2021 Award Recipients

Student Awards

University Honors

Regan Haney and Jayla Terry

The University Honors Program enhances Miami University’s commitment to student success by creating curricular and co-curricular opportunities for deep and meaningful reflective learning. Honors is committed to graduating students prepared to excel in their fields and to be citizens and leaders with a proactive sense of responsibility to our global world.

International Student Recognition

Ailing Cui

Ailing is an exemplary international student who has maintained a rigorous academic course load while participating in activities and volunteerism during her time at Miami University Regionals. She is always positive and brings energy to our classes-virtual or on-campus.

Xi Zeng

Xi is an active, engaged and proactive student who has maintained a challenging course load while participating in volunteer activities both on and off campus. Throughout the school year, he has been a positive addition to the regional campuses. He has now relocated up to Oxford and continues to excel.

Yu Cao

Yu “Gibbs” Cao has been a positive presence on the regional campuses this school year. While maintaining his studies, he offers ongoing support in many forms: giving friends rides to and from the area airports, helping out with students’ dead car batteries, and helping the ELC team on various projects.

Student Organization of the Year

Regional Activities @ Miami (RA@M)

This student organization was nominated for recognition of their creativity and perseverance in programming throughout COVID. The departmental student organization not only has sent out postcards to all Regional students on a monthly basis with passive programming, but since we've been allowed on campus to program, has offered a variety of grab'n'go activities (such as stuff a bear) and hosting synchronous events with interactive speakers (like the lip reading) and important topics (like the importance of voting). Each of their members have stepped up to program in the memory of their late president, Tiernee "T" Gonzalez, to ensure that the remainder of her year as president was remembered as a great one.

Robert H. Rusbosin Award (MUH Recipient)

The W. Lynn Darbyshire and Dr. Robert H. Rusbosin Leadership awards are presented annually to students who have demonstrated outstanding leadership in a student organization, student advisory council, student employment, community service, or campus committee assignment.

Nicholas Thornton

It is said that a true leader does not seek recognition nor leadership roles, but rather they find the leader. This is exactly how Mr. Nicholas “Nick” Thornton came to find the ROSA office.

Nick has served as a Regional Orientation Leader (ROL), Regional Orientation Coordinator (ROC), and ROSA Student Ambassador. He has also served as an active member of the ROC&ROL student organization that programs for first-year students during the academic year. He actively engages with fellow students and helps them find their place on campus. Nick’s first priority is those around him. He is the first to ensure team members have what they need to be successful and will employ his creativity to solve any problems that arise.

He will be an excellent addition to the history of the Dr. Robert H. Rusbosin Leadership Award recipients on his character alone, with his active engagement an astounding addition.

W. Lynn Darbyshire Award

The W. Lynn Darbyshire and Dr. Robert H. Rusbosin Leadership awards are presented annually to students who have demonstrated outstanding leadership in a student organization, student advisory council, student employment, community service, or campus committee assignment.

Marielena Orozco

Some of her biggest roles in student organizations include serving as President of our Regional programming board and Treasurer of 4+ other organizations. Lulu has also served multiple orientation seasons, not only as a Regional Orientation Leader (ROL), but also as a Regional Orientation Coordinator who mentors the ROLs. Lulu goes above and beyond to serve the university as a student representative in a variety of capacities. For example, not only is Lulu a sitting Regional Student Representative on the University Senate, but she actively volunteers for marketing videos and materials, as well as helped to serve on the Regional Dean Search Committee to ensure the student voice was known. For these reasons she is well deserving of the W. Lynn Darbyshire leadership award.

Student Organization Diversity Appreciation Award

Regional Activities @ Miami (RA@M) 

E-Campus Distinguished Student Award

Matthew Alldredge

Matthew Alldredge, a health information technology major, was nominated by Donna Evans for being a leader among his peers in online courses.

His nominator commented that, “As a full time employee and busy family member, Matt sees the benefit of being in an online program. Matt is a leader in every sense of the word earning the respect of not only his professors but his peers as well.”

A big congratulations to Matthew Alldredge, winner of the 2021 E-Campus Distinguished Student Award.

