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Student Laurels and Honors for 2017

National, university and department awards honoring student achievement

Part of the Commencement Stories, 2017 Series
Clockwise from top: Faculty Scholars Caroline Fernelius, Gabrielle Stewart and Karen Xu (not pictured are Lauren Bunce and John Lu); Truman Scholar Maya Durvasula; Sanford Morton (Engineering); Christina Gibbons (Athletics Award); Henry Washington (Africa
Clockwise from top: Faculty Scholars Caroline Fernelius, Gabrielle Stewart and Karen Xu; Truman Scholar Maya Durvasula; Sanford Morton (Engineering); Christina Gibbons (Athletics Award); Henry Washington (A&AAS); and Alex Pieloch (Music).


Truman Scholars

Duke junior Maya Durvasula is among 62 students selected as 2017 Truman Scholars. Durvasula, a Robertson Scholar from Albuquerque, New Mexico, studies economics, with a minor in mathematics and a certificate in politics, philosophy and economics.  She has been involved with research through the Duke-UNC Initiative on Poverty and Inequality and the UNC Institute for Global Health & Infectious Diseases.

Students are selected based on their records of leadership, public service and academic achievement, and their likelihood of becoming public-service leaders.


Gates-Cambridge Scholars

Duke senior Jessica Van Meir is among 36 U.S. recipients selected from roughly 800 applications for a Gates-Cambridge Scholarship, which covers a student’s tuition and living expenses while completing a graduate degree at the University of Cambridge.

Beginning this fall at Cambridge, Van Meir plans to pursue a master’s of philosophy in development studies.

In addition, Duke alumna Liangliang Zhang is among 55 international recipients selected for the Scholarship.


Schwarzman Scholars

Justin Bryant at Duke Kunshan University Seniors Justin Bryant of Johns Creek, Georgia, and Julian Keeley of New York, New York, and 2015 graduate David Robertson of Fairfax, Virginia, were named to the second class of Schwarzman Scholars, which provides for one year of study at Tsinghua University in Beijing, China.

Bryant is a Reginaldo Howard Memorial Scholar majoring in public policy studies and pursuing a certificate in information science and information studies.

Keeley is an economics major pursing a minor in philosophy with a focus on politics and economics.



African & African American Studies

Henry Lafond Washington Jr. won the John Hope Franklin Award for Academic Excellence. He also received the Karla F. C. Holloway Award for University Service

Mina Ibiye Ezikpe received the Walter C. Burford Award for Community Service.

Lindsey Alexander Hallingquest, Shameka Carolynn Rolla and Dorothy Ruo-shi Wu won the Mary McLeod Bethune Writing Award.

Nikolas Oscar Sparks received the Graduate Teaching Award


Art, Art History and Visual Studies

Tiange Zhang received the Mary Duke Biddle Foundation Visual Art Award

Charlotte Ellen McKay and Frances Gambee Sensenbrenner won the Nancy Kaneb Art History Award

Victoria Katherine Bilas earned the Sue and Lee Noel Prize in Visual Arts

Zarah Udwadia and Indrani Saha earned the Visual Studies Initiative Award


Arts of the Moving Image

Elaine Seoyoung Pak and Abhi Shah won the Outstanding Undergraduate Filmmaker Award

Upasana Chandra received the Rodger Frey Film Essay Award


Asian/Pacific Studies

Felix Forest Kung, Ning Olivia Zhao, Megan Ye and Mirai Matsuura received the Sirena WuDunn Memorial Scholarship



Christina Marie Gibbons earned the ACC Plaque for Excellence, Scholarship and Athletics


Benenson Awards in the Arts

Neha Agrawal, Mariana Calvo, David Geng, Elliot Golden, Amanda Hedgecock, Yizhou Jiang, Erin Mathias, Robert Meese, Rhys Morgan, Elise Nelson, Elaine Pak, Paul Popa, Alex Sanchez Bressler, Quinn Scanlan & Hunter Stark, Madeline Taylor and Christopher White received Benenson Awards for summer arts projects.



