Union College recognizes outstanding students during Honors Day

Published on
April 27, 2016

Lydia Nash recognized for academic achievements during Honor's Day Union College recognized nearly 40 students for outstanding academic achievement at its annual Honors Day Convocation ceremony held in the Conway Boatman Chapel on the college’s Kentucky campus.

The awards acknowledge high scholastic averages by class year and discipline, including literature, computer programming, business, accounting, history, psychology, the sciences and others. Special scholarships and other recognition, including a distinguished professor award, were also presented during the event.

Union President Marcia Hawkins will welcome students, and thanked the college’s supporters prior to Dr. David Johns, Union College’s Vice President of Academic Affairs, leading the awards ceremony.

“So many people are involved with supporting our college and providing the academic framework to support our students,” Dr. Hawkins said. “Even in the midst of the end of semester activity, it is important that each of us pause to recognize our students and their academic achievements.”

In all, 44 different awards presented to 37 students during the 2016 Honors Day Ceremony. The ceremony also included a “Passing of the Gavel” component where outgoing Student Government Association members recognized newly elected officers.

The 2016 awards recipients are:

Lydia Nash, Dr. Mahlon A. Miller President Emeritus Award for the senior with the highest cumulative average based on total hours earned at Union College. Miller served as President from 1959-1982.

Lydia Nash, Gov. James D. Black Senior Award. Given by the late Pitzer D. Black of Barbourville to the senior with the highest scholastic average for the year based on total hours earned at Union College. Gov. Black was one of Union College’s founding fathers and President from 1910-1912.

Tyler Carter/Lydia Nash/Laurel Everett, President’s Award. Given to the senior who has the highest cumulative record in grades earned at Union College.

Kaitlyn Stittums, Dr. Cecil H. Wilson Junior Award. Given in memory of Dr. Cecil H. Wilson of Barbourville, an alumnus and trustee emeritus of Union College, to the junior with the highest scholastic average based on total hours earned at Union College. Wilson (’38) was a member of the Board of Trustees from 1954-2008.

Karilyn Peach, John Henry Wilson Sophomore Award. Given by the late Mrs. Guy D. Atkisson, Jr., to the sophomore from the Fifth Congressional District of Kentucky who has the highest scholastic average for the year, based on total hours earned at Union College. Wilson was one of the founding fathers of Union College and a U.S. Congressman from 1889-1893.

Whitney Broughton, Arthur E. Spurlock Business Award. Given by Michael Spurlock in memory of his father, Arthur E. Spurlock, a former Union College Business Office manager, to a sophomore or junior business major showing promise for future success. Spurlock was the Business Manager and Treasurer for Union College from 1959-1967.

Cody Krueger (senior) and Ignacio Tejerina Jorquera (junior), Dr. L. A. Geiss Awards. Given by the late Dr. and Mrs. L. A. Geiss to the senior and junior business majors with the highest cumulative standing in that field. Geiss was a member of the Board of Trustees from 1948-1986.

James Jones, Dr. L. A. Geiss Computer Award. Given by the late Dr. and Mrs. L. A. Geiss to the student exemplifying excellence in computer information systems.

Ethan Wright, Joe C. Hacker Award. Given in honor of the late Joe C. Hacker to a student showing interest and excellence in a computer programming course. Hacker was Assistant Professor of Business Education and Director of Data Processing for Union College for thirty years.

Tyler Tye, Rena Milliken Award. Given in memory of the late Rena Milliken, Professor Emeritus of Business, by the Union College Business Department, to the graduating senior who shows the greatest potential for professional achievement. Milliken served as a member of the Business faculty from 1946-1975.

Katelynn George, H.B. Jones Business Enterprise Award. Given in memory of Mr. H. B. Jones to the student who has shown initiative and enterprise in the field of business.

Ana Owens, Accounting Award. Given to the most promising freshman or sophomore accounting major. The award is sponsored this year by Carolyn Payne CPA.

Teresa Brown, Bjornstad Freshman Composition Award. Given by Mrs. William B. Bjornstad and the late Dr. Bjornstad to the student achieving the highest writing excellence in freshmen courses as determined by the English Department.

Tasha Stewart, Beverly P. and Mossie B. Wilson Memorial Award. Given by Mrs. O. J. Wilson and the late Dr. Wilson in memory of his parents, to the English major with the highest cumulative grade point average, who has completed three full years of residence at Union College.

Kari Williamson, Connie Danner Book Award. The Department of English established a fund in honor of Dr. Connie Danner, the interest from which will pay for course textbooks for one deserving student for one year.

Kaitlyn Stittums, Eastern Kentucky Essay Award. Given to the student writing the best essay on Eastern Kentucky history.

Macy Lynn Stewart, William Faulkner Rushton Memorial Award. Given to promote Appalachian literature and given in memory of William Faulkner Rushton. Award has been established by parents and friends in honor of Lura Faulkner Rose, (’14), a Union alumna, the late Rushton’s grandmother. Winning papers are selected by a committee of judges from entries submitted by teachers.

Emily Harless, The Literature Award. Given by the Barbourville Tuesday Club to the English Major who shows the greatest excellence in the field of literature.

