2020 Awards Ceremony


Outstanding Language Awards


100 Level – Peter C. Casey
200 Level – Lara Shoukair
300 Level – Kaitlin Christine Denihan


100 Level – Lauren Virginia Speelman
200 Level – Molly J. Smith
300 Level – Wil Deonte Stevens
400 Level – Ana Mercedes Nieto


100 Level – Shannon S. Mack                 
200 Level – Erik James LaBelle                   
300 Level – Spencer William Minyo          
400 Level – Madeleine June Shilts


100 Level – Zihan Chen
200 Level – Ryan Berning
300 Level – Erin M. Horvath


100 Level – Tracy Lynette Collier
200 Level – Kyla Nicole Stone


100 Level – Ashley S. Morris
200 Level – Christa Joelle Niemann
300 Level – Taylor B. Rathe

Herr Jacques Breitenbucher Award

Outstanding Upper-Class Female Students Learning German or Russian

German – Janie Freestone Moore
Russian, East European, and Eurasian Studies – Nancy C. Pellegrino

Student Achievements

On February 20-22, 2020, Miami University's Model Arab League student team met great success at the Ohio Valley Regional Model Arab League, hosted at Shawnee State University in Portsmouth, Ohio.

Model Arab League is a student debate competition run by the National Council on U.S.-Arab Relations. The student league at Miami was established in 1983 to develop leadership skills such as public speaking, parliamentary procedure, and diplomacy.

Nearly all students won an outstanding or distinguished award for their representation as delegates of Sudan or Qatar. Below are students from GRAMELAC that participated.

  • Gabrielle Arvizu and Shams L. Al Khafaji are minoring in Arabic: Distinguished Delegation in Council of Arab Social Affairs Ministers
  • Eliza Mills and Sydne Blackburn are minoring in Chinese: Distinguished Delegation Joint Defense Council
  • Mackenzie Holtz and Sydney Chuen are both minoring in Arabic: Outstanding Delegation Joint Defense Council
  • Meghan Brandabur is completing the Russian, East European, and Eurasian studies major: Outstanding Delegation Council on Palestinian Affairs
  • Mohammed Shaheen is minoring in Arabic: Distinguished Delegation in Council of Arab Economic Affairs Ministers

The Miami students competed against John Carroll University, Campbellsville University, Ashland University, Wilmington College, and Shawnee State University.

In March, the team was to head to Washington DC to compete at the National Conference. Sadly, this event was canceled due to the pandemic.

2020-2021 Fulbright Winners

Sarah Frick - Quantitative Economics major with Japanese and Statistics minors, open study/research award in Japan.

Katherine (Katie) Rogers - German and History double major with a French minor, English teaching assistant in Germany.


August John Hagemann-Economics and Russian, East European, and Eurasian Studies, English teaching assistant in Russia

2019-2020 Dean Scholars

Aimee Joy Liston worked with Dr. Mariana Ivanova and Dr. Catherine Grimm.  Her research explores political and cultural developments surrounding automobile and transit use in the United States and West Germany during the years following World War II. This time period was formative of transportation cultures in the U.S. and Germany, and its effects are visible to this day.

Ellie Joy Timmons worked work with Dr. John M. Jeep. The purpose of her study is to understand the development of German as a written language and how the vestiges Roman Empire’s culture and language influenced this development. There are three key influences: linguistic, political and religious.

Individual Achievements

August John Hagemann double majors in Economics and Russian, East European, and Eurasian studies is Miami’s American Council of Teachers of Russian Post-Secondary Russian Scholar Laureate Award winner. He will also begin studying at the University of Illinois’ Ph.D. program in Slavic Languages and Literature on a five-year full scholarship.

Graduating Majors and Minors

Arabic Minors

Bethlhem Tagne Aseffa
Abigail Katherine Bert - Cum Laude
Sydney Jade Chuen - Magna Cum Laude, University Honors
William Christopher Coudret
Sarah Nicole Gaddy - Cum Laude
Zachary Stephen Hayburn - Cum Laude, Magna Cum Laude 
Rebekah Star Johnson - Cum Laude
Emma Catherine Kinghorn - Cum Laude
Miranda Rae Loesche
Sophia Annabella Pauken - Cum Laude
Connor Gardner Weston - Cum Laude
Emma Adriene Yockey - Magna Cum Laude, University Honors

East Asian Languages and Cultures Majors - China Concentration

Michael Yuri Kondratiev
Iris Andrea Patton - Cum Laude
Ana Mercedes Nieto - Cum Laude
Dania Gloria Puente Davilla - Cum Laude

East Asian Languages and Cultures Majors -Japan Concentration

Kevin M. Berning - Cum Laude
Foster Ellis Edens
Ruicheng Huang
Hailei Lan
Keng Lin
Dan Luo - Cum Laude
Weize Song
Kellyn Holden Vince
Haoyan Yu
Hailun Zhang
Zhoutian Zhao

Chinese Minors

Blair E. Arnell
Sydne Danielle Blackburn
David Harry Blankenship
Aidan James Connolly
Nikko Alexander Dunkas
Cameron James Green - Cum Laude
Christopher James Grillo
Michael Lee Guffey - Cum Laude
Amelia Grace XiuQiao Hoover
Austin Ray Jackson - Magna Cum Laude
Pierce Mitchell Kaufman - Magna Cum Laude, University Honors
Juanita Ivy Kwarteng - Magna Cum Laude
Kara Marie Leckinger - Summa Cum Laude
Grant Michael Mercer
Elizabeth Deford Mills
Jason Christopher Ramel
Christopher Nelson Shackleton
Eaint Myet Thwe - Summa Cum Laude
Jason Phongtri Tran
Matthew T. Truong
Alicia Roxanne Walsh-Clarett
Madeleine Adele Whissell - Cum Laude, University Honors

German Majors

Lindsey Elaine Adams
Angus Broderick Cady
Haley Erin Cappone
William George Estey
Phillip Miller Gandy
Aimee Joy Liston - Summa Cum Laude, Department Honors
Ava Lunder - Cum Laude
Jacqueline Kay Meriwether - Magna Cum Laude
Katherine Elizabeth Rogers - Summa Cum Laude
Andrew David Schroeder
Elianna Joy Timmons - Cum Laude, Department Honors

German Minors

Kayleigh Rose Antonelli
Hayden Chase Bitler
Anne Kathryn Cunagin - Magna Cum Laude
Tavis Mychal Enderle - Summa Cum Laude
Lauren Gorze
Nicholas Gary Kress
Matthew Cameron Luczaj
Daniel Stephen Luddeke
Ashley Nicole Monaco
Sarah Marie Moore - Summa Cum Laude, University Honors
Grace E. Moraski
Matthew J. Narbutis - Cum Laude
Allyson Elizabeth Osborne
Jennifer L. Peters - Cum Laude, University Honors
Julia Marie Pjevach - Cum Laude
Madison Kathleen Schnell - Magna Cum Laude
Tyler Spencer Sisk
Charles Spieser - University Honors
Katherine Lynn Swerbenski - Magna Cum Laude
Alaina Kathryn Swope - Magna Cum Laude
Qiyan Yang

Russian, East European, and Eurasian Studies Majors

Meghan O’Harra Brandabur
Colin Michael Gatta
August John Hagemann - Summa Cum Laude, University Honors, Department Honors
Seth I. Kraman
Charles Jacob Sparks Skaggs
Pavlo Oleg Stasiouk

Russian Minors

Elina B. Vilenchuk