2014 Senior Awards Banquet

2014 Senior Awards Banquet

Class of 2014 candle ceremony WEB

Photo from the Class of 2014's candle ceremony, taken during Orientation Weekend in August 2010

On Thursday, May 22, Wagner College held its annual Senior Awards Banquet, where 72 students from around the globe were recognized for high achievement during their undergraduate college careers.

Kristina Abruzzo of Staten Island won the Wagner College Prize in Mathematics in recognition of her outstanding accomplishments as a double major in mathematics and finance.

Fatimat Adams of Staten Island won the Hertha Troll Meyer Memorial Award, given for exemplary scholarship and service in sociology and anthropology.

MacKenzie Alfaro of Riverside, Cal., won the Julio Cortazar Spanish Award for outstanding work in the study of Spanish language and literature.

Lena Ayechemi of Silver Spring, Md., won the Wagner College Award in Art for the student with the highest grade point average in the Art Department. Ayechemi is an arts administration major with a concentration in fine arts. She has continued to explore her abundant creativity through both fine arts and art history. She has most recently pushed her own boundaries in creativity through an independent study in collage, which has been informed by her dual background in art making and the historical analysis of art. She is inspired by the imaginative concepts illustrated in Harajuku fashion. Ayechemi hopes to pursue a career in the fashion industry, making responsibly crafted, cutting-edge fashion available to a wider audience. She is particularly dedicated to providing creative employment opportunities to at-risk women, aiming to empower this demographic through the arts.

Stephanie Baez of the Bronx won the Phyllis Andors Award for outstanding performance in the study of government and politics. Baez is interested in Middle Eastern studies and is developing her fluency in Arabic. During her junior year, she studied Israeli-Palestinian politics and Arabic while abroad in Jerusalem. More recently, she completed a rewarding internship with the United Nations Global Compact. She currently studies in Jerusalem.

Sara Bandurian of Fountain Valley, Cal., won the Theatre Award in Design, Technology and Management as well as the Theatre Department Academic Award. Bandurian designed costumes for Wagner’s Main Stage production of “Little Shop of Horrors,” directed by Tony Award winner Michele Pawk.

Natalie Bartels of Rahway, N.J., won the Alumni Association Merit Award for outstanding service, loyalty and dedication to the Wagner College community as demonstrated through participation in campus organizations and activities.

Courtney Begley of Staten Island was awarded a grant from the Academics for Activism Graduate School Fund, which aids Wagner College English majors with senior standing applying to Ph.D. programs in English and/or women/gender studies whose scholarship has a focus on issues concerning women, gender and sexuality, and/or marginalized groups. Begley won the grant in recognition of her academic achievements and her civic contributions in helping to provide legal services for the disabled. The award will support her continued efforts on behalf of this marginalized group through her study of the law, which she will begin this fall. Begley also won the Verrazano Memorial Prize for outstanding academic achievement in the study of government and politics. She is a member of the Pi Sigma Alpha national political science honor society, the Omicron Delta Kappa national leadership honor society, the Sigma Tau Delta national English honor society and the Wagner College Student Advisory Board. Begley has been on the Dean’s List every semester since enrolling in Fall 2010.

Patrick Bethel of Waterbury, Conn., won the Verrazano Memorial Prize for outstanding academic achievement in the study of history.

Elle Brigida of Boston, Mass., won the Academic Excellence Award in Music.

Alyssa Brown of Pittsburgh, Pa., won the Outstanding Service in Communication Award, given to a student who has contributed mightily to one or more of the media organizations on campus. She also won the Thomas Kendris Award in Expository & Journalistic Writing for outstanding work in writing and journalism courses.

Meghan Brown of Brooklyn won the Microbiology Award for outstanding scholastic achievement in the field of microbiology. Brown had the highest GPA among seniors in the microbiology major. This fall, she will enter the fifth year of Wagner’s 5-Year B.S./M.S. program in microbiology.

