Annual award ceremony recognizes Shenango students, employees

Students Georgianna Sheperd, Fidaa Daralhaj, and Shae Kanan pose with their awards at the Shenango Awards Banquet

Penn State Shenango students and employees were honored at the annual 2023 Awards Ceremony and Honors Convocation to celebrate outstanding academic and student life achievements. Students Georgianna Sheperd, Fidaa Daralhaj and Shae Kanan pose with their various recognition certificates.

Credit: Michael McElroy

SHARON, Pa. — Penn State Shenango students and employees were recognized at the 2023 Award Ceremony and Honors Convocation, held at the Avalon Country Club at Buhl Park on Thursday, May 4. The annual Honors Convocation celebrates the outstanding academic and student life achievements of our students, faculty and staff. 

Photos from the evening can be downloaded from Penn State Shenango's Flickr photo gallery.

Academic recognition 

The President Walker Award 

The President Walker Freshman Award is presented annually to undergraduate candidates who have earned a 4.0 cumulative grade-point average (GPA) based on at least 12 graded Penn State credits completed during their first semester of admission. 

  • Michael Crist, Transfer 
  • Karson Cropp, Clarks Mills 
  • Willa Dickey, Hermitage 
  • Rebecca Feilke, Mercer 
  • Lillie Holt, Pulaski 
  • Kylie Jackson, Cleveland, Ohio 
  • Victoria Lowrey, Conneaut Lake 
  • Grace Marhulik, Boardman, Ohio 
  • Cassandra McNeely, Beaver Falls 
  • Merrick Morneweck, Mercer 
  • Pilar Moschillo, Hermitage 
  • Haillee Wickham, Greenville 

The President Sparks Award 

The President Sparks Award is presented annually to undergraduate students who have earned a 4.0 cumulative GPA based on at least 36 graded Penn State credits completed by the end of the fall semester of the academic year in which the award is given. 

  • Mackenzie Lambert, Jamestown 
  • Jenna Piccirilli, Transfer 

The Robert Weber Mathematics Award 

The Robert Weber Mathematics Award is presented annually to the most promising Shenango math student and honors the late Robert Weber who taught math at the Shenango campus. 

  • Karson Cropp 

The Margaret Cunningham Foley Memorial Teaching Award 

  • Jo Anne Messett 

Teaching Excellence Award 

  • Maureen Dunn 
  • Kevin McDade 
  • Phil Nash 

Honors Program 

The honors certificate is awarded to several of the students in the Honors Program who have fulfilled the program requirements and have maintained an excellent GPA. 

  • Michael Horstman, Greenville 
  • Kylie Jackson 
  • Mackenzie Lambert 
  • Merrick Morneweck 

Career Readiness and Engagement Award 

This award recognizes undergraduate students that have demonstarted career competencies and career readiness by actively engaging in professional development activities throughout the academic year to prepare for success in the workplace and lifelong career management. 

  • Rhonda Kanan, Sharon 

Lambda Pi Eta 

Lambda Pi Eta (LPH) is the National Communication Association’s official honor society at four-year colleges and universities. Honors cords for graduation are awarded to graduating seniors in LPH that have upheld the academic goals of the chapter and shown outstanding dedication to the group. 

  • Georgianna Shepard, West Middlesex 

Academic Achievement Awards 

Recognized for outstanding academic achievement, this award is presented to students with cumulative GPAs of 3.5 and above. 

  • Selina Beach, West Middlesex 
  • Megan Bourne, Hermitage 
  • Jenna Daly, Hermitage 
  • Alex Davis, Hermitage 
  • Robert French, Roaming Shores, Ohio 
  • Zarah Hershberger, Greenville 
  • Abigail Hodge, Brookfield, Ohio 
  • Michael Horstman 
  • Logan Hurley, Mercer 
  • Kailey Isenberg, Espyville 
  • Kyle Jackson, Cleveland, Ohio 
  • Jade Janacone, Youngstown, Ohio 
  • Brooke Lees, Jamestown 
  • Abigail Lewis, Sharon 
  • Jenna McCright, Greenville 
  • Anna Merkulova, Erie 
  • Andrea Milano, Greenville 
  • Leah O’Kresik, Hermitage 
  • Ashley Poghen, Atlantic 
  • Virginia Reagle, Greenville 
  • Katie Richards, West Middlesex 
  • Kaitlyn Roseski, Mercer 
  • Dien Tran, Hermitage 

High Academic Achievement Awards 

The Shenango campus High Academic Achievement Awards are presented to those students in each college or degree program who have achieved the best cumulative GPA during the academic year. 

  • Business: Joshua Cidila, Hermitage 
  • Corporate Communication: Gianna Effinite, West Middlesex 
  • Criminal Justice: Kaleb Kowacich, Sharpsville 
  • Criminal Justice: Mackenzie Lambert 
  • Division of Undergraduate Studies: Jill Dunleavy, Struthers, Ohio 
  • Human Development and Family Studies: Karsyn Rupert, West Middlesex 
  • Health Policy and Administration: Alissa Owen, Jamestown 
  • Nursing: Courtney Barker, Greenville 
  • Two-year Business Administration: Jenna Piccirilli 
  • Occupational Therapy Assistant: Bella Davis, Linesville, and Shelby Glover, Conneaut Lake 
  • Physical Therapist Assistant: Jamie Thompson, Pulaski, and Karley Nelson, Dubois 

