Inside Rensselaer
Volume 7, No. 10, May 24, 2013

Division of Student Life Presents CLASS Awards

In 2009, the Division of Student Life launched the Clustered Learning, Advocacy, and Support for Students (CLASS) initiative that is designed to provide support and co-curricular opportunities for students throughout their undergraduate years. Through CLASS, students are connected to a network of faculty, staff, and other students who lend support and guidance and help to build a strong community of learners as they strive to become the leaders of tomorrow.

As Rensselaer prepared to celebrate the Institute’s 207th Commencement ceremony, the Division of Student Life carved out time to honor several graduating seniors as the first recipients of the newly created CLASS Awards. The students were recognized for their achievements during the annual Zero Year Reunion Brunch that was held on May 23.

Division of Student Life Presents CLASS Awards


Personal/Self Development
These students are self-motivated problem-solvers who are also active members of the Rensselaer community. They were able to explore and appreciate the values of others by defining their own personal strengths and ethical values. These students have been able to identify the steps to achieving their goals while encouraging others to reach their highest potential. The award was presented to Christopher Newhard, a biochemistry and biophysics major; and Shawn Nelson, a chemistry major.

Professional Development
This student has achieved high honors in his/her chosen field of study. She/he actively sought out opportunities for professional development through multiple pathways offered at Rensselaer. Through participation in undergraduate research, studying abroad, internship(s), co-op, and/or national fellowship/scholarship opportunities, this student was able to connect her/his talents and skills in unique ways with the goal of pursuing post-graduate work and/or career opportunities in their chosen field. The award was presented to John Miner, a civil engineering major who will also receive his master’s in environmental engineering.

Leadership Development
These students have engaged in experiences that have broadened their capacity for leadership. Through purposeful learning and focus, they developed their leadership capacity while demonstrating leadership qualities for the benefit of the university. The award was presented to Nikki Gallant, a chemical engineering major; Nick Timakondu, a computer and systems engineering major; and Rebecca Exley, an architecture major.

Cultural Development
In recognizing the synergy between science, technology, and the arts, this student embraces the arts both personally and academically. Being an active participant in artistic performances, exhibits, and forums, this student gained a better understanding of how to use art as a tool for personal, public, and professional expression in media. The award was presented Howard Lien, who graduated in December 2012 with a B.S. in Business and Management.

These students were involved citizens over the past four years at Rensselaer. They contributed to and enriched the environment and culture of the university. In bringing diverse groups of individuals together with intersecting values, interests, and goals, they have connected others in ways that benefit the world at large. The award was presented to Andrew Chung, a mechanical engineering and Design, Innovation, and Society major; and Brian Nock, a civil engineering major.

Having developed a greater sense of responsibility for others, this student has taken strides to improve the various Rensselaer connected communities whether they are local, statewide, national, or international. He/she has demonstrated multicultural sophistication, participated in civic matters, and helped to create and/or improve partnerships between Rensselaer and its communities. The award was presented to Corey Marshall, a mechanical and aeronautical engineering major.

The CLASS Award
These graduating seniors have grown significantly through their engagement in all six growth areas of CLASS: Personal, Professional and Leadership Development, Culture, Community and Communiversity. As a result of their work, the university has benefitted tremendously. The award was presented to Jon Stack, an aeronautical engineering and economics major; and Michael Villardi, an architecture and philosophy major.

* * *
* *
Inside Rensselaer
Volume 7, Number 10, May 24, 2013
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
Return to front
Front Page
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute | About RPI | Virtual Campus Tour | Academics | Research | Student Life | Admissions | News & Events