COLLEGE OF ENGINEERING
Dylan Rummel (Junior)
Electro-Mechanical Engineering Technology
Michael Ott (Senior)
Sedona Rogers (Junior)
Karen Whittaker (Sophomore)
Biomedical Engineering Technology
Matthew Coppolo (Sophomore)
Dalynn Park (Sophomore)
Louis Surma (Sophomore)
Administration of Justice
Drake Thompson (Sophomore)
Sarah Pflueger (Senior)
Bethany Underwood (Senior)
Elian Buchi (Junior)
Olivia Ferrante (Senior)
Lindsey Hessom (Senior)
Hannah Comeau (Sophomore)
Janet Surma (Junior)
Information Sciences and Technology
Logan Villella (Senior)
Zachary Jones (Junior)
Luke Barkley (Sophomore)
Project and Supply Chain Management
Gabriel Gaertner (Senior)
Moriah Kromer (Senior)
Brianna Dynka (Senior)
Benjamin Edwards (Junior)
Kylie Meyer (Sophomore)
Letters, Arts and Sciences
Allyson Henry (Sophomore)
Emily Daugherty (Sophomore)
Kali Facemire (Sophomore)
Nicole Weiblinger (Sophomore)
THE PRESIDENT’S FRESHMAN AWARD
Presented to undergraduate degree candidates and provisional students who earned a 4.0 cumulative grade-point average (GPA) at the end of the fall semester.
Dr. Penelope Morrison
Program Coordinator & Assistant Professor of Biobehavioral Health
Dr. Morrison holds a PhD in medical anthropology and master’s in public health from the University of Pittsburgh. She also has three years of postdoctoral training in health services research with the RAND-University of Pittsburgh Health Institute. In addition to her education and training, Dr. Morrison has been a Fulbright Scholar, an Albert Schweitzer Fellow, a Foreign Language and Area Studies Fellow, and a recipient of the Amy Roberts Award for Health Promotion. Prior to Penn State New Kensington, she served as a senior research associate at Magee Womens Research Institute where she applied her expertise and 15+ years of qualitative research experience to projects related to substance use during pregnancy, patient-provider communication, and hepatitis c, among other issues. Dr. Morrison is a leading scholar in research on intimate partner violence perpetration and interventions designed to reduce gender-based violence. She is also an avid runner, baker, craftswoman and volunteer for the Women’s Center and Shelter of Greater Pittsburgh.
Adjunct Instructor in French
Born in Rome, Italy to an Italian mother and French father, Marie Thérèse didn’t move to the United States until the age of 11. Her middle and high school years were spent attending public school in Pittsburgh, PA, where she graduated in 2002. Although the majority of her life has been spent in the United States, Marie has always felt a strong tie to her French and Italian heritage. While attending college, the opportunity to be a teacher’s aid in her Italian classes allowed her to discover a strong passion for teaching. Her love for her international roots combined with her desire to educate future generations lead to her pursuing a degree in foreign language. Marie graduated with her Master of Foreign Language Education from the University of Pittsburgh in 2010, a program that was instrumental in teaching her many methods for successfully reaching students in her classrooms over the years. Her deep love for her heritage has inspired her to teach her students to learn more than just the language, but to also respect and value the cultures that use them.
Assistant Teaching Professor of Science
I have been teaching biology at Penn State New Kensington for a long time! I started as an adjunct instructor in 1991 and was hired as a fulltime faculty member in 2000, devoting half my time to teaching and the other half to providing instructional design support to faculty. Even this long span of time and experience could not have prepared me for these last 8 weeks. But, despite the anxiety, long hours, and constant Zooming, these weeks gave me the opportunity to do what I enjoy most – solving teaching problems in ways that work for both our wonderful students and devoted faculty. I am grateful that I could end my career doing something so important and so challenging. I plan to retire to Colorado to be near family and do a lot of hiking, but will always be grateful for the opportunity Penn State gave me to create a meaningful career working with wonderful people. I will miss all of you!
