Spring 2022 Academic Awards
The Spring 2022 Academic Awards Ceremony was held on May 3, 2022 in the Lewis Academic Building Brooks O'Brien Auditorium.
Presentation of Awards
First Year Student Award
Given to the student who has demonstrated an ongoing process of self-reflection, self-awareness, and self-advocacy that has led to significant achievement of first year academic goals.
Recipient: Dominic Limaldi
Presenter: Katie Roquemore, Assistant Professor of Education
Hello, my name is Katie Roquemore, and I have the pleasure of presenting Dominic Limaldi with the First Year Student Award. I had the privilege of working with Dominic in College Learning Strategies and Perspectives in Learning this year. Dominic possesses many qualities of an exceptional student including being dedicated, organized, curious, and self-aware. Like many new students, Dominic was anxious at the start of the fall semester. However, Dominic is an amazing self-advocate, and by communicating his learning and emotional needs with faculty, he gained confidence to meet any challenge. He continues to grow academically and personally. Dominic is also a positive and supportive class and community member, always ready with a pop culture reference and smile. Congratulations, Dominic, on an amazing first year; you have earned it!
Recipient: Fernando Zavala
Presenter: Meg Baronian, Associate Professor of Writing
I encountered Fernando for the first time in the fall of 2021. It was by email before the semester began and he was already demonstrating great skills in self advocacy. Fernando was a student in my WRT1011 class, and I have the good fortune of working with him again this semester in WRT1012. He is someone who demonstrates the “ongoing process of self-reflection, self-awareness and self-advocacy” acknowledged in the First-Year award, and he has achieved a lot in his first two semesters at Landmark. I find Fernando’s commitment and perseverance admirable. He completes every assignment with care, uses office hours for support as much as he can, and takes every opportunity to revise. His academic writing improves with every essay draft he submits. His other instructors concur. Doug Lynch his math instructor this spring says, “Fernando has been 100% engaged in my class all semester. He works through every single problem and makes sure he knows it. He is an incredibly dedicated student”. Lucy Stamp who worked with him in Perspectives in Learning in the fall says Fernando “experienced tremendous growth as a learner and always seemed interested in learning for its own sake”. I’m very happy to name Fernando Zavala one of two recipients of the First Year Student Award.
Creative Writing Award
Given to the student who demonstrates commitment to and talent with creative writing.
Recipient: Madeleine Symons
Presenter: Hannah Markos, Assistant Professor of Education
Hello, my name is Hannah Markos, and it’s my pleasure to present Madeleine Symons with the creative writing award. Sharing work with peers is one of the most nerve-wracking aspects of life as an emerging writer, but Madeleine actively seeks feedback, especially of the sort that will guide the revision process. Delving more deeply into what is not yet working about a story in order to continue to improve requires a good deal of courage and dedication to the craft, and Madeleine exemplifies both of these traits. An aspiring novelist, Madeleine has developed a portfolio of short fiction that spans a range of genres, but regardless of the conventions of the form in which she’s working, her narrative authority and talent for creating authentic vulnerability in her characters makes each piece deeply relatable and emotionally compelling—two elements that will provide a strong foundation for future work, especially in book-length projects that are meaningful and powerful. Congratulations, Madeleine!
Rob Gunther-Mohr Award
Given in memory of Rob Gunther-Mohr, founding faculty member and beloved teacher and colleague, to the student who best exhibits independent critical judgment, a love of reading and ideas, and an abiding compassion for others.
Recipient: Meredith Robertson
Presenter: Sara Glennon, Professor of Writing
The Rob Gunther-Mohr award is presented annually in memory of Rob to the student who best exhibits independent critical judgment, a love of reading and ideas, and an abiding compassion for others.
This year’s recipient is Meredith Robertson.
I have had the great pleasure of working with Meredith in two different courses at Landmark. Meredith is the kind of student who makes any class she is in better for everyone. She’s well-prepared, insightful, humble, and curious about other people’s viewpoints. She loves to learn. She loves to read. She loves language.
In class and in her writing, she does this thing, which some say is the essence of academic discussion: she builds on the ideas of others. She listens to her classmates and responds to them by name, adding to their ideas or thoughtfully countering their ideas with her own.
She helps us all use our shared classroom discussion to make meaning.
One of my favorite quotes is from a writer named Nicole Wallack, who directs the undergraduate writing program at Columbia. Wallack says this: What writing teachers want is for students “to show up as thinkers, on the page.” Meredith shows up as a thinker -- a curious, intelligent, compassionate thinker -- every time she comes to class. She is an ideal recipient of this award. Congratulations, Meredith.