Christina Brunetti of Brooklyn won the Michele Connors Tellefsen ’71 Alpha Delta Pi Leadership Award, given to a dedicated leader in the Gamma Pi chapter as she transitions from being an active to an alumnae member. Brunetti also won the Student Government Award for outstanding work, dedication to the student body and exemplary leadership abilities.

Andrew Burt of Cross Lanes, W.Va., won the Joseph T. Gabrielline Memorial Award, recognizing superior qualities of leadership, honor, scholarship and service.

Marie Cantillo of Staten Island won the Student Nurse Association Award for academic merit and leadership in diverse community activities. Cantillo is a December 2013 graduate of the second-degree nursing program who has successfully passed her R.N. licensing exam. During her 15-month program of study at Wagner, Cantillo was active in the nursing student body, on and off campus, for various service activities within the community. She was also elected the first president of Wagner College’s new National Student Nurses’ Association chapter.

Marisa Carmello of Staten Island won the Kurt Goedel Award for Excellence in Mathematics.

Laura Carroll of New Hyde Park, N.Y., won the Constance Byron Award for academic merit, leadership qualities, tenaciousness of spirit, thoughtfulness and caring for others. In addition to Carroll’s academic achievements, she was inducted into Sigma Theta Tau, the international nursing honor society, and completed a student externship at Johns Hopkins Medical Center as a Wagner College Spiro Scholar.

Catherine Cartino of Sag Harbor, N.Y., won the Ellen Horrman Award for academic excellence in nursing studies during the clinical experience.

Britney Cataruzza of North Branford, Conn., won the Nathan and Ruth Wolff Prize in Dance. Cataruzza was president of the Dance Club and an avid dancer. She was seen in several annual “Dance Project” productions in our Stage One studio theater, and she served as dance/movement captain for the Wagner College Theatre production of “Romeo and Juliet,” directed by David McDonald.

Daniel Cimilucca of Staten Island won the Juliette Tyor Outstanding Student Employee Award, recognizing honesty, dependability, initiative, leadership and campus involvement in a student employee. Cimilucca worked on the IT Help Desk for 4 years.

Allison Curley of Staten Island won the Special Education Award, which goes to the teacher candidate who has shown unusual skill and sensitivity in working with special needsstudents and has clearly demonstrated potential for becoming an outstanding teacher of students with disabilities.

Molly Delbridge of Mission Viejo, Cal., won the Anita Volland Anthropology Award, which is presented to a student who exemplifies the work and vision of anthropology practiced by Professor Volland, emphasizing the importance of the “four fields,” the centrality of the culture concept, and great intellectual curiosity. Delbridge also won the Diversity Action Council Award, which is given to a student who has furthered, exemplified or supported diversity issues at Wagner College, and the Julia M. Barchitta Award for Civic Engagement. Delbridge, a double major in Spanish and anthropology with a concentration in medical anthropology, has traveled, worked and researched in several Latin American countries while at Wagner, most recently in Peru. Through an NGO in Peru, Moche Inc., Delbridge spearheaded several economic and health development projects, facilitating a group of 45 artisan women, administering workshops on topics like interpersonal awareness, among others, and organizing three fairs to sell handcraft products. She organized two health fairs that brought dentists, health practitioners and medical students to the community. She is the Port Richmond Scholar for Health and Wellness and has worked on several projects, most recently with professors collecting baseline health data on the Latino immigrant community in the Staten Island community of Port Richmond. Delbridge will join the Peace Corps after graduation and eventually pursue advanced studies in public health.

Phill Della Noce of Carlisle, Pa., won the Bob Gabriel Memorial Endowed Award for Theatre, which is presented to a theatre major with an interest in Italian and /or Italian American Culture with proven history of outstanding performance in theatre. Della Noce, an honors student who played Friar Lawrence in the Wagner College Theatre production of “Romeo and Juliet,” traveled to Italy in advance of the show to research Verona, where the action is set.

