an outstanding student in French.

The Sumner and Mary French Prize in Music:
Alexander Woubeshet Lehr ’19, Indira Natalie Joell ’19
Established in 2010 by music professor John French in memory of his parents and awarded annually to the senior who has made the most significant contribution to the music program, as determined by the faculty of the department.

The German Award:
Sarah Luise Wonsidler ’19
Given by the Modern Languages department to honor an outstanding student in German.

The Thomas P. and Frances T. Glassmoyer Scholastic Award:
Sarah Ruth DeFelice ’19, Nolan Casey Murt ’19
Endowed in 1980 by Thomas P. Glassmoyer ’36 and Frances Thierolf Glassmoyer ’40, and awarded annually to the member of the graduating class with the highest scholastic average for four years at Ursinus.

The Richard Goldberg Award:
Robert Jeffery Varney ’20
Endowed by the late Dr. Richard Goldberg ’58, his family, friends and colleagues, and awarded to the student exhibiting a sensitive interpretation of an artistic vision in the Annual Student Exhibition.

The Olive Sargeant Hamm Award:
Samantha Susan Garritano ’19
Established in 1988 by Olive S. Hamm, class of 1929, the first recipient of the “All Around Award” for the senior woman who exemplifies “the best in college life—athletically, socially and scholastically.”

The Robin Blood Harris ’56 Memorial Prize:
Joanna Rose Timmerman ’19
Established by her family and friends for the senior woman who exemplifies those outstanding qualities of leadership and scholarship that characterized Robin’s association with Ursinus.

Health and Exercise Physiology Outstanding Young Professional:
Emily Hope Reeve ’19
Awarded to a health and exercise physiology major who has actively engaged in service and leadership within the department

Health and Exercise Physiology Scholar Award:
Brittany Nicole Gasser ’19
Awarded to a health and exercise physiology major who has earned the highest overall cumulative GPA at Ursinus College.

The Heller Prize in American History:                        Tiffini-Amber Leigh Eckenrod ’20, Elizabeth Sarah Iobst ’19, Heidi Anne Maurer ’19, Gregory Daniel Stryker ’19
This prize was established by Flloyd E. Heller Jr. ’33 in his will as a memorial to his father, Flloyd E. Heller Sr., his wife, Mary Francis Heller, and himself. The prize shall be awarded in his/her senior years to the student who has achieved outstanding grades and accomplishment in the field of American history.

The Heller Prize in English Literature:                   Courtney Ann DuChene ’19, Faith Caroline Carson ’19, Sophie Elisabeth Gioffre ’19, Brianna K Hurley ’19, Kristyn Ann Fetterman ’19
This prize was established by Flloyd E. Heller Jr. ’33 in his will as a memorial to his father, Flloyd E. Heller Sr., his wife, Mary Francis Heller, and himself. The prize shall be awarded in his/her senior years to the student who has achieved outstanding grades and accomplishment in the field of English literature.

The Heller Prize in Politics:
Corinne Marie Cichowicz ’19
This prize was established by Flloyd E. Heller Jr. ’33 in his will as a memorial to his father, Flloyd E. Heller Sr., his wife, Mary Francis Heller, and himself. The prize shall be awarded in his/her senior years to the student who has achieved outstanding grades and accomplishment in the field of government and politics and political science.

The C. Dallett Hemphill Prize:
Chloe Anabel Sheraden ’19
Endowed by family, colleagues and friends in memory of C. Dallett Hemphill (Ursinus faculty 1987-2015) and awarded annually for the best research paper in American or women’s history.

The Ronald E. Hess Chemistry Department Award for an Outstanding Pre-Health Student:
Omar Elghawy ’19
Established by Dr. Ronald E. Hess, a long-serving premedical adviser, to recognize an outstanding chemistry major who plans a career in the medical field.

Hillel Student Leadership Award:
Jonathan Louis Guba ’19
This Religious and Spiritual Life Award from the Office of the Chaplain is presented to a Hillel student who is fully invested in fostering Jewish life and community at Ursinus College.

