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2017 Student of the Year Winners

 

Technical Category Winner - Paige Laughlin
Penn State University

Penn State student, Paige Laughlin, received the 2017 Pennsylvania Association of Colleges and Employers (PennACE) JoAnne Day Student of the Year Award (SOTY) in the technical category for her experience with the Malaria Vaccine Branch at the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research (WRAIR) in Silver Spring, MD.

Paige earned this award through her outstanding work with WRAIR conducting research on the malaria vaccine. She received special training and shadowed experts prior to performing over 1,000 tests on mice and monkey samples. Her research formed the basis of an FDA application requesting permission to test the vaccine on humans. The results from this study have been published in at least one manuscript for the journal Vaccine and another is awaiting review. Paige’s experiences with WRAIR have given her more confidence in the research lab back at Penn State and have put her at ease when she thinks about her pending graduation. 

Liberal Arts Category Winners  - Emily Parker 
Juniata College 

Juniata College student, Emily Parker, received the 2017 PennACE JoAnne Day Student of the Year Award (SOTY) in the Liberal Arts category for her communications internship at Pachaysana Institute in Quito and Amazonia, Ecuador.

Emily earned this award through her outstanding work with Pachaysana Institute and their partner company UDAPT. UDAPT is the Union of People Affected by Texaco/Chevron, an Ecuadorian environmental justice and indigenous rights NGO.  She also coordinated an eight-day trip to Pañacocha and spent three days interpreting for a UNC Asheville learning tour.

Over the course of this internship, Emily used her bilingual skills to translate documents and organize small activities within the office, translate and help facilitate the trip with other partner universities in the US, and led an expedition by bus, taxi, and canoe to an Amazon village in preparation for a research project.
 

Business Category Winner - Makenna Kuntz
Clarion University 

Clarion Business student, Makenna Kuntz, received the 2017 PennACE JoAnne Day Student of the Year Award (SOTY) in the business category for her HR internship experience at rue21. This is the first year a Clarion University student received this honor.

Makenna earned this award through her outstanding work with rue21 in their HR department. Her responsibilities included coordinating events, collaborating with other teams and working on some of the company’s charity efforts. She was able to not only meet, but also exceed the goals and expectations set for her in each of these projects.

Some of the events that she coordinated include Meals on Wheels, volunteering with the Butler Humane Society, and rueRelief’s silent auction. Makenna demonstrated her strong work ethic, intelligence, passion and enthusiasm to stand out among her co-workers and peers. 


Associate’s Category Winner - Katelyn Fyock-Myers
Clarion University

Clarion student, Katelyn Fyock-Myers, received the 2017 Pennsylvania Association of Colleges and Employers (PennACE) JoAnne Day Student of the Year Award (SOTY) in the associates category for her experience as a student respiratory therapist for Allegheny Health Network (AHN) in Pittsburgh, PA. This is the first year a Clarion University Venango student received this honor.

Katelyn earned this award through her outstanding work in her clinical rotation at Western Pennsylvania Hospital in respiratory care. Some of her roles included conducting bedside assessment rounds, participating in the resuscitation, and performing physician rounds. 

The roles and duties that Katelyn fulfilled reflect what she learned in the classroom and her desire to expand on that knowledge. This experience helped her showcase her motivation, self-direction, and strong work ethic. Internship advisor, Charlotte Fenn, says that “if all students would demonstrate the characteristics that are displayed by Katelyn, the respiratory care profession would have unlimited possibilities for growth!”