Students in the TCNJ School of Humanities and Social Sciences have remarkable achievements that stem from their dedication to learning and enrichment, both inside and outside the classroom.
Click on the boxes below or read on to learn more about some of the students who call the School of Humanities and Social Sciences their home.
About Our Students
Every year, students in the TCNJ School of Humanities and Social Sciences make remarkable achievements. Here is just a small sample of how our students made us proud during the 2011-2012 academic year:
The School of Humanities and Social Sciences was well represented by nine students who took home awards from this year’s college-wide Student Leadership Awards Banquet, including the Harold W. Eickhoff Outstanding First-Year Student Award, the Outstanding Student Employee of the Year, Emerging Leader of the Year Award, Student Organization President of the Year, and Outstanding Student Leader of the Year, among other scholarships and awards. Our student who won Outstanding Student Employee of the Year at TCNJ was nominated and won the Outstanding Student Employee of the Year for the entire state of New Jersey. For the third year in a row, a graduating HSS student has been named a Fulbright scholar. In 2010 we placed a Fulbright scholar in Poland; in 2011 – Azberbaijan; and in 2012 – India.
Many HSS students here at TCNJ pursue cultural explorations abroad, and are often awarded scholarship money to help finance these educational and life-changing experiences. During the 2011-2012 academic year, eleven HSS students won prestigious scholarships to help fund study abroad experiences, including Roebling Scholarships, Laurenti Scholarships, a Clinton Foundation Scholarship, and a Benjamin Gilman Scholarship, for study in 12 different countries across North America, South America, Europe, Africa, and Asia.
A psychology major also won a travel grant from the Council on Undergraduate Research to present her research project, “Applying the Normative Conflict Model to Organizational Deviance,” in a poster presentation at the Society for Industrial & Organizational Psychology in San Diego, California, while another HSS student won a Fulbright Fellowship to teach abroad in India after graduation. We are proud to have sent five HSS students to participate in the Clinton Global Initiative University in Washington, D.C. in March.
The School of Humanities and Social Sciences’ student groups are also very impressive: 10 HSS students making up TCNJ’s 5 Moot Court teams had a spectacular showing at the regional competition in February, qualifying three teams for the national competition in California, where one of our TCNJ teams placed second overall. TCNJ’s Society for Parliamentary Debate won the President’s Cup for highest average GPA for a student organization at the College for the fourth year in a row.
17 students studying English, History, Psychology, Sociology, World Languages and Cultures, and Women’s and Gender Studies were granted state, national, and international awards, while 11 students presented papers or research at national conferences and three students made such presentations alongside faculty. Three sociology majors published their article “Sexual Violence and Deaf Communities” in the Summer 2011 Volume 11 Issue 2 edition of New Jersey Coalition Against Sexual Assault (Voices in Action) and a psychology student co-authored a scholarly article with two faculty members.
Over 35 HSS students were admitted to Phi Kappa Phi, one of the oldest and most esteemed national honor societies. Additionally, 11 HSS students from the class of 2012 were accepted to Teach for America, a competitive post-graduate opportunity. This HSS team is the largest ever from TCNJ! One HSS student was selected from applicants throughout the state for an internship in the office of the Governor of New Jersey.
Within the School of Humanities and Social Sciences, 10 outstanding HSS students from the class of 2012 were recognized for their many accomplishments throughout their years at TCNJ by being named the 2012 Laureates for the HSS Dean’s Award for Excellence in the Liberal Arts.
When our students graduate, they go on to even greater accomplishments, with jobs in business, the media, non-profit organizations, and government agencies, or futures with Fulbright Scholarships (one in India right now), Teach for America, the Peace Corps, graduate school, and other professional schools. Our students also have an excellent rate of acceptance at both law schools and medical schools.
Profiles of Our Students
The students profiled here are the 2012 DAELA Laureates: They won the Dean’s Award for Excellence in the Liberal Arts and together they represent all the majors in the School of Humanities and Social Sciences. Their achievements are exemplary and demonstrate what is possible for HSS students. These students set the bar for the extraordinary success to which all our students aspire, success made possible through the outstanding mentoring provided by our faculty and staff.
Corey Dwyer majored in Political Science with a minor in Holocaust and Genocide Studies. He has been active in Student Government for each of the past four years, and he has spent the past two years in the role of Executive Vice President. He has worked in the Department of Residential Education and Housing, as a Community Advisor and as an Assistant Residence Director. Corey has also served as a College Ambassador. He is a member of both Pi Sigma Alpha, Golden Key International Honor Society, and the TCNJ Honors Program. In addition, he is a member of both Phi Kappa Phi and Phi Beta Kappa. Corey has served as tutor and teaching assistant for a college-level course at Albert C. Wagner Youth Correctional Facility. In addition, he has completed three internships, including one with United States Senator Kirsten E. Gillibrand in New York City. Corey will be joining the Philadelphia Corps of Teach For America this fall, and he will pursue a Master’s degree in Education at the University of Pennsylvania.
