The Falk College Department of Human Development and Family Science would like to congratulate the following Class of 2022 award winners:
HDFS Undergraduate Student Awards
Bernice M. Wright Memorial Award: Julia N. Rizzo
This award is given to an outstanding undergraduate student in Human Development and Family Science given in memory of Bernice M. Wright, former Dean of the College for Human Development (1964-1973). The award criteria include GPA, co-curricular experiences related to the HDFS field, campus involvement, awards/recognitions received while at Syracuse University, research/scholarship activity, and leadership experience. Julia has shown remarkable achievement in each of these areas. She has shown strong academic excellence in the classroom, leadership in a variety of roles at the university, and has given back much to the community. Julia has been a Success Scholar, on the Dean’s list every semester, and will represent the college as a Falk Marshal this spring. She is a student leader who serves the current president of Kappa Omicron Nu, the HDFS Honor Society, in addition to being a Falk Ambassador and a Falk Peer Advisor. She also has served as a volunteer remote tutor for children during the pandemic in the Syracuse University schools and has worked as a research assistant in the Mind Body lab, helping to advance research on mindfulness interventions.
Elizabeth Manwell Memorial Award: Colleen J. Ahearn
This award is given to the outstanding senior student in Human Development and Family Science with the highest academic average in the major. Collen has been in the Dean’s list for every semester and received the HDFS Outstanding Junior Award in spring 2021, which is presented to an outstanding undergraduate student based on excellent GPA and faculty recommendation. Colleen received the Success Scholar merit scholarship, which recognizes students for their high achievement. She has volunteered as a Child Life Aide Student volunteer, served as a Transfer transition leader in Syracuse University, and provided supportive transition housing and professional services for unhoused women and children serving as an intern at Chadwick Residence. Her career goal is to become a Child Life Specialist.
Elizabeth L. Reid Memorial Award: Sarah Ellen Gerace
The award was established by the New York State Federation of Home Bureaus in honor of Elizabeth L. Reid, and presented to a student in either Human Development and Family Science or Nutrition Science and Dietetics. The award is based on scholarship and need. Sarah performs exceptionally well in the classroom and has been on the Dean’s List every semester. She is also currently in the honor society. Sarah plans to be a marriage and family therapist focusing on issues of sexuality and interpersonal relationships.
Ruth Tolley Award: Abby Berkowitz
This award honors Ruth Tolley from the Women of the University Community and presented to a woman who has demonstrated outstanding academic achievement. The award criteria include GPA, clearly stated career goals consistent with the HDFS field, and co-curricular experiences related to the HDFS field. Abby has been on the dean’s list every semester and is currently studying abroad in Spain. She intends to work in the area of human resources or in counseling when she graduates.
Selleck Award: Kirsten E. Waldron
This award is given to the senior student in Human Development and Family Science with the highest cumulative GPA. Kirsten has maintained the highest academic achievement as a HDFS major, while completing two minors, Child and Family Policy and Psychology. She has received the Success Scholar merit scholarship which recognizes students for their high achievement. Kirsten also has been in the Dean’s list for every semester. She has volunteered extensively by serving as a peer facilitator, Falk college peer advisor, and served as an intern at Make-A-Wish Central New York. Additionally, she has served as the Communications and Outreach chair for Kappa Omicron Nu, HDFS national honor society. She is interested in pursuing healthcare and social service careers.
Shannon Davis Memorial Award: Danielle Rebecca Rubenstein
This award is presented to an undergraduate senior student in Human Development and Family Science with a demonstrated interest in child development whose academic, aesthetic, and professional interests most closely embodies that of Shannon Davis, a student who died in the crash of Flight 103 in Scotland. The award criteria include GPA, co-curricular experiences related to child and family development, articulated career goals in the field of early childhood education or related setting, and career interest in providing services for young children. Danielle is a double major in neuroscience and HDFS. She has performed very well in the classroom and has been on the dean’s list every semester. During her time at the university, Danielle has worked extensively to prepare for her career goal of leading a mental health advocacy organization. She is currently the president of Active Minds, an organization that works to promote mental health advocacy and awareness events on campus. She has also volunteered extensively by working to directly support children with autism both in the US and in Israel.
Falk Marshal: Julia N. Rizzo
Senior Class Marshals have excelled during their time on campus and exemplify the spirit of the senior class. The selection committee assesses the nominees on scholarship, academic honors, student organization involvement, and campus/community service. Julia has excelled during her time on campus, in the Human Development and Family Science department as well as Falk college and exemplifies the spirit of the Falk senior class. She has shown extraordinary achievement in scholarship, academic honors, student organization involvement and campus and community service. She has also demonstrated strong academic excellence in the classroom, leadership in a variety of roles at the university, and has given back much to the community. She is a student leader who serves the current president of Kappa Omicron Nu, the HDFS Honor Society, in addition to being a Falk Ambassador and a Falk Peer Advisor.
