Schreyer Honors College presents awards to graduating scholars

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – Four Schreyer Honors College Scholars were selected as winners of annual awards established through the generosity of faculty members and friends on May 6. The reception in the HUB Robeson Center’s Alumni Hall to celebrate the graduating Scholar seniors included the awards program and acknowledgement of 28 finalists who were nominated by honors faculty members for their distinguished efforts.

The Schreyer Honors College Faculty Advisory Committee reviewed the nominations and recommended the 2016 award winners for the Paul Axt Prize, Nicholas Frazzette; the Douglas G. and Regina C. Evans Award for Research Achievement, Grace Lee; and the Reddy Mission Award, Joshua Bram. These recipients were presented with certificates and monetary awards by Schreyer Honors College Dean Christian Brady. An engraved Penn State lion statue was presented to Colleen Tygh, the senior winner of the Robert W. “Bear” Koehler Award, by Noah Barsky and Charles Smith.

The Paul Axt Prize is presented to a scholar who exemplifies the passionate commitment to inquiry that promotes high scholarly achievement and the intellectual curiosity and daring that lead to the development and pursuit of wide-ranging interests. Nicholas Frazzette demonstrated his passion for human-centered design through his experiences with the Humanitarian Engineering and Social Entrepreneurship Program (HESE). He was one of two students nominated for the first year of the College of Engineering’s Grand Challenge Scholar Program, which focuses on innovative efforts in the face of global engineering and sustainable development challenges. Frazzette graduated with both his bachelor’s and master’s degree in bioengineering through Penn State’s integrated undergraduate/graduate program.

Grace Lee, who earned dual degrees in biology and biochemistry and molecular biology, was selected as the 2016 Evans Research Achievement Award winner. This award recognizes the graduating Schreyer Scholar who accomplished the single, most extraordinary research achievement. Dedicated to unprecedented research that investigates cell reprogramming in the brain, Lee’s area focuses on primary cell culture, immunostaining and fluorescent imaging – an emerging field in stem cell research. Her work will pave the way for drug-based therapy repair to regenerate neurons in patients’ brains using internal glial cells, a revolutionary approach to brain repair.

The Reddy Mission Award was established to honor a graduating Schreyer Scholar who best exemplifies all three parts of the honors college mission: academic excellence, globalization and civic engagement. Recognized with a campus-wide award for contributing to the reputation of Penn State through extracurricular activities, Bram graduated with degrees in biology and infectious diseases and immunology with a grade point average near the top of his scholar class. Involved in the Humanitarian Engineering and Social Entrepreneurship Program (HESE), he traveled to Sierra Leone for two separate projects related to improving health care in developing nations. As president of Penn State IFC/Panhellenic Springfield THON, Bram helped guide that organization to a membership of more than 250 students and a $270,000 fundraising total.

Responsible for the campus-wide “Pink Zone,” and helping to raise the largest fundraising total of this student organization donation to date, Colleen Tygh was selected as the winner Robert W. “Bear” Koehler Award. Tygh reflects the traits of Professor Koehler, a compassionate and giving individual, as she also implemented a tutoring program in local middle schools, coordinated trips to local food banks and raised funds for those in need. She also served in leadership roles for Sapphire THON fundraising and was named captain for THON’s inaugural Donor and Alumni Relations Alumni Engagement team. As a symbol of mentorship, the Koehler Award also recognizes a first- or second-year Schreyer Scholar from the Smeal College of Business and the first-year award for 2016 will be made in Tygh’s name. 

The Schreyer Honors College promotes academic excellence with integrity, the building of a global perspective, and creation of opportunities for leadership and civic engagement. Schreyer Honors Scholars, including Gateway Scholars admitted after their first or second year of enrollment, total more than 1,900 students at University Park and 20 Commonwealth campuses. They represent the top 2 percent of students at Penn State who excel academically and lead on campus.

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Last Updated May 24, 2016