Samantha Atieno Kisare won the James B. Rast Memorial Award in Comparative Organismal Biology

Anthony Hung received the Edward C. Horn Memorial Prize for Excellence in Biology

Jade C. Lu received the Excellence in Plant Science Prize

Samantha Ann Huff earned the Maggie Schneider Award in Marine Biology


Biostatistics and Bioinformatics

Tianhui Zhou received the Overall Academic Excellence Award

Rachel Gottron Greenberg earned the Student Leadership Award. She also won the Outstanding Master’s Project Award

Hengshi Yu received the Outstanding Methodological Master’s Project Award



Christopher McGee Jernigan received the American Chemical Society Undergraduate Award in Analytical Chemistry

Brandon Quoc Vinh Ngo won the American Chemical Society Undergraduate Award in Inorganic Chemistry

Luke Tseng won the American Chemical Society Undergraduate Award in Organic Chemistry

Debbie Charlotte Louise Burdinski earned the Merck Index Award

Benjamin John Guy Rousseau won the Hypercube Scholar Award

Erin Frances Brooks received the Department of Chemistry Award


Zach Heater Classical Studies

Zachary Dean Heater won the Classical Association of the Middle West and South Award for Outstanding Accomplishment in Classical Studies

Zachary Dean Heater and George Slade Mellgard received the David Taggart Clark Prize in Classical Studies


Computer Science

Arun Ganesh, Aditya Mukund and Zheqing Zhu won the Alex Vasilos Award

Mary Elizabeth Dowd received the DeNardis Award


Cultural Anthropology

Fei Yi Kuai earned the Judith McDade Prize in Cultural Anthropology

Briana Danielle Acosta and Mina Ibiye Ezikpe won the Paul Farmer Award for Justice and Social Responsibility


Sara Yuen Dance

Haylee Paige Levin won the Julia Wray Dance Award

Cindy Li received the Dance Writing Award

Sara Yuen earned the Clay Taliaferro Dance Award


Divinity School

Mary Spears Dance Berry and James William Myers won the Award for Excellence in Bible

Victor Andre Greene received the Frederick Buechner Writing Award

Yucheng Bai earned the Richard P. Heitzenrater Award for excellence in History

Glenn Rees Stallsmith received the Hoyt Hickman Award for excellence in Liturgics

Samantha Kate McKean won the Jameson Jones Preaching Award

LaDonna Wharton Farrish and Stacy Jissel Guinto-Salinas earned the McMurry Richey Awards in Field Education

Seung Kwon (Joseph) Yang won the McMurry Richey Awards in Missions

Cynthia Sherre Jacko earned the Seminarian Award of the fellowship of United Methodists in Music and Worship Arts

Kendal L. McBroom was named the university’s Julian Abele Award for Divinity Student of the Year      


Documentary Studies

Christopher Michael White won the Julia Harper Day Award for Documentary Studies


Duke Global Health Institute

Devon Wayne Paul received the Outstanding Master of Science in Global Health Student


Duke Human Rights Center at the Franklin Humanities Institute

Madeleine Octavia Roberts, Carolina Gisela Robledo, Jenna Zhang and Symonne Rachelle Singleton earned the Oliver W. Koonz Human Rights Prize


Duke Service-Learning

Kristen Michele Larson and Christina Cherise Williams won the Betsy Alden Outstanding Service-Learning Award


Earth and Ocean Sciences

John McDermott won the Thomas V. Laska Award



Ibanca Anand won the Class of 2016 Award for Exceptional Growth in the Master of Economics

Jaikun Xu, Shiv Shyam Gidumal and Roland Douglas Muench won the faculty vote for Outstanding Honors Poster; Ricardo Javier Martinez-Cid and Gonzalo Pernas won the student vote.

Kai Yu Lee earned the Outstanding Symposium Presentation Award

Zhao Ting Lim and Ren Hao Tan received the Allen Starling Johnson Jr. Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Research for Best Honor Thesis; Sachet Bangia was a finalist.

