USAO Minerva Awards highlight student achievement
Students at the University of Science and Arts were honored in the spring for a variety of achievements during the fifth annual Minerva Awards Ceremony at the USAO Ballroom April 12.
The Minerva Awards provide public recognition for outstanding students at USAO. Students are honored for excellence in academics, community service, athletics, campus involvement and other areas.
In addition to individual honors, the ceremony recognizes honor society members, recipients of Who's Who, seniors graduating with honors, Presidential Leadership Council and Student Government members.
Five graduating seniors were recognized by the college’s four academic divisions as Distinguished Graduates for spring 2011.
Norman English major Kyndra Spaulding received distinction from the Division of Arts and Humanities. Oklahoma City psychology major Jorden Wiggins and Chickasha business major Adrian Talley were named the outstanding graduates for the Division of Business and Social Science. Sarah Brewer, a deaf education major from Broken Arrow was distinguished by the Division of Education and Speech Language Pathology. Christina Wilson, a mathematics major from Mustang was named the outstanding graduates for the Division of Science and Physical Education.
Six students received the NAIA Scholar Athlete Award. Honorees included Nikola Cakarevic, John Gardner, Lexxa Kever, Gabrielle Martinez, Maggie Oliver and Dusan Rasovic. Oliver, along with Victoria Russell, an elementary education major from Hobart, were additionally recognized for being named Academic All-Conference.
The annual Bill & Pat Smith Scholar-Athlete Award was presented to Taylor Smithwick and Caleb Martin.
The George Austin Award for Campus Leadership was presented to Emily Kirk of Edmond. Dibble resident Tabitha Deskin received the Te Ata Award for Creative Expression. The Emerging Leaders Award went to Matthew Crow of Collierville, TN; Kathryn Daniels of Del City; April Lawrence of Del City; Kelsea Mallette of Spencer; Molly Tracy of Middletown, RI and Preston Vasquez of Tuttle. Autumn Fosberg, Emily Kirk, Bled Nguessan, Taylor Smithwick and Kyndra Spaulding were presented with the Evolving Leaders Award.
Nguessan was also honored with the Commitment to Diversity Award.
The Drover Pride Award was presented to Molly Tracy. Chi Alpha was named the Outstanding Student Organization of the Year and Dr. Jeanette Loutsch, assistant professor of biology, was given the award for Outstanding Student Advisor of the Year. The Sigma Psi Omega sorority was also recognized with an award for an Oustanding Commitment to Service.
Dr. John Bruce, associate professor of language and literature, presented the Stuart Meltzer English Scholarship to Kyndra Spaulding. Tabitha Deskin received the Derald Swineford Art Scholarship from Jacquelyn Knapp, associate professor of art. Kayla Butler was also presented with the Gladys Emerson award for Undergraduate Research.
Six students received graduation cords for their involvement in the President’s Leadership Council. They include Laci Deskin of Oklahoma City, Trey Moss of Vinita as well as Beki Ervin, Robert Story and Nina Lawrence, all of Chickasha.
Special Graduation cords were given to two students, Nina Lawrence and Beki Ervin, for their roles in the Student Government Association.
Two students were honored as Student Government Senators of the Year, Molly Tracy and Veronica Fennell of Valliant.
Forty-two students across multiple studies and classifications were recognized for their inclusion in Who’s Who in American Colleges and Universities:
Anadarko- Brooke Stephenson, Lori Wenninger
Ardmore- Schuyler Austin
Blanchard- Joshua Smith
Chickasha- Cody Bogle, Rachael Brown, Nina Lawrence, Adrian Talley
Duncan- Amber Caudill,
Kingfisher- Kelsey Bennett
Lawton- Mary Rios,
Lindsay- Amber Frizzell
Little Axe- Alyssa Pence
Midwest City- Laron Short
Moore- Christopher Bennett, Brittany Gotcher,
Mustang- Cindy Alexander,
Norman- Chelsea Davis, Kyndra Spaulding
Oklahoma City- Heather Brand, Lacey Gillis, Gabrielle Martinez, Taylor Smithwick, Dakota Webster,
Paoli- Chelsea LaGace,
Pauls Valley- Shaylea Shebester
Pawhuska- Amber Ibarra
Ryan- Haley Curtis
Seminole- Katie Arnold
Tuttle- Mason Dobbins,
Valliant- Veronica Fennell
Vinita- Trey Moss
Wagoner- Autumn Fosburg
Woodward- Tialyn White
Yukon- Leslie Bross, Victoria Petrosky, Christie Sandefur
Out of State
Springdale, AR- Lexxa Kever
Pleasanton, KS- Meghan Duggins
North Begen, NJ- N’Faly Berete
Out of Country
Edinburgh, Scotland- Niall Crick
Sao Paulo, Brazil- Antonio Barros, Jr.