The Horioka Latin Prize:
Fiona Autumn Copeland ’19
Established in 1993 by Margaret A. Horioka ’77 and awarded to a graduating senior who has excelled in Latin.

The Japanese Award:
Veronica J Fried ’19
Given by the Modern Languages department to honor an outstanding student in Japanese.

The Ronald C. Kichline Prize:                                     Peyten Lynn Lyons ’19, Brett Charles Highland ’19, Caroline Elizabeth Buckley ’19, Peter Joseph DeSimone ’19
Awarded annually to a senior who has excelled in athletics.

The Lawrence Lange Award:
Sophie Elisabeth Gioffre ’19, Joanna Rose Timmerman ’19
Established in honor of Jan Lawrence Lange, Dean of Continuing Education and Associate Dean of the College (1995-2003) upon her retirement in January 2003. This award is presented annually by the faculty of the Education department to the graduating senior who best exemplifies outstanding work in the field of education and is committed to nurturing the lifelong learning of others through a career in teaching.

The Laughlin Award:
Gabrielle Rose Manto ’19
Endowed by Henry P. Laughlin, M.D. ’38 and his wife, M. Page Durkee Laughlin, for the student who has made outstanding contributions to his or her class and to the College.

The William L. Lettinger Chemistry Award:
Julia Reid Dorsheimer ’19
Endowed by his wife, Sharon B. Lettinger ’66, in memory of William L. Lettinger ’65, and awarded annually to a member of the senior class who has demonstrated promise for graduate studies in the field of chemistry.

The MAA Prize for Service and Excellence in Mathematics:
Faraha Rathod ’19
Established in 2006 to recognize excellence in mathematics and service to the Student Chapter of the Mathematical Association of America or to the department.

The Elizabeth Rockefeller McCain Memorial Prize:
Thea Kate Pastras ’21
Endowed by the late George Nox McCain and awarded annually to the student who at the end of the sophomore year has shown the greatest ability in the use of the English language as evidenced by work in composition and literature.

The Barbara Olmo McInnis ’57 Prize:
Sarah Conway Howell ’19
Established by Ray Hamilton ’57, the income to be awarded annually to an outstanding student in teacher education.

The Linda L. McIntyre Award:
Aliyah Brooke Stephens ’21
Established in honor of Linda L. McIntyre ’68 and presented to a sophomore woman who demonstrates initiative in financing her education, proficiency and perseverance in intercollegiate athletics, and a cooperative and unselfish attitude in women’s sports.

The Joseph H. Melrose Jr. Prize:                                        Anika Louise Backelin-Harrison ’19, Chelsey Thomas ’19  The Joseph H. Melrose Jr. Prize shall be awarded to the graduating senior who, in the judgment of the faculty, has demonstrated a strong intellectual curiosity, concern for overlooked and underdeveloped areas, a global perspective and a sense of adventure.

The Professor Eugene H. Miller Prize:
Roumaissaa Rose Tailassane ’19, Gregory Daniel Stryker ’19
Endowed by the Honorable Hermann Frederick Eilts ’43 and awarded annually for the best essay on a subject in political science.

The Jessie Ashworth Miller Prize:
Laura Katelyn Johnson ’19
Established by Ray Hamilton ’57, the income to be awarded annually to an outstanding student of anthropology and sociology.

The Wayne F. Millward ’57 Memorial Prize:
Angela Antoinette Bey ’19
For excellence in the theater program, established in 1988 by Ray Hamilton ’57, the income to be awarded annually to the student who contributes the most to Ursinus’s theater program.

The Mary Onopchenko ’85 Memorial Prize:
Corinne Marie Cichowicz ’19
Established in loving memory of Mary by her family and friends, to be awarded to an outstanding senior who plans a career in law.

The Outstanding Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Student Award:
Jake Christopher Lachowicz ’19
Presented to a graduating BCMB major who has demonstrated outstanding qualities as determined by the BCMB faculty.

