Campus News

Honors Day Ceremony Held May 8

Story posted May 09, 2002

On Wednesday, May 8, Bowdoin College held its sixth annual Honors Day Ceremony to present awards to students and faculty who have distinguished themselves both in and out of the classroom. The ceremony was held at Pickard Theater, Memorial Hall.

Following President Barry Mills's welcome, Nancy Jennings delivered the Honors Day address. Jennings, associate professor of education, gave a talk titled "Public and Private Honors."

"Tonight is clearly a night to recognize good work publicly," Jennings said, "but I'd like to extend the idea of honors a little and talk about public and private honors." Jennings recalled her days as a student at Macalester College in St. Paul, Minn., where she and a large group of other students, faculty and staff passionately voiced their displeasure with the newly arrived Hubert H. Humphrey.

Humphrey, having just lost the presidential election, was at an unhappy point in his life. Adding to his burden was his unpopularity with much of the Macalester population, who regularly heckled him, shouted at him, interrupted his public talks, and grilled him with aggressive questions. Humphrey was a man who tackled many tough issues and opponents during his career, yet the behavior of his Macalester nemeses made the simple act of walking across the campus to teach his class one of the most difficult things he ever had to do.

"There will be times in your lives," Jennings said, "when all the hard work, intelligence, creativity and excellence it took for you to get the awards you're being honored for here tonight will be necessary for you just to push the chaos of your life aside do very simple things, like walk across campus...." You will have to "marshal all those forces just to get by. And these acts will...not receive public recognition, but are [still] worthy of honor, and should in some way be acknowledged.

"So, what I hope for you is a life full of public recognition..., but also a life in which you learn to recognize and celebrate the times when all that good stuff in yourself and others is needed to do very simple things that won't result in public recognition--to award, at those times, private honors that are deserved."

The awards were then presented to dozens of outstanding individuals (students listed are Class of 2002 unless noted otherwise):

Marc J. Hetherington, assistant professor of government, was awarded (in absentia) the Sydney B. Karofsky Award for Junior Faculty. The award is given annually to a member of the faculty who "best demonstrates the ability to impart knowledge, inspire enthusiasm, and stimulate intellectual curiosity." Prof. Hetherington is presently a visiting research fellow at the Center for the Study of Democratic Politics at Princeton University.

Students were then recognized for winning national awards. Twenty members of the Class of 2002 have been elected to Phi Beta Kappa, a national honorary fraternity open to top scholars of the graduating class:

Kristopher Regis Bosse
Sara Jung Edel
Karin Alaine France
Katherine Anne Grote
Laura Marie Hilburn
Peter Heathwood Hill
Robin Marie Kramer
Gregory Christopher Orlicz
Matthew Thomas Reeder
Jeffrey Scott Riese
Allison Susanne Robbins
Rebecca Ann Sears
Andrew Dana Shaw
Elizabeth Mary Shesko
Brandee Marie Strickland
James Webster Stull
Tara Anne Lang Talbot
John Karl Thorndike
Ann Emily VanVolkenburg
Ningning Yang

Three seniors earned Fulbright Teaching Awards. Fulbrights provide funding for study or teaching abroad for one year to promote cross-cultural interaction and increase mutual understanding. Katherine Anne Grote, Lindsay Marie Pettingill, and John Montgomery Yost will all teach next year in Germany.

Monica L. Skoge '03 is the recipient of a Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship. The scholarship is awarded to highly qualified students who intend to pursue careers in the fields of science, mathematics or engineering. Skoge is a physics/math double major who plans to pursue her Ph.D. in physics.

Marisa McNamara has been awarded a Thomas J. Watson Fellowship. The Watson Fellowship is given to college graduates of unusual promise to pursue an independent research project outside the United States for one year after graduation. An English and Spanish double major, McNamara will travel to Mexico, Ecuador, and Argentina.

Craig McEwen, dean for academic affairs, announced the winners of the Bowdoin College Research Awards. Over 60 students, representing all class years, were asked to stand and be honored.

Craig Bradley, dean of student affairs, presented Commencement Awards and awards of general scholarship. Tara Anne Lang Talbot received the Goodwin Commencement Prize, and Homa Mojtabai '01 was given the Class of 1868 Prize. Both students will give Commencement addresses. Phillip John Prest won the DeAlva Stanwood Alexander Prize and will speak at Baccalaureate.

Rebecca Ann Sears was given the Brooks-Nixon Prize as the best Bowdoin candidate for selection as a Rhodes scholar.

President Mills presented John Karl Thorndike with the Andrew Allison Haldane Cup. This cup is given to a member of the senior class who demonstrates outstanding qualities of leadership and character.

Tara Anne Lang Talbot and Kathleen Claire Waller were awarded the Lucien Howe Prize, given by the faculty to a member or members of the senior class who, as undergraduates, showed the "highest qualities of conduct and character."

Larisa Reznik was presented with the President's Award. This award, inaugurated in 1997 by Robert H. Edwards, recognizes a student's exceptional personal achievements and uncommon contributions to the College.

Extracurricular awards were given to students who have demonstrated exemplary leadership and character during their time at Bowdoin. Departmental awards were presented to those students who excelled in particular fields of study.

Students arrived at Pickard Theater in a procession led by the Bowdoin College World Music Ensemble, who performed the Ga drumming piece "Kpanlogo" and Jossie Deléon's "Coqui Serenito." BOCA performed an interlude, and led the singing of the Alma Mater. The World Music Ensemble led the recessional performing the Rastafarian drumming song "Nyabinghi."

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