Veteran Valiance

Jonathon Godby

"As an active Miami Army ROTC student, Jonathon Godby has served as a squad leader, platoon sergeant, and platoon leader.

He is also the Vice President of the Student Veterans’ Association – Regionals. He has been instrumental in leading a small group of veteran students who are helping the new Regional Coordinator of Veterans’ Service reorganize the program to provide support to our veterans and military affiliates.

He has also volunteered in support of Non-university community events to include: 1) coordinating community food donations for reach out Lakota and 2) serving food to families at New Life Mission in Hamilton, Ohio"

Outstanding Work+ Student Award

Garrison Barnhill

Garrison Barnhill is the epitome of Work+ success. He boasts an exceptional GPA and will soon earn his BS in Engineering Technology. His work ethic at thyssenkrupp Bilstein is outstanding. He gives of his time to promote Work+ and has worked diligently on professional development for post graduation.

Departmental Awards

Biological Sciences

Erica Staton

The Department of Biological Sciences congratulates Erica Staton on receiving the BSC Departmental Award in Applied Biology with a concentration in Human Biology and Health Sciences. Erica is an excellent student that will undoubtedly have a successful career in Science. The entire BSC faculty congratulates Erica on her outstanding efforts at Miami.

Ashley Hopper

The Department of Biological Sciences congratulates Ashley Hopper on receiving the BSC Departmental Award in Applied Biology with a concentration in Human Biology and Health Sciences. Ashley was an excellent student that will undoubtedly have a successful career in Science. The entire BSC faculty congratulates Ashley on her outstanding efforts at Miami.


Autumn Newdigate

Autumn is a non-tradtional student working her way through school. She is a very good student who participates and leads in class, and her classroom behavior is considered noteworthy by a number of CMR facutly

Noah Juste

Noah is a student with demonstrated leadership skils who exhbits compassion and care. He is an excellent communicator and an asset to any class.

Computer and IT

Savanna Stoddard

Savanna Stoddard is a transfer student who has excelled here at Miami University. She has been an exceptional leader in her Agile courses and is well positioned to graduate and make positive changes in the world.

Education and Society

Rose Hurley

Rose Hurley is an outstanding student. She is president of the Social Work Organization on the Regionals and a student member of the National Association of Social Workers. She was selected to be a student leader for Social Work Advocacy Day, leading a virtual meeting and presenting to an Ohio Senator's Chief of Staff.

Ashley Augsburger

Ashley stands out as an engaged, thoughtful, and dedicated student. She volunteered with the Ohio Department of Transportation's job fair, the Flying Pig marathon, and her church to assist those who had their homes damaged during the Dayton tornado. She has worked as a teacher's assistant and a substitute teacher.

Engineering Technology - Also known as the Outstanding Engineering Technology Student Award

Tyler Sargent

Tyler Sargent has been identified by the ENT faculty as an outstanding student based on his excellent academic records and his performance in the program. The ENT faculty is happy to nominate Tyler for the outstanding student award of Engineering Technology.

Logan Street

Logan Street is an excellent student who completed his BS degree in Mechanical Engineering Technology. Logan in outstanding student based on his excellent academic records and his performance in the MET program. The ENT faculty is happy to nominate Logan for the outstanding student award of Engineering Technology.

Humanities and Creative Arts

Katrina Shafor

Katrina took exceptional steps to research and develop her capstone project Empowered: What If Women Ruled The World?, a juried exhibition exploring, and highlighting art that engages with female identifying artists for the Miami University Middletown Galleria. She went above and beyond expectations. Her project involved all the steps that a curator at a museum would follow from creating the prospectus, to advertising, receiving applications, building a maquette of the gallery space to determine layout, written correspondence and connections with the community.

Bridgette Scott-Devlin

Many, many well written class papers. "A's" in all these classes. A conscientious reader and analyst. A consistent and insightful class participant. Also did well in NEH class, HST/PHL 350. No one in recent years has taken a greater variety of HST classes and excelled across the breadth of them. She has been a positive and collaborative learner and exemplar in all of these classes -- and more. I have enjoyed working with her and appreciate all of her efficacious efforts.

