Celebrating excellence at annual Honors and Awards Dinner

Chanceller wafa stands at podium and addresses the seated crowd at annual awards dinner

Penn State Scranton Chancellor Marwan Wafa addresses the crowd at this year's Honors and Awards Dinner, which recognizes students, faculty and staff for their academic and professional achievements and excellence. The event, an annual tradition was attended by over 200 students, families, faculty, staff and donors.

Credit: Amy Gruzesky

DUNMORE, Pa. — Penn State Scranton recently hosted its much-anticipated Honors and Awards Dinner, an annual celebration dedicated to recognizing the outstanding achievements of students, faculty and staff members.

The event, a cornerstone of the campus community, not only celebrates academic excellence but also acknowledges the profound impact of professional leadership on campus life. The ceremony serves as a testament to the dedication and hard work exhibited throughout the academic year.

Chancellor Marwan Wafa, alongside Honors Program Coordinators Meg Hatch and Corianne Thompson, took center stage to bestow honors upon the deserving recipients.

This year’s award recipients are named as follows:

Student Awards

  • President Walker Award – This award is reserved for University students carrying a 4.0 grade-point average for the first semester of their freshman year: Max Castellino, Alexis Colasurdo, Ava Compton, Sophia Cuerriero, Leanna Defazio, Om Desai, Sadid Hassan, Braden Savage and Alexander Whittaker.
  • President Sparks Award – This award is presented to students whose academic achievement places them in the upper 0.5% of their class: Christian Dructor and Zamarra Vrabel.
  • Evan Pugh Scholar Award – This award is presented to students whose academic achievement places them in the upper 0.5% of their class: Michael DeWolfe, Elizabeth Morris and Halle O’Neil.
  • Academic Excellence Awards – Awarded to students who have demonstrated outstanding academic achievement in the individual disciplines and were nominated by faculty members of the discipline:
    • Art: Ceiwynn Longworth
    • Biological Sciences: Abigail Gaebel and Brandon Shotto
    • Business: Michael DeWolfe
    • Communication Arts & Sciences: Temo Uvera
    • Corporate Communication: Jenna Scarfo
    • Creative Writing: Fey-Lyn Hankee
    • English: Alexandra Bouselli
    • Engineering: Antonio Pugliese
    • History: Zachary Hensel
    • Human Development and Family Studies: Alison Marshman
    • Information Technology: Matthew Diehl
    • Mathematics: Madison Weinczyk
    • Music: Rowan Sunye Mulligan
    • Nursing: Kelly Varcoe
    • Project and Supply Chain Management: Amanda Delhagen
    • Psychology: Andrea Williams
    • Spanish: Evan Bannon

Penn State Scranton Campus Honors Program – The Penn State Scranton Campus Honors Program was established to broaden and enrich the education of outstanding students at the Scranton campus. The campus honors students participate in a wide range of academic, social and cultural activities:

  • First year: Stanley Cibaroski, Nicholas Crowley-Spisiak, Natalie Faybisovich, Jermin Gilbert, Sadid Hassan, Micaela Fernanda J. Bayona, Mahathir Mahbub, Haily Serpico and Conner Sheruda.
  • Second year: Katrina Concepcion, Khush, Halle O’Neil and Madison Weinczyk.
  • Third year: Rhiannon Depew, Olivia Osborne, Grace Rosecrans, David Stoshick and Andrea Williams.
  • Fourth year: Kelly Varcoe.

Michael and Stephanie Evans Nursing Grant – Assistant Dean for Undergraduate Nursing Education at the Commonwealth Campuses for the Ross and Carol Nese College of Nursing and Penn State Scranton Instructor of Nursing Michael Evans and his wife, Stephanie, fund annual grants to assist nursing students with a GPA of 3.0 or higher who have a demonstrated financial need. These funds are directed to costs associated with the Assessment Technology Institute testing requirement for nursing students: Natalie Faybisovich.

Morgan and Annie Marie Evans Award in Nursing – This award is presented to a nursing student who has completed between 70 and 100 credits, is enrolled for a minimum of 6 credits, has a GPA of 3.0 or higher, and has a proven financial need: Frank Turnbaugh.

Richard and Lois Ostroski Family Award for Adult Learners – The purpose of this award is to honor and recognize outstanding achievements by an adult learner who has attained the highest grade point average (GPA) upon completion of his/her first year:  Alexis Colasurdo.

Patrick J. and Mary Jane Sheridan Award for Excellence in Business – The purpose of this award is to recognize outstanding achievement by a student enrolled in the bachelor of science degree in business who obtains the highest grade-point average at the end of his/her junior year: Michael DeWolfe.

Walter Weber Memorial Award in Theatre and Speech Communications – The purpose of this award is to honor and recognize an outstanding student with an overall grade-point average of 3.0 or higher who has excelled in theater or speech communications courses: Elizabeth Alin.

Tabatabaie Family Math and Science Award – This award is given to full-time undergraduate students who are majoring in a math or science degree program at Penn State Scranton who are at least second semester freshmen and who have achieved a minimum grade-point average of 3.2 on a scale of 4.0: Raphael Carvalho.

Outstanding Peer Tutor Award – This award was established to recognize peer tutors committed to provide extraordinary service to student and the campus community support of student success: Halle O’Neil.

Outstanding Research Scholar Award – This award is given to a recognize a student who has demonstrated excellence in scholarly research: Morgana Costanzo.

Outstanding Creative Accomplishment Scholar Award – This award is given to recognize a student who has demonstrated excellence in creative accomplishments: Ammaarah Hassan.

Faculty/Staff Awards

David and Joyce Mack Tressler Fund for Professional Development -- Penn State alumni, David and Joyce Mack Tressler, have established this fund to enrich the campus by providing monies for professional development initiatives and opportunities for faculty, staff, administration, and technical service employees. This year’s recipient was Morgan Sewack.

K Bruce Sherbine Penn State Proud Award -- Recognizes a member of the campus community who has positively influenced students and employees, contributing to the prestige and well-being of the campus. This year’s recipient was Mar Tsakonas.

Award for Excellence in Administrative Service -- This award is intended to recognize campus Administration and/or Managers for innovative and creative program development. This year’s recipient was Shannon Williams.

Award for Excellence in Support Services -- This award is intended to recognize Staff Assistants and/or Technical Services employees for their contributions to the teaching-learning climate of the campus. This year’s recipient was Sharon Ebert.

Gertrude Hawk Chocolates Service Award -- Honors a campus faculty or staff member whose contributions have benefited the day-to-day activities of the students. This year’s recipient was Megan Van Etten.

Dr. Richard J. & Sally Matthews Award for Scholarly Activity -- Awarded to a deserving member of the Campus faculty in recognition of his/her scholarly and research activities. Award was created in 1988 through the generosity of Advisory Board Member, Dr. Richard J. Matthews and his wife, Sally. This year’s recipient was Ray Petren.

Excellence in Teaching and Service Award for Part-time Faculty -- Awarded to a part-time faculty member who has positively influenced students by demonstrating innovative and dedicated teaching techniques in his/her academic endeavors and contributing to the well-being of students through service to the campus. This year’s recipient was Bill Borer.

Excellence in Academic Advising -- Recognizes a full-time faculty and staff who advises students. This year’s recipient was Fred Aebli.

Advisory Board Award for Teaching -- This award began in 1988 by the campus Advisory Board to recognize a faculty member who has demonstrated innovative and dedicated teaching techniques in his/her academic endeavors. This year’s recipient was Kelly Worozbyt.

The photo album from this year's awards dinner is available on Flickr:  https://www.flickr.com/photos/pennstateworthingtonscranton/albums/72177720316653087/