Student Leadership Recognition 

Allied Health Club 

  • President Shae Kanan, Sharon 
  • Vice President Lindsey Okruch, Russell 
  • Vice President and Treasurer Fidaa Daralhaj, Sharon 
  • Treasurer Garrett Hamrick, Webster Springs, West Virginia 
  • Secretary Teagan Pope 
  • Secretary Georgianna Shepard 

Black Student Union 

  • President Daniel Hughley III, Hermitage 
  • Vice President Malik Weatherington, Youngstown, Ohio 
  • Treasurer Kevin McKinney Jr., Hermitage 
  • Secretary Jaslyn Williams, Brookfield, Ohio 

Book Club 

  • President Georgianna Shepard 
  • Vice President Jaslyn Williams 
  • Treasurer Zarah Hershberger 
  • Secretary Cole Micsky, Greenville 

Dungeons & Dragons Club 

  • President Alex Weimer, Hermitage 
  • Vice President John Stephenson Jr., New Castle 
  • Vice President Grace Haggard, Mercer 
  • Treasurer John Jakob Raskob, Sandy Lake 
  • Secretary Leo Staples, Sharon 

International Cultures Club 

  • President Shae Kanan 
  • Vice President Fidaa Daralhaj 
  • Treasurer Daniel Hughley III 
  • Secretary Zarah Hershberger 

Occupational Therapy Assistants’ Club 

  • President Bella Davis 
  • Vice President Jade Janacone 
  • Treasurer Maureen Cipriano, Brookfield, Ohio 
  • Treasurer Madison Dickinson, New Wilmington 
  • Secretary Shelby Glover 
  • POTA Representative Anthony Stasko, West Middlesex 

Physical Therapy Assistants’ Club 

  • President Aileen Lewis, Grove City 
  • Vice President Morghan Burncheck, Carlton 
  • Treasurer Jamie Thompson 
  • Secretary Rachel Moroco, Transfer 

STEM Club 

  • President Jacob Wetherill, Lowellville, Ohio 
  • Vice President Grace Haggard 
  • Treasurer John Jakob Raskob 
  • Secretary Leo Staples 
  • Secretary Michael Myers, Jackson Center 

Student Government Association 

  • President Gianna Effinite 
  • Vice President Shae Kanan 
  • Treasurer Catherine Howard, Wheatland 
  • Secretary Karsyn Rupert 
  • Chief of Staff Michael Horstman 
  • Senator-at-Large Halaina Bowers, Hermitage 
  • Senator-at-Large Karson Cropp 
  • Senator-at-Large Kyle Jackson 
  • Senator-at-Large Daniel Hughley III 
  • Senator-at-Large John Jakob Raskob 
  • Senator-at-Large Anaziah Fryer, Niles, Ohio 
  • Senator-at-Large Cole Micsky 
  • Athlete Representative Malik Davis, Harper Woods, Michigan 
  • Athlete Representative Aileen Lewis 

Leadership Awards 

Orientation Leaders 

  • Megan Bourne, Hermitage 
  • Halaina Bowers 
  • Gianna Effinite 
  • Emily Filicky, Hubbard, Ohio 
  • Zarah Hershberger 
  • Michael Horstman 
  • Daniel Hughley III 
  • Shae Kanan 
  • Mackenzie Lambert 
  • Aileen Lewis 
  • Leah O’Kresik 
  • Karsyn Rupert 
  • Anthony Stasko 
  • Jaslyn Williams 

The Ann Wansack Award 

This award was made in memory of Penn State Shenango employee, Ann “Mom” Wansack, and her devotion to the students of the Shenango campus. The purpose of this award shall be to honor and recognize full-time students enrolled at Penn State Shenango who are actively involved, through leadership or participation, in the betterment of Penn State Shenango. 

  • Daniel Hughley III 
  • Kevin McKinney Jr. 
  • Cole Micsky 

The Eric and Josephine Walker Award 

The Eric and Josephine Walker Award recognizes Commonwealth Campus students whose outstanding qualities of character, scholarship, leadership and citizenship have been directed into programs and services that have positively influenced fellow students and have contributed to the prestige and well-being of their campus and, hence, to the reputation of the University as a whole. 

  • Gianna Effinite 

Club Advisor of the Year 

  • Phil Nash 

Spirit of Shenango Award 

This award is given to an individual that genuinely cares about other students, faculty, staff and the surrounding community of Penn State Shenango. This person embodies the motto, “small campus with a big heart.” 

  • Shae Kanan 

Staff Member of the Year 

This award recognizes Penn State Shenango staff members who demonstrate outstanding service to the University, our students and the broader community. 

  • Jim Castelli 

Programming Excellence Award 

This award recognizes innovative and outstanding achievement in the planning and presentation of a program by a student organization, group/class project, committee or an individual. 

  • The Prerequisite Podcast Instagram by Georgianna Shepard 

Unsung Hero Award 

The Unsung Hero Award recognizes a student who works behind- the-scenes of a successful recognized student organization, athletic team, group/class project or committee. This award is given to a student who consistently gives their all, going above and beyond the call of duty on a regular basis without expectation of recognition. 

  • Michael Horstman 

Emerging Leader of the Year 

This award is presented to a student with less than 45 credits who has contributed significantly to the Penn State Shenango community through their involvement in a campus organization, athletic team or a community service program. They must also show significant potential for continued leadership and civic engagement. 

  • Cole Micsky 

Student Leader of the Year 

The Student Leader of the Year award recognizes a student who has demonstrated excellence in academic growth and achievement, as well as excellence in campus and community engagement and has made a contribution to the Penn State Shenango community through their leadership and participation in campus programs, organizations and activities. 

  • Emily Filicky