State University of New York Chancellor Nancy L. Zimpher recently presented 256 SUNY students from across the state with the 2017 Chancellor’s Award for Excellence. SUNY students, their families, campus presidents and faculty convened in Albany to congratulate this year’s honorees.
“It is my honor to celebrate the achievements of students who have surpassed SUNY’s highest standards of academic excellence and leadership both on and off campus,” said Zimpher. “Every student we recognize today has demonstrated a strong commitment to their degree program, home campus, greater community, and much more. Congratulations to all of the students receiving this year’s award.”
Steve Levy, ESPN SportsCenter anchor and SUNY Oswego Class of 1987 graduate, joined Chancellor Zimpher through a video message congratulating the students on their success in college, and providing encouragement for the future. Through hard work and dedication to his craft, along with the opportunities presented at SUNY Oswego, Levy credits his college experience as setting him on a path to what is now a 25-year career at ESPN.
The Chancellor’s Award for Student Excellence was created in 1997 to recognize students who have best demonstrated, and have been recognized for, the integration of academic excellence with accomplishments in the areas of leadership, athletics, community service, creative and performing arts, campus involvement or career achievement.
Each year, SUNY campus presidents establish a selection committee, which reviews the accomplishments of exemplary students. Nominees are then forwarded to the chancellor’s office for a second round of review. Finalists are then recommended to the chancellor to become recipients of the award.
Here are the local finalists:
Fashion Business Management, Fashion Institute Of Technology
McIver is a member of the Presidential Scholars, the honors program at FIT. She received the SUNY Chancellor’s Scholar Athlete Award and joined the athletic staff as a student assistant coach. McIver serves as an orientation leader and head planner of the FIT Style Shop. She has interned and worked in various apparel companies and studied abroad in Florence, Italy. McIver is an active member of the Merchandising Society, FIT’s oldest and largest club.
Liberal Arts, Nassau Community College
Donahue immersed herself in NCC through student life, community service and academic excellence. She achieved associate membership status in the national biological honor society and quickly became president of the college chapter. Accepted into the Honors Program, she was chosen student representative for the college. Involved in the Biology Club, NCC’s Peer Mentor Program, community service and coach of a travel volleyball team, Donahue has had an impact on her department, her peers and her community.
Engineering Science, Nassau Community College
Originally from Honduras, Bossio has created his own business and won many awards and scholarships. Actively involved, he serves as the vice president of Nassau Community College’s Engineering Society, volunteers at the Engineering and Physics Help Center, and has organized a blood drive. Excelling academically, Bossio has a 4.0 GPA.
Biology, Stony Brook University
Madan is a student ambassador, an Honors College peer mentor and has been named a URECA Researcher of the Month. After studying abroad in Madagascar, Madan did a project on disease transmission in lemurs and became founder and president of Students Helping Malagasy Students, a club that aims to provide educational tools and resources to underprivileged children in Madagascar. Madan is an aspiring physician and will attend SUNY Upstate Medical University.
Accounting, Suffolk County Community College
Sorisi has excelled academically with a 4.0 grade point average and has earned Dean’s List recognition every semester for the last two years. He is involved on campus, serving as co-president of the Honors Club, a peer mentor and a SGA senator and Finance Committee member. In addition, he is a member of Phi Theta Kappa and is a bookkeeping assistant for the Office of Campus Activities.
Liberal Arts, Nassau Community College
Kaur is the president of Nassau Community College’s Women’s Student Association and the NCC Speech, Debate and Acting Team. She convened with young leaders from around the world at the United Nations for the annual International Young Leaders Assembly. Her honors include induction into the Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society, Phi Rho Pi Forensics Honor Society and New York Pi Kappa Delta National Forensics Honor Society.
Dietary Management, Nassau Community College
After serving in the U.S. Army and now attending NCC, Morring’s honors include five scholarships from the NCC Foundation and a TRiO Grant award for academic excellence. Morring applied for and received major grants for NCC from the Student Veterans of America, and as president of the NCC Student Veteran’s Club has conducted numerous fundraising activities including efforts for Habitat for Humanity, toy drives for a foundation supporting women in the military and a drive to collect used phones.