Chenyu Wang and Xirui Zhang won the Master’s Program Award for Academic Excellence



Gwen Elizabeth McMahon won the D.T. Stallings Award

Jennifer Acosta, Arielle Rebecca Kahn, Gabrielle Rose Weiss, Christina Cherise Williams and Chloe Marissa McIntosh earned the Holton Prize for Education Research

Paige Elise Prather received the Virginia S. Wilson Excellence in Teaching Award


Efe Aras stands with his adviser Galen Reeves in the busy streets of downtown Durham. Their research aims to reveal how much traffic might change if cars could go park themselves


Lauren Alison Harper and David Chapman Rosen won the Aubrey E. Palmer Award

Elijah Henry John Cole won the Charles Ernest Seager Memorial Award

Gautam Sai Chebrolu earned the Charles Rowe Vail Memorial Outstanding Undergraduate Teaching Award

Alden Timothy Harwood received the David Randall Fuller Prize

Aubrey Lynn Presnell won the da Vinci Award

Zachary David Brown received the Edward D. "Ned" Light Memorial Award

Rekha Subhashini Korlipara won the Eric I. Pas Award

Efe Aras earned the George Sherrerd III Memorial Award in Electrical and Computer Engineering

Anchi Wu and Grace Ying won the Helmholtz Award

Matthew Tyler Tobin and Jacob Ryan Wirfel received the Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science Faculty Award

Aubrey Lynn Presnell won the Otto Meier, Jr. Tau Beta Pi Award

Sanford Douglas Morton received the Pi Tau Sigma Scholarship Award

Sebastian Rodolfo Baquerizo Queirolo earned the Pratt School of Engineering Student Service Award

Andrew John Broaddus Gayle earned the Raymond C. Gaugler Award in Materials Science and Engineering

Daniel Archer Hull won the Theo C. Pilkington Memorial Award

Aubrey Lynn Presnell and Jeremy Elias Schreck received the Walter J. Seeley Scholastic Award

David Chapman Rosen won the William Brewster Snow Environmental Engineering Award

Grace Li English

Anna Elizabeth Mukamal won the Award for Most Original Honors Thesis

Aaron Montgomery Baum and Haley Marie Enos received the Lucaci Award for Creative Non-Fiction

Elise Laurie Nelson earned the Terry Welby Tyler Jr. Award for Creative Writing

Chloe Hooks received the Academy of American Poets Prize. Emily Otero earned honorable mention

Vivian Lu received the Anne Flexner Memorial Award for Creative Writing in Fiction

Andrew Tan-Delli Cicchi won the Anne Flexner Memorial Award for Creative Wrtiting in Poetry

Martha Addison Cady won the Francis K. Pemberton Scholarship

Vivian Lu, Carmen Pharr and Haley Enos received the Margaret Rose Knight Sanford Scholarship

Grace Li received the Reynolds Price Fiction Award

Louis Garza, Yulia Kozina and Elizabeth Krogman earned a William M. Blackburn Scholarship


Nicholas School of the Environment

Donovan Loh won the Sara LaBoskey Award


Fuqua School of Business

Aiyappa Chengappa Maruvanda earned the Alan D. Schwartz Award for Mentorship

David Anthony Gross won the Asa T. Spaulding, Sr. Award for Leadership

Ross Thomas Boomer, Owen McGowan Boyce, Catherine Nicole Carter, Saad Duraiz, Diego David Granados Hernández, Erika Jacqueline-Simone Hines, John Edward Huisman III, Noelle Elizabeth Kelly, Evelyn Kim, James Jordan Kozlow, Jennifer Nicole Miller, Jarrett Haywood Nobles, Maria Peverelli, Hunter H. Rudd, Elizabeth Ann Rybacki, Abraham Joshua Saldana Jr., Monique Stone, Vedant Tomer, Andrew Robert Tuttle and Nicholas Durwood Williams received the Deans’ Recognition Awards

Alejandra Rossi received the Distinguished Service Award

Christopher James Castro and Anna Rose Cottone earned the Keohane Leadership Award

Kimberly Ann Whelan Runge won the The Breeden Award in Finance

Jarrett Haywood Nobles, Hunter H. Rudd and Robert Darnell Sinyard III received the 2017 Forever Duke Student Leadership Award


