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Student Life Awards

Congratulations 2006 Student Life Award Recipients!!

As part of the 2006 Student Leader Recognition Week, we’re proud to feature student leaders from across campus who were nominated and won various leadership awards for their contributions to and leadership of the University community. These students/student groups were nominated by their peers, faculty and staff and were selected from outstanding candidate pools. We congratulate them and all of our award nominees and thank them for their accomplishments during the past year!!

Donald L. McCullough Leadership Award
Rebecca Henderson

Recipient: Rebecca Henderson
Rebecca, a senior majoring in Animal Science, was a member of the Pi Beta Phi Sorority as well as its Vice President of Social Advancement and its Membership Chair. She also served as a member of Bacchus and Gamma and the Spring Weekend Task Force, in addition to being a Community Assistant in Husky Village. She recently was inducted into the first chapter of the National Residence Hall Honorary.

Paul Bacek

Finalist: Paul Bacek
Paul is a senior majoring in Molecular Biology and he was a Heart House Intern. Helping to organize many events sponsored through the program, he was also a member of the Alcohol Task Force. Paul was the University's Molecular Cell Biology Nominee for the Pfizer Summer Research Fellowship and received a Student Undergraduate Research Fellowship Grant to continue his research pursuits. Finally, Paul was also an instructor for supplementary instruction for Introductory Biology, which he has done for the past three years.

Devika Dhandapani

Finalist: Devika Dhandapani
Devika, is a junior majoring in Physiology and Neurobiology and is a University Nutmeg Scholar. She is the Coordinator for the University's Alternative Breaks and Immersion Program, serves on the Community Outreach executive board, and is an active volunteer with multiple service agencies around the state. She is also an Honors student and a member of the Honor's Council.

Emerging Leaders Award
Alexandria Thornton

Recipient: Alexandria Thornton
Alexandria is in the combined program in Medicine and was the student organizer for the week-long New Orleans alternative break trip in which 40 students aided in the post-Katrina clean-up. Additionally, she participated in a Washington D.C. alternative break program focusing on hunger and homelessness and has served as a Eucharistic minister, a Husky Ambassador and occasionally worked at a medical clinic in Willimantic.

Brittany Kwalek

Finalist: Brittany Kwalek
As a sophomore, Brittany served as a student government representative for the School of Allied Health. She was chosen, along with seven other USG senators, to represent the University by attending the National Leadership Conference for Student Governments this past February. Currently Brittany is considering pursuing a career as a Physician's Assistant or Physical Therapist.

Shannon O'Reilly

Finalist: Shannon O'Reilly
Shannon is a freshman pre-teaching major. This year she was a Residential Senator for the Undergraduate Student Government as well as the vice-chair of the Residential Affairs Committee. In addition to representing her constituents, Shannon's dedication was instrumental in developing the soon-to-be published Student's Rights Guide.

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Individual Husky Pride Award
Britta Lundgren

Recipient: Britta Lundgren
Britta, a sophomore majoring in Dietetics, has been on the Dean's List with High Honors since her freshman year and is a member of the UConn Pre-Dental Society, a Student Senate Representative, a member of the National Society of Collegiate Scholars, a member of the Delta Gamma Sorority, the Chapter's Huskython Representative and a blood drive volunteer.

Dale Nosel

Finalist: Dale Nosel
Dale, a junior majoring in Communication Sciences, is known simply as the "Blue and White Guy" or "Superfan," because he paints himself half blue and half white for sporting events and attends every basketball and football game, along with various other sporting events. Dale is also the 'face' of "Husky Hardcores," a group aiming to increase pride and school spirit in UConn students.

Individual Community Service Award
Christopher Vimini

Recipient: Christopher Vimini
Christopher, a senior majoring in Political Science, led the University's largest alternative break trip to Mississippi; recruiting and organizing 50 student leaders, facilitating work groups and holding reflection sessions during the trip. So inspired by that trip, he organized his own successful trip of students to New Orleans over spring break as part of a new group, the UConn Relief Corps.