Computer Science, Nassau Community College
Singh has been very involved in NCC student life. He has earned a Certificate of Merit for the AMATYC Student Mathematics League and a certificate of completion of one hour of code awarded by the Mathematics and Computer Science Department. As an NCC orientation leader, he helped hundreds of incoming freshman learn about NCC. He serves on the executive board of the Nest Food Pantry at NCC, and is an elected student senator on the SGA.
Biochemistry, Stony Brook University
Joshi participates in the Women in Science and Engineering (WISE) and Scholars for Medicine programs. She serves as vice chair for President Stanley’s Council of Student Advisors, is a mentor for WISE, a student ambassador and a researcher in the Department of Medicine. Her research at SBU and the Feinstein Institute has led to co-authorship of two publications. In her spare time, Joshi performs Indian classical dance and plays the bass clarinet.
Visual Communications, Farmingdale State College
Saillant’s passion for design drives him to use his talents to make the greatest impact possible through his creativity. Whether honing his skills through three different internships and a work-study position, or applying his talents to a non-profit organization such as S.T.R.O.N.G. Youth, he has embraced the opportunity to concurrently experienced personal, academic, and professional growth. Furthermore, he has excelled academically as a visual communications student while contributing his time to his personal and educational community.
Biology, Stony Brook University
Mallangada is in the Scholars for Medicine Program (BS/MD) and is a pancreatic cancer researcher in the Division of Cancer Prevention. He has designed beautification projects, (Heart Beats of Stony Brook & Piano Steps), and promotes interdisciplinary collaboration through the SBU Innovation Lab. He is a student ambassador, Honors College mentor and received the Gelfond Leadership Scholarship and Outstanding Future Alumni Award. Mallangada maintains a 4.0 GPA and will attend SBU School of Medicine.
Pharmacology, Stony Brook University
Sweeney is a pharmacology major and music minor and uses his love of both science and music to guide his experiences at Stony Brook. In addition to being a member of Stony Brook’s marching band and the vice president of SB Live, a student-run jazz band, Sweeney conducts biochemistry research concerning the endocannabinoid system under the guidance of Dr. Dale Deutsch. As an aspiring physician scientist, Sweeney plans to pursue an MD-PhD degree after graduation.
Marissa Grill of Plainview
Policy Analysis and Management, Cornell—NYS College Of Human Ecology
Grill is a dedicated policy analysis and management major who is committed to work in STEM education and education reform. She has interned at the U.S. Department of Education and for Senator Chuck Schumer, and completed minors in demography and law and society to further her understanding of education issues. In addition, Grill is a volunteer tutor for local students. Outside of academics, Grill loves to sing and serves as president of the Cornell Chorus.
Tina Lloyd of Massapequa
Marketing, SUNY New Paltz
Lloyd has demonstrated exceptional leadership in both her academic field and her co-curricular experiences. She has earned a spot on the Dean’s List every semester while at New Paltz. Lloyd began her leadership experience as president of Bevier Hall Government before becoming a resident assistant, serving on the executive board of the National Residence Hall Honorary during the inaugural year of Dance Marathon, hosting her own FM radio show and serving as a student ambassador.
Jessica Ann Daddino of Seaford
Nursing, Farmingdale State College
Daddino has maintained a GPA of 3.95 and achieved recognition on the President’s List each semester. In June of 2016, she received the American Nurses Association-New York Future Nurse Leaders award, and in December of the same year, she was selected to receive the Student Award for Academic Excellence. Daddino is a member of the nursing honor society and is active in community service projects.
Natalie Gramegna of Massapequa
Audio Radio Production & Digital Media Production, SUNY Plattsburgh
Gramegna excelled academically receiving the SUNY Plattsburgh Academic Excellence Award, while also dedicating much of her collegiate career serving in numerous roles for the two college radio stations, including general manager at both stations. A member of the National Broadcasting Society, Gramegna was a grand prize winner two years in a row. She has also acquired numerous awards and internships for her talent in both audio and video production on campus and regionally.
—Photos courtesy of SUNY