More than 300 members of the campus community gathered on the UC lawn for the awards ceremony.
More than 300 students, parents, staff and faculty gathered on the lawn in front of the University Center on a brisk spring afternoon to honor the contributions made by several students to enhance the Lehigh community.
The 24th Annual Student Life Leadership Awards—held for the second year in an open and inclusive outdoor ceremony—recognized extraordinary contributions to student life in the areas of diversity, community service and volunteerism, Greek life, peer education, student programs and activities, leadership, character, and academics and athletics.
A reception on Memorial Walkway followed the event.
Jess Manno, assistant dean of Student Leadership Development, opened the ceremony by noting that the campus community was gathering to “recognize and celebrate the achievements of Lehigh’s finest students: those students who have devoted their time and energy into shaping the Lehigh Community. We recognize these students first and foremost as a measure of thanks and to preserve their works for posterity, but also so that their hard work can serve as an inspiration to future students.”
Added Tom Dubreuil, associate dean of Campus Living and Student Conduct: “Just as Lehigh leaves an impression on you, you leave your impression on Lehigh.”
Vice Provost of Student Affairs John Smeaton drew upon former president Theodore Roosevelt’s definition of leadership when lauding the accomplishments of two recipients of the prestigious Bosey Reiter Leadership Cup—Robert Buckheit and Lisa Sweeney.
He cited the characteristics of “resolution, courage, energy, power of self-control, combined with fearlessness in taking the initiative and assuming responsibility; a just regard for the rights of others, together with the unflinching determination to succeed, no matter what obstacles and barriers have to be beaten down.”
Moreover, he added, “the one quality to often wholly lacking in people of high intellectual ability….the fundamental gift of common sense.”
The University Service Award was presented to three seniors this year—Ashley Pritchard, Michelle Harris, and Class of 2009 President Scott Wojciechowski—by Lehigh President Alice P. Gast, who cited the students’ unselfish devotion to Lehigh.
Jess Manno, who led the ceremony, with John McKnight, director of the Office of Multicultural Affairs.
The annual ceremony—which is nearing the quarter century mark—was revamped two years ago to contribute to a sense of unity and pride on campus, and to raise the profile of the exemplary work done by students at Lehigh, according to Dean of Students Sharon Basso.
"We felt that it was important for students to appreciate the accomplishments of their peers,” Basso said. “There are so many student groups and individuals who are doing incredible things to impact the culture of the university. Awards that recognize service, leadership and character honor those contributions.”
Student Life Leadership Awards Celebration recipients included the following:
Contribution to Student Life Awards
Student Life Leadership Awards
Service Above Self Award
Lehigh women’s basketball team
Residence Hall Association Character Award
Student Club/Organization of the Year Award
Engineers Without Borders
Student Club/Organization Advisor of the Year Award
Karen Hicks, Advisor for Microfinance Club
Student Senate Leadership Award
Outstanding Educational Programming Award
“The Vagina Monologues”
Excellence in Entertainment Programming Award
Exemplary Cultural Programming Award
Alumni Association Undergraduate Merit Award
Alumni Association Graduate Merit Award
Graduate Student Life Award
Bosey Reiter Leadership Cup
University Service Award
Highlighted awards from additional University recognition ceremonies include the following:
GREEK AWARDS BANQUET
Emerging Greek Leader Award
Greek Life Leadership Award
Alpha Omicron Pi.
Outstanding Greek Man and Woman of the Year Award
HONORS CONVOCATION AWARDS
Class of 1904 Award
WOMEN’S RECOGNITION AWARDS
Undergraduate Leadership Award
Student Male Ally Award
LGBTQIA RECOGNITION AWARDS
Lehigh University Gay and Lesbian Alumni Award for Continued Service
Exemplary Leadership Award
Model Ally Award
MULTICULTURAL AFFAIRS AWARDS
Ralph Albert Thomas '76 Leadership Award
Student Organization of the Year
Brown & Black Student Newspaper
Chinese Students Scholars Association
VOLUNTEER RECOGNITION AWARDS
Brian J. Lime Award
Vice Provost Award for Service