Gender, Sexuality and Feminist Studies

Dana A. Raphael received the Dora Anne Little Award


The Graduate School

Nicole Marie Dalzell and Erin Alison McKenney received the Dean’s Awards for Excellence in Teaching

Juan Ramirez Jr. earned the Samuel DuBois Cook Award

Julia Hamilton Roberts won the WomC Campus Impact Award

Emily Elizabeth Blankinship Boehm, Dalmacio Dennis Flores III, Abigail Leavitt LaBella and Mary Caton Lingold earned the 2017 Forever Duke Student Leadership Award


Paige Newhouse History

Paige Alexis Newhouse received the William T. Laprade Prize


International Comparative Studies

Chinyere Nnenna Amanze and Mina Kim won the Capstone Research Prize

Diana Wang Dai earned the Distinguished Thesis Award


The Kenan Institute for Ethics

Amulya Vadapalli earned top prize in the Kenan Moral Purpose Award contest. Honorable mention went to Richard Phillips and Alexandra Zrenner.


Linguistics Program

Taela Donalda Dudley received the Distinguished Thesis Award



Zhicheng Qiao won the Karl Menger Award

Efe Aras and Alexander John Pieloch received the Julia Dale Prize in Mathematics



Maria Crisalli Andrews, Heather Ashley Burrell, Martha Marguerite Cullen, Daniel Joseph Cunningham, Jacqueline Boykin Henson, Alexandra Jordan Horne, Phillip M. Kemp Bohan, Collin L. Kent, Daniel Bowman Loriaux, Eric Michael Mastria, Benjamin Ryan Murray, Matthew Liam O'Sullivan and Lowell Thorndike Nicholson received the Academic Award

Heather Ashley Burrell, Jing Light Han, Morgan Scott Hardy and Kelly Ryan Murphy earned the Albert Schweitzer Fellowship

Jong G. Park and Vinayak Venkataraman received the Andrew C. Puckett Essay Award

Neil Anjon Ray earned the Arnold P. Gold Foundation Leonard Tow Humanism in Medicine Award

Perez Agaba, Beteal Getachew Ashinne, Javier Galán, Elizabeth Wanja Mathenge, Mya DeBoer Sendak and Arthurine Kulubo Zakama won the Brenda Armstrong Living the Dream Award

Kathleen D. Campbell, Nikita Chapurin, Godefroy Sullyvan Chery, Daniel Joseph Cunningham, Ajay Gopalakrishna and Chinmay Shivaram Paranjape won the Clinical and Translational Science Award

Beteal Getachew Ashinne, Kathleen D. Campbell, Bora Chang, Rathnayaka Mudiyanselage Kalpanee, Dhanushika Gunasingha, Collin L. Kent and Conrad Nelson Stern-Ascher received the Davison Scholarship

Daniel Joseph Cunningham, Ajay Gopalakrishna, Benjamin Joseph Hoover, Yoon Young Mun, Jong G. Park, Jeffrey Tadashi Sakamoto, Kevin Denis Schwartz, Alissa Rose Stavig and Hanci Zhang won the Dean’s Merit Scholarship

Taylor M. Broome, Heather Ashley Burrell, Samuel Harrison Farber, Rathnayaka Mudiyanselage Kalpanee, Dhanushika Gunasingha and Jinh Light Han earned the Dean’s Recognition Award

Rajvi Mehta, Emily Wai Yan Ngan, Michael Sena Quist, Mark Phillip Sendak, Robert Darnell Sinyard III, Christopher M. Sterwald and Cecilia Jing Zhang earned the Dean’s Tuition Scholarship

Vinayak Venkataraman won the Doris Parrish Cardiology Award

Collin L. Kent received the Doris Parrish Oncology Award

Michael John Maranzano and Divya Natesan won th Duke Translational Medicine Institute Award

Taylor M. Broome, Zachary Eugene Holcomb, Yoon Young Mun, Lowell Thorndike Nicholson, Robert Bo Qi, Vinayak Venkataraman and Cecilia Jing Zhang won the Eugene A. Stead Student Research Scholarship

