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As Phi Beta Kappa turns 241, we honor our own

December 21, 2017
The award recognizes students who excelled both academically and in leadership roles during their first year at Rochester, and was renamed for Suzanne O’Brien ’59, a member of Phi Beta Kappa and longtime director of the College Center for Advising Services. (University Archives photo)(University of Rochester photo / Rare Books and Special Collections)

Phi Beta Kappa, the nation’s oldest and most prestigious honor society for liberal arts and sciences, celebrates its 241st birthday this month. It was founded at the College of William and Mary on December 5, 1776.

The University of Rochester’s chapter was founded in 1887, and new members are elected annually based on exceptional academic performance recommendations from faculty members and staff.

The University typically elects about 10 percent of each graduating class. Particularly strong candidates are elected as juniors.

In celebration of Phi Beta Kappa’s birthday, we honor the 17 students who were elected last spring as juniors, noting their hometowns and majors:

Alexander Boyd, Tampa, Florida (mechanical engineering)

Abigail Bruce, Binghamton, New York (financial economics)

Brian Caputo, Silver Lake, New Hampshire (statistics and business)

Perry DeMarche, Denver, Colorado (anthropology)

Laura DiRienzo, Niskayuna, New York (molecular genetics)

Emma Dudley, Cazenovia, New York (molecular genetics, Spanish)

Meixiao Han, Beijing, China (electrical and computer engineering)

Apolline Jungels, Winchester, Massachusetts (molecular genetics)

Zixiang Liu, Nanjing, China (computer science and electrical and computer engineering)

Monica Masterson, Freehold, New Jersey (cell and developmental biology)

Logan Meredith, Longmont, Colorado (physics and mathematics)

Akihiro Minami, Shanghai, China (computer science and applied mathematics)

Reva Peer, Roseville, California (molecular genetics)

Cynthia Plant, Naperville, Illinois (mathematics)

Gabrielle Scullard, Chandler, Arizona (mathematics)

Margaret Thurston, Pittsford, New York (global sustainable development)

Wen Zhou, Beijing, China (computer science and optical engineering)


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