Erica Thiry

Finalist: Erica Thiry
Erica, a junior majoring in Elementary Education, has worked one-on-one with the staff of the Calvery Chapel and with her volunteers to help offer struggling community members a clean, safe, and drug-free place to stay. She also worked this semester to set up a homelessness workshop and was also a Peer Leadership Instructor and a peer mentor.

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Building Community Award
Cory Federline

Recipient: Cory Federline
A senior majoring in Sociology, Cory has worked very hard to make significant improvements to the Club Sports Council. His leadership has helped the council to grow in order to support 800 members from over 30 club sports teams. Cory has been integral in building a community within club sports by helping to sponsor numerous events such as the Run/Walk charity event that has now become a tradition for the Club Sports Council.

Shawn Goulet

Finalist: Shawn Goulet
As a junior majoring in Costal Sciences, Shawn helped plan the First Annual Club Sports Council Fun Run/Walk; a charity event. Shawn built relationships with many community partners who donated goods and services in support of this event. He also worked with staff in the Division of Athletics to effectively manage the many run/walk logistics.

Melissa Lewis

Finalist: Melissa Lewis
A sophomore majoring in psychology, Melissa was the Union Events chair of SUBOG. Through a film series that provided affordable entertainment for students, daytime events designed to make commuter students feel at home on campus, and late night programming that allowed for a safe, alcohol free environment for socialization, Melissa helped to promote the sense of community we all strive to create.

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Organization Community Service Award

Recipient: Student Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC)
Composed of student-athletes at the University, SAAC organized a number of different community service projects in and around the UConn community, including a food drive, book drive, coat drive, and toy drive. With each event, SAAC members emulated a positive image of good health, sportsmanship, and the balance of school and sports.

Student Organization Advocacy Award
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Recipient: V-Day Campaign Waterbury Campus
A group of 15 students and 4 faculty at UConn-Waterbury produced the Vagina Monologues for the first time on their campus. With three performances, and various related fund-raising and awareness activities they were able to raise over $5000 for 2 charities engaged in preventing domestic violence.

Program of the Year Award
UConn Club Sports Recipient: UConn Club Sports Council Fun Run/Walk
The first ever event was held in May, 2005 to support a fellow council member who suffered serious injuries in a car accident. This event, attended by over 300 people, raised over $12,000 for the member and his family. The event was a very successful community builder as it allowed University students, staff and community members to support a worth cause.

Spirer/Dueker Humanitarian Achievement Award
Amy M. Colella

Recipient: Amy M. Colella
Amy, a senior, Human Development and Family Studies major, started a club involved in several projects including a community party for kids, a food drive for a soup kitchen in Waterbury, and a clothing drive for the homeless. She was also the Producer for and acted in the Vagina Monologues, which raised over $5000 for charities.

Christopher Vimini

Recipient: Christopher Vimini
Christopher, a senior majoring in Political Science, led the University's largest alternative break trip to Mississippi; recruiting and organizing 50 student leaders, facilitating work groups and holding reflection sessions during the trip. So inspired by that trip, he organized his own successful trip of students to New Orleans over spring break as part of a new group, the UConn Relief Corps.

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Husky Pride Award
Mens Volleyball

Recipient: Men's Volleyball
The Men's Volleyball Team worked with youths from Tolland, role-modeling, encouraging, advising, instructing, playing volleyball with them and raising their morale after the program had been cut from the budget. The team also committed the time to support the high school team through fundraising assistance.

Student Organization Advisor Award
David Daniels Recipient: David Daniels
David, a graduate student in the HESA program, served as the Chapter Counselor for Beta Theta Pi Fraternity. Constantly offering pointers and encouraging members, his suggestions and motivation helped recruit twenty six men this year, a significant increase from previous years. He was depended on by the brothers throughout the year and was always there to lend a helping hand and give advice or support.