Vincenzo DiMaggio of Staten Island won the Wagner College Physician Assistant Award for the highest overall grade point average among P.A. students in the senior class.

Anjali Divakaran of Staten Island won the Marie Picket Award, which is given to a nursing undergraduate student who has shown outstanding community service and is a great role model in our community or abroad. This student also shows patience, compassion and leadership in the field of nursing by always being willing to assist others in their time of need. The award is given in memory of Dr. Nancy Cherofsky’s mother, who dedicated her life to helping others.

Alessandra D’Onorio DeMeo of Staten Island won the Education Department Award.

Jennifer Durso of Howell, N.J., won the Robert deCsipkes Memorial Prize for Research, recognizing the student with the greatest potential as a clinical psychologist. Durso was president of Psi Chi, the international psychology honors society, and was the coordinator of the Psychology Department’s research participant pool.

Kevin Farrell of Rockville Centre, N.Y., won the Periclean Senior Award, recognizing an abiding and active sense of social responsibility and civic concern through academic work or community activities.

Stephanie Fueguel of Staten Island won the Academic Excellence Award in Sociology.

Stephen Galazzo of Staten Island won the Dorothy Schaffer Memorial Award for outstanding achievement in the study of computer science.

Dominick Brennan of Brooklyn won the Douglas Gee Morton Award in Economics.

Gary Giordano of Staten Island won the Community Service Award, given to a student who has demonstrated commitment to community service through campus organizations. He also won the Christian P. Holmstrup History Award, given to the history major with the highest grade point average. Giordano, who majored in history and education, served as president of Wagner Cares and as the Student Government Association’s vice president of civic engagement. He is a member of the Omicron Delta Kappa national leadership honor society, Kappa Delta Pi education honor society, the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development, and the History Club. Giordano is also adviser to the Emerging Leaders Program at Staten Island’s Petrides School, a civic leadership and empowerment extracurricular program for 4th and 5th graders.

Alexandria Greco of Totowa, N.J., won the Thomas Kendris Award in Expository & Journalistic Writing for outstanding work in writing and journalism courses.

Kellie Griffith of Riverhead, N.Y., won the Julia M. Barchitta Award for Civic Engagement as well as the Ann H. and Norbert H. Leeseberg Undergraduate Education Award.

Katherine Hamilton of West Roxbury, Mass., won the English Literature Prize. Hamilton was president of both the Sigma Tau Delta English honor society and the Omicron Delta Kappa leadership honor society.

Shanti Hellerich of Munich, Germany, won the Psychology Department Award for academic excellence. She is a member of the Psi Chi psychology honor society and was a student representative on the college’s Human Experimentation Review Board.

Carrie Holt of Fort Mill, S.C., won the Harvey Logan Memorial Award in Physics. Holt belongs to the Kappa Mu Epsilon mathematics honor society and was president of the Wagner College Choir as well as Vocal Synergy, an all-female a cappella singing group.

Jason Hopkins of Sun City, Cal., won the Harvey Logan Memorial Award in Physics.

Ellen Huffman of Lima, Ohio, won four prizes:

  • Accounting Society Award
  • Business Administration Award
  • Sir Peter L. Cardiello Award for Entrepreneurship
  • Dr. Donald W. Spiro Award for Best Academic Achievement, the most prestigious award at Wagner, recognizing outstanding academic and co-curricular achievements

Huffman, a women’s golf team member, graduated with a cumulative 4.0 GPA. She majored in business administration with a concentration in accounting. She was an active member of Alpha Omicron Pi sorority, serving as its vice president of administration and recruitment chair. She was also a peer tutor and a member of the Accounting Society. Huffman has accepted a full-time position as an accountant with PriceWaterhouseCoopers.

Regina Ippolito of Brick, N.J., won the Hertha Troll Meyer Memorial Award for exemplary scholarship and service in the study of sociology and anthropology.

Jaclyn Jaffe of Short Hills, N.J., won the Simone de Beauvoir French Award.

