CHaSS Honors its Best
Thursday, Apr. 24, 2014
Utah State University’s College of Humanities and Social Sciences celebrated the accomplishments of its students, staff, faculty and friends in a year-end award ceremony held in the Taggart Student Center Stevenson Ballroom.
“It is fitting that we gather today to recognize those who have made exceptional contributions to our college, as well as to our campus and community life,” Dean John Allen said to the assembled crowd of honorees and guests.
Dean Allen first thanked members of the CHaSS Dean’s Development Board. “Their vision for the college helps us move forward continually,” he said. “I am truly appreciative of their continued support of CHaSS.”
The awards also opened with the presentation of the U.S. flag by a Color Guard Corp from the USU Army ROTC — a program based in the college.
The college’s first major award, “Friends of Humanities and Social Sciences,” recognizes those who have provided outstanding service to further the college mission. This year’s recipient is Dr. Mehdi Heravi.
Heravi was born in Tehran, Iran, and studied in England as a young man. As a teenager, after a lot of convincing, his father allowed him to move to Logan, Utah, to attend high school where, after graduation, he completed his undergraduate degree at USU, where he also served on the academic senate. He earned his doctorate from the American School of International Services, where graduates are well known for their excellence in public service, environmental stewardship, human rights and social justice. During his career he served as vice president and provost at the University of Iran. Since retirement, Heravi has worked in philanthropy, giving support to academic programs and charities. He is passionate about encouraging young academic talent and cares deeply about students receiving access to international programs and other academic opportunities.
His contributions to CHaSS further the college’s vision of the new Global Communication and Culture Complex.
Students from the college who earned the A-Pin were recognized. The A-Pin is among USU’s oldest academic awards. Students must earn straight “A” grades through two consecutive semesters while taking at least 15 credit hours. Twenty-one students earned the honor.
Students from the college’s multiple departments and program areas were named “Students of the Year.” Thirty-three students were named.
“It’s always a pleasure to honor our students,” said Senior Associate Dean Dawn Kirby. “Each department has selected those who represent high levels of achievement. We commend them all for their scholarship, leadership and service.”
The CHaSS Scholar of the Year is Briana Bowen who goes on to represent the college at USU’s annual Robins Awards. The award recognizes the intellectual contributions of a student to the USU community. Bowen is among the college’s most distinguished students ever. She was recognized as the 2012 CHaSS Undergraduate Teaching Fellow of the year, she is an A-Pin recipient, an Honors student and she has been named Student of the Year for Political Science. She was named a 2013 Truman Scholar (the fourth recipient in USU history and the only female). She is a dedicated and gifted student, but her achievement and service is not unique to the classroom. In 2012 she worked as a regional field director for the Scott Howell for U.S. Senate campaign and represented Utah State University at the Democratic National Convention. After graduation she plans to earn a master’s degree in public policy.
Bowen was also named the college’s 2014 Valedictorian.
Students at the college level who receive the Legacy Award also represent the colleges at the annual Robins Awards. The CHaSS recipient and nominee is Isaac Timm, who has distinguished himself in academics, creative activities and service. He leaves a legacy that “future students would do well to emulate,” his presenter said.
Among the college’s unique presentations is the “Giraffe Award” created by current Dean John Allen. It was clear that, while we are very skilled at valuing our traditional areas of teaching, research, and service, we are not so proficient when it comes to honoring the risks taken in teaching, office management and organization, the dean felt. Innovators help to create a better college and university by taking individual risks. The Giraffe Award is intended to recognize those who stick their necks out to make this a better college and university. Twelve individuals were nominated for the award and this year’s recipient is Matthew LaPlante.
“Pre-tenure, he organized the Crisis Simulation for his students,” Allen said. “He uses a model of shock and awe and engages students in missionary journalism. He definitely stuck his neck out, risked failure and reputation, which is the definition of a Giraffe Award winner.”
Other major college awards include the Ed Glatfelter Faculty Service Award that recognizes the extra efforts and service contributions faculty make by working with a variety of programs and initiatives, both on and off campus. The 2014 recipient is Harrison Kleiner from the Department of Languages, Philosophy and Communication Studies.
Matthew Anderson was recognized for his service to the college as the CHaSS undergraduate senator in the Utah State University/Student Association. His university involvement was noted, including work on the government relations council and as an undergraduate teaching fellow.