Ryan Gale, a Criminology Major, was a Bonner Community Scholar. As a Bonner Scholar, he was the site leader for PEI Kids Inc. At PEI Kids Inc., for three years he hed a group of TCNJ student volunteers who worked directly with juveniles on probation. Ryan also tutored inmates at Albert C. Wagner Youth Correctional Facility for three of his TCNJ years. He completed six internships: two with the Morris County Prosecutor’s Office, another with the New Jersey State Police, and another two with the Bureau of Gangs and Organized Crime of the New Jersey Division of Criminal Justice. Working closely with Dr. Charles Fenwick, Ryan contributed to two papers that were presented at international conferences. Moreover, he was a Jeffrey R. Ralston Crime Analytics Fellow. Conducting research, under the guidance of Dr. David Holleran, Ryan gave a poster presentation entitled “Application of Risk Terrain Modeling to Residential Burglary” at an annual meeting of the American Society of Criminology. He is currently working on a research manuscript that he plans to submit to a peer reviewed Criminology journal. Ryan served as president of TCNJ’s chapter of Alpha Phi Sigma and as president of the Criminology Student Association. Ryan will be pursuing a master’s degree in Criminology at the University of Pennsylvania.
Melissa Gutworth majored in Psychology, took a minor in Business Administration, and completed a self-designed interdisciplinary liberal learning concentration in Psychology and Criminal Law. During her sophomore year, Melissa served as President of Alpha Phi Omega, directing several projects, including the TCNJ Feed Our Friends 5k (which raised $4,500 for local charities). She co-authored a book chapter with Dr. Jason Dahling. Melissa also participated in MUSE, a TCNJ-sponsored summer research opportunity. Recently, she presented a paper titled “Applying the Normative Conflict Model to Organizational Deviance” at an annual meeting of the Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology. Melissa’s senior thesis was published in the 2013 edition of the TCNJ Journal of Student Scholarship. She completed an internship at First Investors Corporation. Melissa serves as a peer mentor for students majoring in Psychology. In addition, Melissa is a member of Phi Beta Kappa. She will be pursuing a PhD in Industrial/Organizational Psychology at Penn State University.
Laura Herzog double majored in International Studies with a specialization in Diplomacy and Journalism and Professional Writing. She also minored in Religion. Laura contributed to The Signal thorough her four years at TCNJ, moving up the ranks of editorial positions to become news editor in fall 2011. She served as the secretary of International Studies Club. Laura was a member of both Sigma Iota Rho and the TCNJ Honors Program. She is also a member of both Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society and Phi Beta Kappa. Laura studied abroad in Dakar, Senegal. While in Senegal, she volunteered with the nonprofit Centre International pour le Promotion du Leadership Féminin as a mentor for young girls, teaching basic computer literacy and French grammar. After returning from Senegal, Laura volunteered at a local library, exposing 4th and 5th graders to issues of cultural diversity by leading discussions on folktales, plays, fairytales, myths, tall tales and nursery rhymes from other countries. Laura has volunteered with The College of New Jersey Camden Alliance. She has served as student writer for College Relations Department, writing press releases, TCNJ news articles, conducting interviews and writing for TCNJ Magazine. Laura also interned as a social media journalist at Here’s Life Inner City, a non-profit that works to combat poverty and homelessness in New York City.
David Karas double majored in (1) Journalism and Professional Writing and (2) Criminology, with a minor in Public Policy, Analysis, and Management. He is a Bonner Community Scholar and has performed more than 1,500 hours of community service to the campus and local communities. He assisted with the Here for Haiti Initiative, and he has served for two years as a trustee for a Trenton-based food pantry and emergency services provider. David has completed three internships and five independent studies spanning three disciplines. In addition to spending a summer studying at Georgetown University, he worked two blocks from the White House at the Christian Science Monitor. David helped launch a program that provides educational opportunities for prison inmates. Further, he transformed an internship at The Times of Trenton into a full-time job. To date he has published nearly 600 stories on topics ranging from municipal budget reform and human trafficking to local crime and skateboarding. For his work as HSS Media Assistant, David has recently been recognized as the 2012 Student Employee of the Year for both TCNJ and the State of NJ. He has won 8 awards from the Garden State Journalists Association, including the award for top photo for 2012. David is the recipient of an Alpha Phi Sigma scholarship. He will be pursuing a MA in Urban Affairs and Public Policy at the University of Delaware.
