Major league baseball announcer, aerospace information officer, human resources expert receive alumni awards from College of Arts and Sciences
Friday, Oct. 25, 2013
MANHATTAN -- Three distinguished alumni of Kansas State University's College of Arts and Sciences received alumni awards from the college at an Oct. 24 ceremony.
Evan Stewart, a 1965 graduate in mathematics, and Steve Physioc, 1977 graduate of the A.Q. Miller School of Journalism and Mass Communications, received Alumni Merit Awards. April West, a 2001 bachelor's graduate in psychology, received the Young Alumni Award.
"The College of Arts and Sciences takes pride in the accomplishments of our alumni -- they remind us of why we are here, at K-State," said Peter Dorhout, dean of the college. "Our goal is to prepare students to go out into the world and make a difference -- to use their Arts and Sciences core and the specialization in their major to 'move the needle.' These three Wildcats are being recognized for doing just that."
Andrew Bennett, head of the university's mathematics department, nominated Stewart for the Alumni Merit Award to recognize his distinguished career in the aerospace industry, most notably as the chief information officer for B/E Aerospace in the wake of the Sept. 11 attacks on the World Trade Center. Stewart has also been a strong supporter of the mathematics department and university as an alumnus.
"Evan Stewart's work demonstrates how mathematical training supports modern business practices," Bennett said. "Mr. Stewart has also been a generous supporter of Kansas State University, with particular interest in effective use of technology in teaching mathematics."
Bennett said that Stewart has taken a particular interest in providing the new tools available, such as iPads, to help students prepare for the advances in technology they will find in their careers. His gifts have supported the Center for Quantitative Education, the Center for the Integration of Undergraduate, graduate and postdoctoral research, and others in the department. He also is an active member of the College of Arts and Sciences Alumni Advisory Committee.
Stewart is a retired vice president and chief information officer for B/E Aerospace Inc. He lives in Leawood with his wife, Karen.
Physioc, who grew up in the Kansas City area, was nominated for his long career as a sports play-by-play announcer, which has included announcing major league baseball, NFL, NBA and NCAA football and basketball games. In 2012, Physioc returned Kansas City as the voice of his hometown team, the Kansas City Royals. He lives in the Greater Kansas City area with his wife, Stacey.
"Steve Physioc, like so many hundreds of A.Q. Miller School alumni, came to K-State with a dream and lots of passion," said Steve Smethers, associate director for undergraduate studies of the Miller School. “He worked hard in college to develop himself into a good sports announcer, and today he is nationally known as a true professional, a man with a passion for sports and a dedication to good journalism. We believe Steve exemplifies what it means to be a distinguished alum of the College of Arts and Sciences and Kansas State University."
West, originally from Mulvane, is the director of human resources for the Ritz-Carlton Co. in Kapalua, Hawaii. A McNair Scholar at Kansas State University, she was the the third member of the university's program to earn a doctorate. West earned a master's degree in industrial/organizational psychology from the California School of Professional Psychology in 2003 and her doctorate in industrial/organizational psychology from Alliant International University in San Diego in 2006. She has rapidly ascended in her career, beginning in 2007 as a leadership development specialist for the MGM Grand University in Las Vegas before becoming the director of human resources for the Mirage Casino and Hotel, also in Las Vegas, prior to her current position with the Ritz-Carlton in Hawaii.
West was nominated for the Young Alumni Award by Michael Young, head of Kansas State University's psychological sciences department.
"When I look at what April has accomplished in only 12 years since leaving K-State, I am amazed," Young said. "She's achieved in that period more than many of us do in an entire career. In addition to her remarkable career achievements, April continues to make time for Big Brothers Big Sisters, tutors at the local high school and oversees community cleanup events. She embodies the K-State value of investing in others. We're very proud of her."
The three recipients of the College of Arts and Sciences awards received their honors at the fourth annual Eisenhower Circle Celebration, a special event recognizing loyal alumni and friends who give $250 or more to the college annually. The Eisenhower Circle recognition society is named for Milton S. Eisenhower, the ninth president of the university and for whom Eisenhower Hall is named. The hall is home to the dean's offices of the College of Arts and Sciences.