Scholarships and Awards Committee 2020-2021

College Committees – Scholarships and Awards – End of Year Report

Chair of Committee: Joel Hunt (HSS)

Committee Members: Rick Huang (ENG), Kristy McCoy (HSS), Kellie Brosius-Jircitano (SCI), Kristen McAuley (BUS), Zachary Williams (BUS), Paul Olson (SCI), Brian Young (ENG), Tera Van Doren, ex officio, Kris Motta Torok (substitute for Ken Miller, ex officio)

Meeting Dates:

  • Tuesday, February 16, at 8:00–8:30 a.m. - Finalist Selection Meeting
  • Thursday, February 25, at 8:30–10:00 a.m. - Student Interviews
  • Thursday, February 25, at 1:30–1:45 p.m. - Student Interviews
  • Friday, February 26, at 8:30–8:45 a.m. - Student Interviews
  • Friday, February 26, at 10:45–11:15 a.m. - Student Interviews
  • Friday, February 26, 1:30–2:30 p.m. - Student Interviews + Final Selection Meeting


Charge 1: Select winners for the Fergusson, Hetzel, Kochel, Lethbridge, Outstanding First-Year Student, Turnbull, and Walker Awards (standing charge)

The Scholarships and Awards Committee received 30 award applications from 19 different students. Kim Lynch in Student Leadership and Involvement compiled the application materials (i.e., nomination letters, transcripts, and résumés), descriptions, and rubrics for each award. The committee members reviewed these materials on Teams and ranked the applicants for each award. The committee chair compiled the rankings in an Excel document and scheduled a finalist selection meeting with the committee. On Tuesday, February 16, the committee met to select finalists for each award, and Kim Lynch scheduled interviews with the students. The committee edited the interview questions from previous years and interviewed ten finalists via Zoom on Thursday, February 25, and Friday, February 26. After the interviews, the committee made final deliberations via Zoom and selected the following awardees:

  • T. Reed Ferguson Award: Alexis Burkhart
  • Ralph Dorn Hetzel Memorial Award: Joshua Slayton and Marissa Litzenberg
  • Irvin H. Kochel Award: Tingyi (Nicky) Zu
  • Jackson Lethbridge Tolerance Award: Lady Tatiana Sullivan
  • Outstanding First-Year Student Award: Alexia Torres-Negron
  • Thomas H. Turnbull Award: Hunter Frazier and Jennifer Gustafson
  • Eric A. and Josephine S. Walker Award: Emily Brocious

Charge 2: Identify and implement processes to publicize student awards and streamline applications to increase nominations.

The committee chair forwarded an award nomination invitation letter to Lisa Nelson for distribution to faculty and staff on December 1, 2020. In the past, the committee also sent out paper flyers to faculty, but this seemed unnecessary during this period of pandemic-related remote teaching. Next year, the committee should distribute invitations earlier in the fall semester to encourage more nominations. Furthermore, it may be advantageous for committee members to publicize the nomination process within their respective schools. The committee should also emphasize nominations for the Outstanding First-Year Student Award and the Jackson Lethbridge Tolerance Award, as these awards only received one nomination each this year.

Charge 3: Identify and/or create additional campus community rewards for faculty engagement and success (low, middle, and high stakes).

The committee touched base with Faculty Council Chair, Emily Cassano, to discuss this charge. We determined that this charge was beyond the purview of the committee, as it concerns faculty rewards rather than student awards and scholarships.

Suggested Charge(s) For Next Year:

  1. Select winners for the Fergusson, Hetzel, Kochel, Lethbridge, Outstanding First-Year Student, Turnbull, and Walker Awards (standing charge)
  2. Work with Student Leadership and Involvement to edit award descriptions and rubrics (as necessary) to clarify criteria and reduce overlap between the seven awards.
  3. Continue to identify and implement processes to publicize student awards and streamline the application process to increase nominations.