On Friday, April 22, the Lock Haven University communication program held its annual Rebecca Gross Awards Day luncheon and ceremony, celebrating distinguished student and alumni achievements in the communication program at LHU.
The activities began with a luncheon in the Durrwachter Alumni Conference Center, followed by the awards ceremony. The following students were honored with scholarships and awards affiliated with the communication program:
- Kerri Hoover - Rebecca Gross Outstanding Communication Senior
- Caprice Bischof - Lisa Riede Excellence in Communication Award
- Alex Ross- Margaret Ann Brown Memorial Scholarship
- Shannon Louszko - Dr. Saundra K. Hybels Memorial Scholarship, sophomore award
- Connor Jackson - Dr. Saundra K. Hybels Memorial Scholarship, junior award
- Alex Ross - Dr. Saundra K. Hybels Memorial Scholarship, senior award
The Rebecca Gross Outstanding Communication Senior Award was presented to Kerri Hoover. The award is given to a student who has at least a 3.0 grade point average and service in other campus or off-campus activities including volunteer work and paid work related to journalism or mass communication. Hoover has served on the Eagle Eye newspaper staff, in the WLHU Radio Club, the Full Gospel Fellowship and Lambda Phi Eta honors society. She wants to become a social media manager.
The Excellence in Communication Award was presented to Caprice Bischof. This award is given to the non-media communication senior with the highest grade point average. Bischof, who wants to manage a dance company some day, is a member of the communication honors society, Lambda Phi Eta. She is a native of Lock Haven.
The Margaret Ann Brown Memorial Scholarship was presented to Alex Ross, of St. Marys. This scholarship is given to the student who completes at least 72 but not more than 104 credit hours, 12 credit hours of specific LHU courses and attains the highest grade point average of communication or communication media majors. A member of the Eagle Eye newspaper staff, WLHU Radio Club and University Players, Ross wants to become a film or music journalist or filmmaker.
The Dr. Saundra K. Hybels Memorial Scholarship Awards were presented to Shannon Louszko (sophomore), Connor Jackson (junior) and Alex Ross (senior). The recipients of these awards must excel in the field of journalism and mass communication, demonstrate financial need and have a minimum grade point average of 2.5. The students also must write an essay to be considered for the scholarship.
"Each of these students has shown the aptitude and excellent attitude necessary to succeed in the field of communication," said Dr. Conne Reece, a professor in the Communication Department. "We are proud of them and know they will benefit from the recognition they are receiving through these awards."
In addition to the student awards, John Vitale, Class of 2013, was presented with the Outstanding Communication Graduate Award. Vitale is the Assistant Director of Alumni Engagement at LHU. He spoke on how he approached and overcame failure.
"As a first-generation, non-traditional college student, Lock Haven University helped changed my life," Vitale said. "The admiration of my former professors who have honored me with this distinction means the world to me."
"John seized every opportunity and challenge that came his way while at LHU, and he continues to employ that philosophy to this day," said Dr. Matt Girton, chair of the Department of Communication at LHU. "He remains a champion of the program and the university. We could not ask for a better ambassador."
"As a communication professional, your job is to tell stories; stories that provoke thought and inspire action," Vitale said. "I hope my story, marred with countless failures that served as a motivational springboard for professional successes, resonated with the students who attended the ceremony - because no matter their professional goals, the ability to persevere through tough times and communicate effectively to unite people toward a common purpose are universal skills that will facilitate their success in any endeavor."
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