“I am nominating Ashton for his leadership in Council of Commonwealth Student Governments. For the past two years, he has served on this committee as director/associate director and helped pass several pieces of legislation regarding the quality of advising (education, accessibility), cultural competency for faculty across the Commonwealth, and election leniency for all students. I believe Ashton is a great student leader that stands for all of Penn State's values and mission.”- Nominator
Senior, Information Sciences & Technology
“Kathy excelled in a leadership role in the planning of a Women in STEM 'Appy Hour event on our campus. The goal of the event was to support female students in STEM fields where women are typically underrepresented and to connect them with role models in the fields. Kathy also holds a number of leadership roles on campus. She is vice president of the STEAM Outreach Club, where her efforts have been essential in planning events for middle school and high school students. She is also a member of SGA and an orientation leader, where she has helped countless new students feel welcome on campus.” - Nominator
Sophomore, Agricultural and Extension Education
“Gabi has already made a tremendous impact in the short time she has been at Penn State. She has represented the campus at numerous leadership conferences, is an orientation leader, on the PSNK THON team, chairs the Student Activity Fee committee and is co-chair of the Student Facility Fee committee. This year, Gabi holds a special role in leading and representing the student body on the Student Union Building Addition Team. This team has the responsibility of designing a building that will support student success and shape the out-of-class experience for generations of PSNK students to come. Gabi is also very active outside of the campus serving in leadership roles in a number of 4-H related organizations. Her passion for sustainability and compassion for others is at the heart of all that she does and this award is well deserved.” - Nominator
“Nick has been an exemplary student-athlete since he walked onto our campus two years ago. He has shown great leadership among his peers within athletics, was named a captain on the soccer team, as well as the first-ever president of the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC). Through SAAC, Nick has helped Tracy Gustafson get the young committee up and functioning and has begun to actively engage the group in events like the MLK Jr. Day of Service and Walk a Mile in Her Shoes. Nick is incredibly consistent and reliable. The athletics department leans on him for help with open houses, prospective student-athlete tours and video projects, and he is always more than willing to volunteer his time. Nick provides a quiet and steady leadership that we will sorely miss next year after his graduation.” - Nominator
Junior, Biomedical Engineering Technology and Biobehavioral Health
“Dalynn is playing a vital role in preparing her fellow students to be successful for their future careers. Dalynn and I are collaborating to redesign one of my courses – an introductory course to the biomedical engineering technology major, employing problem-based learning and focusing on skills that will help graduates to be successful in the future workplace – and conduct a systematic study of the learning outcomes. She has been an integral part of this project, contributing to all aspects of the research. Dalynn’s commitment to leadership and service - to PSNK, her church and the community - is equally notable. I have most closely been able to observe this at school, where she has volunteered to help with alumni and recruiting events. She is also actively involved in THON, showing her willingness to help those in need, and serves on the Campus Activities Board and as an Orientation Leader, striving to help new students adjust to college life. She is also an active member of Tau Alpha Pi and the Honors Program." - Nominator
Senior, Electro-Mechanical Engineering Technology
“Sedona excelled in a leadership role in the planning of a Women in STEM 'Appy Hour event on our campus. The goal of the event was to support female students in STEM fields where women are typically underrepresented and to connect them with role models in the fields. In addition, Sedona has served as president of the STEAM Outreach Club since it's beginning. Combined with her excellent academic performance, Sedona's leadership and commitment to improving diversity in STEM fields make her a great candidate for this award.” - Nominator
“I am nominating Scott for this award because of his initiative with the creation of the digital studio at PSNK. Instead of going to University Park to finish his degree program, he made that program accessible to all students by bringing a filming studio to our campus. This studio allows present and future students to take advantage of the big Penn State name, right here at Penn State New Kensington. This is also a big asset to our campus for future enrollment. He has also switched our student newspaper to a digital format, which fares well in today's technological society. Scott also brings perspective from that of an adult/veteran student, and he is valued by many on campus.” - Nominator
Padma Sairam Reddy Tanuboddi
Sophomore, Management Information Systems
“I have known Mr. Tanuboddi for over a year now, and I have come to know a great leader on our campus. Mr. Tanuboddi has accomplished many great things. He has become a Lion Ambassador and a Success Coach; created new academic research for all to enjoy in the 2019 Research Fair;is willing to help students with their academics as a Peer Tutor; is the Vice President of the OAC where he strives to serve the local community; and during his freshman year, he interned with Dr. Snider at The Corner innovation hub. Due to his hard work in academics, Mr. Tanuboddi is a member of the Honors Program.” - Nominator
“Calle is a strong leader among her fellow student-athletes and beyond. She is a captain on the women's softball team, stepped up last year to help start the women's basketball program, and is New Kensington's representative on the Penn State University Athletic Conference Student-Athlete Advisory Committee. On a softball team that only has three returners, Calle has been instrumental in uniting the young team--a team poised to have a great year if they had the chance. I saw first-hand how Calle has embraced her role as our campus representative on the Advisory Committee. She is organized and speaks up on behalf of our campus, highlighting the great things that New Kensington is doing and helping to make a name for us within the PSUAC. Once Calle is aware of a project need, she takes the ball and runs with it without needing further guidance. Calle is confident and ignites confidence in her teammates and other fellow student-athletes.” - Nominator
“Tavarski “Ski” Wardlow has made a tremendous impact at Penn State New Kensington ever since he transitioned to the campus last year from the Beaver campus. In the two seasons that he has been at New Kensington, Ski has been named a captain for the men’s basketball team. In that role, he has shown that he bleeds blue and white, putting everything that he can into being the best he can be for the team, both as a basketball player and leader of young men. He takes his role as a leader seriously and mentors his younger teammates. As one of the executive board members of the newly formed Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC), Ski has been instrumental in getting that group up and running in its beginning stages. Acting as the community service chair, he has worked with outside groups to develop community service connections for PSNK Athletics. Ski has shown his leadership outside of athletics by serving as a Resident Assistant in the Nittany Highlands Apartments and as a representative on the Student Facility Fee Committee. Ski has an infectious smile and wonderful outlook on life. He shows his fellow student-athletes and other students tremendous support. One moment that stands out recently is when he made posters for each women’s basketball player to be displayed during the team’s last home game. Ski lifts others up and values community over individual success.” - Nominator
PERFORMING ARTS AWARDS
Presented to students who merit recognition for outstanding efforts in performing arts.