Tom Jocelyn of Ulster Park, N.Y., won the Theatre Award in Performance.

Kristen Kaelber of Staten Island won the Mary Burr Award for the highest cumulative GPA among nursing students. A member of the December 2013 class in our second-degree nursing program, Kaelber was inducted into the Sigma Theta Tau national nursing honor society.

Kristiana Kalibat of Princeton, N.J., won the Dr. Norman L Freilich Memorial Award, given to a graduating student who has been accepted into medical or dental school. Kalibat has been accepted into the NYU School of Dentistry. She was a biopsychology major and a member of the women’s swimming team. Her senior thesis was on her research into the effects of endocrine-disrupting chemicals on development in fruit flies.

Thomas Kendris of Staten Island won the Economics Department Award. Kendris was president of the Omicron Delta Epsilon economics honor society.

Meredith Ketchmark of Plainsboro, N.J., won the Anita Volland Anthropology Award, which is presented to a student who exemplifies the work and vision of anthropology practiced by Professor Volland, emphasizing the importance of the “four fields,” the centrality of the culture concept, and great intellectual curiosity. Ketchmark demonstrated high achievement across all fields of anthropology. She conducted research on the environmental health vulnerabilities of Staten Islanders following Hurricane Sandy. As an intern for the local chapter of the Archaeological Institute of America, she was instrumental in organizing and executing the society's 2nd Archaeology Fair, held on Wagner's campus. Ketchmark's broad interests have her considering a number of potential options following graduation, including work in non-profit agencies, museums, and foreign service.

Kristen Lee of Cherry Hill, N.J., won the Biopsychology Award. For her senior thesis, Kristen did research with Professor Zoltan Fulop on developing a digital photographic atlas of the zebrafish brain. She was the biopsychology tutor in Fall 2013, interned at the University of Pennsylvania Medical School, and received NCAA Academic All-American honors as captain of the swimming team. She has been accepted into the neuroscience Ph.D. program at Virginia Commonwealth University.

Katherine Liu of Staten Island won the Education Department Chair’s Award for Distinction in Teaching.

Jenna Lombardo of Staten Island won the Robert deCsipkes Memorial Prize (Clinical) for outstanding research in psychology. She is a member of the Psi Chi psychology honor society.

Aleris Lorenzo of Brooklyn won the Jane Bacher Award for the highest grade point average in Community Health Nursing.

Trevor Loveland of Cherry Hill, N.J., won the Wagner Investment Group Legacy Award, presented to a student for excellence in the investment world.

Keila McCracken of Bemidji, Minn., won the Thomas Carroll Award for Environmental Sustainability, given for dedication in leading the campus toward a more environmentally sustainable future.

Stacy McGregor of Sinking Spring, Pa., won the Norval Calhoun Award for distinguished academic and teaching performance.

Joseph Messano of Oak Ridge, N.J., won the George G. Hackman Prize in Religious Studies.

Beth Miller of Holland, Pa., won the Theatre Award in Performance. Graduating with the highest overall GPA in the Theatre Department, Miller played numerous lead roles, including Jojo in “Seussical,” Elle Woods in “Legally Blonde” and Janet Vander Graf in “Drowsy Chaperone.”

Katilyn Pinkos of Harleysville, Pa., won the Lee Yorgey Davidheiser Prize in Chemistry. Pinkos graduated with a double major in chemistry and music. Her senior research project studied the use of MRI contrast agents for the detection of cancer. This has earned her a place next year at the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy, where she will work toward a doctorate in one of the leading pharmacy programs in the country.

Arielle Richardson of Eastport, Maine, won the International Affairs Award. Richardson has an avid interest in Middle Eastern politics and languages, which she studied at the Rothberg International School in Jerusalem. She is a member of Pi Sigma Alpha, the national political science honor society, and was the 2013 recipient of the Chai Mitzvah Outstanding Student Award.