Career Readiness Award
Given to the student who has made the most strides in demonstrating professionalism in the workplace and developing a career plan.
Recipient: Chris Ferraina
Presenter: Jan Coplan, Director of Career Connections
My name is Jan Coplan. I am the Director of Career Connections and have the privilege today to present the Career Readiness Award. The Career Readiness Award is given to the student who has made the most strides in demonstrating professionalism in the workplace and developing a career plan.
The recipient of this award began their journey of building their professional skills in 2019 when they completed our Employment Readiness Program. Since then, they have participated in several of our workshops and events including writing an elevator pitch, mock interviewing, networking, and finally interviewing in the fall with our corporate partners from Computer Aid and EY.
Recently they were awarded $1,500 to help build up their entrepreneurial business of buying and reselling popular videos.
This student will be receiving their Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science on May 14th and in preparation for “life after Landmark” has submitted their resume to numerous corporations. They were recently interviewed by our newest partnership, Tufts Point 32 Health. In an effort to be thorough in their search for opportunities they have been in the process of creating a customized computer science internship with Monadnock Developmental Services in Keene, NH for this summer.
Having taken ownership and initiative in their career plan the Career Readiness Award goes to Chris Ferraina. Congratulations Chris for all your diligent and focused efforts.
Writing Excellence Award
Given to the student who best exemplifies communicating with purpose, clarity, coherence, and persuasiveness in writing.
Recipient: Claudia Sherman
Presenter: Meg Baronian, Associate Professor of Writing
Claudia Sherman is a student in my WRT1011 class this semester. In the short time I’ve known her, she has impressed me with her seriousness of purpose, focus and self-discipline. Claudia’s writing ability is noteworthy. She reads everything assigned and reflects on it thoughtfully. She thinks critically about her subject then writes with insight and skill, incorporating what she takes from discussion and texts. She not only synthesizes information effectively but makes every other writing decision involved in producing an essay with thought and care. Claudia deserves to be recognized for the effort and skill with which she has approached every writing task she’s been given this semester. She is this year’s recipient of the Writing Excellence Award.
Excellence in Liberal Studies - Associate
With nine disciplines, liberal studies explore humanity from many perspectives. Our courses are about the diversity of human experience and how the past informs contemporary life. Excellence in liberal studies means engaging with new and enduring questions in humanities, literature, and social science.
The Award for Excellence at the Associate Level goes to a student who has excelled in a range of our elective courses. This student shows curiosity about the world and the desire to explore unfamiliar topics.
Recipient: Katherine Addison
Presenter: Peg Alden, Professor of Anthropology
Although this award goes to an associate-level student, my encounters with the recipient of this liberal studies honor have been in upper-level courses…courses that pull for critical thinking on complex, sometimes contentious, issues. The liberal studies faculty had no difficulty coming to consensus that Katherine Addison deserved this award that honors thoughtfulness, curiosity, and academic excellence. Congratulations, Katherine!
Excellence in Liberal Studies - Baccalaureate
The Award for Excellence at the Baccalaureate Level goes to a student who has pursued a focused area of interest in the liberal studies. This student is a budding scholar who has the potential for leadership in the field.
Recipient: Ben Heath
Presenters: Lynne Shea, Professor of Literature
Scholarship means engaging with ideas, valuing both theories and facts, and displaying an openness to seeking out and synthesizing multiple perspectives. This student’s faculty remark on his passion for the subject matter and a willingness to engage with difficult questions. He maintains high standards but also inspires classmates not only through his intelligence but also his compassion for others. I had the good fortune of working with this student in two courses this year and am so pleased to give this award to Ben Heath.
The Maria Forte Art Award
Named for a beloved founding member of Landmark College’s art department, goes to a student who is deeply committed to developing as an artist, and who is willing to take risks and spend considerable time on their art, regardless of the medium. The student consistently produces work of a high caliber that manifests deep engagement and experimentation, and routinely elevates the level of conversation within classes, helping to cultivate a culture of curiosity, dialogue, and inclusivity.
Recipient: Lana Deane
Presenter: Jen Morris, Professor of Photography
Lana, your steady curiosity shines like a star, glittering. You ask us for more information, more challenges, and more feedback. You are the student in the room who possess the continual dedication to refinement of craft while simultaneously cultivating space to experiment. When you fail, you fail heartily– with a sketchbook to document how to reinvent what you learned. The yarns of questions and attempts that you are weaving together may seem thin and incomplete to you now, but may we remind you that are still threading warp and weft; the full pattern will reveal itself over time.
