Outstanding Students Celebrated

Each spring the Mathematics Department is pleased to host its Annual Awards Banquet to recognize our most outstanding students and their families. The 2013 banquet will be held on Friday, April 12.

Department Scholarships

One way that we recognize students for their excellence is with Mathematics Department Scholarships. Through the generous contributions of alumni, as well as past and present math faculty, the Mathematics Endowment Fund, provides funds for all scholarships.

This year we are delighted to award Department Scholarships to seven exemplary students. Students are selected based on the quality of their personal essay, grade point average, letters of recommendation, and extra-curricular mathematical endeavors. The 2013-14 scholarship winners are:


Kerry Cornelisse
Nate DeMaagd
Sean Hamilton
Kayla Kolbe
Andrew Otten
Anna Plant
Rachel Wehner

VanderJagt Mathematics and Athletics Scholarship

Prof. Don VanderJagt served the mathematics department and Grand Valley State University for more than 40 years. In one of his many roles at the university, he served as the GVSU faculty representative to the NCAA. Don loved athletics and was as passionate about Grand Valley's excellence on the field as he was in the classroom. He was particularly fond of students who were not only mathematics majors but also were engaged in university-sponsored athletics.

Before his retirement, Don and his wife Barb endowed a scholarship in their name to honor and support students majoring in mathematics who demonstrate excellence in both mathematics and athletics. A list of past recipients can be found on a plaque outside the math department office.

This year we are delighted to announce that there are two winners: Sara Andrasik of the GVSU softball team and and Olivia Lynn Obetts of GVSU cheer. Congratulations to all of these fine returning students who have received scholarships.

Annual Departmental Awards

The Outstanding Sophomore Award recognizes the academic achievements of one or two students early in their respective academic careers. The purpose of the award is to encourage continued success in the study of mathematics. Students may only win this award by being nominated by one or more faculty, and the 2013 award is shared jointly by Anna Plant and Khadijah Shaff.

This year we honor and acknowledge ten graduates with Department Senior Awards. This prize recognizes students for their overall excellence in the mathematics major and their many additional contributions to the department. This group of students has made a tremendous difference in the life of the mathematics department through their exceptional coursework and varied participation in extracurricular mathematical activities. The winners of Department Senior Awards for 2013 are:

Hannah Anderson
Nicholas Benthem
Ellen Borgeld
William Brown
Paul Fett
Amanda Haupt
Kurt O'Hearn
Mackenzie Osbeck
Bridgette McGuire
Kathryn Smith

The university asks each academic department to name a single Outstanding Graduate each year. We are delighted to present the 2013 Outstanding Graduate in Mathematics Award to Kate Coveney. You can learn more about Kate and her many accomplishments in the article about her in this newsletter.

Mathematics and Community Service Award

This award is designed to honor a mathematics major at GVSU who exhibits excellence in mathematics and a strong record of community service related to mathematics, mathematics education, or education. The mathematics and community service award for 2013 will go to Sarah Jamison. Sarah is being recognized particularly for her extensive work as a volunteer math tutor at Union High School and as a volunteer coach at Rockford High School for their mathematics competition teams.

We thank and congratulate all of these outstanding students. We wish you the very best in all of your future endeavors.

Page last modified June 9, 2017