Stacy Smulka

Finalist: Stacy Smulka
Stacy went above and beyond the call of duty and supported students' efforts to get the Club Sports Council recognized across campus. Her hard work and determination has been a large part in the organization gaining funding from the University, and it was with her guidance that the organization was able to form and firmly establish the council and its guidelines that are in place today.

Outstanding Graduate Assistant Award
Fulvio Santo Orsitto

Recipient: Fulvio Santo Orsitto
Fluvio teaches Italian as part of the Linkage through Language (LTL) Program. He brings an openness to new ideas in the classroom and demonstrates remarkable patience with students less-proficient with the language. Additionally, he brings a very dynamic teaching style to the classroom, involving everyone in the learning process.

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Matthew B. Schechter Scholarship
Tanya Kristine Bogdanovski

Recipient: Tanya Kristine Bogdanovski
Tanya is a third-year student at the Law School. She is currently a student attorney in the juvenile division of the University's rigorous criminal trial clinic. She was involved in the Women's Law Student Association where she held the position of Historian and Community Outreach Chair of the Public Interest Law Group (PILG).

Peer Ed of the Year Award
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Chloe Coenen
Chloe, a junior majoring in Psychology with a Women's Studies and Anthropology minor, was involved at UConn as an FYE mentor and a TA training FYE mentors. In addition, she was part of the Violence Against Women Prevention Program and she was a Husky WOW Leader and Husky Ambassador.

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Jason Corbo
Jason, a sophomore majoring in Pharmacy and German Studies, co-taught a course that trains new Honors Peer Facilitators and was an Honors Peer Facilitator last semester for first-year honors students. He was also a Husky Ambassador.

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Kevin Lenhart
Kevin, a senior majoring in Sports Management with a minor in business, was involved in the SSS Peer Education Team for the past three years, assisting with the advisement of students. He was also a CA, and worked with the Huskies Away from Home program and the Husky Ambassador program. He was also a FYE Mentor for first year students.

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Galina Portnoy
Galina, a senior double-majoring in an individualized major and psychology with a minor in Women's Studies, worked extensively with the Peer Helper's Program and facilitated the UConn Connects Program. She also co-facilitated an Honors FYE course, and was a member of the UConn Marching Band and was Flute Section Leader her sophomore year.

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Cohen Scholarship for Enhancing Community
Joshua C. Schreier

Recipient: Joshua C. Schreier
Joshua, a senior majoring in Political Science, has participated in countless efforts working toward the betterment of humanity. Specifically, this past year he volunteered at Catholic Charities Refugee and Migration Services in Hartford and was an avid participant in Habitat for Humanity. Additionally, during spring break he went to the gulf coast to help with the Hurricane Katrina relief efforts.

CA of the Year Award
Amelia Arnold

Recipient: Amelia Arnold
Amelia Arnold is the recipient of the 2006 Jackie Seide Outstanding Community Assistant. Amelia is from Maine and is a 6th semester Pharmacy major. This is her first year as a Community Assistant and she currently builds community on the Pre-Pharmacy First Year Learning Community. After graduation she plans to further pursue her education and career in Pharmacy.

Student Employee of Year Award
Jenna Dhandapani

Recipient: Jenna Dhandapani
Jenna is a Senior Majoring in Elementary Education. She has been working at the Lodewick Visitors Center and has left a good impression on her fellow colleagues and visitors. She is outgoing and upbeat and she fulfills every assigned shift and steps up during busy times. Jenna has also received several awards for working the most hours and leading the most tours.

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Recipient: Michael Reynolds
Michael Reynolds is a Family Life Education teacher here at the University of Connecticut. He has created a computer program for ESOL students and he is very reliable. He is nurturing, gentle and kind and open to new ways of doing things. He is the only male involved with the programming of young children and acts as a role model.

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