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2019 Commencement

Manchester University celebrates student leaders

NORTH MANCHESTER, Ind. – Manchester University offers rich experiences where students grow, lead and make a real difference. This spring, the undergraduate Student Experience Leadership Banquet celebrated determined leaders who have demonstrated compassion, dedication and caring.

The Outstanding Senior Leadership Award recognizes graduating seniors who contributed significantly to the quality of campus life throughout their years at Manchester.

The award signifies that they have been a model of citizenship – displaying balance between personal qualities, leadership in campus activities, service and academic success.

The 2018-19 winners are:

* Connor Eichenauer, a psychology major from North Manchester, Ind.
* Darlene Melvin, a communication studies and digital media major from La Fontaine, Ind.

The Office of Religious Life presents the Faith in Action Award to a student who has contributed in significant ways to Religious Life and Campus Ministry programs. It is given to a student who has put their faith into action on campus and in the larger community in tangible ways.

The recipient is Nolan McBride of Elkhart, Ind.  Graduating in May, he was a religious studies major with concentrations in social justice and history. He also had a minor in peace studies. He is spending the summer traveling to Church of the Brethren camps across the nation as its youth peace advocate.  

The Rising Student Leader of the Year, Evan Harris, distinguished himself as an outstanding leader. The award signifies that he has been a model of citizenship while demonstrating creativity and energy that has broadly benefited student life at Manchester University.

He is an English writing major from Fort Wayne, Ind.

Volunteer Service Awards

Volunteer of the Year – The Advocate: The recipient is Mikki Goetz, an accounting and finance major from Highland, Ind., who graduated in May.

The Center for Service Opportunities (CSO) presents this award to a student who has brought mission to others within the Manchester community while creating awareness of a need or cause. 

Volunteer of the Year – The Volunteer: Kaitlin Lizik, an exercise science and fitness major from Brookfield, Ind., is the 2018-19 recipient.

CSO presents this award to a student who is able to see an organization’s areas of assistance or need. Lizik volunteer willingly and freely gave of her time, talent and passion, showing flexibility, compassion and excitement – no matter the job at hand.

Volunteer of the Year-The Giver: Cheyenne Heath, an educational studies major with a minor in psychology from Liberty, Ind., has embraced the world of philanthropy and its many dimensions of engagement.  She developed plans for execution and engagement for organizations in the community.

Multicultural Awards

Anthea AyebazeThe Luminescence Award is the highest award a student can receive from the Office of Multicultural Affairs (OMA). Anthea Ayebaze, a biology-chemistry major with a minor in psychology, is this year’s recipient. She is from Kampala, Uganda, and graduated in May.

Luminescence, by definition, is the emission of light as a result of the excitation of atoms of energy other than heat.  Those receiving this award demonstrate the highest moral and ethical character, coupled with demonstrated academic achievement and community involvement. Recipients are honored by having their names engraved on a plaque in the Jean Childs Young Intercultural Center.

The Emerging Light Award distinguishes a first-year student or sophomore who is lighting the Manchester University community on fire with energy, drive and passion. This award also recognizes the essence and the potential of making a lasting impression on faculty, staff and fellow students in diversity efforts.

* Omar Gadzhiev, a political science major from Arcata, Calif.
* Kimberly Khavayi, a political science major from Nairobi, Kenya

The Scholastic Achievement Award is earned by students associated with the OMA who have achieved a grade point average of at least a 3.50 after seven semesters and have made significant contributions to the multicultural community. All three winners graduated in May.

* Susuyu Lassa, a political science major from Jos, Nigeria
* Anthea Ayebaze, a biology-chemistry major from Kampala, Uganda
* Zoe Vorndran, a history and English major from Fort Wayne, Ind.

Student Government Association Awards

Organization of the Year:  Manchester Activities Council
Program of the Year:  Empty Bowls fundraiser for the Manchester Fellowship of Churches’ Food Pantry
Member of the Year: Chris Francois, a peace studies major with a minor in French from Port-au-Prince, Haiti 
Advisors of the Year:
Sam Alley, MU director of student involvement and leadership development. She is a 2011 Manchester graduate.
Bekah Houff, campus pastor

Residential Life Awards

Service to Residence Hall Association: Kaleigh Lane, an exercise science major from Fowler, Ind.
Hall of the Year: Oakwood Hall
Hall Council of the Year: East Hall
Hall Director of the Year: Amy DiNovo served as director in Helman and Schwalm halls.
Resident Assistant of the Year: Lucas Villapando graduated in May with a major in history. He is from Demotte, Ind., and worked in Oakwood Hall.

About Manchester University

Manchester University, with campuses in North Manchester and Fort Wayne, Ind., offers more than 70 areas of academic study to more than 1,400 students in undergraduate programs,a Master of Accountancy, a Master of Science in pharmacogenomics, a Master of Athletic Training a four-year professional Doctor of Pharmacy degree and a four-year dual degree in pharmacy and pharmacogenomics. Learn more about the private, northern Indiana school at www.manchester.edu . 

Our mission
Manchester University respects the infinite worth of every individual and graduates persons of ability and conviction who draw upon their education and faith to lead principled, productive, and compassionate lives that improve the human condition.

Press release prepared with assistance by Strategic Communications student worker Cici Vanderwall.

Top photo: TerraceUniq Johnson and Connor Eichenauer at 2019 Commencement.

July 2019