Erica Overbay, Ronald and Mary Alice Marley Mass Communication Award. Given to the student with the highest grade point average who is majoring in mass communication at Union College.

John Patrick White, Katherine V. Sutphen Memorial Award. Given in memory of Katherine V. Sutphen, a former faculty member of Union College, to the student who has given exemplary service to the Union College Music Department.

Maggie Watkins, Jane Minton Blair Endowed Award for the Arts. Given to the Union College student who has made outstanding contributions to the area of Fine, Performing and Communication Arts during his/her years here at Union.

Paris Obike (freshman) and Karilyn Peach (sophomore), Iota Sigma Nu Awards. Given by the Iota Sigma Nu Honor Society to the freshman and sophomore with the highest scholastic average for the year based on total hours earned at Union College.

Timothy McKay, Dr. Paul S. Moore Wellness, Human Performance, and Recreation Management Faculty Award. Given by the Union College Wellness, Human Performance and Recreation Department to the senior health, physical education, recreation management or sports management major with the highest cumulative academic standing. Moore (’59) served as Professor of Health and Physical Education, Head Men’s Basketball Coach, Athletic Director and Vice President of Academic Affairs. He retired in 1997, after 38 years of service.

Lydia Nash, Steve Jones Memorial Award. Given in memory of Steve Jones, a former Union College student, by former athletes and friends, to the senior varsity athlete with the highest cumulative academic average.

Women’s Swimming and Diving, Athletic Team Academic Award. Awarded to the Union College Athletic Team with the highest cumulative GPA to recognize outstanding academic achievement among student athletes.

Justin King, Dr. Albert D. Graham, Jr. Social Studies Award. Given to the senior education major who shows the greatest teaching potential in social studies. Graham (’70) served on the Board of Trustees from 1992-2010.

Erin Cooper, The Jones Foundation Award in Education. Given by The Jones Educational Foundation Inc., to the graduating senior who shows the greatest promise for a career in education.

Tanner Hacker, Wimmer Chemistry Award. Given to the student showing the greatest promise in the field of chemistry. Dr. Wimmer served as head of the Chemistry Department from 1932-1946.

Tyler Carter, Dr. Paul Muncy Memorial Award. Given in memory of Dr. Paul Muncy to the senior pre-medical student with the highest cumulative academic standing.

Tyler Carter, Theodore R. Davies M.D. Senior Biology Award.Given to the senior showing the highest academic excellence in the field of biology.

Laurel Everett, Outstanding Psychology Major Award.Given to the psychology major, in the top 35th percentile of his/her class, who shows outstanding dedication in the discipline of psychology.

Jennifer Jackson, Dr. Erwin S. Bradley History Award.Given in honor of Dr. and Mrs. Erwin S. Bradley to the upper-class history major who has the highest scholastic average in overall grades in history, earned at Union College.  Dr. Bradley served as Chair of the Division of Social Studies, and the Department of History & Political Science.

Chuck Minton/Heather Welch, H. H. Owens History Award. Given by the late Mrs. H. H. Owens to the student showing the greatest excellence in the field of history. Owens was the father of alumnae Jean Knuckles (’37) and Eleanor Clark (’36).

Chuck Minton, Rev. Charles Hansel Annual Award for Religion & Philosophy.Given to a student who best demonstrates and understanding of one or more critical issues in the philosophy of religion.

Dustin Smith/Wendi Hacker, Dr. Sarah Hendrix Social Work Award.Awarded in memory of Dr. Sarah Hendrix, Union College Social Work Program Director (2012-2015), to social work students who have a cumulative social work GPA of 3.0 or higher.

Cameron Pieroni, Blackwell Political Science Award.Given to the senior with a major in history and/or a minor in political science, who shows the highest academic excellence in political science. Dr. Blackwell was a member of the Board of Trustees.

John Patrick White, Outstanding Sociology Major Award. Given to the graduating sociology major with the highest cumulative grade point average.

Casey Whittle, Outstanding Student in Criminal Justice Award.Given to the upper division criminal justice major whose work embodies exemplary objective academic achievement in conjunction with substantial contributions to the conduct of inquiry in criminal justice classes, a clear commitment to both personal and intellectual development, and a greater understanding of the relationship between citizen and state.

Stephanie Miller, Judge W. W. Tinsley Family Memorial Award. Given by the late Mrs. Mayo Tinsley Rathfon to the pre-law junior or senior showing the greatest promise for future success.

Ryan Coleman, Sampson Political Science Award.Given to the junior showing the highest academic excellence in the field of political science.

Logan Lynn and Kari Williamson, Student Government Association (SGA) Study Abroad/Internship Scholarship. To encourage study outside the campus proper, this Student Government Association scholarship is awarded to students participating in either an internship or a study abroad opportunity. Selected students are proven academic leaders and positive ambassadors for Union College.

Dr. Dan Covington, Student Government Association (SGA) Distinguished Professor Award. Award given by students to a Union College faculty member who best exemplifies Union College’s commitment and dedication to student well-being. This faculty member sets the standard for enhancing student education and experiential experience in and out of the classroom.

Rachel Johnson, Student Government Association (SGA) – Passing of the Gavel. This honor recognizes past and future Student Government Association officers. Johnson is the newly elected SGA President and received the gavel.