Carly Schmidt of Royersford, Pa., won the Robbie & Mary Boody Memorial Award in Art. A double major in art history and studio art, she is very skilled in both fields. Schmidt was the recipient of last year’s Richard Gaffney Grant, and she interned at the prestigious Barnes Collection this past summer.

Amanda Sieferman of Tucson, Ariz., won the Robert deCsipkes Memorial Prize (Clinical) for outstanding research in psychology. Sieferman is a member of Psi Chi, the national psychology honor society. She is applying to a number of clinical/counseling psychology graduate programs that focus on sports psychology.

Amanda Spira of Rocky Point, N.Y., won the Kevin Sheehy Award in Biology. Spira graduated with a 3.99 cumulative GPA, majoring in biology with minors in chemistry and mathematics.

Wilson Thomas of Staten Island won the Marie Picket Award, given to a nursing undergraduate student who has shown outstanding community service and is a great role model in our community or abroad. This student also shows patience, compassion and leadership in the field of nursing by always being willing to assist others in their time of need. The award is given in memory of Professor Nancy Cherofsky’s mother, who dedicated her life to helping others. Thomas has raised funds and volunteered his time for numerous community projects and organizations, including weekly service in a soup kitchen.

Samantha Thompson of the Bronx won the Community Health Nursing Award, given to a nursing student who demonstrates volunteerism, thoughtfulness, caring and patience while promoting the health of individuals, families and groups within the community.

Julianne Tszuska of Staten Island won the Verrazano Memorial Prize for outstanding academic achievement in the study of history.

Zachary Weinsteiger of Dumont, N.J., won the George G. Hackman Prize in Religious Studies and the English Literature Prize. Weinsteiger edited Nimbus, the college’s literary magazine.

Cassandra White of Raleigh, N.C., won the Sigvart J. Steen Scholarship Award in Music for excellence in choir performance and the Socrates Prize for outstanding thought with application to human concerns in a community. White is applying to enter law school in Fall 2014. She completed a thoughtful senior thesis, “Democracy and Education.”

Stephanie White of North Branford, Conn., won the Wagner College Physician Assistant Award.

Bronwyn Whittle of Dublin, Ireland, won the Theatre Award in Performance. Whittle played the title role in the Main Stage production of “The Drowsy Chaperone” and was featured in the Stage One studio theater productions of “Five Women Wearing the Same Dress,” “Catholic School Girls” and “Zombie Prom.”

Heather Wolf of Pine Brook, N.J., won the Alpha Omicron Pi Award for academic excellence in the study of business administration and exemplary participation in campus activities. She graduated with a cumulative 3.975 GPA.

Laura Yasson of Stony Brook, N.Y., won the Don Hartung Prize in Education, given to a senior education major intending to pursue a career in teaching.

Bernadette Zapata of Staten Island won the Nursing Faculty Award, which recognizes a compassionate student leader who is patient and family-centered.

Julia Zenker of Port Jervis, N.Y., won the Julio Cortazar Spanish Award and the Socrates Prize for outstanding thought that has application to human concerns in a community. Zenker produced a thought-provoking senior thesis in the area of business ethics on the fair trade concept. She will attend law school in the fall.

Francis Zuniga of Manhattan won the Internationalization Action Council Award for a student who has furthered, exemplified or supported internationalization issues at Wagner College. Zuniga, who has served as president of the campus Habitat for Humanity chapter, helped organize this year's Alternative Spring Break service trip to El Salvador. She studied abroad at the University of Almeria, and on our own campus she helps organize student internationalization activities, serving as a study-abroad ambassador.

Vocal Synergy, an all-female student a capella group, won the Organization of the Year award, which is given to a Student Government Association-recognized organization on campus that actively participates in both the Wagner community and the surrounding communities, excelling in both social and civic work, serving as a model for other campus organizations.

Generation Citizen won the Periclean Community Agency Award, recognizing an abiding and active sense of social responsibility as demonstrated in the organization’s work.