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Students, Faculty Honored at 2010 Wilson College Academic Awards Dinner

Posted: May 21, 2010

5/21/2010 Wilson College honored students and faculty alike at its annual Academic Awards Banquet held April 23 in Jensen Dining Hall. Approximately 130 people attended the dinner, where Wilson’s top scholars were recognized.
DATE: May 21, 2010
CONTACT: Cathy Mentzer, Manager of Media Relations
Phone: 717-264-4141, Ext. 3178

CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. – Wilson College honored students and faculty alike at its annual Academic Awards Banquet held April 23 in Jensen Dining Hall.

Approximately 130 people attended the dinner, where Wilson’s top scholars were recognized. In addition, three faculty members received the Donald F. Bletz Awards for Teaching Excellence. This year’s Bletz award winners are:

Senior Faculty Member – Lori Frey, director of intercollegiate athletics and associate professor of exercise and sport science. Frey joined Wilson in 1988 lives in Chambersburg
Junior Faculty Member – Amanda McMenamin, assistant professor of Spanish, lives in Morgantown, Pa., and has been at Wilson since 2008.
Adjunct Faculty Member – Cynthia Sullivan, adjunct instructor of education, lives in Waynesboro. She has taught at Wilson since 2004.

Criteria for receiving the teaching awards includes: using effective, creative and/or innovative teaching techniques; staying up to date within the discipline; inspiring students; outstanding performance in a variety of teaching responsibilities, and participating in leadership activities related to teaching.

In addition, this year, two new awards were given to two full-time faculty members: Dr. Michael Cornelius and Dr. Lisa Woolley, both of Chambersburg. Cornelius, associate professor of English and chair of the English and Mass Communications Department, received the Assessment Innovation Award and Woolley, associate professor of English, received the Assessment Excellence Award.

The following students received academic awards at the banquet:

The Edward and Sarah Anderson Psychology Prize, awarded to a graduating senior for outstanding scholarship in the discipline of psychology, went to Nikola Grafnetterova, a citizen of the Czech Republic who lives in Chambersburg.

The James Applegate Award, awarded to a student or students with an interest in and appreciation of drama and theater, was given to juniors Kelly Flavin (performance) of Carlisle and Ian Downin (scholarship) of Chambersburg.

The Lucy Bremmer Global Citizenship Award, given to a student or students who participate in the service learning component of the Global Citizenship Initiative and intended to be used to offset expenses associated with travel to another country, went to senior Mariza Cooray, a citizen of Sri Lanka.

The Virginia Dodd Cooper Prize, was established by the students of the late Virginia Dodd Cooper, Wilson French professor, and awarded to a student who has demonstrated excellence in both French and academic work. The prize went to senior Katelin Reever of York.

The Buchanan Prize, awarded to the member of the senior class who – in the judgment of classmates – has exerted the most praiseworthy influence for good and has worked most notably for the welfare of others, went to senior Christina Howard of Glen Rock.

The Margaret Criswell Disert Honors Scholarship, given to a student who has submitted the proposal for senior advanced study and research considered most worthy of support by the selection committee, was awarded to junior Mariam Khalifeh, a citizen of the nation of Lebanon.

The Estep-Lawson Memorial Prize, awarded to a student in lower-level French who demonstrates excellence and shows future promise in French studies, went to junior Katharine Voldstad of Chambersburg and freshman Rebekkah Williams of Benson, Arizona.

The Mildred Franklin Prize for excellence in the classical languages is awarded to a senior who has demonstrated proficiency in Latin or Greek and has shown understanding of the literature and thought of the ancient civilizations. The award went to sophomore Elise Bricker of Shippensburg.

The Donna Gomer Veterinary Medical Technology Continuing Education Award went to senior Amanda Ridge of Harrisburg.

The Davison Greenawalt Grove Award, which is awarded to a member of the junior or senior class participating in research in the area of physical and life sciences, was given to senior Bemnete Tadesse, a citizen of Ethiopia.

The Dorle Haas Memorial Prize, awarded to a senior for outstanding service within the greater Chambersburg community, went to the aforementioned Katelin Reever.

The Margaret Strode Haines Award, which recognizes a student who possesses outstanding qualities of scholarship, interest in the humanities, and strength of mind, body and spirit, was awarded to seniors Ariel Carver of Pittsburgh and Sarah Weikert Wilson of Chambersburg.

The Joanne Harrison Hopkins Literary Achievement Award, which is given for the finest piece of imaginative literature in fiction, poetry or drama, went to seniors Sara Goss and Jacquelyn Valencia, both of Chambersburg.

The Josef Michael Kellinger German Award, given in honor of the late Josef Michael Kellinger, former Wilson German professor, to a student who has demonstrated excellence in German or foreign language studies, was awarded to three students: junior Kiah Berman of Greencastle, the aforementioned Mariza Cooray and Reginald Heefner of Chambersburg, who is a participant in Wilson’s Teacher Intern Program.