Interdisciplinary and Communication Studies

Emily Waldron

"Emily is a teacher’s delight - bright, responsive, and upbeat. One of my best in 16 years at Miami. She was always prepared, attentive, and engaged. Besides getting the highest score in the class, she stepped up and successfully took on a key leadership position in a semester-long business simulation." "Emily is an exceedingly intelligent student who consistently stands out as a leading member of her classes. She is attentive and her class contributions are always substantive and thought-provoking. Her work is always high quality and she is one of the best students I have ever worked with."

Shaun Smart

LST major Shaun Smart is a leader who continually exceeds expectations. His interactions with readings and peers explore the depth of ideas, and discussions are always richer for his participation. His writing is exemplary, which is reflected in his acceptance to present at an undergraduate honors conference.

Justice and Community Studies - Also known as the Beccaria Award

Tony Dinh

Tony, a senior Criminal Justice major from Hamilton, Ohio, has excelled in the classroom throughout his time at Miami. The Department of Justice & Community Studies congratulates Tony on his success!

K.C. Ciallella

K.C., a senior Criminal Justice major from Sunbury, Ohio, has impressed JCS faculty both with his intellectual curiosity and his consistently strong work in his courses. The Department of Justice & Community Studies congratulates K.C. on his success! 

Languages, Literatures, and Writing

Claire Barrington

Claire is one of the most outstanding EGS majors I have worked with (and there is a high bar). She is an outstanding student with an exceptional GPA, which she has maintained while also working as a professional ballerina with the Norwegian National Ballet and teaching ballet. She has traveled the world as a professional dancer, but maintained the desire to seek a college degree and pursue a career in law. She is working on an advanced graduate or even master’s degree level. Despite that, she showed incredible generosity to her peers, commenting on many posts (far more than the minimum required) and really engaging with their ideas.

Olivia Gronvall

Olivia’s class projects were certainly the best work in the class, and among the best I’ve ever seen from students. Beyond the high quality of her writing, her work was particularly impressive because of her engagement with and application of the rhetorical genre theory that was central to our class. I can say honestly that she is one of the best students I have ever had in a class.

Mathematical and Physical Sciences

Carter Lindeman

Carter Lindeman is a senior who graduates in Dec. 2021. He was in the NSF-funded AUGITE program, is lead author on a peer-review manuscript in Minerals (impact factor 2.250) and had two lead presentations in 2020. He is very helpful and instructive to other undergraduate students in the lab. Carter is an example of a team supporter who advocates for everyone to do well and helps enable excellence in others. He has a unique leadership style that is unassuming and makes others comfortable. Nominated by Mark Krekeler.

Erin Fairweather

Erin Fairweather is a high school student with an excellent academic record that takes classes on the Hamilton campus. In Fall 2020, Erin took STA 261 and did a phenomenal job in the course. All of her work was thorough, complete, and very well done. Her work was always well done. Moreover, she never missed a class, was never late, and participated in class on a daily basis. She was in every way what is considered to be the epitome of an ideal student. Nominated by Andrew Liljestrand.


Alaezsha Mayo

Alaezsha is a well-regarded senior student graduating in May, 2021 with dual degrees in Nursing and Spanish. She is a role model for others in her classes, clinical and organization involvement. Alaezsha has participated in the Student Advisory Council and represented students at Nursing Department Meetings.

Marielena Orozco

Junior in the Nursing program with a phenomenal academic record. Marielena is very involved in the Department and on the regional campus. Marielena was on the Regional Dean search committee. She is involved in University Senate and many student organizations. Marielena always represents Nursing well.

Social and Behavioral Science

Danielle Pate

Danielle is a Psychological Science and Applied Social Research double major. She is an outstanding student with an exceptional GPA. She is extremely active on campus and in the community with various service endeavors. This year Danielle received the President’s Distinguished Student Achievement in Service Award.

Brianna Stoll

Brianna is a Psychological Science major. She is an outstanding student. As a member of the Autism Lab since 2018, she has co-authored three publications in well recognized journals and presented papers at four professional conferences. This year Brianna received the Miami Provost’s Student Academic Achievement Award.

