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College Awards Top Student Honors
CHESTERTOWN, MD—Jeffery Dale Sullivan could never be accused of being a slacker. At Washington College’s 2014 Commencement on May 17, the Environmental Studies major from Harrington, Del., graduated summa cum laude with First Honors as the graduating senior with the highest cumulative grade-point average. Sullivan, who also made time his senior year to serve as president of the Student Government Association, also took home the Environmental Studies Award, the W. Dennis Berry ’87 Leadership Award, and the prestigious George Washington Medal, awarded to the senior who shows “the greatest promise of understanding and realizing in life and work the ideals of a liberal education.”
Sullivan took full advantage of the College’s offerings during his four years, arriving as a Presidential Fellow, being elected into the Cater Society, participating in the holistic Chesapeake Semester, studying songbirds and bird migration at the College’s Chester River Field Research Center at Chino Farms, and working in the Geographic Information Systems (GIS) lab. He also joined the Student Environmental Alliance on campus and helped start a Bike Share program. He was awarded a national Udall Foundation Scholarship in 2011 for his “demonstrated commitment to careers related to the environment,” and was elected into Phi Beta Kappa this past semester.
As is the tradition, General Washington himself (portrayed by actor Dean Malissa) strode up to the commencement stage to congratulate Sullivan on winning his namesake Medal. He then took the opportunity to offer some remarks on good citizenship and the importance of actions over words, or, as his colleague Benjamin Franklin put it, “Well done is better than well said.”
Other important awards bestowed during Commencement included five that, like the Washington Medal, are voted on and conferred by the entire faculty. “These awards have special significance as the graduates receiving them have made a tremendous impact in campus life,” said Dean Emily Chamlee-Wright. “Their names will be added to plaques in William Smith Hall, permanent reminders of their importance to Washington College.”
The Louis L. Goldstein ’35 Award, presented to a graduating senior who, in the opinion of the faculty, has demonstrated unusual interest, enthusiasm and potential in the field of public affairs, went to Hilary Shea Badger.
Eugene B. Casey Medal, presented to a senior woman voted by the faculty to be outstanding in the qualities of scholarship, character, leadership and campus citizenship was shared by Charllotte Angel Costa,and Daina Elise Raiffe.
Henry W.C. Catlin 1894 Medal, presentedto a senior man voted by the faculty to be outstanding in the qualities of scholarship, character, leadership and campus citizenship, went to Anthony A. Cairo, III.
Clark-Porter Medal, presented in memory of Harry B. Porter, Class of 1905, tothe student whose character and personal integrity, in the opinion of the faculty, have most clearly enhanced the quality of campus life, was awarded to Emily Elizabeth Hall.
Other top accolades awarded from the Commencement stage were as follows:
The Alumni Association’s Distinguished Teaching Award, decided annually throughextensive consultation with students and faculty, was presented to Associate Professor of Anthropology William Schindler.
The Jane Huston Goodfellow Memorial Prize,presented to the graduating senior majoring in science who has an abiding appreciation of the arts and humanities and has shown scholastic excellence, was shared by Christopher O. Miller and Kim-Vi Silken Sweetman.
The Gold Pentagon Award, which recognizes a senior and an alumnus, faculty or friend of the college, selected by Omicron Delta Kappa Society, for meritorious service to Washington College, was awarded to senior Brittany A. Weaver, and Professor of Philosophy Kevin Brien.
The Sophie Kerr Prizefor literary promisewas awarded to Alexander Curren Stinton.
The other finalists for the Sophie Kerr Prize also were recognized: Grace Ann Arenas, Peter Fortenbaugh, Kimberly Ann Uslin, and Courtney Kay Wicker.
For a photo gallery showing the winners of the academic and service awards that were presented at the Senior Luncheon on May 16, click here.