AU Press Releases

Tobin receives Miller Outstanding Senior Award

Emily Tobin of Penfield, NY, will receive one of Alfred University’s highest honors, the Marlin Miller Outstanding Senior Award, to be presented at Alfred University’s annual Honors Convocation April 23.

Each recipient – one man and one woman -- will receive a $5,000 check and a handcrafted tile to commemorate the award. They will also speak at Alfred University’s commencement May 15.

Tobin was chosen for the honor by a campus-wide committee on the basis of her scholarship, extra-curricular leadership and personal character. Faculty, staff and students may nominate candidates for the award.

“We once again had an exceptional field of candidates for the Marlin Miller Outstanding Senior Awards,” said Kathy Woughter, vice president for Student Affairs. “I continue to be impressed with our students, and recognize how fortunate we are to have such incredible students – they’re bright, engaged, and totally committed to making the most of their Alfred University experience.”

“Throughout the last four years, I have developed as a woman, leader, friend, confidant, peer, and student,” said Tobin. “I possess a skill set that will allow me to succeed now and in the future thanks to my experience at Alfred University.”

“Alfred University means the world to me,” said Tobin. “I have poured my heart and soul into this University over the past four years. The day I graduate will only be the beginning of a new relationship with Alfred. I will miss the day-to-day interactions I have with so many people here, but I certainly will always have lasting memories and relationships. Alfred has a certain uniqueness about it, which only people here in this tight-knit community understand. If I had not come to Alfred for my undergraduate degree, I know for sure that I would not have had the successes and determination I am leaving with. I feel privileged and fortunate that I was I was able to experience Alfred, and hope that one day I can give back to this University for all it has given to me.”

“Emily Tobin exemplifies the best of Alfred students,” wrote Julia Overton-Healy, director of the Women’s Leadership Center, in nominating Tobin for the award. “In addition to her marvelous AU engagement, she is a stand-out academic achiever. She is unfailingly polite, hard-working and ever-ready with fresh ideas. Emily is AU… she is exactly what we want our students to become: innovative and dedicated individuals who find a mission for their lives and pursue it with passion.”

Sociology Professor Karen Porter, who selected Tobin to be her peer leader for her First Year Experience class, has also taught Tobin and advised her in a research project that will lead to her presenting a poster at the Council of Undergraduate Research “Poster on the Hill” session in Washington, DC, this month.

Tobin, who will graduate with majors in sociology and psychology and a minor in coaching, enrolled at Alfred intending to become a high school guidance counselor. Her work at AU as a First Year Experience peer leader, as retention program assistant, as a peer advising intern, and member of the Residence Life staff convinced her future lies in the area of college student personnel administration; she has enrolled in a master’s degree program in that field at Canisius College for the fall.

Tobin has been an award-winning member and captain of the women’s lacrosse team, a member and president of the Student Athlete Advisory Committee, and a student athlete mentor. Through her initiative, the University created a new Saxon athletics logo and revamped its athletics Web site, an effort that earned Tobin an honorable mention in the 2009 Richard V. Bergren Student Innovation Awards competition.

She earned the Saxon Six Award bestowed upon a select group of outstanding seniors, and was selected to participate in Alfred’s Newest Talent leadership initiative as a first-year student.

She is a member of Omicron Delta Kappa, the national leadership honor society; Psi Chi, the national psychology honor society; and Pi Gamma Mu, the national honor society for social sciences.
A graduate of Penfield High School, Tobin is the daughter of Robert and Patricia Tobin of Penfield.

Along with a hand-crafted tile made by Wayne Higby, an internationally acclaimed artist and professor of ceramic art in the School of Art & Design at AU, Tobin will receive $5,000 in cash, thanks to an endowment created by Robert L. McNeil Jr. of Wyndmoor, PA, a friend and business colleague of Marlin Miller, who is a 1954 alumnus of Alfred University as well as a member and former chairman of the Board of Trustees.

While Alfred University has for many years presented outstanding senior awards to the man and woman in each class selected by a campus-wide committee, in 2004 the awards were named in honor of Miller.