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K-State Today

May 5, 2015



K-State Alumni Association honors undergraduate, graduate students for achievements

By Tim Schrag

Eight graduating Kansas State University students have been recognized by the K-State Alumni Association for outstanding achievements during their college careers. Amy Button Renz, K-State Alumni Association president and CEO, presented the students with plaques during an awards luncheon April 29 at the K-State Alumni Center.

The honors include four upcoming graduates who earned the Anderson Senior Awards, which recognize graduating seniors for academics, leadership, inspiration and service. The award was established in 1998.

The alumni association also recognized two graduate students with its Graduate Student Award, which was established in 2010. The award recognizes outstanding graduate students for academics, service and leadership.

Two students were presented with the Tony Jurich Community Commitment and Leadership Award at the ceremony. The award was established in honor of K-State professor Tony Jurich, who taught in the College of Human Ecology for more than 39 years before his death in 2010. It recognizes both graduate and undergraduate students who have demonstrated a commitment to community leadership and service through Jurich's core leadership tenets.

Faculty and peers nominate students for the awards, and committees consisting of members of the Alumni Association board of directors and K-State students select the recipients.

"It is an honor to recognize these exceptional students for their achievements at K-State," said Michelle Elkins, associate director of awards and special events for the K-State Alumni Association. "These award winners were selected from a group of remarkable candidates."

Recipients of awards from the K-State Alumni Association are:

Jonathan Bernard, bachelor's candidate in biology and pre-medicine, Hutchinson, Anderson Senior Award for Outstanding Service. Bernard participated in the Edgerley-Franklin Urban Leadership Scholars Program. He also volunteered with the Flint Hills Bread Basket, Habitat for Humanity, the Democracy Project and Mercy Regional Hospital emergency room. In addition, he participated in alternative spring break trips to assist the Chicago Hopes Organization and St. Jude Children's Research Hospital.

Ryan Broxterman, doctoral candidate in physiology, Topeka, Graduate Award for Outstanding Academics. Broxterman's doctoral research has focused on the mechanisms and conditions contributing to fatigue — research that is being discussed and lauded by senior international experts in the field. Additionally, he has been instrumental in research work with NASA to identify key components of fitness that an astronaut must possess in order to safely preform mission tasks at destinations such as the moon or Mars. He has been successful in getting grant proposals funded by NASA.

Nicholaus Herrmann, bachelor's candidate in agricultural economics, Holcomb, Tony Jurich Community Commitment and Leadership Award. Herrmann worked in Nyeri, Kenya, at the Children and Youth Empowerment Centre and interned for U.S. Sen. Jerry Moran. He is a member of Alpha Gamma Rho fraternity and has been an ambassador for the College of Agriculture.

Mohamed Ismail, doctoral candidate in nuclear engineering, Belbies, Egypt, Graduate Award for Outstanding Leadership and Service. Ismail served as the president of the Egyptian Student Association and is on the board of directors for the Islamic Center of Manhattan. He served as a graduate student senator for the K-State Student Governing Association and is a member of Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, Nuclear & Plasma Sciences Society.

Dennis Jilka, concurrent bachelor's and master's candidate in kinesiology and pre-medicine, Overland Park, Anderson Senior Award for Outstanding Inspiration. Jilka was a volunteer medical assistant for the Flint Hills Community Clinic and was a certified nurse assistant with Via Christi Health Services. He also is a member of Kappa Sigma fraternity.

Reagan Kays, bachelor's candidate in agribusiness, Weir, Anderson Senior Award for Outstanding Leadership. Kays served as the student body president and during his presidency funding was secured for campuswide tutoring, the Lifeline 911 campuswide policy was passed and he has been instrumental in getting the Kansas Legislature to review this policy for statewide legislation. Kays also is a member of Blue Key Senior Honor Society and Alpha Gamma Rho fraternity.

Brady Rundel, bachelor's candidate in agricultural economics, Colby, Anderson Award for Outstanding Academics. Rundel has served on the College of Agriculture Student Council Executive Committee and has been a member of the Kansas State National Agri-Marketing Association. In addition, he was a student fellow for the Center for Risk Management Education and Research.

Barrett Scroggs, master's candidate in theater, Duluth, Georgia, Tony Jurich Community Commitment and Leadership Award. Scroggs is on the Drama Therapy Fund board of directors and is a member of the North American Drama Therapy Association. He toured area schools with a play he adapted and directed to help children deal with anger management issues through drama therapy.

For more information about the awards programs, visit www.k-state.com/awards or call the K-State Alumni Association at 800-600-ALUM or 800-600-2586.