Your light shines in your role as a member of this community. You are a grounding presence for your fellow classmates. Your critiques are full of grace, genuine interest, and aplomb. You lead the Art Club.
We, as the Fine and Performing Arts Department, are grateful to have the opportunity to offer you this award.
Excellence in Psychology
This award goes to a student who has excelled in psychology. Through academic achievement and work outside the classroom, the student has shown mastery of foundational content, a scientific mindset, and the people-focused skills for a multicultural and neurodiverse society.
Recipient: Sarah Kersey
Presenter: Tim Beck, Assistant Professor of Psychology on behalf of Professors Linda Kerr, Tim Beck, and Solvegi Shmulsky
Congrats, Kersey, on this receiving our first ever award for excellence in the discipline of psychology. No student I’ve worked with embodies the attributes that define this award more than you, and none is more deserving of being awarded it in its inaugural year. You have been a consistent, critical voice in our young psychology program, leaving an indelible impact on students, staff, and faculty. It has been a pleasure watching your passion for psychology and social justice grow across many courses and conferences we’ve participated in together. You have a rare ability to not only understand complex ideas but communicate them to others in ways that help them understand them as well. Wherever the future takes you, I hope you continue to nurture these qualities as you embark on the next phase of your journey.
Recipient: Alexandra Jassin
Presenter: Linda Kerr, Associate Professor of Psychology on behalf of Professors Linda Kerr, Tim Beck, and Solvegi Shmulsky
It is with great pleasure to name you, Alexandra, as one of the recipients of the Excellence in Psychology award this year. Through academic achievement and work outside the classroom, you demonstrate mastery of foundational psychological concepts and an understanding of the scientific mindset. Further, in your interactions with others and your work for the Center for Women and Gender, you display the people-focused skills necessary for a multicultural and neurodiverse society. Not only do you care deeply for the success of others, but you add a dash of color to all you touch. Thank you for your tireless contributions to the Centers for Diversity. Congratulations and best wishes!
The Computer Science Award
This award is given each year to a student who has excelled academically in the program and also shows much potential as a future technology professional.
Recipient: Andrew Barrows
Presenter: Karina Assiter, Assistant Professor of Computer Science
I am pleased to announce that Andrew Barrows was unanimously selected by the Computer Science Program faculty to receive the Landmark College 2022 Computer Science Award.
Andrew is the type of student that instructors hope for; he is hard working, intelligent, kind, respectful, mature, humble, motivated, and exceptionally generous with his time. He rarely, if ever, misses (or arrives late to) class. He submits his work on time and always performs at the top level. He never complains either about project requirements or course-based workloads. When his peers have problems with their projects, Andrew jumps in to help.
As an anecdote, whenever I ask a question of the class, such as “are you ready to start” or “does that make sense” or “do you have any questions”, Andrew always gives his signature thumbs up as an acknowledgement. As faculty, we know that an acknowledgement is not always a given, so it’s appreciated (and a sign of emotional intelligence).
The only downside to Andrews stellar performance, strong work ethic and upbeat personality is that he is in high demand; many Landmark College entities would like to have him participate in their clubs, their committees, apply for their internships, participate in their research ventures, etc. I’ve tried a few times to recruit him for Computer Science support.
In terms of what Andrew has selected to participate in, he has contributed greatly to the Landmark college community, often in the position of leader. For example, he is currently a Resident Assistant, the President of Phi Theta Kappa, a Golden Key Officer, and co-president of the Dungeon Delvers club. He has been an intern working on Education Software Development and a student employee with Data Management and Online Hiring.
We are proud of Andrew for his accomplishments, and for his contributions to the Computer Science program specifically, and Landmark College in general.
Media Studies Award
This award is given to the student who has taken courses in radio, television or video, or journalism. This student has participated in our co-curricular activities for media studies and has excelled in the courses offered in this area. The student has gone beyond and applied these skills, collaborating to produce television, video, radio, or journalistic work for the College community.
Recipient: Jason DeWald
Presenter: Gyuri Kepes, Assistant Professor of Communication and Media Studies
It is my pleasure today to present the Media Studies Award: This award is given to the student who has taken courses in radio, television or video, or journalism. This student has participated in our co-curricular activities for media studies and has excelled in the courses offered in this area. The student has gone beyond and applied these skills, collaborating to produce television, video, radio, or journalistic work for the College community.
