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K-State Today

April 22, 2015



Golden Key recognizes outstanding GTA and GRAs of the year

By Kelsey Peterson

Twelve of K-State's graduate teaching assistants and graduate research assistants were nominated by faculty to be recognized for their outstanding leadership and diligence at the Golden Key International Honour Society's GRA and GTA Awards Ceremony and Reception, April 19, in the K-State Student Union. Two students were selected to receive the Graduate Teaching Assistant of the Year award and Graduate Research Assistant of the Year award.

"GTAs and GRAs play such an important role on campus, and I think it is great to be able to hold an event where our organization and faculty members can get together to show them appreciation," said Kori Zarzutzki, social events chair for the Golden Key. "It shows the GTAs and GRAs how much the professors and department heads appreciate them, since they have to take the time to nominate them."

D. Scott Sibley, a doctoral student in human ecology, was nominated by his major professor Amber Vennum, assistant professor of family studies and human services, for the Graduate Teaching Assistant of the Year award.

"Scott loves teaching," Vennum said. "He has an uncanny ability to manage small and ridiculously large classrooms of undergraduates with poise. He is passionate about what he teaches and about helping young adults reach their potential."

Ryan Broxterman, a doctoral student in physiology, received the Graduate Research Assistant of the Year award. He was nominated by his major professor Thomas J. Barstow, professor and graduate coordinator for kinesiology.

"Since coming to my lab over six years ago, Ryan has grown into an outstanding doctoral student," Barstow said. "I can think of no other collection of attributes that would better describe an outstanding graduate research student than those that Ryan possesses. He is the quintessential senior doctoral student."

Additional graduate teaching assistants who were recognized:

  • Melisa Lynes, agricultural economics, nominated by Allen Featherstone
  • Ashley Hough, entomology, nominated by James Nechols
  • Scott K. Ferguson, kinesiology, nominated by David C. Poole
  • Travis Hale, curriculum and instruction with emphasis in music education, nominated by Ruth Gurgel
  • Taylor Wadian, psychology, nominated by Rebeca Paz 

Additional graduate research assistants who were recognized:

  • Nassim Sabhafar, civil engineering, nominated by Mustaque Hossain
  • Brooke Cull, human nutrition, nominated by Sara K. Rosenkranz
  • Morgan Bialas, family studies and human services, nominated by Carol Shanklin
  • Amanda Martens, psychology, nominated by Carol Shanklin
  • Aaron Entringer, psychology, nominated by Carol Shanklin

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