Elizabeth Hall

Senior Honors and Awards
College of Arts and Sciences

Congratulations to all of our Outstanding 2020 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: Jenna Palmisano

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: Phasin Gonzalez

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: Daniela Anant

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: Emily Maule

Ethan F. Green Award

Presented annually starting in 2017, this program award is named in honor of Ethan Greene, D.M.A. a composer and sound artist who taught in the Digital Arts program from 2014 to 2015. Although his time at Stetson was cut short, he made a lasting impact on his students and colleagues. The award recognizes one student for significant achievement in the preparation and presentation of their senior project.

Recipient: Eva Deisa

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: Slavina “Sally” Ancheva

Outstanding Senior


Ray V. Sowers Elementary Education Award

This award recognizes the most outstanding graduate in Elementary Education.

Recipient: Jasmine Santiago

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: Jacob Mauser

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: Jenna Palmisano

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: Emma Knowles

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: Ola Bartula

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: Dylan Croup and Dakota Figueroa

Outstanding Seniors

Mathematics, Applied Mathematics, Computer Science

Outstanding Seniors


Outstanding Senior


The Jack Gibson Endowed Physics Research Award

The Jack Gibson Endowed Physics Research Award was established in 2008 by Physics alumnus Jack Gibson, Stetson class of 1956. The stated purpose of the award is: “To acknowledge the outstanding senior in the Physics Research and in so doing, honor the memory of George L. Jenkins, Ph.D., a former chair of the Physics Department. Jenkins was a gifted educator and mentor whose guidance helped shape the life and career of Mr. Gibson and so many of Jenkins’ students. Presented annually, it goes to the student who demonstrates excellence in the entire senior project sequence. The final grade on the senior project will not be the sole determining factor. Rather, the student’s performance throughout each step of the sequence will be evaluated.”

Recipient: Erik David Bergstrom

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: Korinne Patterson

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: Mackenzie Nalven

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: Reilly Cash

Outstanding Senior

Sociology, Social Science

The Durkheim Prize for Research Excellence in Sociology

The Durkheim Prize is the highest honor the Department of Sociology and Anthropology bestows on a sociology major for excellence in research, as demonstrated in a senior thesis project. Department faculty members choose the recipient using criteria which focus on the quality of conceptualization, execution, and communication of an original, independent, empirical research study and its corresponding written thesis. This prize is awarded only in years when a thesis meets national professional standards of excellence in scholarship and is deemed worthy of submission for presentation at national conferences or for publication in a professional journal.

Recipient: Vincenzo Cornacchione

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: Slavina Ancheva