By Celina Simmons
On Monday, April 30, the Center for Student Involvement and Leadership held their fifth annual CeSIL Awards. This program helps students become more involved in and out of the classroom by connecting them with campus activities, community service and other leadership opportunities. They hold these awards to recognize the well-deserving students who go above and beyond to step up as a leader on campus.
The night began with an inspiring speech by SMCC’s president, Ronald Cantor. He briefly introduced the event and described some characteristics of the awarded students. One thing he noted was that the more successful students he has come across throughout his career were the most involved. The experience acquired from taking a leadership role inevitably enhances a person’s future experiences, no matter what they may be, and “the more you put in, the more you get out.”
After President Cantor’s introduction, the awards began. The first was the most prestigious award, known as the President’s Award or Student of the Year. This was presented to Spring Point Resident Assistant Claudia Johnson. Claudia maintained a GPA above 3.5 throughout her time at SMCC and made a positive impact on the student body. Since her first year, she has been an active member of the Activities Committee and a dedicated RA.
The next awards, presented by Chuck Ott, were the Beacon Honors Awards. The first two were Beacon Alumni Garrick Hoffman and Erik Squire. These individuals were a major part of the legacy of The Beacon. Following were current Beacon members who continue to improve the paper today. Those awarded were Oguzhan Ozkan, Vanessa Poirier, Paul Moosmann, Troy Hudson, Lloyd Metcalf, Cassie-Briana Marceau, Jacob Clowes and Ben Riggleman. The last awards Chuck presented were the Beacon Scholarships, given to Rebecca Dow and Daniele Amandolini.
The Leader of the Pack Award was presented to 12 students who will soon be leaving SMCC. To achieve this, these individuals have had to demonstrate leadership and role-model-like behaviors in and out of the classroom. Those students were Claudia Johnson, Troy Hudson, Nicole Wickstrom, Tammy Creamer, Taylor Gerrish, Celetta Richard, Rachel Merrill, Madaleine Baker, Brandon Buck, Isaac McIntire, Jason Smith and Jean Medard Zulu.
After the Leader of the Pack came the Rising Star awards. Another 12 students were awarded with this because of how they began to step up and shine over the past year. Those given this award were Omid Rohani, Eric Dodge, Ashley Holmes, Dale Wilbur, Megan Waters, Taylor Miller, Rebecca Dow, Taylor Markee, Leah Parrish, Rachel Lanzikas, Shannon Chisholm and Nkana Dorcus Ngaliema.
Following was the Organization of the Year Award presented to the Activities Committee. Over the past year, the Activities Committee has shown a lot of growth with student involvement and begun to take on much more initiative. Next was the Organizational Program of the Year, awarded to the SPLC Real Talk for sparking conversations among students, such as gun control and freedom of speech.
Afterwards, RA Jean Medard Zulu was awarded with RA Program of the year for organizing Cultural Night here on campus. He considered how so many students are from all over the world and wanted to put together an event where everybody could share pieces of their home culture. Zulu also shared the interesting point that “a leader is a leader everywhere”.
The next award was Advisor of the Year, presented to Kelly Levine. Kelly is the Resident Director of Surfsite, and well deserving of this award for her extensive time and effort put into the student body and Activities Committee.
The final awards were the Emerging Leaders Program graduation certificates, presented to 14 individuals who will continue to bring their leadership abilities to their careers after SMCC. Those students were Peggy Goodfield, Merrick Banks, Madison Holbrook, Mary Jo Smith, Ashley Holmes, Nkana Dorcas Ngaliema, Brandon Buck, Loreal Legare, Zainab Miguel, Matthew Cleary, Cameron Wheelock, William Chabot, Abigail Myatt and Maegan Perrault.
Congratulations to all those honored at the CeSIL Awards, and best of luck to the graduates leaving SMCC this spring! You continue to inspire students to become future leaders and to get involved in the student body.