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April 17, 2008

Spellman Awards Reflect Strength of Campus Diversity

Interim President George M. Philip with Rashaun Allen, a Spellman Award recipient

Interim President George M. Philip with Rashaun Allen. Allen was a recipient of the Spellman Award for Community Service. (Photo by Marguerite Hill)

The academic achievements of UAlbany’s African American, Asian, Latino, and Native American students were recognized on April 6 at the 22nd annual Spellman Awards ceremony in the Campus Center Ballroom.

Interim President George M. Philip said the honorees have distinguished themselves through their fine academic records, leadership, and community service.

“Your spirit and your energy make our University a better place. You truly contribute to the success of our community, and in so doing, you are charting your own paths to success,” said Philip, adding, “You also reflect a great strength of our campus, as well as our state and our nation – our diversity. In today’s global society, there is no doubt the success of our communities depends on our understanding of, and respect for, other races and cultures.”

The Spellman Awards were created in memory of the late Dr. Seth W. Spellman, Jr., dean of the School of Social Welfare from 1975 to 1980. Spellman was a professor and past chair of the Africana Studies Department, which he helped to establish. In 1984, he was named a Distinguished Service Professor by the State University of New York Board of Trustees. Spellman’s son, Torin, and his wife, Susan, were special guests at the event.

Interim Vice President for Student Success Christine Bouchard said the award for leadership honors those who are recognized as student leaders and role models by peers, faculty, and administrators.

Recipients of the Leadership Award were:
• The Asian American Alliance
• Emmanuel Abreu
• Omari McKie
• Natasha Paul
• ShaQuanna Williams

Bouchard said the Community Service Award honors students or groups who have unselfishly worked to improve campus life; have dedicated great time and energy to projects that help others; and who have given of themselves consistently to improve the UAlbany community.

Recipients of the Community Service Award were:
• Rashaun Allen
• Ebony Isaac
• Tasia Jackson
• Sigma Iota Sigma Multicultural Sorority, Inc.

Director of the Office of Multicultural Student Success D. Ekow King presented the Academic Achievement awards. To be eligible, honorees must have a 3.0 or better after two consecutive semesters, or after one semester for freshmen. King said, “This year we are very proud to announce that approximately 37 percent of the students of African, Latino, Asian or Native American descent have met these criteria.”

Top honorees for Academic Achievement were:

 Freshmen
• Daksha Bhatia
• Danielle Millman
• Sakinah Smith

Sophomores
• Adam Abraha
• Nicholas Jarrett
• Janelle Murphy
• Thomas Rivera
• Jessica Ventura

Juniors
• Dennis Iyekegbe
• Kit-Sum Ling
• Jordan Medina
• Daren Pon

Seniors
• Rossana Coto-Batres
• Ildefonso Correas-Apelanz
• Barnaby Nicolas
• Yu-Ming Mo 

For more information about the Office of Multicultual Student Success, go to: http://www.albany.edu/multicultural/ .

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