Jennifer Min Wang received the Glaxo Smith Kline Award

Montgomery Joy Zachary and Kun Wei Song won Howard Hughes Medical Institute Research Training Fellowship

Jennifer Min Wang received the Palmer Award

Zachary Eugene Holcomb earned the Palumbo Family Award

Maria Crisalli Andrews, Kathleen D. Campbell, Javier Galán, Mya DeBoer Sendak, Conrad Nelson Stern-Ascher and Arthurine Kulubo Zakama received the Primary Care Leadership Track

Collin L. Kent won the Rauch Family Foundation

Heather Ashley Burrell, Marguerite Martha Cullen, Adam Daniel Glener, Michael R. Harowicz, Zachary Eugene Holcomb, Alexandra Jordan Horne, Kelly Ryan Murphy, Emily Wai Yan Ngan, Lowell Thorndike Nicholson, Robert Darnell Sinyard III, Zachary Y. Walker and Timothy Y. Wang earned the Senior Scholarship

Adeola Phebean Awodele, Brian Gabriel Jiang and Jeffrey Tadashi Sakamoto won the Singapore Fellowship

Kelly Ryan Murphy and Daniel Bowman Loriaux received the Wilburt Davison Award

Jong G. Park received the Vice Dean’s Research Award -- Basic Sciences

Godefroy Sullyvan Chery earned the Vice Dean’s Research Award -- Clinical Sciences


Military Science

Gabrielle Renae Lucero won the Daughters of the Revolution Award. She also was named the Distinguished Military Graduate and received the George C. Marshall Award

Erik James Kennelly won the Reserve Officers Association of North Carolina Medal


Ilhan Gokhan Music

Justin Olivier Bryant earned the Ann-Marie Parsons Memorial Prize

Ilhan Gokhan won the Henry Schuman Music Prize

Melody Cari Lin earned the Julia Wilkinson Mueller Prize for Excellence in Music

Alexander John Pieloch and William Robert Harris earned the Paul R. Bryan Award

Jonathan Louis Aisenberg earned the William Klenz Prize in Music Composition


Naval Science

Conner Benton Silveria earned the Admiral Frank Bowman Leadership Award

Julianne Elizabeth Dahlman received the CNO Distinguished Graduate Award

Liam Kelly Brennan won the USAA Spirit Award


Office of Health Professions Advising

Chukwuma Nnanyelu Eruchalu won the Raymond Lublin, M.D. Award


Physical Therapy

Mariel A. Hammond won the Duke Doctor of Physical Therapy Diversity Award

Thomas Joyce, Ryan Koter, Alexander Reiley, Whitney Gore, Sarah Funderburg, Melissa Gunner, Sara Regan, Amber Penna, Derek Mitchell Poulson and Ashlee Price received the Helen Kaiser Scholarship Award

Thomas Eugene Hammett earned the Student Recognition Award



Tianji Cai won the Daphne Chang Memorial Award


Political Science

Thamina Jasmin Stoll and Robert Phillip Allred received Alona E. Evans Prizes in International Law

John Jesse Villa won the Elizabeth G. Verville Award

Kevin Matthew Lewallyn and John Lawrence McMichael earned the Ole R. Holsti Award in American Foreign Policy and International Relations

Dana A. Raphael and Apara Sivaraman received the Robert S. Rankin Award for Leadership and Academic Achievement

Connor Michael Phillips won the Robert S. Rankin Award in American Government and Constitutional Law

Delaney Patricia King won the Robert S. Rankin Award in American, National, State, and Local Governments



Joseph Henry Levy earned the Karl E. Zener Award for Outstanding Performance of an Undergraduate Major in Psychology

Jennifer Acosta received the Jerome S. Brunner Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Research


Jessica Van Mier Public Policy

Parker Colburn Gilbert and Jessica Elisabeth Kalili Van Meir won the Joel Fleishman Distinguished Scholar Award

Osasenaga Kelly Aghayere and Jessica Elisabeth Kalili Van Meir won the Terry Sanford Leadership Award


Religious Studies

Kristen Lee Buehne received the Best Paper Award


Romance Studies

Rinzin Dorjee earned the Guido Mazzoni Prize in Italian

Emily Kathryn Aarons and Benjamin Francis Brissette won the Richard L. Predmore Award in Spanish

