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Leadership Development

Student Life Awards

The annual University Student Life Awards recognize those undergraduate students who—through service to others, investment of talent and time, and pursuit of excellence—have significantly and positively impacted the University of Rochester and/or surrounding community. The awards are divided into two categories: Individual Leadership Awards, and the Student Organization and Programming Awards.

See the past awards page for a list of recipients.

Student Life Award Nominations 

Nominations for the 2018-2019 Student Life Awards are now closed.

Andrew Fried Prize: Andrew Thankson

Establish by friends and family in 1961 in memory of Andrew Norman Fried, class of 1961. This prize is awarded to the first-year student who shows outstanding qualities of character, superior moral judgment, and interest in serving their fellow students.

Delno Sisson Prize: Samy Raudales Pineda

This award was established by a 1957 legacy gift from Delno Sisson (Class of 1917). This prize is awarded annually to the first-year student who has overcome obstacles to successfully transition into and adjust to college academic life.

Award for First year Leadership: Annie Chen

This award recognizes an exceptional member of the first year class who has motivated their fellow classmates to become actively involved in the campus community.

Eli and Mildred Sokol Prize: Waliyah Johnson

This award was established in 1985 by a gift from Eli and Mildred Sokol, class of 1933. This prize is awarded to a sophomore who has emerged as a leader who can be expected to contribute significantly to the welfare of their fellow students in the next two years.

Award for Campus Contributions: Genessis Galindo (Junior) and Blaine Tessa Vande Creek (Senior)

Awarded to a student who has made significant contributions to the University community, including campus life, academic achievement and leadership, and community service. The award winner will have promoted and demonstrated excellence in all aspects of their college experience. Two awards will be given: one to a senior, and one to a junior.

Seth H. and Harriet S. Terry Prize: Beatriz Gil Gonzàlez

Established in 1928 as a gift from Seth H. Terry, class of 1883, in memory of his parents. This award is given to a member of the senior class who, by their industry, character, and honorable conduct, has done the most for the life and character of the undergraduate community.

Percy Dutton Prize: Nicholas Foti

This prize was established in 1946 as a gift from Percy Dutton. It is given to the member of the graduating class who has excelled in "wholesome, unselfish, and helpful influence" among their fellow students.

Transfer Student Award: Julia Norwood

This award, recognizing the unique role of transfer students to the campus community, is given to a student who transferred with sophomore standing or above, and has completed two semesters of study at the University. The recipient will have demonstrated a quick and successful transition to the institution and will have taken full advantage of their time at the University.

Simeon Cheatham Award: Mahima Joshi

Established in the 1970s by the Office of the Dean of Students, this award is given to a student who has outstanding qualities in devotion to community service, and to the growth and development of children.

Rob Rouzer Award for Excellence in Student Government Leadership: Jamal Holtz

Established in honor of his 28 years of service to the University of Rochester, the Rob Rouzer Award is conferred annually to a River Campus student affiliated with any of the three branches of the Students' Association Government who has shown immense integrity and perseverance in striving to improve student life and welfare.

Award for Athletic Leadership: Andreanna Bowers

This award recognizes the positive contributions athletes make to the campus community. It is awarded to a student athlete who has contributed to campus life and demonstrated leadership within their club or varsity sport.

Presidential Award for Community Service: Suman Kumar

Established by the dean of students in 1990 to recognize University students who are committed to community service. Given to a senior for outstanding participation and leadership in service to the community beyond the campus, this award recognizes a student who has worked selflessly and effectively in addressing social causes.

Areas of focus include improving literacy, reducing hunger and hopelessness, providing legal or medical assistance to the needy, and serving as a mentor.

Award for Outstanding Fraternity and Sorority Leadership: William Jacob Sehnert

This award recognizes the positive contributions fraternities and sororities make to the campus community. It is awarded to a fraternity or sorority member who has led with integrity within their fraternal organization while also making significant contributions to the greater campus community.

Logan R. Hazen Award for Outstanding Contribution to Residential Life: Srihari Chari

This award is given annually to the University of Rochester River Campus student who has "made significant contributions to the community and experience of students living in undergraduate residence halls. This student, through their actions, leadership and innovation has promoted community through respect, fairness, and inclusion."

Michael Lowenstein Memorial Award: Tara Eagan

This award, named for Michael Lowenstein ’60, is presented to the University of Rochester River Campus undergraduate who deepens student, faculty, and community awareness of existing social, racial, or political inequities. This undergraduate, through their work and actions, has endeavored to promote the ideals that Michael cherished. Michael sought to give a fresh view of things around us, to focus upon issues, to probe deeply using fact and objectivity, and to open a dialogue with the community to find some answers.

The Communal Principles Award: Shingirai Dhoro

Established in the 2011–12 academic year by the Office of the Dean of Students, this award will be given annually to the student(s) or organization that best promote(s) the Communal Principle that is highlighted during a given year. The recipient will have demonstrated qualities that exemplify the principle and/or created programming and activities related to the highlighted Communal Principle. 

The Communal Principle highlighted this year is RESPONSIBILITY: 

Freedom and responsibility are two sides of the same coin. To uphold this kind of freedom of expression and action in the public arena, each person has the responsibility to own his or her ideas and actions as well as express them in ways that do not limit or threaten others' freedom to learn, teach and work.

This means that ideas and actions are neither anonymous nor isolated. To act or express one's ideas openly and in a responsible manner enhances the learning and growth of all. On the other hand, to act or express one's ideas in an irresponsible manner impinges on other's rights and freedom to learn and grow.

Linda Muise Award for Outstanding Contribution to Student Life: Benton Gordon

This award is presented to one Eastman School of Music undergraduate student whose contributions to co-curricular life have strengthened community spirit and involvement. Applicants need not be in formal positions of leadership to be considered. Instead, this award recognizes dedication, enthusiasm, collaboration, and leadership traits that help promote and maintain a strong quality of life for all.

Gwen M. Greene First Generation Senior Award: Seyvion Scott

This award is bestowed upon a first-generation senior who has demonstrated the virtues of leadership, scholarship, service, and compassion. The recipient has been a true example in the University community, and the community at large, of the qualities and accomplishments that we most treasure and value, and will serve as a role model for other first-generation students for years to come.

Student Organization and Programming Awards

Outstanding Student Organization Award: ROC Players

Awarded to an undergraduate, University-recognized student organization that has gone beyond the bounds of their membership by helping to create a positive campus environment for all students.

Award for Excellence in Creative Co-sponsorship: Asian-American Alliance

Established in 2004, the award recognizes a program that was co-sponsored by a minimum of two organizations or groups. The co-sponsored program should have been a new effort, one that brought together different facets of campus, and which served to build and strengthen the campus community.

Award for Excellence in Programming: American Society of Mechanical Engineers

This award recognizes a student organization or group, either formal or informal, for its exceptional creativity, planning, and execution of a University program. Criteria upon which decisions are based include appeal to a broad cross-section of the University community, originality, and participation by members of the organization during all phases of the effort.