More than 100 recognized for achievement by DSA

The Lion’s Roar /Kelli Meynard

The Lion’s Roar / Kelonda Dixon

2016 Greek Man and Woman of the Year Justin Archote and Harli Manuel (top) smile proudly with their awards at the Division for Student Affairs Convocation held last Tues., April 26 in the Student Union Ballroom. Joerell Jones and Braylon Gros  (middle) show off their Green “S” Award at the reception following the ceremony. Alexis Quackenbush and Bradley Watson (bottom) are granted the highest honor, 2016 Outstanding Woman and Man of the Year.

The Lion’s Roar / Kelonda Dixon
Ms. Antoinette Alack with Office of Student Conduct presents Chase Cole (top) with the L.I.V.E the CODE Award. Lauren Davis (bottom) is recognized as the Office of Multicultural & International Student Affairs 2016 Role Model.

Students from different majors, backgrounds and organizations were recently recognized for their hard work, dedication and campus involvement. The Division for Student Affairs Awards Convocation took place Tuesday, Apr. 26 in the Student Union Ballroom. Many students received awards including the Green “S” Award, the Who’s Who Award, Live the Code Award, the Alumni Association Outstanding Senior Award and more. 

“This is about recognizing [students],” said Assistant Director for Student Engagement Kyle Gallagher. “We have tons of students within our division and on this campus that really make an impact through the things that they do. So tonight we were able to recognize just a small portion of all the great works and efforts of our students.”

During the convocation, former Student Government Association President Alexis Quackenbush gave a farewell speech. The 2015 Chief Justice Stephanie Travis swore in the 2016 Chief Justice Caleb Kerstens. Kerstens then swore in 2016 SGA president Erin Fernandez, who gave an inaugural address and swore in Gabrielle Reynolds as the SGA Vice President.

Fernandez spoke briefly of her plans as president and thanked those who helped her reach where she is now. 

Of the awards given, the Division for Student Affairs Green “S” award was given to the most recipients. 80 students received the award. The Green “S” award is presented to students who have contributed to student life at the university. 

Many other divisions on campus, including the Office of Multicultural and International Student Affairs and Recreational Sports and Wellness, gave awards to deserving students, organizations and staff.

According to Gallagher, recipients are chosen for awards based on nominations, applications and more. 

“We select a committee made up of people across the whole campus that will evaluate each one (nominations and applications) and that’s how they’re selected,” said Gallagher.

The highest honor students receive from the Division of Student Affairs is the 2016 Outstanding Man and Woman of the Year award. Quackenbush received the 2016 Woman of the Year award alongside SGA Vice President Bradley Watson who received the 2016 Outstanding Man of the Year award. The two were selected based on their dedication to the university and the Division for Student Affairs. 

Before they accepted their award, the Division for Student Affairs played a video which recognized their achievements on campus and displayed remarks from people in their lives.

Both Quackenbush and Watson expressed their shock and joy at receiving this honorable award.

“I was shocked,” said Quackenbush. “I’m very honored. I definitely wasn’t expecting it.”

Watson expressed similar feelings.

“I was very surprised,” said Watson. “I am very honored to have won it. It is the pinnacle of my career at Southeastern and it is an absolute honor.”

Quackenbush decided her freshman year to get involved on campus. She began small, but eventually got more and more involved as she went through her college career.  

“I just didn’t want to be one of those people who just went back and forth from class to my dorm,” said Quackenbush. “I started out in Leadership Council, then SGA, then my sorority and from there I just kept growing and I wanted to be a bigger leader. I wanted to promote our campus and help our campus out more.”

Through her time at Southeastern, Quackenbush has grown personally and as a leader.

“I’ve learned a lot of different leadership skills and leadership responsibilities,” said Quackenbush. “It’s definitely taught me to be a better person.”

According to Watson, he also grew during his time on campus and in SGA. 

“It has helped me grow as a person and a leader,” said Watson. “It has opened so many doors on this campus. I’m very thankful for that experience.”

The two seniors remarked on their view of the university from their freshman to senior year. Southeastern became a home for them both.

“Falling in love with this campus [was a surprise],” said Watson. “I didn’t expect to, but I certainly did. It gave a lot to me, and I gave a lot back as well.”

After all awards and closing remarks were given, recipients and family gathered for a  reception.