Seniors recognized at Baccalaureate and Honors Convocation

May 19, 2012

Members of the Class of 2012 were honored May 18 with academic, activity and leadership awards at the Baccalaureate and Senior Honors Convocation.

On the eve of their graduation from McDaniel College, students, family and members of the college community gathered in the Gill Center where this year’s faculty speaker, ¬¬Dr. Francis “Skip” Fennell, spoke about McDaniel’s First Principles and the college’s new mission statement and how they relate to the class of 2012.

Thomas Nelson, a French and Political Science major from Reading, Mass., was awarded the Bates Prize for the most outstanding male graduating senior. Fellow senior Sara Krome, an English major from Union Bridge, Md., was awarded the Mary Ward Lewis Prize for the most outstanding female graduating senior.

While at McDaniel, Nelson, a Cum Laude graduate, was the governor of the Maryland Student Legislature, co-head of the McDaniel Model U.N. delegation and participated in the Model European Union and North Africa Conferences. Fluent in French, he also studied in Brussels at Facultés Universitaires Saint-Louis. After graduation, Nelson will take another step toward his goal of joining the U.S. Foreign Service when he heads to Tunisia to study Arabic on a prestigious State Department Critical Language Scholarship. Afterwards, he will teach English in France at the Académie of Lille, and then live and work in D.C. to pursue graduate school.

Recently, Krome, who graduated Summa Cum Laude, wrote the application that won McDaniel’s Alpha Phi Omega service fraternity the Excellence in Service Student Group Award. She is also an avid volunteer who logs about 400 hours a year. She participated on the First Year Council Executive Board, as a Student Ambassador for Admissions and guide for the Parent Preview Program, and a research assistant in the English department. She was one of three recipients of the Griswold–Zepp Award in Volunteerism in 2010 and has been involved with the Contrast Literary Magazine and Outdoors Club. This summer, Krome starts her job as the Assistant Administrative Director of the Student Academic Enrichment Program at McDaniel while beginning a graduate program in Professional Writing at Towson University. She will continue writing and social media work for a PR, marketing, and event planning boutique firm in Frederick, Md.

Gregory Bowman and Rachel Walega were recognized as this year’s top athletes and awarded the John A. Alexander Medal and the Faith Millard Medal, respectively.

Bowman, a Business Administration major from Catonsville, Md., lead the men’s golf team to a conference championship title in 2011. That year, he scored the lowest ever of any Centennial golfer at the NCAA championships. This season, he led the team with a 76.6 stroke average and finished at 5 above par. He placed 2nd overall in the Centennial Conference Championship. He has been offered a job in accounting and finance at Northrop Grumman Corporation, but hopes to shift his career towards golf, possibly in sales and marketing.

Walega, a Summa Cum Laude Exercise Science and Physical Education major from Ambler, Pa., brought home her third career gold medal in the 100 breaststroke to lead McDaniel to a sixth-place finish at the 2012 Centennial Conference women’s swimming championship. She was also part of record-setting performances by both medley relays for a pair of silver medals. Her efforts contributed to a new program best for points scored at a conference championship. She will pursue a graduate degree in Cardiac Rehabilitation and work in the field at a hospital or outpatient center.