Finally, two faculty members were honored at their retirement for the years of dedicated service to the university and the college, William Furlong (46 years) and Ronald Shook (31 years).
The complete list of honorees and awards follows.
Benjamin Anderson, German; Alexandra Batty, English; Briana Bowen, Political Science; Natalie Cheney, English; Jessica Christiansen, English; Lusine Dokhoyan, Global Communication; Chelsey Funk, English; Benjamin Harman, Religious Studies; Grant Holyoak, Sociology; Jordan Jeppson, Social Work; Elizbeth Jorgensen, Journalism and Communication;
Lindsey McBride, English; Kristine Perryman, English; Sarah Romero, Journalism and Communication; Hannah Russon, Social Work; Joshua Smith, Law and Constitutional Studies;
Tahnee Soule, History; Natasha Summers, Social Work; Shannon Kayla Tuck, Social Work;
Daniela Wheelwright, Social Work; Jared Woodcox, Journalism and Communication
Students of the Year
Colleen Hughes, Interdisciplinary Studies; Candace Child, Liberal Arts; Trenidy Thomas, Aerospace Studies; Lindsey McBride, Literary Studies; Cree Taylor, English Teaching;
Paden Carlson, Creative Writing; Ariel Peterson, Technical Writing; Emily A. Cannon, Religious Studies; Tahnee N. Soule, History; Marcie Cowley, History Teaching; Nicholas S. Gittins, Classics; Dawn Otterby, Agricultural Communication and Journalism; Marie A. Titze, Broadcast/Multimedia Journalism; Paul R. Christiansen, Print Journalism; Elizabeth K. Jorgensen, Public Relations; Tesha Edwards, Asian Studies; Kayla Arrington, Communication Studies; Tori Winslow, French; Megan Armstrong, French Teaching; Benjamin Anderson, German; Trevor Mills, Global Communication; Emily Cannon, Philosophy; Jorri Falslev, Spanish; Jennie Cross, Spanish Teaching; Hser Doh, Intensive English Language Institute; William Burton, Military Science; Briana Bowen, Political Science; Sandra Mueller, International Studies; Adam Stewart, Law and Constitutional Studies; Rachel Smith, Sociology; Whitney Smith-Hickman, Social Work; Audrey M. George, Anthropology; Katie Swain, Utah Public Radio.
Researcher of the Year — Michael Sowder
Teacher of the Year — Ko-Yin Sung
Lecturer of the Year — Shanan Ballam
Outstanding Undergraduate Researcher — Chelsey Funk
Outstanding Undergraduate Research Mentor — Christine Cooper-Rompato
Faculty Advisor of the Year — Jennifer Sinor
Outstanding Employee – Classified — Robin Wheelwright
Outstanding Employee – Professional — Reid Furniss
Ed Glatfelter Faculty Service Award — Harrison Kleiner
Graduate Researcher of the Year — Ann Armstrong
Graduate Instructor of the Year — Trisha Haber
Legacy Award — Isaac Timm
Scholar of the Year — Briana Bowen
Valedictorian — Briana Bowen
Giraffe Award Nominees — Ekaterina Arshavskaya, Marcus Brasiliero, Brian Champagne, Maria Cordero, Karin DeJonge-Kannan, Maria Spicer-Escalante, Bradford Hall, Christa Jones, Harrison Kleiner, Matthew LaPlante, Mary Leavitt, Doris McGonagill.
Giraffe Award Recipient — Matthew LaPlante
CHaSS Undergraduate Senator — Matthew Anderson
Scholarship Recipients — Wafaa Arabash, Hubbard Family Scholarship; Kyra Karegeannes, Hubbard Family Scholarship; Devin Greener, Charles and Rae Perkins Scholarship; Braden Clinger, Seely-Hinckley Scholarship; Sharon Lyman, Seely-Hinckley Scholarship; Cambri Spear, Seely-Hinckley Scholarship; Daniela Wheelwright, Seely-Hinckley Scholarship; Andrew Izatt, Lillywhite Scholarship; Elena Fletcher, Lillywhite Scholarship; Abigail Fritz, Lillywhite Scholarship; Whitney King, Lillywhite Scholarship; Joshua Smith, M. Judd Harmon Scholarship; Kaitlin Peterson, Student Opportunity Recipient; Andrew Izatt, CHaSS Student Senator Award.
Contact: CHaSS Office, 435-797-1195