2014-2015 Student Successes

Michelle Alderink, a former Latin American Studies (LAS) minor and a current graduate student in the Master of Social Work program, received the LAS mini-grant to study abroad in El Salvador and Guatemala.

Veronica Beltran, a double major in Political Science and Spanish and a Latin American Studies minor, received the Thomas M. Seykora Award for Outstanding Contribution.

Leslie Boker, a Liberal Studies major, received the Winter 2015 Wendy J. Wenner Outstanding Liberal Studies Thesis Award. Boker’s thesis was titled “Treatment of Trans Characters in Japanese Sequential Art and Animation.”

Mallory Caillaud-Jones, a Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies minor, and Alexandra Mitchell, a Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies major, received the Jean Enright Scholarship.

Richard Campbell, a Liberal Studies Leadership Program cohort student, participated in a stewardship project with Disability Network – Lakeshore as part of a Liberal Studies class during the Winter 2015 semester. Through this project Campbell has been selected as the recipient of the 2015 Ability Scholarship from the Disability Network.

Kevin Chau, a Chinese Studies major, received the Outstanding Office Award at the 2015 GVSU student Life Awards for his work in the Chinese Language and Culture Club.

Anthony Clemons, a Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies major and LGBTQ minor, and Margaret Munoz, a Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies major, were recognized as the recipients of the Thomas M. Seykora Award for their outstanding contributions to the campus community.

Natalie DePyper, a Liberal Studies major and a Dean’s Office Student Assistant, received the Fall 2014 Wendy J. Wenner Outstanding Liberal Studies Thesis Award. DePyper’s thesis, which was about storytelling, was titled “Talk Isn’t Cheap; It’s Powerful.”

Graduating Liberal Studies major and Environmental Studies minor, Casey DuPuie, presented her senior thesis, “Sustainable Urban Development: Living Tiny in Big America,” at the Student Association of Planning Conference, held at the University of Michigan. In December, she appeared on WGVU to discuss her research.

Hannah Fernando, a Liberal Studies major and Grand Rapids native, represented her class, "Attracting College Students to Grand Rapids," at Mayor George Heartwell's State of the City address on January 17. Fernando gave a presentation on the 10 class recommendations that will help Grand Rapids attract and retain college-age students.

Mackenzie Kibbe, a Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies major, was named the Outstanding Graduate by the Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies faculty.

Elizabeth Nienhouse, a Religious Studies major, received the Religious Studies Outstanding Senior Thesis award. Nienhouse’s thesis was titled “Religion and Public Policy: Inclusion or Separation?”

Chris Schertenlieb, a Spanish and Latin American Studies (LAS) minor, received the LAS mini-grant to study abroad in Chile.

Meghan Vance, a Chinese Studies major, was selected to participate in the highly selective Wooden Fish program at Mount Wutai, Shanxi Province, China. This program gives students first-hand experience with Chinese Buddhist Monasticism.

Liberal Studies alum Mark Wilson was selected as one of the 40 most influential individuals in the Traverse City region under the age of 40 by Traverse City Business News. Mark is the youngest elected member of the Grand Traverse Band of Ottawa and Chippewa Indians, Tribal Council. He completed his Liberal Studies major with a concentration in "Creativity in Tribal Leadership" at GVSU's Traverse City Campus.

The Frederik Meijer Honors College presented students with a number of Senior Project awards:

  • Gail Berkompas, Outstanding Senior Award
  • Erin Erickson, Outstanding Leadership and Service
  • Paul Francoeur, Outstanding Senior Thesis
  • Alexandra Johnson and Megan Nowak, Outstanding Senior Project
  • Alyssa Kulesza and Adam Rosenberg, Excellence in Collaborative Research
  • Alice Munday, Excellence in Creative Achievement

Four students received the Nichols Sustainability Scholarship through the Office of Sustainability Practices:

  • Brenna Christopoulos, French and Education Major
  • Hannah Fernando, Liberal Studies Major and Environmental Studies Minor
  • Emily Johnson, Natural Resource Management Major
  • Sarah Waraniak, Exercise Science Major

Since our last Annual Report, the Frederik Meijer Office for Fellowships, housed in the Frederik Meijer Honors College, has played a key role in helping a number of Honors College students earn prestigious awards for graduate and international study:

  • Leah Beaulac, a Biology major and Honors College student, was awarded a prestigious Boren Scholarship to study Arabic in Jordan during the 2015-2016 academic year.
  • Honors College students Irada Chaudhuri, Kyle Meppelink, and Meagan Roche, received Critical Language Scholarships, giving them the opportunity to participate in a cultural immersion, intensive language education program.
  • Four Honors College students received the Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship for graduate study or internships abroad: Brody Cragg (Norway); Lindsey Dopheide (Ghana); Christian Knighten (Ghana); and Mason Villanueva (Ghana).
  • Two Honors College students received Fulbright U.S. Student Scholarships: Seth Price, to complete research in Jordan, and Irma Ramirez, to teach English in Guatemala. Additionally, Honors College student Thomas Walters received a spot in the Fulbright Summer Institute Program to study at Durham University in the United Kingdom.

Twelve students received the Brooks Professional Series (BPS) Certificate. Students must attend three programs with at least two programs being part of the BPS Core.

  • Brenden Cooper, Liberal Studies Major
  • Kabine Coulibaly, Liberal Studies Major
  • Justin Doan, Liberal Studies Major
  • Jaclyn Ermoyan, Nonprofit Administration Major
  • Kaitlin Gaule, Biology Major, Environmental Studies Minor
  • Logan Knoper, Geology Major
  • Marisol Menken, Liberal Studies Major
  • Bernice Mitchell, Liberal Studies Major
  • Jacob Schaafsma, Liberal Studies Major
  • Emily Smigiel, Liberal Studies Major
  • Hannah Swanson, Liberal Studies Major
  • Chelsea VanAllsburg, Liberal Studies Major

Seven Writing Consultants from the Fred Meijer Center for Writing and Michigan Authors presented at the 20th Annual Michigan Writing Center’s Association Ideas Exchange on October 25 at Lansing Community College. The theme of the exchange was “The Center of it All.”

  • Sarah Armand presented “Playing to their Strengths: Games for Writing Groups.”
  • Nathan Holtrey and Jacqueline Vega presented “Finding Our Center: Communication as Foundation for Collaborative Student Services.”
  • Anna White presented “Cite This: Examining Citation Practices for Consultants and Students.”
  • Matt Winnen presented “The 'Hurry Up' Writing Process and Other Tactics.”
  • Lindsey Wolpert and Katie Conigliaro presented “Taste the Freakin Rainbow: Queering the Writing Center."

2013-2014 Student Successes