Elizabeth Schachte, Freshman, Social Sciences/Humanities
“Elizabeth is receiving this is award based on her hard work, dedication and involvement with the fall musical, Mamma Mia!” - James Baker, Adjunct Faculty, Theatre
Mackinly Adams, Sophomore, Information Sciences and Technology
“Mack is receiving this award based on his sound design, involvement with lighting installation and willingness to go above and beyond to make our fall musical a success!” - James Baker, Adjunct Faculty, Theatre
Recognizes a student who authors a creative fiction or nonfiction published or accepted for release in a current campus publication.
Janet Surma, Junior, Communications
“Janet has been a prolific reporter, writer and editor in her role as a student journalist with the Nittany Pride News.” - Abhinav Aima, Associate Professor, Arts and Humanities
LION AMBASSADOR OF THE YEAR AWARD
Lion Ambassadors represent Penn State at campus recruitment events and in the community.
Carly Duncan, Senior, Biobehavioral Health
“Carly is not just a student volunteer, she is part of the Admissions family. She has been giving tours and helping with events for years, while balancing numerous leadership roles on campus, classes, research, working on- and off-campus jobs, and this year, applying for graduate programs. Who knows how many students have decided to become a Penn Stater because of an interaction they had with Carly, either on a tour or at an event? We have watched Carly grow into an amazing young woman and will miss her laughter, stories of travels and adventures, her love of hockey, her cats and dogs, and her amazing personality! I know Carly will do great things, and I look forward to watching the next chapter of her life.” Thank you Carly…you have been an amazing Lion Ambassador, Penn Stater and friend.” - Jill Dikun, Admissions Counselor
Recognizes a student’s leadership impact on a student organization through dedication to community service, promotion of diversity, responsible citizenship, and academic excellence.
Gianna Foglia, Freshman, Division of Undergraduate Studies
“Gianna has proven to be an excellent student leader in the short time that she has been at PSNK. She already has made an impact as an assistant in the Student Government Association. Gianna also worked hard to raise money for THON, participated in numerous fundraising events and activities and was one of our 4 THON dancers this year. It is unusual for a first-year student to become a dancer, and this is representative of the kind of leadership that Gianna demonstrates in her commitment, dedication and steadfastness to whatever she puts her mind to do. She has an amazingly positive attitude, which is reflected in anything that she tackles. She is well deserving of the emerging leader award.” - Nominator
SGA EXECUTIVE BOARD 2019-2020
Gabrielle Kriley, President
Sophomore, Agricultural and Extension Education
After college, Gabi intends to become an Agricultural Educator in a high school setting, educating students about all there is to offer in the field of agriculture and raising up our future farmers, vets, welders, florists and so much more!
Mackinly Adams, Vice President
Sophomore, Information Sciences & Technology
Mack is unsure of his final future goals and is focusing on his academics and completing his degree in Information Sciences and Technology.
Kathryn Durkin, Secretary
Senior, Information Sciences & Technology
After college, Kathy intends to secure a position as a project manager and would love to work with a company that focuses on sustainability in some form.
Ian Callender, Treasurer
After graduation, Ian plans to get involved with a tech company and practice online safety and implement defense mechanisms through cyber security. This sort of behavior is particularly important as our world becomes more digital and people become more reliant on technology in their everyday lives.
Samantha Kravits, Upperclassmen Faculty Senate Representative
Junior, Criminal Justice
Samantha is the newly-selected incoming 2020-2021 President of the Penn State New Kensington Student Government Association. Following graduation, her goal is to continue her education in a PH.D. program in clinical psychology.
Hailey Dikun, Underclassman Faculty Senate Representative
Sophomore, Division of Undergraduate Studies
After graduating from PSNK, Hailey plans to continue working towards attaining an MBA and work in a corporate setting. Her goal is to gain a position in Business Management or Human Resources, helping people.
Neeha Thulasiram, THON Chair
Sophomore, Biobehavioral Health
Upon graduating from Penn State, Neeha plans to go to medical school to gain a doctorate in medicine and hopefully become a successful surgeon one day.
