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April 2009

Release Date: April 30, 2009ASU Logo

ASU Presidential Award, Distinguished Student Awards Announced for 2009

Jason Layne Strickland has been named recipient of Angelo State University’s 2009 Presidential Award while five other ASU undergraduate students have been selected for 2009 Distinguished Student Awards from their respective colleges.

Strickland, of Seminole, will be recognized at ASU’s May 16 commencement exercises along with the five Distinguished Student Award honorees representing each ASU college. The Distinguished Student Award recipients are: Scott Henrich, College of Business; Jessica Nichols, College of Education; Erin Marie Marks, College of Liberal and Fine Arts; Kali Gerber, College of Nursing and Allied Health; and Jennifer Kathleen Hendryx, College of Sciences. Other nominees were Jared Bird, Massooma Pirbhai and Weldon “Seth” Stell from the College of Sciences and Teresa Strickland from the College of Nursing and Allied Health.

ASU’s Academic Excellence Committee will host a public reception at 1:30 p.m. Monday, May 4, in the Eldon Black Recital Hall in the Carr Education-Fine Arts Building to honor the nominees and recipients. ASU President Joseph C. Rallo will present plaques to each recipient and nominee.

A biology major and chemistry minor, Strickland was nominated by the Department of Biology. He is the recipient of numerous scholarships, including the Carr Academic Scholarship, Carr Honors Scholarship, Alvin and Patricia New Honors Scholarship and Special Academic Scholarship for Biology. Strickland will graduate with Highest University Honors. His academic accomplishments include induction into the Alpha Chi National Honor Society and the Beta Beta Beta (Tri-Beta) Biological Honor Society.

Strickland has held numerous leadership positions, including president and secretary of the ASU Tri-Beta chapter and president, secretary and parliamentarian of the regional Tri-Beta chapter. A recipient of a Carr Research Scholarship and two external grants, he presented his research findings at meetings of Tri-Beta, the National Collegiate Honors Council, the Southwestern Association of Naturalists and the Texas Academy of Science. He won first place for oral presentation at the 2009 Texas Academy of Science Conference and third place for oral presentation at the 2008 Tri-Beta Regional Conference.

Strickland’s strong record of extracurricular and community service activities earned him selection to Who’s Who Among American Universities and Colleges. He was involved with the Honors Student Association and Residence Hall Association on campus as well as the YMCA and Rebuilding Together in the community. He has been accepted to several graduate programs in the biological sciences and plans to pursue a doctoral degree in preparation for a career in university teaching and research.

A native of Mason, Henrich was nominated by the Department of Accounting, Economics and Finance. An accounting major, Henrich earned selection to Who’s Who Among American Universities and Colleges and honorary membership in the Texas Society of Certified Public Accountants. He has accepted a position as staff auditor with the RSM McGladrey accounting firm in Dallas.

Nichols, of San Angelo, was nominated by the Department of Teacher Education. A recipient of the Carr Academic Scholarship and the RAO/Hutchinson Scholarship, she earned induction into the Alpha Chi National Honor Society and Kappa Delta Pi International Honor Society for Education. She served as vice president of Baptist Student Ministries and as a tutor in the Success by 6 program and participated in intramural soccer and volleyball. She studied in Luneburg, Germany, through the ASU Study Abroad Program and spent a summer teaching in Southeast Asia. She also presented a paper at the National Association for the Education of Young Children. Nichols plans to pursue a career as an elementary school teacher either in Texas or overseas.

Marks, nominated by the Department of English, is an English major and kinesiology/journalism minor from Midland. She received the Berchman T. Carville Academic Scholarship and Lucille P. Gragg Scholarship from the Department of English and earned induction into the Alpha Lambda Delta Freshman Honor Society, Sigma Tau Delta English Honor Society, Alpha Mu Gamma Modern Language Honor Society and Kappa Delta Pi Education Honor Society. She was also named Who’s Who Among American Universities and Colleges. Marks served as vice president of Sigma Tau Delta, features co-editor for the Ram Page and assistant literary editor for the Oasis magazine. She also worked as a peer tutor in the ASU Writing Center and co-presented a paper at the Texas Council of Teachers of English Conference. She will enter ASU’s English M.A. program and plans to pursue a career in university teaching while also writing feature articles and poetry.

Gerber, nominated by the Department of Nursing, received her associate degree in nursing from ASU in 2008 and is a student in the Bachelor of Science in Nursing (B.S.N.) program. A native of Hereford, she received a Carr Academic Scholarship and the San Angelo Community Medical Center Auxiliary Scholarship. She was also inducted into the National Scholars Honor Society. An active member of the Student Nurses Association, Gerber was an officer for the Newman Center and participated in the Helping One Student to Succeed program. Her campus activities included intramural flag football, basketball and softball. In the community, she participated in the San Jacinto School Health Clinic’s community health project, the American Cancer Society and Healthy Families San Angelo. She is employed in the Intensive Care Unit at Shannon Medical Center and plans to pursue graduate studies at Texas Wesleyan University in preparation for a career as a nurse anesthetist.

Nominated by the Department of Physics, Hendryx is a physics major and chemistry/mathematics minor from Alpine. She received a Carr Academic Scholarship, Carr Honors Scholarship, Special Academic Scholarship in Physics, the Kailas and Becky Rao Scholarship and the Mr. and Mrs. T. Alexander Scholarship. She was inducted into the Alpha Chi National Honor Society, Sigma Pi Sigma Physics Honor Society, Pi Mu Epsilon Mathematics Honor Society and the American Physical Society. She served as vice president for Sigma Pi Sigma and as a member of the National Council of the Society of Physics Students. Also a Carr Research Fellow, Hendryx spent summers as a student researcher at the Los Alamos National Laboratory and the Princeton Plasma Physics Lab. She presented her research at meetings of the Texas Section of the Society of Physics Students and the Texas Section of the American Physical Society Division of Plasma Physics. She will enter the doctoral program at the University of Arizona’s College of Optical Sciences in preparation for a career in university teaching or industry.

Bird was nominated by the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry. He is a biochemistry major and biology minor from Ozona.

Pirbhai, nominated by the Department of Mathematics, is a mathematics major and physics minor from the island of Mauritius.

Stell was nominated by the Department of Computer Science. He is a computer science major and mathematics minor from Odessa.

Teresa Strickland, nominated by the Department of Nursing, is a B.S.N. student from Abilene.