President's Report Masthead
June 30, 2015

Student kudos

Graduate School dissertation awards

    • Jun Guo, management (accounting): Prof. Yan Zhang and Prof. Nan Zhou “Essays on Audit Committee Financial Expertise”
    • Meghan Hunt Jordan, English: Prof. Michael Conlon “Self, Form, Fiction: Life Writing and the Novel in Great Britain, 1780-1900”
    • Jennifer Kennedy, art history: Prof. Thomas F. McDonough “Charming Monsters: the Spectacle of Femininity in Postwar France”
    • Brett Palfreyman, history: Prof. Douglas M. Bradburn “Peace Process the Reintegration of the Loyalists in Post-Revolutionary America”
    • Michael Reale, computer science: Prof. Lijun Yin “Automatic Analysis of Facial Activity for Multi-Modal Human-Machine Applications”

Other awards

    • Eric Gelles received a Critical Language Scholarship Program award for summer 2015 to study Arabic in Amman, Jordan. He is an undeclared freshman interested in political science. The Critical Language Scholarship (CLS) Program is a fully funded overseas language and cultural immersion program for American undergraduate and graduate students with the goal of broadening the base of Americans studying and mastering critical languages and building relationships between the people of the United States and other countries, CLS provides study opportunities to a diverse range of students from across the United States at every level of language learning. It is a program of the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs and part of a U.S. government effort to expand dramatically the number of Americans studying and mastering critical foreign languages. Participants are expected to continue their language study beyond the scholarship period, and later apply their critical language skills in their future professional careers.

    • Kate Ellenberger, MA ‘15, and a PhD student in anthropology, received an NSF Graduate Research Fellowship. Her study looks at sex difference in the effects of acute stress on several aspects of reward processing (e.g., effort-cost computation, prediction error signaling, reward anticipation versus consummation) in healthy people. After conducting these studies in healthy people to understand the effects of acute stress on “normal” reward circuitry, she will administer the same paradigms to chronic schizophrenia patients and adolescents at clinical high risk for psychosis to evaluate a new theoretical model of “stress induced anhedonia.”

    • Cinema major Justin Craig ’14 of Ballston Spa, N.Y., delivered a command performance at the 87th Academy Awards — he was one of six young filmmakers, members of Team Oscar, chosen to deliver the Oscar statuettes to the celebrity presenters. Winners were selected for their creative 60-second videos on the subject, “The best piece of advice I’ve ever received.” Of 1,100 entries, six were chosen; Craig’s was titled Banana.

    • Daniel J. Parisian ’15, PhD, will start as an assistant professor in the Department of Economics and Finance at Mississippi State University. 

    • Samantha Birk, winner of the 2015 Edward H. Prentice award and previous research assistant in psychology with Professor Brandon Gibbs, examines risks for depression in children and adolescents. She developed an honor’s project examining how different forms of perseverative cognition affect individuals’ physiological responses to stress.

      Birk graduated with two majors – psychology and management – as well as two minors – education and dance. She earned a 3.93 GPA and has been on the dean’s list every semester since fall 2011. In 2012, she received a SUNY Emerging Leaders Award and is a National Residence Hall Honorary member (representing the top 1 percent of student leaders on campus). In 2013, she was one of only four from the United States selected for the Fulbright Summer Institute at King’s College. In 2014, she won a University travel award to present the results of her honor’s thesis at a high-level psychology conference in Chicago and was recently inducted into Psi Chi, a national honorary society in psychology.

    • Angelique Szymanek received the Dissertation Award for Primary Source and Field Research in Art History 2014-15, and the Dorothy Foehr Huck Research Travel Award from the Eberly Family Special Collections Library, Penn State University, 2015.

    • Dengyan Zhou received the Graduate Award for Excellence in Research 2014-15; the Joan and Stanford Alexander Award, Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, 2014-15; the Rosa Colecchio Travel Award for Dissertation Research Enhancement 2014-15; and the Dissertation Year Fellowship 2014-15.

    • Rotem Rozental received a Graduate Research Fellowship from The Center for Jewish History, New York, 2015-16.

    • Amanda Beardsley received the Charles Redd Center for Western Studies Grant, spring 2015.

    • Hyeyun Chin received a Travel Award from The Historians of British Art, 2015.

Student award/grant recipients, spring 2015

    • 2015 - NSF Graduate Research Fellowship Recipient, Raymond Futia ’15, cell and molecular biology
    • 2015 - NSF Graduate Research Fellowship Recipient, Katherine Frost, graduate psychology student
      These are nationally competitive fellowships awarded by NSF since 1952 to individuals selected early in their careers (as a graduating senior or in the first or second year of graduate school) based on their demonstrated potential for significant achievements in science and engineering.

    • 2015 - Barry Goldwater Scholarship Recipient, Brandon Pereyra ‘16, mechanical engineering
    • 2015 - Barry Goldwater Scholarship Honorable Mention, Caleb Donovick ‘16, computer science

      The Goldwater Scholars were selected on the basis of academic merit from a field of 1,206 applicants; 260 sophomores and juniors were chosen to receive scholarships for the 2015-2016 academic year that cover the cost of tuition, fees, books, and room and board up to a maximum of $7,500 per year.

      The Goldwater Foundation is a federally endowed agency established by Public Law 99-661 in 1986, honoring Sen. Barry Goldwater and designed to foster and encourage outstanding students to pursue careers in the fields of mathematics, the natural sciences and engineering. The Goldwater Scholarship is the premier undergraduate award of its type in these fields.

    • 2015 - Fulbright Teaching Assistantship, Monique Saastamoinen ‘15, English rhetoric, Malaysia
    • 2015 - Fulbright Teaching Assistantship, Carys Coates Martin ‘15, comparative literature and linguistics, Germany
    • 2015 - Fulbright Study/Research Grant, Donovan Borger ‘15, English creative writing, Ireland. He will be pursuing a master’s degree in creative writing at University College Cork.

      The Fulbright U.S. Student Program provides grants for individually designed study/research projects or English Teaching Assistantships. During their nine to 12 month stays, Fulbrighters meet, work, live with and learn from the people of the host country, sharing daily experiences. The program facilitates cultural exchange through direct interaction on an individual basis in the classroom, field, home and in routine tasks, allowing the grantee to gain an appreciation of others’ viewpoints and beliefs, the way they do things and the way they think. Through engagement in the community, the individual interacts with hosts on a one-to-one basis in an atmosphere of openness, academic integrity and intellectual freedom, thereby promoting mutual respect and understanding.

    • 2015 - Mount Vernon Research Fellowship Recipient, Kenneth Allen Lane, doctoral student in history

      The Fred W. Smith National Library for the Study of George Washington offers fellowships to support the growing community of scholars whose research focuses on George Washington, colonial America, the Revolutionary Era and the Early Republic.
These funded research opportunities are available to doctoral candidates at dissertation stage, who have a PhD or who have standing as an advanced scholar in a relevant field.