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Political science department honors top students

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

LAWRENCE — The University of Kansas Department of Political Science honored its top students at its annual recognition ceremony last month, including awards and induction into Pi Sigma.

Twenty-five students were inducted into the Gamma chapter of Pi Sigma Alpha, the national political science honor society. Criteria for induction include a 3.5 grade-point average on a 4.0 scale in all political science courses with a cumulative grade-point average of at least 3.4 for undergraduates. In addition, inductees cannot have a grade lower than a B in any political science course.

These students were inducted:

  • Trent Allen from Beloit
  • Laura Bilsborrow from Broomfield, Colorado
  • Madeleine Bryce from Tulsa, Oklahoma
  • Matilda Carter from Kansas City, Missouri
  • Cody Christensen from Topeka
  • Madison Cook from Shawnee
  • Amr El Afifi from Kansas City, Missouri
  • Aurelie Gagnet from Lawrence
  • Alexander Green from Hays
  • Sarah Herman from Overland Park
  • Adam Kerkman from Sattler, Texas
  • Owen MacDonald from Overland Park
  • Claire MacLachlan from Prairie Village
  • Kassidy Mahoney from Branson, Missouri
  • Derek Martin from Conway Springs
  • Garrison Matthews from Overland Park
  • Claire Meczkowski from Bentonville, Arkansas
  • Hannah Reinhart from Parkville, Missouri
  • Robert Santamarina from Overland Park
  • Adam Steinhilber from Leawood
  • Erin Suggs from Overland Park
  • Mary Trimble from Oklahoma City
  • Jacob Vance from Lenexa
  • Tyler Walmsley from Lawrence
  • Kellor Yde from Wichita.

The political science department provides cash awards with no restrictions and scholarships that provide tuition assistance. The awards and scholarships presented:

The Ethan P. Allen Pi Sigma Alpha Award to outstanding graduating seniors majoring in political science. The recipient:

  • Jesse Burbank from Topeka

The Emmett L. Bennett Scholarship to an outstanding junior majoring in political science. The recipients:

  • Trent Allen
  • Madison Cook
  • Travis Hoehn, Paola
  • Derek Martin
  • Megan Peat, Lenexa
  • Adam Steinhilber, Leawood

The Eldon Fields Pi Sigma Alpha Award to outstanding graduating student majoring in political science. The recipients:

  • Claire Branstetter from Derby
  • Laura Bilsborrow

The Elizabeth and Carl Gustafson Scholarships of $500 was awarded to these outstanding political science undergraduates:

  • Rebekah Burgweger from DeSoto
  • Madeline Caywood from Jacksonville Beach, Florida
  • Amr El Afifi
  • Alexander Houston from Lawrence
  • Kaitlyn Johnson from Lawrence
  • Kevin McCarthy from Lenexa
  • Owen MacDonald
  • Robert Santamarina

The Allan J. Cigler Academic Enrichment Award was presented in the amount of $1,500. This fund is made possible by former students of Cigler, who wished to recognize him for his continued academic service. The recipient:

  • Amr El Afifi

The Political Science Future Military Leaders Scholarship is awarded to political science majors participating in ROTC. This fund is possible by the generosity of Roberto Montoya.

This year the Fall 2015 winner:

  • Derek Martin

The Spring 2016 winner:

  • Madeleine Ulloa from Leavenworth

The Walter Thompson Scholarships in the amount of $3,500 was awarded to deserving graduate political science students. The recipients:

  • Ranya Ahmed
  • Sammy Badran
  • Brittnee Carter
  • Ryan Daugherty
  • Bronson Herrera
  • Sierra Reicheneker
  • Brian Turnbull
  • Marcus Williamson

The Political Science Faculty Award is given to those students who have nearly completed or have completed an honors thesis with a faculty member. Those students:

  • Caleb Bobo from Ballwin, Missouri
  • Nicole Humphrey from Lawrence
  • Ryan Ott from Neoga, Illinois
  • Madeline Ulloa
  • Zachary Watson from Olathe

All of the scholarship funds are managed by KU Endowment, the independent, nonprofit organization serving as the official fundraising and fund-management organization for KU. Founded in 1891, KU Endowment is the first foundation of its kind at a U.S. public university.

Photo: Students and staff mingle during the annual political science department recognition ceremony.