Elizabeth Hall

Senior Honors and Awards
College of Arts and Sciences

Congratulations to all of our Outstanding 2021 Seniors!

Biology, Aquatic and Marine Biology, Molecular Biology

Dorothy L. Fuller Award

The Dorothy L. Fuller Award is named for a longtime faculty member and former chair of the Biology Department who was also an outstanding teacher. It is awarded annually to the most overall outstanding senior.

Recipient: Shmuel Binyamin Fogel (Molecular Biology)

Outstanding Seniors


American Institute of Chemists Foundation Outstanding Senior Award

The award is sponsored by the American Institute of Chemists Foundation and is awarded to the outstanding senior majoring in Biochemistry or Chemistry.

Recipient: Matisyahu S. Fogel (Chemistry)

Outstanding Seniors

Communication and Media Studies

The Michael McFarland Award for Outstanding Senior in Communication and Media Studies

The Michael McFarland Award for Outstanding Senior in Communication and Media Studies is named for Dr. Michael McFarland, who founded the Communication and Media Studies program when he began his long career at the university in 1988. The award recognizes a graduating senior, selected by the department faculty, who is outstanding in academics and who uses communication to contribute to the community, be it in the department, the University, or the world beyond Stetson.

Recipient: Hannah Zeller (Communication and Media Studies)

Outstanding Senior

Creative Arts, Art, Art History, Digital Arts, Theatre

Ed Hamill Award to Outstanding Senior

In late 1979, Edwin N. Hamill, a significant donor of artwork to Stetson University, desired to establish an annual scholarship-based award to be presented to an outstanding senior art major. At the time, it was the first award of its kind for the department, and in the fall of 1980 the first award was presented.

Recipient: Faith Belflower (Studio Art/Art History)

Marjorie Forster Gilbert Award

The Marjorie Forster Gilbert Award for Outstanding Student Performer recognizes a Theatre Arts or Communication Studies major who has demonstrated excellence as an actor or director in theatre production. Mrs. Marjorie Gilbert was a professor at Stetson from 1969 until her retirement in 1989. She was dedicated to drawing the best from her students, both in the classroom and on the stage, and her immense contribution to our Department over the years is commemorated with this award.

Recipient: Kiara Santiago (Theatre Arts)

Outstanding Seniors


Outstanding Student in Economics

This award is presented to the top student in Economics based on his or her coursework, with an emphasis on the student’s senior research.

Recipient: Grace Highsmith (Economics)

Outstanding Senior


Ray V. Sowers Elementary Education Award

This award recognizes the most outstanding graduate in Elementary Education.

Recipient: Jessica Gundy (Elementary Education)

Outstanding Seniors


Byron H. Gibson Award

The Byron H. Gibson Award, named for a former long-time chair of the English Department, was established by Dr. Gibson’s son and former students, and it is the most prestigious honor bestowed by the Department. It is presented annually to a student whose outstanding scholarly work in the classroom is complemented by other, also outstanding contributions to the Department and the University.

Recipient: Nelson E. Quezada Herrera (English)

Outstanding Seniors

Environmental Science and Studies

The Rachel Carson Environmental Science Award

The Rachel Carson Environmental Science Award, the most prestigious award given to a Stetson Environmental Science student, is made possible through the generosity of Mrs. Marion Potter and her late husband Mr. Charles Potter. This award recognizes the senior who has achieved exceptional academic standing and made extraordinary contributions through civic engagement on environmental issues.

Recipient: Stephanie Hanson (Environmental Studies)

Outstanding Seniors

Gender Studies

Outstanding Senior in Gender Studies

This award recognizes the academic excellence and the overall contribution of a graduating senior, minoring in Gender Studies, to the mission of the program.

Recipient: Haley Qualls (Social Science)

Health Sciences

Health Sciences Scholarship and Service Award

The Health Sciences Scholarship and Service Award is presented to Health Sciences seniors who have demonstrated outstanding academic performance and research skills and commendable service to the Department of Health Sciences, Stetson University, and the DeLand community.

Recipient: Nadesha Phipps (Health Science)

Outstanding Seniors


Gilbert L. Lycan History Award

Gilbert Lycan, PhD, was a popular and well-respected History professor at Stetson University from the ’50s through the ’70s. He also wrote the first history of the University. An award was established in his name to honor the outstanding seniors every year within the Department of History.

Recipients: Julia F. Bassett (History), Hannah Zeller (Communication and Media Studies, History)

Outstanding Seniors

Mathematics, Applied Mathematics, Computer Science

Outstanding Seniors


Ronald L. and Margaret Smith Hall Philosophy Award

The Ronald L. and Margaret Smith Hall Philosophy Award is given to honor the most outstanding graduating senior in the Department of Philosophy.

Recipient: Rachael Ryan (Philosophy)

Outstanding Senior


Outstanding Senior

Political Science, Public Management, International Studies

William Amory Underhill Award

Named for the late William Amory Underhill, Stetson alumnus, former trustee, and one of the most admired lobbyists in Washington, DC, this award is given annually to the student who has most demonstrated the discipline, integrity, and desire to pursue a successful career in public service and who is most likely to have a positive impact on government.

Recipient: George Alderman (Political Science)

Outstanding Seniors

Public Health

Outstanding Senior


The Psychology Department Award for Excellence in Research

The award is presented each year to the student who has completed the most outstanding psychological research project.

Recipient: Jason Schmidt (Psychology)

Outstanding Seniors

Religious Studies

Outstanding Senior

Russian, Eastern European and Eurasian Studies

Sergei Zenkovsky Prize in Russian Studies

Stetson University acquired its first specialist in Russian Studies with Serge A. Zenkovsky, who was born in Kiev, studied in Prague, and taught at Indiana and Harvard Universities. His wife, Betty Jean, began the Russian Language program at Stetson. By an agreement in the early 1960s of the Independent Colleges and Universities of Florida, Stetson University was designated the member institution that would focus on study of the Russian area, and the Russian Studies Program was born. The Serge A. Zenkovsky Award is reserved for the top student of Russian language and culture.

Recipient: Lois Oxley (Russian, Eastern European and Eurasian Studies)

Outstanding Senior

Sociology, Social Science

Outstanding Seniors

World Languages and Cultures

Outstanding Senior


University Honors Program Award for Outstanding Senior

Stetson's Honors Program was founded in 1956, making it the oldest program in the Southeast and one of the older programs in the United States. The Outstanding Senior in the University Honors Program is awarded based on academic performance and participation in the intellectual and communal life of the University.

Recipient: Ruby Moore (Communication and Media Studies)

Outstanding Senior