Outstanding students celebrated

Every April the Mathematics Department hosts an awards banquet to recognize and honor exemplary students and their families.   In this article, we report on these students and their achievements.


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

The selection criteria include a personal essay, grade point average, letters of recommendation, and extra-curricular mathematical engagement.  The following outstanding students are receiving this scholarship for the 2022-23 academic year:

Julie Belloli

Virgina Berger

Elise Dettling

Antonio Plascencia-Vargas

Jacob Ritsema

Randi Stone

Nathan Vandermeer

Emily Waggoner

Samuel Webb

Congratulations to each 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.

Paige McAloon, a member of both the GVSU Cross Country and the GVSU Track & Field teams, is the mathematics major receiving the VanderJagt Scholarship for 2022-23.

Other Awards

The GVSU Mathematics Community Service 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 winner of this award receives a certificate and a book and is recognized by having their name engraved on a plaque in the Mathematics Department. The 2022 winner of the Community Service Award is Alexia Davis.

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 2022 Outstanding Sophomores are Lauryn Davis and Alaina Hogan.

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 2022 are:

Heather Anderson

Mary Baars

Samantha Bosma

Arthur Clark

Lilia Condra

Annemieke Engelsma

Morgan Hartline

Mirza Komic

Stella Rodriguez

Lucas Smielewski

Kaitlin Terpstra

Finally, the department’s Excellence in the Discipline Award for 2022 is Nick Layman, and you can read more about him in this article.


Page last modified April 7, 2022