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Landmark College Honors Spring 2017 Graduates

by Madeline Bergstrom

PUTNEY, Vt. -- Seventy-eight graduates were honored on Saturday, May 13, 2017, at Landmark College's Spring Commencement Ceremony, including nine baccalaurate graduates, 57 graduates who earned an associate degree in liberal studies, and four graduates each in the associate degree programs in business studies, computer science, and life sciences. 

The ceremony opened with an invocation by Michael Luciani, vice president for student affairs and dean of student life. Dr. Peter Eden, Landmark College's president, delivered the welcome address. Nan Strauch, a member of the Board of Trustees and the parent of a member of Landmark College's first class of students, honored five longtime Landmark College faculty and staff members who are retiring this year: Linda Hecker, Tom Kosiba, Lesle LewisVirginia Scholl, and Tom Trenchard.

The most distinctive feature of a Landmark College commencement is that every graduate has the opportunity to speak about their academic journey as they receive their diploma. Stories ranged from poignant to funny, serious to irreverent.

Watch the ceremony here:




Community Service Award: Ahmad Ghiaz Badruddin (pictured here receiving the award from Michael Luciani)

Ghiaz Badruddin at podium with Michael Luciani on stage at graduation

The Community Service Award is given to the student who has unselfishly given of themselves to the activities of the Landmark College community.


Academic Dean's Award: Mariah Edson (not pictured) and Molly Nelson (pictured below receiving her award from Dr. Gail Gibson, vice president for academic affairs)

Molly Nelson at podium with Gail Gibson on graduation stage

The Academic Dean's Award is given to the student who has best demonstrated the qualities that define academic success at Landmark College. These qualities include hard work, seriousness toward learning, intellectual development, and measurable achievement, such as grades.


Charles Drake Award: Ben Raskin-Gross (pictured below with Dr. Peter Eden)

Ben-Raskin Gross at podium with Peter Eden on graduation stage

The Charles Drake Award is awarded to a student who has inspired the Landmark College community through his or her personal qualities. This student is not a quitter, but one who lives in the tradition of Dr. Charles Drake, whose lifetime of vision and courage helped to found the College. This student gives 100 percent, goes the extra mile, and perseveres in the pursuit of his or her goals. This student helps the rest of us realize that we have more resources to draw upon than we think, and helps us to keep going when we feel discouraged.


President's Award: Michael Kenyon (pictured below with Dr. Peter Eden)

Michael Kenyon at podium with Peter Eden on graduation stage

The President's Award is given to the student who has best exemplified the principles we believe in here at Landmark College. This student is talented and energetic, meets difficulties head-on, works hard, and  is dedicated to his or her studies. On the other hand, this student also finds time to contribute to the well-being of other people and to the life of the Landmark College community as a whole.


Spring 2017 Graduates


Graduate in academic regalia poses with two friends in front of stage


Congratulations to all the graduates!


Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies
Each B.A. student was required to complete a capstone project of their choosing.
Talal Al-Meshri Ω “Augmented Reality Games and Their Impact on Socialization
and Self-Esteem”
Ahmad Ghiaz Badruddin “Anti-Social Personality Disorder: Reality vs. Film Portrayals”
Elizabeth Hubbard Ω “Giving a Face to Neurofibromatosis”
Michael Kenyon Ω “Students with ADHD in the Classroom: Learning from Montessori and
Waldorf Methods”
Jeffrey Marcano ♦ “The Journey of Students on the Autism Spectrum through Higher
Jake McLaughlin “On the Road: Using Self-Determination Theory to Coach Elite Road
Samuel Pratt “Dissecting the Issue of Dissection in the Classroom”
Katherine Udvarhelyi “The Social Responsibilities of Three Vermont Businesses”
Kate Weinstein ° “Fan Fiction vs. Copyright: The Right to Write”

The B.A. graduates after the ceremony:

Students in academic regalia standing on steps to upper campus


Associate of Arts in Liberal Studies
Alejandro Camerieri-Rodriguez Caitlin Fash Sean Morse
Christopher Adschiew Michael Ferrari Molly Nelson*
Isaac Alam Samuel Garcia Lucas O’Keefe
Peter Andreas Ω Andre Gaughan * Alyssa Picknelly ¤
James Bach * Nathaniel Gulley Sarah Rabbit
Emily Bradley ♦ Jared Hammerman Benjamin Raskin-Gross ¤*
Dawn Brewer ¤ * Margaret Holgate ∞* Cassandra Reng
Samuel Calle Michael Israelton Michael Rose *
Eliza Caughey Ω Rachel Katz Krzysztof Rozycki
Camden Chilcoff Stephen Kellogg Caroline Sanderson
Stacey Clement ¤ Rachael Koslouski ¤ William Schlickler
Elizabeth Coons ∞ Justin Lee Kristina Schopper
Leah Coppola ♦ Christopher Leong * Adam Singer*
Eleanor Davis Joseph Lydon * Jessup Straus¤
Mariah Edson ♦ Demetria Lyons James Valeri
Lenora Ellison John Lyons Kellie Vien Ω
Aaron Epelbaum Harrison McGuire Joseph Viglietti
William Faden Ω* Julia McLaughlin ♦¤ Andrew Voss
Stephanie Fasano McKenzie McNamara Elizabeth Weller


Graduates pose with Dr. Eden before the ceremony:

Graduates in academic regalia in the Click Family Sports Center with Peter Eden


Associate of Arts in Business Studies 
Mitchell Barrett John Coyne
Michaela Bied Alexander Milliken




Associate of Science in Computer Science
Max Ames Robert Christopher
Matthew Bonanno Gregory Hadjiyane



Associate of Science in Life Sciences 
Jeanette Brendler Samantha Jackson
Rhiannon Greywolf * Matthew Merline *


Graduates pose in Click Family Sports Center


Key to Symbols:

°Golden Key Honor Society
* Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society
♦ Communication
Ω Psychology
β Computer Science
€ Media Studies
π Business Studies
¤ Education
∞ Natural Science

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