This award goes to Jason DeWald.
Over the course of his tenure at Landmark Jason has been instrumental to the growth and sustainability of the college’s student-run media outlets, Voices magazine, Voices TV and WLMC. It has been inspiring to observe Jason transform into a visionary leader in his work at the radio station and as a member of the founding team for Voices TV.
Equally impressive is Jason’s capstone project—the constitution, bylaws, and organizational structure for Landmark’s newly launched student-run news website, www.lcvoices.com--a document that will serve the college community and its varied media platforms for years to come.
Business and Entrepreneurship Award
This award goes to the student who has taken courses in professional studies and has demonstrated high proficiency in business and entrepreneurship. This student has accomplished excellent research or creative proposals in the areas of organizational design, finance, economics, marketing, accounting, or entrepreneurship. The student has gone beyond classes and has applied these skills contributing to the College community as a whole.
Recipient: Martha Meigs
Presenter: Lee Crocker, Associate Professor of Communication
Martha, you have entrepreneurship in your bone and being. You participate in the Idea Lab, in LEAP, and in various pitch competitions that you have won. You have your own business “Martha’s Passions” where you sell knitted and handmade products on our campus. Further, you are a member of the Golden Key Honor Society for students pursuing a bachelor’s degree.
You have earned this award through your creativity, focus, and hard work. It is our great pleasure to give this award to you.
The Geoff Burgess Communication, Entrepreneurship and Leadership Award
This award goes to a Communication and Entrepreneurial Leadership student who has demonstrated academic excellence and community leadership through initiative, diligence, and progress. This student has been inspirational and has provided leadership, helping to transform the lives of others and the community as a whole.
Recipient: Lauren Orser
Presenter: Mac Gander, Professor of Journalism
The Geoff Burgess award goes to a Communication and Entrepreneurial Leadership student who has demonstrated academic excellence and community leadership through initiative, diligence, and progress. This student has been inspirational and has provided leadership, helping to transform the lives of others and the community as a whole. It is an honor to present this year’s award to Lauren Orser.
Lauren is an extraordinary student, one whose diligence and perseverance are matched by a quick, lively intellect and a willingness to go the extra mile, whether in supporting other students or in making her own projects the best that they can be. The new independent student newsmagazine, Voices, would not have come into being without the scores of extra hours Lauren put in to make the graphics and layout work.
Lauren is one of the most dependable students I have worked with in more than three decades of teaching, and every class is made better by her presence in it. Working with Lauren has been one of the great joys in my professional life, and I could not be happier to present this award to her today. Congratulations, Lauren!
The Dianne Wood Award
This award will go to the student who has not only excelled academically in courses offered in professional studies, but who has also gone beyond and applied these skills to transform personally and thereby contributing to the college community as a whole.
Recipient: Sophia Spraggins
Presenter: Tamara Stenn, Assistant Professor of Entrepreneurial Leadership
Sophia is an enthusiastic class participant and team leader in both my Opportunity Management and Marketing classes. Sophia really integrates her learning experience. Sophia has gone beyond her classroom learning and applied these skills to transform personally and thereby contributing to the college community. For example, Sophia applies team building lessons from Opportunity Management to her marketing projects, and her marketing lessons to her Opportunity Management projects.
She strives to include her teams in marketing and Opportunity Management projects by seeking small points where they can start and encouraging them to become more involved. She applied her marketing skills to design the logo and messaging for Sharks Go Greens and has risen to the be the Opportunity Management classroom project’s top salesperson.
Sophia is patient and understanding of others and has a positive can-do attitude for herself, even when faced with a large challenge.
Life Sciences Award (Majors)
For outstanding achievement in the Life Sciences by a student who has declared a Life Science major.
Recipient: Hannah Goldman
Presenter: Christin Monroe, Assistant Professor of Biochemistry
Over the past year, Hannah has demonstrated a vast amount of growth. She regularly demonstrates leadership in the classroom, performing research, and to the Landmark community. She actively and regularly helps her classmates work through challenging problems.
While performing research Hannah always has a positive attitude when learning and troubleshooting laboratory techniques. She is a role model for Landmark students and shared her insights into obtaining research positions during the Landmark College Student Leadership Conference. She will be spending the summer further expanding her science knowledge through the Vermont Biomedical Research Network at the University of Vermont. Hannah’s leadership, strong content knowledge and accomplishments this year make her an ideal awardee for the Life Science Award. Congratulations Hannah!
