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We welcomed a stellar class of 386 first-year students to the Honors Program this year, raising the total number students in the program to 1510. This year's class of incoming students included students from 32 states outside Colorado. Nearly two thirds are from Colorado (65%) and 70% are women.
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Travis Hall (Political Science major, graduated in Spring ‘10), a United States diplomat returning from his first overseas assignment in the U.S embassy in Honduras, spoke to CSU students about how his experiences at CSU helped him on his career path in the Foreign Service. He has been nominated for the State Department’s Superior Honor Award for his work as Chief of the American Citizen Services Unit. He coordinated a successful search and rescue operation with the US Coast Guard and US Southern Command that resulted in the rescue of nine missing persons adrift for three days in a small vessel off the northern coast of Honduras. Travis was an Honors student and Resident Advisor in the Academic Village while getting his degree in Political Science with a minor in Chinese.
Dr. John Murray, class of 1957, visited campus and the University Honors Program this fall. He splits his time between Seattle where he has been a cardiologist and Hawaii where he has become a gentleman farmer of protea flowers.
Noah Sandoval is an Engineering Education and Spanish major who has served as an Honors Peer Mentor for four years. He has also coordinated a leadership exchange with UADY, a university in Merida, Mexico and served as a resident assistant at CSU.
Christof Bentele is a research coordinator in Applied Counseling Psychology, and he is employed as a Residential Support Provider at Foothills Gateway. He has participated in the Presidential Leadership Program at CSU and founded the Harry Potter Alliance and Quidditch Club in order to promote literacy in schools and libraries.
Jessica Lederhos is a double major in Art (with a concentration in graphic design) and Business Administration. She hopes to make a career as a creative director in a non-profit organization. She has been a Ram Welcome Leader and a Resident Assistant on campus. She has had her work published in the Honors literary magazine, Spiritus Mundi.
Hammam Belgasem was recognized for his citizenship, leadership and service, as well as academic performance, with $3,500. Hammam worked on the ASCSU campaign, participated in student government at CSU and Front Range Community College, mentored students in the CSU Dream Project, participated in LeaderShape, and served as the Vice President of the Ram Wellness Club. He is majoring in Biology and Health & Exercise Science.
Kimberly The is a Biomedical Sciences major who aspires to become an Occupational Therapist. She has participated in the President’s Leadership Program, interned in Resources for Disabled Students, and volunteered for the Little Shop of Physics and the CSU Figure Skating Club. She co-founded the CSU Ability Club and the Delta Alpha Pi International Honor Society.
Tessa Behnke is a Fish, Wildlife, and Conservation Biology major who will be travelling to the Galapagos Islands in Ecuador to study the reproductive biology of the critically endangered waved albatross. She has participated in the Live Green Community, played Ultimate Frisbee, and served as team captain of the squad. She studied abroad in Madagascar where the instruction was entirely in French.
Katherine Aker is a Business Administration major with a Spanish minor. She hopes to pursue a master’s degree in preparation for a career in international development. Her goal is to instill sustainable economic practices that support underrepresented populations. She has served as a site leader for an Alternative Spring Break trip to Panama, participated in the international leadership exchange with the Autonomous University of Yucatan in Merida, Mexico, and served as an officer in the Delta Sigma professional business fraternity.
Forrest Craft is majoring in Physics and Mechanical Engineering. He is interested in improving the reliability of the infrastructure as a way of maximizing resources. He has served as the president of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, is a ranger with the Fort ZED Community Energy Challenge, and is an employee of the Little Shop of Physics.
Adam Allevato is a Mechanical Engineering major who is working to develop a custom monitoring system and a machine health analysis system. He worked on the team that developed a wirelessly synched hand. He also worked on heart valves in an artificial heart. The project resulted in a paper published in the 2012 Association of Mechanical Engineering Newsletter. Adam is also one of 6 winners of the AP-Google Journalism and Technology Scholarship.