The Outstanding Research Student in Biology Award:
Gabriella Altmire ’19, Kirk Robert Cherneskie ’19
Awarded to an outstanding research student in biological science.

The Paisley Prize:
Tara-Duncan Lawrence McLeod ’19, Mysterie Sylla ’19
Awarded for the best dissertation by a member of the senior class on an assigned topic involving the thoughtful application of the principles of Christianity to the problems of practical life.

The Parsons Prize:
William Donald Wehrs ’19
Awarded annually to an outstanding student of American history. This prize was established by Ray Hamilton ’57, in memory of William T. Parsons ’47, professor of history.

The Pennsylvania Institute of Certified Public Accountants Prize:
Kelly Lynn Wright ’19
Presented to the outstanding senior in accounting.

The Peters Prize:
Daniel Whelton Becker ’19
Awarded annually for excellence in the study of the Bible.

Physics Senior Teaching Award:                                 Jason Joseph Bennett ’19                                       Awarded annually to a graduating senior physics major in recognition of excellence in teaching while serving as a teaching assistant or help-room tutor.

Psi Chi Award for Excellence in Psychology:
Morgan Adele Cope ’19
Awarded to the graduating psychology major who has demonstrated excellence in academics, research, and service.

The Psychology Award for Distinguished Leadership and Citizenship:
Bryanna Marie Jones ’19
Awarded to the graduating psychology major who has demonstrated extraordinary service to the department, college, and/or community.

The Psychology Award for Distinguished Scholarship:
Noah Christopher Yeagley ’19
Awarded to the graduating psychology major who has demonstrated outstanding research and scholarship and who intends on pursuing research in graduate school or the field.

Ursinus QUEST Award:
Mysterie Sylla ’19
Presented to a graduating senior who embodies the values of the Ursinus Open Questions and has undergone a significant personal transformation.

The Margot and Richard P. Richter Prize:
Courtney Ann DuChene ’19
Established in 2003 by faculty members and friends in celebration of the 50th wedding anniversary of the College’s 10th president and his spouse, to be awarded to a student who demonstrates excellence in both English and Music.

The Andrew Rifkin Prize:
Kevin David Leon ’20, Courtney Ann DuChene ’19
Established through a bequest from Andrew R. Rifkin ’74, the Andrew Rifkin Prize recognizes students or alumni selected for the best investigative article, either published or unpublished.

The Frank K. Rifkin Prize:
Daniel John Walker ’20
Established through a bequest from Andrew R. Rifkin ’74, the Frank K. Rifkin Prize recognizes students or alumni selected for the best point of view in an editorial or editorials, either published or unpublished.

The Robert Rifkin Prize:
Alexander Woubeshet Lehr ’19
Established through a bequest from Andrew R. Rifkin ’74, the Robert Rifkin Prize recognizes students or alumni selected for the best original music composition, either published or unpublished.

The Jacqueline R. Rifkin Prize:
Danielle Merie Friedman-Hill ’20
Established through a bequest from Andrew R. Rifkin ’74, the Jacqueline R. Rifkin Prize recognizes students or alumni selected for the best editorial cartoon or illustration or photograph, either published or unpublished.

The Miriam and Irving N. Rosenthal Memorial Award:
Suzanne Angermeier ’20
Established in 1989 by the gift of professor William E. Rosenthal to commemorate in perpetuity his beloved parents, who instilled in him a sense of the intrinsic value of lifelong learning. To be awarded to a female rising senior who has clearly demonstrated an interest in pursuing graduate study in the mathematical sciences.

The Senior Alumni Award:
Johnathan Thomas Myers ’19, Susana Nodrisavic Zelaya Rivera ’19
This award recognizes two graduating seniors who show promise of making significant contributions to their careers, their community and/or Ursinus College. One award is presented to a female and one is presented to a male.

Senior Prize for Exceptional Contribution to the Neuroscience Program:                                                 Noah Christopher Yeagley ’19, Katherine Anne Madden ’19                                                                               Awarded to the senior who exhibited exceptional contribution to the neuroscience program.