Recipient: Becky Scheff
Presenter: Andrew Stein, Associate Professor of Environmental Science
Becky Scheff is a superstar. She is an artist, animal lover and virtual encyclopedia of animal facts. She is the most motivated student I have ever had. She reads books on research and contacts the authors with her questions. She finds internships, applies, successfully navigates multiple interviews and lands them. She cares for her fellow students enough to set up and run a study group in Chemistry that many students have depended on to improve their performance in the class. She is also involved in the newly formed Critter Club to maintain the health of a small animal collection in the MacFarlane Center. She does all of this with a positive attitude and maintaining an excellent academic record.
Becky, congratulations on receiving the Academic Award for the Department of Natural Sciences. It has been an pleasure to have you in class and an honor to present you with this award!
Life Sciences Award (Non-majors)
For outstanding achievement in the Life Sciences by a student who has not declared a Life Science major.
Recipient: Holly Kasten
Presenter: Christin Monroe, Assistant Professor of Biochemistry
Holly always brings a positive attitude to her coursework, even when working through difficult concepts in chemistry. She demonstrated leadership when working with others to make sure everyone successfully worked through laboratory experiments. By the end of Principles of Chemistry I, she showed strong content knowledge through her detailed final lab report.
Holly’s passion for learning was shown through her desire to take Biotechnology, a 3-week laboratory intensive course. Holly’s dedication to learning and expanding her skills make her an ideal awardee for the Life Science Non-Major Award. Congratulations Holly!
Recipient: Will Donohue
Presenter: Todd Miller, Assistant Professor of Physical Education
Will, this award is for outstanding achievement in the study of Life Science. I belive this is an accurate description of your performance in two Life Science lab courses that you have taken: Science of Wellness and Intro to Anatomy and Physiology. You have shown dogged persistence in working to understand complex systems and big ideas, and how they relate to everyday life. Your scientific writing skills have matured beyond format, content, and rationale to the point where your unique voice is evident in your reports. Even when your grade can go no higher, you review and revise, enhancing your understanding and improving the quality of your work. Congratulations.
Math Excellence Award
The award for excellence in mathematics goes to the student who is serious about further study in mathematics. The student actively participates in discussions, communicates clearly about mathematical concepts, and demonstrates inquisitiveness, dedication, consistency, and preparedness: the hallmarks of a successful analytic and logical thinker and problem solver.
Recipient: Oscar Gal
Presenter: Gil Rosenberg, Associate Professor of Mathematics and Chair, Department of STEM
I am very pleased to present Oscar Gal with the math excellence award. Simply put, Oscar deserves this award because he is already a talented mathematician. I saw this in Linear Algebra, where Oscar often went above and beyond, answering every challenge question I offered, searching for and finding additional connections among the topics in the course, and posing astute questions about where he could next take the ideas.
I saw this even more in the Problem Solving class, where Oscar chose to work on a very complicated problem. By the end of the course, Oscar had filled many pages of his notebook with novel notation and rather amazing partial solutions to this complex problem. He approached the problem exactly as a professional mathematician might have, with the same intensity and systematic, logical strategies, and as a result he generated original mathematical ideas.
Oscar’s curiosity, initiative, critical thinking, and persistence all exemplify the kind of mathematical interest and ability that we admire in the winners of the math excellence award. Congratulations, Oscar!
Pat Jaquith Award
Given to the mathematics student whose extraordinary effort and progress over the year is consistently admired by professors, peers, and advisors. Through hard work, attentiveness, and diligence with assignments, the student is becoming a skilled problem solver; one who has learned to think logically and symbolically, to reason analytically, and to communicate clearly about mathematical concepts.
Recipient: Will Donohue
Presenter: Gil Rosenberg, Associate Professor of Mathematics and Chair, Department of STEM
I am delighted to present the Pat Jaquith award to Will Donohue. Will’s performance in Statistics exemplifies the characteristics that this award seeks to honor: hard work and persistence that pays off with improved mathematical thinking, problem solving, and math communication. I can count on Will to come to class well prepared and ready to learn. He always has assignments complete and is completely engaged in class.
Most importantly, however, Will takes charge of his own learning. He pays attention to what he does and doesn’t completely understand, and then takes steps to bring his learning to the next level. For example, he asks questions in class and comes to office hours to get clarification where it is needed, and he takes advantage of opportunities to re-learn material that he didn’t completely master the first time around.
Will’s effort and work ethic are admirable, and it is so gratifying to see them result in Will’s significant growth as a mathematical thinker. Congratulations, Will!