Outstanding students celebrated

Every April, the mathematics department hosts an awards banquet to recognize and honor exemplary students and their families. This year the banquet will be held on Thursday, April 12.


The generous contributions of alumni and many past and present mathematics faculty have established the Mathematics Endowment Fund that provides funds to support annual Mathematics Department Scholarships for select mathematics majors.

This year we are delighted to award Department Scholarships to six outstanding students. The selection criteria include a personal essay, grade point average, letters of recommendation, and extra-curricular mathematical engagement. The students who will receive this honor for the 2018-19 academic year are:

Aimee Ash
Megan Genslak
Amanda Stanley
Shirley Walcott
Maia Wichman
Kat Yats

Congratulations to all of these excellent continuing mathematics students!

VanderJagt Mathematics and Athletics Scholarship

Prof. Don VanderJagt served the mathematics department and Grand Valley State University for more than 40 years, and for many of those years he was the GVSU faculty representative to the NCAA. Don loved athletics and was passionate about Grand Valley athletes’ excellence on the field and in the classroom.

Before his retirement, Don and his wife, Barb, endowed a scholarship in their name to honor a student majoring in mathematics who demonstrates excellence in both mathematics and athletics. A list of past recipients is kept on a plaque outside the math department office.

This year we are pleased to announce that Sara Soltis, a member of the women’s club volleyball team, is the mathematics major who will receive the VanderJagt Scholarship.

Other Awards

The Outstanding Sophomore Award recognizes the academic achievements of one or two students at the beginning of their 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; the 2018 Outstanding Sophomores are Miranda Bibb and
Maia Wichman.

In addition, we present Department Senior Awards to honor graduating students for their accumulated excellence in the mathematics major and their overall contributions to the department. These students make a positive difference in the life of the mathematics department as they have demonstrated exemplary work in their courses and often have demonstrated leadership and participation in extracurricular mathematical activities. The winners of department senior awards for 2018 are:

Zach Ash
Dayna Ball
Matt Conflitti
Logan Felt
Ellen Grove
Sam Law
Grace McMonagle

Morgan Oneka
Maddie Rainey
Liah Renaud
David Shane
Mikaela Wyatt

Morgan Oneka is not only a recipient of a Department Senior Award, but she is also one of just 3 recipients of the University’s undergraduate Glenn A. Niemeyer Award. You can read more about Morgan in this article.

Finally, the department’s Outstanding Graduate for 2018 is Casey Koch-Larue, and you can read more about him in this article.

Congratulations to all of these outstanding students. We wish them the very best in all of their future endeavors.

Page last modified April 5, 2018