Faculty and Staff Awards

Faculty Achievement in Teaching, Professors and/or Assoc. Professors

Dr. Beth Dietz

Dr. Beth Dietz boasts one of Miami University Regional’s most substantial records of scholarship in the area of teaching and learning. Dr. Dietz’s pedagogy helps students develop critical thinking skills. For example, through her Gender and Sport Laboratory, students critically examine the degrees to which fans’/athletes’ perceptions of gender shape sport.

Faculty Achievement in Teaching, Asst. Professors and/or Lecturers

Jennifer Purdum

Jennifer Purdum was awarded the Teaching Award due to her innovative approaches in helping students explore how art can traverse private and public boundaries. Jennifer’s pedagogical approach, “glitch,” helps students disrupt habitual ways of thinking. Her students produced art that inquired into ways identity can be represented and distorted.

Faculty Achievement in Teaching, Part-Time

Janelle Allen

Janelle Allen’s commitment to her students and to make science relevant to students’ lives won her the Teaching Award for 2021. Janelle’s innovative pedagogy marries current issues, such as the pandemic, with courses and topics like Human Physiology to help students understand science in real-world contexts.

Faculty Achievement in Advising

Dr. Dee Kinney

Dr. Dee Kinney uses advising as an opportunity to get to know her KNH students well while helping them navigate Miami resources, manage their multiple responsibilities and taking care of their health and wellness. Her advising philosophy is holistic and based on encouragement, reassurance and individual learning styles. A student nominator wrote, “She is timely, responsive and passionate about helping others.” Congratulations Dee!

Staff Campus Impact Award

Francis Tonner

Francis Tonner, a long-time Hamilton employee, recently took on support for the Engineering Technology Department in Middletown as well. He is known for his dedication to the success of the students. He will guide them and assist them in building projects just as if he were the instructor for the course.

Andy Richard

Andy Richard is most recognized as a public face at our student activities and events, but he has a strong impact on faculty and staff as well. He is known as a “go-to” for answers of all sorts and for his humor, brightening the mood of all those around him.

Kelly Cochrane

Kelly (Brown) Cochrane is the definition of above and beyond. While being the interim director of Work+, she still is heavily involved in academic advising and serves as a resource for many other departments as well. While doing all that, she also overhauled the UNV 101 curriculum as the UNV 101 coordinator.

John Burke

John Burke is an amazing resource for faculty, staff, and students. His humor and humility are infectious. John has a long history of service to the university, and is a founding member of Staff Forum. When he’s not coming up with the next cool gadget in the library, he can be found at many campus events or heard in voiceovers for university videos.

Faculty/Staff Diversity Appreciation Award

Bethany Carr 

Faculty Achievement in Scholarship and/or Artistic Distinction

Dr. Cecilia Suhr

Dr. Cecilia Suhr has won this year’s Faculty Achievement in Scholarship and Artistic Distinction award. Over the years, she has given her renowned interactive multimedia performances at many prominent national and international venues, and she was able to successfully adapt to virtual performances when the pandemic caused many live events to be cancelled. Congratulations, Dr. Suhr! 

Faculty Achievement in Service

Dr. Ann Rypstra

Dr. Ann Rypstra has won this year’s Faculty Achievement in Service award. Her service profile is wide-ranging, including significant service in all areas. Highlights include serving on nine university-level committees in the past five years, serving as director of Miami’s Ecology Research Center, and reviewing about forty articles per year for the top scholarly journals in biology. Congratulations, Dr. Rypstra! 

E-Campus Excellence in Online Teaching

Dr. Theresa Kulbaga

Dr. Theresa Kulbaga, Professor in ENG & LLW, was nominated by student, Jesseca Crosen, for making her course engaging and fun while still challenging students.

Her nominator commented that, "Dr. K's class was truly the best online course I have ever taken.”

Congratulations to Dr. Theresa Kulbaga, 2021 winner of the E-Campus Excellence in Online Teaching Award.

Regional Student Advisor of the Year

Kenzie Bryant and Charmaine Moore Kitsinis

Kenzie & Charmaine go above and beyond to support the org when we need them most. They are constantly stepping up as an advocate for students and aren’t afraid to get their hands dirty when needed the most. When there is a question about next steps, Kenzie & Charmaine are willing to go the extra mile to make sure the org has what it needs to be successful and worthwhile. Kenzie & Charmaine are true models of great advising for a student organization.