Alfred University News

Alfred University AKO chapter announces 2024 leadership awards

The Sisters of Alpha Kappa Omicron announce two current students have been named as winners of the 2024 AKO Leadership Awards. The awards, given in consultation with the Judson Leadership Center, have been strategically established to perpetually award two Alfred University students each year through generous support from numerous donors from the sisterhood.

Alyssa DiMillo, a junior business administration major from Syracuse, NY, with minors in marketing, sport management, coaching, and leadership, is the winner of the 2022 AKO Social Change Leadership Award. Jane Heffernan, a sophomore ceramic engineering major from Buffalo, NY, is the recipient of the 2022 AKO Achievement Award. Alyssa and Jane will each be awarded an honorarium.

The AKO Social Change Leadership Award is given to a junior woman who has demonstrated superior efforts in creating change-for-the-good for the Alfred University community. An emphasis is placed on active, authentic service-based leadership which creates sustainable change.

“I am extremely honored and blessed to have received the AKO Social Change Award this spring,” Alyssa commented. “My leadership journey through sports at AU has been a difficult one, but I’m glad that I’ve been able to have a positive effect on the community that gave me a chance to compete at the college level.”

Alyssa works for admissions as a student ambassador. She is a captain on the women’s basketball team, treasurer for Alfred Marketing Association and Student-Athlete Advisory Committee, and vice president of the Alfred University chapter of Omicron Delta Kappa.  Alyssa has participated in many programs through the Judson Leadership Center, including the Women’s Leadership Academy, Alfred’s Newest Talent, and LEAD Athletic.

The AKO Achievement Award is given to a sophomore woman who has demonstrated excellence in personal academic leadership and honors the high standards of scholastic performance. 

“In my time at Alfred University, I have tried to throw myself at every opportunity that comes my way,” Jane said. “I have always been passionate about learning; Alfred has given me the space to explore both my academic and creative interests. From delving into research on 3D printing to learning how to crochet mathematical concepts, I have been able to get my hands dirty in the pursuit of a greater understanding of my field of study and the world around me.”

Jane is a member of Material Advantage, the Society of Women Engineers, and Guiding Eyes for the Blind. She has also taken advantage of global learning opportunities, participating in a winter term study abroad program in Germany and planning to study abroad in France spring 2025.