Chi Dat Lam and Benjamin Mirman received the Robert J. Niess / Alexander Hull Award in French


School of Nursing

Ian Power Ryan won the Ruby L. Wilson Excellence in Clinical Practice Award

Susan Clime Herndon earned that Thelma Ingles Excellence in Clinical Expertise and Scholarly Activities Award

Ariella Rosalie Jolly received the Outstanding DNP Scholarly Project Award


Statistical Science

Lun Yin received the Statistical Science TA of the Year Award


Student Affairs

Lindsey Alexander Hallingquest, Alexandria Renee Miller, Manish Nair, Sophia Khan, Dayton Parker Grogan and Shivram Ayyappan Chandramouli earned the Distinguished Leadership and Service Award

Chinyere Nnenna Amanze, Nur Cardakli, Manish Nair, Christina Elizabeth Oliver, Richard Aidan Phillips, Steven Jonathan Soto and Sydney Ann Speizman won the William J. Griffith University Service Award


Theater Studies

Yizhou Jiang won the Alex Cohen Award for Summer Initiatives in Theater

Carolina Gisela Robledo and Emily Hope Levinstone received the Outstanding Acting Student

Emily Hope Levinstone earned the Harold Brody Award for Excellence in Musical Theater

Rory Berend Strauss Eggleston won the John M. Clum Distinguished Theater Studies Graduate Award. She also won the Reynolds Price Award for Best Original Script for Stage, Screen or Television

Ashley Morgan Sage received the Kenneth J. Reardon Award for Theater Design, Management or Production

Sophie Caplin won the Award for Excellence in Directing

Reilly Johnson won the Dale B.J. Randall Award in Dramatic Literature

Alex Felix and Madeleine Taylor received the Forlines Family Theater Studies Grant

Onastasia Ebright won the Kevin Gray Musical Theater Award


Trinity College of Arts and Sciences

Anna Elizabeth Mukamal won the Bascom Headen Palmer Literary Prize

Abhi Shah received the Edward H. Benenson Award in the Arts

Vania Jiayi Ma, Lydia Bradford and Hannah Dean Morris won the James Rolleston Prize for Best Literary Honors Thesis in a Foreign Language

Danielle Rene Mayes earned the Louis B. Sudler Prize in the Creative Arts and Performing Arts


University Union

Will Francis and Danny Kim won the Hall Kammerer Memorial Prize for Film and Video Production


Bass Connections

Bass Connections Award for Outstanding Mentorship

Bass Connections Follow-on Student Research Awards

Bass Connections Poster Awards

  • Judges’ Selection: Identifying the Needs and Barriers to Patient-Family Education to Improve Neurosurgery Patient Outcomes in Mulago National Referral Hospital (MNRH), Uganda (Joao Ricardo Vissoci, Chinemerem Nwosu, Sandra Batakana, Silvia Vaca, Stephanie Lim, Linda Xu, Michael Muhumuza, Hussein Ssenyonjo, John Mukasa, Joel Kiryabwire, Emily Smith, Anthony Fuller, Gerald Grant, Michael Haglund), Improving Neurosurgery Patient Outcomes in Uganda
  • Audience Choice: Automated Building Energy Consumption Estimation from Aerial Imagery (Mitchell Kim, Sebastian Lin, Sophia Park, Eric Peshkin, Nikhil Vanderklaauw, Yue Xi, Samit Sura, Hoël Wiesner, Kyle Bradbury, Leslie Collins, Timothy Johnson), Energy Data Analytics Lab


Faculty Scholar Award

Lauren Bunce (Gender, Sexuality and Feminist Studies), John Lu (Chemistry) and Gabrielle Stewart (Classical Studies) received the 2017 Faculty Scholar Award. Presented annually to juniors who have conducted independent research and show potential for innovative scholarship and a potential career in academe, the award is the highest honor presented by Duke faculty to undergraduate students. Honorable mentions went to Caroline Fernelius (English) and Karen Xu (Biomedical Engineering).