The Catherine Herr Langdon Award, given to a senior who has demonstrated academic excellence, and, during the year, has fully, unselfishly and willingly given comfort, compassion, encouragement, guidance, and help and understanding to her fellow women students, went to the aforementioned Nikola Grafnetterova.

The Mary-Eleanor Maule Travel Grant for travel planned in support of a student's study in Spanish,

given to a student selected by the dean of the college in consultation with the Spanish faculty, went to the aforementioned Mariza Cooray.

The Alta Lindsay McElwain Prize, awarded to the best student in the freshman class in Latin or Greek, was given to freshman Dana Hill of Chambersburg.

The Robert Shannon McElwain Prize, awarded to the best student in mathematics in the freshman class, went to freshman Alexis Powers of South New Berlin, N.Y.

The Outstanding Peer Teacher award was given to Jessica Domanico of Chalfont.

The Nicky Hoffman Reich Award, given annually to the Wilson student whose work with animals shows commitment to their humane treatment, went to junior Janice Lykens of McConnellsburg.

The John D. Rose Award in Environmental Studies, given to an outstanding junior majoring in environmental studies or biology to fund a summer research project or internship, was awarded to juniors Megan K. Dennis of Cooperstown, N.Y., and Tara Leeking of Fayetteville.

Grace Tyson Schlichter Award in Communications, which is given to a senior who has shown general academic excellence and outstanding promise for a career in a field of communications, went to senior Kayla Chagnon of Loudon, N.H.

The Gloria Randle Scott-Francis Richards Hesselbein Prize for Exemplary Volunteer Leadership, awarded to a senior who has demonstrated outstanding volunteer service during her four years at Wilson College, was given to senior Amelia Frast of Riverdale, N.J.

The Mary Beers Sheppard Prize, awarded to the member of the senior class who has shown the keenest understanding and appreciation of literature, went to senior Nathalie Djiguimkoudre, a citizen of the nation of Burkina Faso.

The William P. Van Looy Business Prize, awarded to the junior or senior business and economics major who has demonstrated excellence in business studies and in service to the well-being of both the Wilson College and larger community, went to seniors Elsa Camuamba of the country of Angola and the aforementioned Mariza Cooray.

The E. Grace White Prize, awarded to the most outstanding junior in the area of biology for use at an approved summer laboratory, went to the aforementioned Bemnete Tadesse.

The Wilson College Education Award for outstanding achievement in academic studies and in professional preparation went to senior Janice McClintock of Chambersburg.

The Wilson Equestrienne Award, presented to a graduating senior who has excelled in her academic work and in equitation, was given to seniors Risa Saar of Etters and Nicole Malott-Shelton of Hagerstown, Md.

The Wilson College Fine Arts Prize, awarded to a graduating senior for outstanding achievement in both art history and studio art, went to the aforementioned Sarah Weikert Wilson.

The Carolyn Zeleny Prize, awarded to a sociology student in the junior or senior class based on academic excellence and/or community service, was given to senior Mary Heather McCoy of Chambersburg.

The CRC Press General Chemistry Achievement Award went to junior Jing Luan of China.

In addition, Wilson College Scholar Athletes were announced at the dinner. To attain this honor, a student must have a grade-point average of 3.5 or higher and participate on one of Wilson’s eight varsity athletic teams. She also must have attended Wilson at least three semesters prior to receiving the award.

Students Wilson scholar athletes are the aforementioned seniors Elsa Camuamba, Nathalie Djiguimkoudre and Nikola Grafnetterova, as well as Melissa Ellerman of Newville and Samantha Vance of Winchester, Va.; juniors Elizabeth Bush of Pottstown, the aforementioned Ian Downin, Alaina Hofer of Duncannon, Monique Pare of Cambridge, Mass., Teslote Tadesse of Ethiopia; sophomores Amelia Doyle of Smithsburg, Md., Colleen O’Reilly of Mardela Springs, Md., and Ciera Rhodes of Carlisle; and exchange student Aisling Gallagher of Ireland.

For more information, contact Wilson College Manager of Media Relations Cathy Mentzer at 717-264-4141, Ext. 3178, or


Founded in 1869, Wilson College is a liberal arts college dedicated to the education of women. Affiliated with the Presbyterian Church and located in Chambersburg, Pa. Wilson offers bachelor’s degrees in 30 areas and a master’s degree in education. The college’s 2009-10 enrollment in both the College for Women and the Adult Degree Programs is 838 and includes students from 20 states and 18 foreign countries. Wilson is committed to environmental sustainability and to preparing leaders who will serve their communities and professions effectively.

Last Updated: June 30, 2011