HDFS Graduate Student Awards
Alice Sterling Honig Award: Xiaoyu Fu
The Alice Sterling Honig Award is presented to a graduate student who has demonstrated outstanding scholarship in child development and family studies. The award recognizes’ the legacy of Alice Sterling Honig, Professor Emerita in HDFS. This year’s recipient, Xiaoyu Fu has demonstrated outstanding scholarship in child development and family studies. She has 8 research papers published, under reviews, or in progress as the first, second, or third author.
HDFS Doctorate Award for Research Excellence: Staceyann Reid, Ph.D.
The HDFS Doctorate Award for Research Excellence is presented to a doctoral student who has excelled in academic achievement, research practice, and leadership activities. This student has also shown great potential for continued growth and contribution in the area of human development and family studies to the department, college and university. This year’s recipient, Staceyann Reid, was actively involved in several research projects that evaluated the benefits of mindfulness-based programs in schools for children and youth. Her work has been presented at eight conferences and resulted in 3 publications thus far. She is also certified play therapist and New York State Licensed Mental Health Counselor with a C.A.S. in trauma-informed practice. Stacey was instrumental in establishing the HDFS Graduate Student Group and served as the student representative for the HDFS Graduate Committee. She is currently a PRODiG Fellow in the Psychology Department at SUNY Oswego.
HDFS Master’s Award for Research Excellence: Abigail Picinich
This award is presented to a Master’s student who has excelled in academic achievement, research practice and leadership qualities. This student has also shown great potential for continued growth and contribution in the area of human and family studies to the department, college and university. This year’s recipient, Abigail Picinich has done extremely well in her coursework, and is committed to further graduate education and a career working with children. Her research has provided her with experience in working with multiple waves of secondary data and could make a contribution to the literature.
HDFS Outstanding Graduate Teaching Award: Corinne Blake
This department award is presented to a graduate demonstrating a strong commitment to teaching and learning. This student will have demonstrated exceptional skills and competence in assisting the Human Development and Family Science faculty with undergraduate education. This year’s recipient, Corinne Blake, has demonstrated excellence in teaching as both a teaching assistant and as an independent instructor in the department. Faculty and students have recognized Corinne’s commitment to students and her leadership in the classroom.
All-University Doctoral Prize: Ying Zhang, Ph.D.
Awarded annually to doctoral students in each of Syracuse University’s 11 schools and colleges who have demonstrated originality, contribution to the field, creativity, methodology, soundness, and quality of writing in their dissertation. This year’s recipient, Ying Zhang, uses rigorous statistical methodologies to study the longitudinal associations between early life context (e.g., interparental violence, maternal mental health, poverty) and the development of cognitive, social, and emotional functioning from early childhood to adolescence. Her dissertation included secondary data analyses of children in families with intimate partner violence, with a focus on the developmental trajectories and longitudinal mediation effects of behavioral self-regulation of risky behaviors in adolescents. Ying is currently an assistant professor of Psychology at Clarkson University.
All Graduate School Outstanding TA Award: Caitlin Smith
This award recognizes Teaching Assistants who have made distinguished contributions to Syracuse University by demonstrating excellence in significant instructional capacities, such as classroom teaching, laboratory or studio instruction, leading recitation or discussion sections, or assisting senior faculty members with high-enrollment courses. TAs are nominated by their departments and must present a teaching portfolio for review by a university-wide faculty selection committee. Caitlin has excelled as both a teaching assistant and an independent instructor in our department. Caitlin stands out as a perceptive and effective educator. She demonstrates a strong teaching presence in the classroom and consistently received positive student and faculty reviews, both as a TA in for the two courses that she taught independently. Caitlin is determined to get to know her students and their needs; she invests significant time and effort in workshops to learn how to engage and support student learning and wellness.
Graduate Dean’s Award for Excellence in Research and Creative Work: Xiaoyan Zhang
This award recognizes students across the university who have made outstanding accomplishments in research and creative work, as well as the quality and impact of their work. Xiaoyan Zhang (Ph.D., Human Development and Family Science) was selected as one of nine students who presented their research on March 25, 2022. Graduate Dean’s Award Recipients Announced | Syracuse University News
2022 Graduate School Marshal: Ying Zhang, Ph.D.
This award recognizes students across the university who have made outstanding accomplishments in research and creative work, as well as the quality and impact of their work. Ying Zhang, Assistant Professor of Psychology at Clarkson University (Ph.D., Human Development and Family Science), received this honor reserved for an outstanding doctoral student who will represent the doctoral degree recipients of 2022 at the Ph.D. hooding ceremony and the University’s Commencement ceremony in May.