USAO Minerva Awards Highlight Student Achievement
CHICKASHA -- Each year, the University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma spotlights student achievement with the Honors Convocation and Minerva Awards ceremony. This spring, faculty and staff members presented departmental, athletic and creativity awards to dozens of seniors during the annual event, held April 9 in the USAO Student Center Ballroom.
After an opening by Terry Winn, vice president for administration and student services, guests were entertained by the USAO Concert Choir, under the direction of Dr. Jan Hanson, professor of music.
Lori Underwood, director of student activities and leadership programs, served as emcee for the event and recognized members of the university's five honor societies for the academic year.
This year's Divisional Distinguished Graduate Awards were distributed by Dr. Ken Bohannon, associate professor of music. Receiving awards in the Arts and Humanities Division were Anadarko music major Susannah Hayworth and Chickasha fine arts major Amy Widener. Chickasha psychology senior Chelsea Huddleston received the award for the Business and Social Sciences Division, with Chickasha chemistry major Brady Crane receiving the award for the Science and Physical Education Division. Kati Wint, a Kingfisher speech and language pathology senior, received the award for the Education and Speech Pathology Division.
The annual Bill Smith Scholar-Athlete Award was presented to Yukon political science senior Jennifer Bridgforth.
Additional scholar-athlete awards were given to three Brazilian students: physical education major Wesley Costa, business major Paulo Kubis and business major Amanda Caldeira, as well as biology major Sasha Ferguson of the Bahamas.
Dr. Jennifer Long, associate professor of economics and chair of interdisciplinary studies, presented several Works of Distinction Awards to students for papers and special projects:
Fletcher English senior Helen Chappell for " The Effect of Christianity in American Literature;" Anadarko music major Susannah Hayworth for " Letters from an Oklahoma WASP;" Chickasha psychology senior Chelsea Huddleston for " An Exploration into Creative Problem Solving: A Solution for Climate Change;" and Chickasha psychology senior Barry McCoy for " Cognitive Psychology Applied to Neoclassical Economics: An Analysis of the Rational Consumer."
Additionally, Chickasha English senior Jessica Townsend received recognition for " Una Voce dei Suoi Propi: Protofeminism in Sixteenth Century Italy" alongside pair Beaver psychology senior Bobby Arnold and Oklahoma City psychology senior Ricky James for their work, " Political Bias Regarding Party Affiliation."
Dr. Brenda Brown, professor of English and chair of the division of arts and humanities, presented a new English Department Scholarship Award to Lawton English senior Sarah Powers in honor of longtime faculty member Stuart Meltzer.
Kelly Brown, director of Nash Library, presented the George Austin Award for campus leadership to two students: Moore communication senior Ryan Bell and business major Paulo Kubis of Brazil. A $250 cash prize accompanied the award for each.
The Te Ata Award for creative expression went to Chickasha fine arts senior Amy Widener and Duncan communication junior C.W. Bardsher. Each student received $250 cash for the award.
Anadarko music senior Susannah Hayworth received the Gladys Emerson Award for undergraduate research. Hayworth's research on women in military aviation received state recognition at the annual Research Day at the State Capitol this spring. The Minerva award came with a $500 cash prize.
Six seniors received graduation cords for their involvement in the President's Leadership Council: political science major Jennifer Bridgforth of Yukon, psychology major Kyle Dake of Blanchard, psychology major Chelsea Huddleston of Chickasha, communication major Lonnie Iannazzo of Tulsa, deaf education major Mandy Mason of Broken Arrow and communication major Meagan Peters of Marlow.
Graduation cords also were given to seven seniors for their roles in the Student Government Association: communication major Ryan Bell of Moore, political science major Jennifer Bridgforth of Yukon, political science major Will Farris of Norman, psychology major Chelsea Huddleston of Chickasha, psychology major Scotti Parker of Talala, communication major Meagan Peters of Marlow and speech and language pathology major Kati Wint of Kingfisher.
Nineteen students across multiple studies and classifications were recognized for their inclusion in Who's Who in American Colleges and Universities:
Bobby Arnold, Philip Beam, Ryan Bell, Karen Boyd, Wesley Costa, Kyle Dake, Tara Davies, Sasha Ferguson, Lauren Greenfield, Lonnie Iannazzo, Ricky James, Carissa Jones, Paulo Kubis, Scotti Parker, Sarah Powers, Danny Rodriguez, Elizabeth Sellers, Meredith Shaw and Cody Stull.