The Spanish Award:
Susana Nodrisavic Zelaya Rivera ’19
Given by the Modern Languages department to honor an outstanding student in Spanish.

The Professor Evan S. Snyder Prize:
Jason Joseph Bennett ’19
Endowed by George Bause ’77 to be awarded to a graduating senior who has demonstrated excellent scholarship in physics.

The #TalkUpTheBears Digital Marketing Competition Prize:
Payel Dheya Girwarr ’18,
Cody J. Richmond ’18, Hannah Wolfram ’20, Kimberly Wieghaus ’20, Carl Perry Christoph ’18, Courtney Cortese ’19, Joseph Edgar Duffy ’18, Franchesca Marie Liberatoscioli ’18
Established by the Athena Institute, a biomedical research organization founded by Winnifred Cutler ’73, to offer students the opportunity to develop and demonstrate digital marketing skills. Awarded to the student team that demonstrated the best digital marketing strategy and execution during a competition sponsored by the U-Imagine Center for Integrative and Entrepreneurial Studies.

The Robert Trucksess Prize:
Megan Lynn McTaggart ’19
Established by Robert Trucksess ’19 and awarded annually to a student in the senior class who plans to study law and who shows unusual promise.

Up-and-Coming Neuroscience Major:
Karen Giselle Herrera ’21
Awarded to the student who has established herself/himself as a promising student in the neuroscience major.

The Teresa L. Urban Leadership Award:
Elizabeth Sarah Iobst ’19
Awarded annually by the USGA to a senior in recognition for outstanding leadership.

U-Imagine Center Rock-a-Thon: James Spencer Vandegrift ’20 , Gwendolen Louise Lasser ’20, Renee Elizabeth LeClerc  ’20, Kailyn Yun Cohen ’20, Sarah Ruth DeFelice’19, Abigail Leigh Goldstein ’19, Sonya Marie Jacobsen ’19, Julianne LaRosa ’19, Shira B. Levin  ’21, Amin Attari  ’21, Asher Grant Donohue ’22
Rock-a-thon is a 15 hour weekend even where students work as a team to “rock a problem” and then present or “pitch” the solution to a panel of outsiders. Teams work through a defined entrepreneurial problem solving method to clarify problem, validate that it is truly a problem worth solving, create a solution that is different than what currently exists and is tailored to meet the needs of the people affected by the problem. Student teams present their solution to outside experts in a concise and engaging manner. 

The Ursinus College Chemistry Department Award in Organic Chemistry:                                                        James Fredrick Haasis ’21
Presented annually to the student who has done exemplary work in both semesters of organic chemistry.

The Sidney L. Wagman Prize:
Indira Natalie Joell ’19
Awarded annually in memory of Dr. Sidney Louis Wagman ’51 to an outstanding and deserving student who has demonstrated loyalty to high ideals. The fund was established by his parents, Mr. and Mrs. Morris Wagman, and his brother, Dr. Sheldon P. Wagman ’59.

The Professor Elizabeth B. White Award:
Joe Makuc ’19
Endowed by the Honorable Hermann Frederick Eilts ’43 and awarded annually for the best essay on a subject in history.

The John Moore Wickersham Phi Beta Kappa Sophomore Book Award:                                          Jessica Erin Greenburg ’21, James Fredrick Haasis ’21, Elvi Sopiqoti ’21, Hakan Atillasoy ’21, Sarah Elisabeth Johns ’21, Thea Kate Pastra ’21
Awarded annually to the sophomore with the leading grade point average and diversity of interests that represent the tenets of election to Phi Beta Kappa.

The William B. Williamson Prize in Philosophy:
Tara-Duncan Lawrence McLeod ’19, Mysterie Sylla ’19
Established in 1989 in honor of William B. Williamson, professor of philosophy and chairman of the Department of Philosophy and Religion from 1968 to 1988. Awarded annually to the student who best exemplifies the Socratic spirit of inquiry in both oral and written expressions on issues which demand human attention and solution.