Scott Sinclair, THON Co-Chair
Scott will be attending graduate school at Indiana University of Pennsylvania (IUP) in the fall for Strategic Communications. His ultimate goal is to obtain a doctoral degree.
(Missing from Photo: Mackinly Adams)
PSUAC ACADEMIC ALL-CONFERENCE
Selected for earning or maintaining a GPA of 3.0 or higher
MEN’S BASKETBALL (SPRING 2019)
Wilson Rojas, Jr.
WOMEN’S BASKETBALL (SPRING 2019)
BASEBALL (SPRING 2019)
SOFTBALL (SPRING 2019)
Golf – All Conference
Men’s Soccer – First Team
Gerald Butler, Jr.
Men’s Soccer – Second Team
Women’s Volleyball – Honorable Mention
Men’s Basketball – Honorable Mention
Softball (Spring 2019) – First Team
The following student-athletes were named USCAA Student-Athlete of the Year, as well as Penn State New Kensington's Female and Male Student-Athlete of the Year.
Kaylea Flick, Women's Volleyball
Flick is a biobehavioral health major who will be graduating in May after just three years in college. She served as captain of the volleyball team for three years. Flick is the 2019 USCAA Division II Women’s Volleyball Student-Athlete of the Year, a two-time USCAA All-American, a two-time USCAA National All-Academic Team member, a two-time PSUAC All-Conference selection, and the YWCA Westmoreland County Sportswoman of the Year in 2019.
Benjamin Midlik, Men's Soccer
Midlik is an electrical engineering major who will be completing his degree at University Park. He is a captain on the men’s soccer team, helping his team to a third-place finish in the PSUAC. He is the 2019 USCAA Division II Men’s Soccer Student-Athlete of the Year, a USCAA National All-Academic Team member, a two-time PSUAC Academic All-Conference honoree, and a PSUAC All-Conference 2nd Team selection.
ROBERT DARBY “THE DARB” SPORTSMAN-SHIP AWARD
The award was established in honor of Robert Darby, kinesiology instructor, athletic director, and coach, who retired in 2006 after 38 years at the campus. "The Darb" recipient demonstrates exceptional sportsmanship.
Grazioli is a sophomore captain on the softball team majoring is aerospace engineering. She demonstrates a tremendous leadership quality and went out of her way to help her team on and off the field. She has shown an incredible knack for uniting both her teammates and other student-athletes. As a member of the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee, Grazioli used her leadership capabilities to spearhead various projects and foster cross-team collaboration.
When arriving at Penn State New Kensington two years ago, Dalynn Park was on her own for the very first time, but quickly felt welcomed by students and faculty at the campus. The help from others solidified and strengthened her purpose of wanting to do the same for others.
“I spend most of my time putting others first, and in most cases, others will come first before myself,” said Park, who will earn her associate degree in Biomedical Engineering Technology (BET) this year, as well as continue her path to earning a bachelor’s degree in Biobehavioral Health (BBH). “The success of others will help in my own success, therefore, I have to help others to succeed and overcome so I can do the same.”
Park’s constant commitment to serve others, as well as her leadership and scholarship, was highlighted by more than one faculty member in their nominations. “Leadership, passion, intelligence, commitment and kindness; I have seen all these characteristics in Dalynn on a regular basis over the past two years,” said one faculty member. A second letter of recommendation further stated, “Dalynn is academically driven, self-motivated and a natural learner. She is also exactly the kind of engaged citizen I think that the award is intended for. She has demonstrated a deep commitment to engagement outside of the classroom and her list of service and accomplishments in this area are remarkable.”
Park’s extracurricular activities include academic and student life-related endeavors. She is a member of both the BET and BBH clubs, a Penn State New Kensington Honors student, member of the Tau Alpha Phi honors society, campus Orientation Leader, member of the campus THON team and member of the Campus Activities Board (CAB). In addition, she has been working as a CTL Scholar with Dr. Joie Marhefka, program coordinator of the BET program, to redesign a BET course and conduct a study of learning outcomes. Outside of the stated on-campus activites, Park has also been a youth group leader at her church for six years, works at the campus with the food services department and regularly volunteers to assist with alumni and recruiting events for the BET program and the campus.
Park’s goal is to work in the healthcare field, eventually with patients specifically in need of prosthetics. While she understands the importance of her current and future education to help reach her goal, her commitment to serving others shines as her guiding principle in all she does and will continue to do.
“Getting this type of recognition actually sparks wondering of what I do to get recognized for such things because I know not what I do, rather just do what I know feels right. As I help others, I know not what I do for myself, but I see the way others are when I help, and seeing others’ succeed and/or overcome obstacles, I feel a sense of success for myself.”
End of Year Slideshow
We want to see how you're celebrating your achievements! Be sure to share your photos (like the proud Penn Staters below!) on social media and tag the campus so we can keep the celebration going!