Colton Pinto is a Biomedical Sciences major who has been a Resident Assistant, a participant in the President’s Leadership Program, and an Honors student. He plans to focus his senior Honors thesis on non-Celiac gluten sensitivity.
Kathrine Yunker is also a Biomedical Sciences major, who wants to become a veterinarian. She has served as the captain of an intramural volleyball team, a tutor for organic chemistry, and a volunteer with numerous organizations involved in animal welfare. She plans to focus her senior Honors thesis on the views of the Humane Society of America relating to the welfare of livestock.
CSU wildlife biology senior Adam Miller has been awarded a Fulbright Fellowship to travel abroad to Indonesia for one year where he will teach English and conduct his own wildlife conservation research and outreach. Miller is excited to have the opportunity to pursue his lifelong passion for studying and conserving lorikeets and other exotic bird species that are at risk due to deforestation and wildlife trade.
Originally from St. Louis, Mo., Miller has had a strong interest in birds, specifically lorikeets, since he was less than 10 years old. Since his freshman year, Miller has gained exceptional undergraduate research experience partnering with a variety of graduate students, scientists and professors from CSU’s Warner College of Natural Resources. Among Miller’s many achievements in the past four years, he has conducted research in Hawaii on the role of native bee colonies on plant ecosystems, spent a semester abroad studying cane toads in Australia, was published in the Journal of Undergraduate Research, and is finishing his honors thesis on the effects of residential development on bird communities.
Amy Sunderman is graduating Magna Cum Laude with a degree in Business Administration-Corporate Finance and Investment Analysis. After graduation, Sunderman has accepted a position with Google as a Financial Analyst in Mountain View, Calif. She is very excited to begin her job and to apply what she has learned at CSU to her profession. When she first came to college, Sunderman was not sure what she wanted to do but felt that the College of Business would give her a good foundation and soon fell in love with her finance courses. Sunderman has participated in several clubs throughout her CSU career, cultivating many friendships and experiences. She is currently the president of the Summit Student Investment Fund, which manages $250,000 on behalf of the University Foundation and is a unique way to bridge the real world with coursework. As the president, Sunderman is responsible for arranging guest speakers and class meetings. She has given presentations to the Financial Advisory Board and worked as the emcee at an alumni event she helped host in New York. She has further been invited to luncheons with university guests including Jim Herbert. Sunderman also is a member of the Finance Club and just joined the Center of Public Trust, the nationally recognized business ethics club at CSU.
Scribendi, the literary magazine of the Western Regional Honors Council, selected works by three CSU students for inclusion in Volume 27 last year. Lucy Horrall ( Art major, Fall ’15) submitted visual art entitled “Buddeh.” Matthew Ryder’s (English major, Spring ’15) short fiction, “The Big Cheese” was a WRHC Award Winner. Maya Benko ( English/ Teaching major, Spring ’13) submitted a photograph, “She Walks in Beauty”that was also included. There were more than 450 submissions.
Amy Emch, Nutrition & Food Science Fall ‘13, won the Albert C. Yates Student Leadership Award
Natalie Paranto (Equine Science, Spring ’13), Charisse Ongie (Biochemistry, Spring ’13) and Nicole Wong (Biology, Spring ’13) are in their first semester of Veterinary Medicine at CSU. Kristen Horsley (Biomedical Sciences, Spring ’13), former H.S.A. president, has begun her Veterinary studies at Texas A&M. Dani Kurkowski ( Biology, Spring ’13) is a first year vet student at Washington State University.
Kyrie Ivanovich( Zoology, Spring ‘13) is doing volunteer work in Nepal.
Sam Lustgarten is studying for his PhD at the University of Iowa.
Ashley Wurth (Equine Science, Spring ’13) is a PhD student at the Ohio State University.
Danny Wilson (Mechanical Engineering, Fall ’08) has a Fulbright to study in India.
Annie Mattingly, (Chemical and Biological Engineering, Spring ’13) is pursuing a PhD at Notre Dame.
2013 CURC Winners: