Alfred University News

Students, clubs, staff recognized at Alfred University Student Leadership Dinner

Several Alfred University students, clubs and staff were recognized for outstanding contributions to the campus at the annual spring Student Leadership Dinner.

ALFRED, NY – Several Alfred University students, clubs and staff were recognized for outstanding contributions to the campus at the annual spring Student Leadership Dinner on April 23.  Honored groups included club and organization presidents, orientation guides, student-athletes, Alpha Kappa Omicron award winners, Women’s Leadership Academy graduates, resident assistants, and Marlin Miller Outstanding Senior nominees.

Gustavo Galvan, who earned a B.F.A. degree from Alfred University in 2010, was the keynote speaker. Galvan is the owner of Galvan Event Design, a New York City company that focuses on making memorable experiences for clients and their guests in the Tri-State area and abroad. Galvan Event Design has designed and created events for a number of big name clients and has had influence over 5,000 guests at events for Macy's Inc., Rakuten Marketing, New Yorkers for Parks, Snug Harbor Cultural Center, Ounce Water, Staten Island Museum and The College of Staten Island.

Student Senate President Bradley Keough, a sophomore physics major from Horseheads, NY, announced the Student Senate awards. Halloween Fest won the Program of the Year, with senior Dillon Smith, a criminal justice/experimental psychology major (sociology/public law minor) from Pine Bush, NY, and sophomore Austin Aiken ’21 (academic exploration) from Cincinnatus, NY, sharing the honors. Caribbean Student Association won the Best Collaborator award, and the Forest People was honored for Best Use of Student Senate Funds. 

The Alpha Kappa Omicron (AKO) Achievement Award is given to an Alfred University woman who has demonstrated excellence in personal academic leadership. Shannon Mendola, a sophomore business administration major from Tonawanda, NY, received the AKO Achievement Award. Junior Amber Smith, a glass engineering science major from Penfield, NY, received the AKO Social Change Leadership Award.

The award for Outstanding Campus Contribution by a First-Year Student, given by Tricia Debertolis, associate dean of students, went to Jenevieve Huta, a first-year bioengineering major from Delmar, NY.


Director of Residence Life Victoria Gebel announced sophomore Desean Fortune, business administration major from Altamont, NY, as Rookie of the Year, and Kyle Full, sophomore psychology major from Blauvelt, NY, as Resident Assistant of the Year.

Kathy Woughter, vice president for Student Affairs, and Norm Pollard, Dean of Students, awarded their annual Saxon Six Awards to seniors who were chosen for their overall campus impact and leadership throughout their years at AU. The students recognized were Kyle Silberstein, glass engineering science major from Wexford, PA; Ashlee Wilmier, material science and engineering/business administration major from Hamlin, NY; Gabrielle Warren, psychology major (equestrian studies minor) from South Deerfield, MA; Elisabeth Estep, biology major (chemistry/Spanish minor) from Horseheads, NY; Keshawn LaPlante, chemistry major (biology minor) from Andover, NY; Seth Steele, ceramic engineering major from Crossville, TN; and Liam Saccucci-Bryan, biomaterials engineering major from Mount Tremper, NY.

Recognition was also given to Student Affairs division award winners.  Paul Vecchio, athletic director, and Jason Milburn, executive chef for AU Fresh, shared the Positive Thinker award.  Mary Therese Sick, executive assistant to the vice president for Student Affairs, earned the Unsung Hero award. Corey Fecteau, art career advisor and service learning coordinator, Robert R. McComsey Career Development Center, shared the Christine P. Kulp Team Player Award with Jessica Hurlbut, head athletic trainer. The Student Affairs’ Student Staff Member of the Year went to Jenepher Estrella, senior psychology/biology major from Clifton, NJ. She was nominated for her work in Athletics. The Program of the Year went to Athletics and Wellness Center collaborations. 

Pollard closed the program with thoughts about leadership after being honored for his upcoming retirement and 28 years of service to Alfred University.

Saxon Six Award winners were among those honored at the 2019 spring Student Leadership Dinner and are pictured above with Dean of Students Norm Pollard (left) and Kathy Woughter, vice president of Student Affairs (right). Award winners are, from left: Ashlee Wilmier, Kyle Silberstein, Seth Steele, Keshawn LaPlante, Liam Saccucci-Bryan, Elisabeth Estep and Gabrielle Warren.