Stephanie Kraver majored in English and took two minors, one in Philosophy and the other in Arabic. She also completed a self-designed interdisciplinary liberal learning concentration on the Middle East: Language and Culture. She is the founder and president of The College of New Jersey Camden Alliance, a social justice organization. In recognition of her work on social justice issues, Stephanie received the 2011 Harold W. and Rosa Lee Eickhoff Student Leadership Award. She organized a pair of Community Engaged Learning Days in which high school students from Camden visited TCNJ to meet college freshmen. Stephanie studied abroad at Hebrew University in Jerusalem, and, while in Israel, she served as a writer for the Alternative Information Center’s English-website. Stephanie participated in MUSE, a TCNJ-sponsored summer research opportunity, and she contributed to Dr. Lisa Ortiz’s book manuscript on Cuban and Cuban American women writers following the 1959 Cuban Revolution. Stephanie was a member of TCNJ’s chapter of Sigma Tau Delta, the national English Honor Society. She also served as a writing tutor on campus. In 2011, Stephanie received the English Department’s Best Essay in Research and Theory Award. She is a member of Phi Beta Kappa. Stephanie intends to pursue an advanced degree in Middle Eastern Studies.
Trevor McLaughlin majored in History / Secondary Education with a minor in USA Studies. In 2010, while serving as an intern in the Registrar Department of the Newark Museum, Trevor accessioned and cataloged photographs of Newark from the late 19th and early 20th century. He also engaged in original archival research both at the Trenton Public Library and at the National Archives and Library of Congress in Washington, D.C. Trevor wrote an honors thesis with Dr. McGreevey and worked in the tutoring center at TCNJ for two years. He is a member of the New Jersey Christian Fellowship and has volunteered at the “Cast Your Cares” Soup Kitchen in Philadelphia. He has also volunteered at the Interfaith Food Pantry in Morristown. Trevor participated in MUSE, a TCNJ-sponsored summer research opportunity, and he collaborated with Dr. Brian Girard on a research project, titled “Pedagogical Relationships in Secondary Social Science Classrooms.” Trevor is a member of Phi Alpha Theta, Golden Key and Kappa Delta Pi. He is also a member of both Phi Kappa Phi and Phi Beta Kappa. In 2011, he was recognized as the Outstanding Junior in History. Trevor received the Bernice Samalonis Award for Pre-Service teachers from the Middle States Council on Social Studies and, recently, he was nominated by the History Department for the NJ Distinguished Student Teacher Award. Trevor will be teaching 8th grade social studies in Caldwell, NJ starting this fall.
Leah Ruediger double-majored in Sociology and Spanish. She has served as a peer tutor in the Tutoring Center and, for the past 3 years, she has led Spanish Conversation Hours. Leah is a member of both the Spanish Club and the HSS Student Advisory Council. She studied abroad both in Madrid, Spain, and in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Leah worked with Dr. Elizabeth Borland, as a student collaborator, on the TAP program’s research on equity issues at TCNJ. She also participated in MUSE, a TCNJ-sponsored summer research opportunity, conducting research, together with Dr. Borland, on the cultural impact of the Madres de Plaza de Mayo in Argentina. Leah is a member of both Alpha Kappa Delta and Sigma Delta Pi. In addition, she is a member of Phi Beta Kappa. Leah is a member of the TCNJ Honors Program and she recently presented a paper titled “Working a Double Shift: Differential Impact of Work/Life Balance on Male and Female Academics’ Careers at an annual meeting of the Northeast Regional Honors Conference. Leah will be joining the New York City Corp of Teach for America this fall.
Sarah Scholz double-majored in (1) Women’s and Gender Studies and (2) Journalism and Professional Writing. She is a member of the Women In Learning & Leadership program (WILL). As a part of WILL, she directed Eve Ensler’s The Vagina Monologues for two years. Sarah is the president of the Iota Iota Iota and she is the recipient of the 2011 Alice Paul Award for Activism. Sarah interned SELF Magazine in New York City. She is a member of Phi Kappa Phi. This coming year Sarah will be pursing a master’s degree in English here at TCNJ. Ultimately, she plans to pursue an advanced degree in Women’s & Gender Studies, while continuing to work as an activist for women.
Dominic Siravo double-majored in Philosophy and Political Science. He is a volunteer at the Boys and Girls club in Trenton. He serves as peer mentor for students majoring in Philosophy. Dominic studied abroad at Oxford University. He participated in MUSE, a TCNJ-sponsored summer research opportunity. He has presented refereed research at the CUR Posters on the Hill Conference, in Washington, D.C. Dominic has also presented research at an annual meeting of the Greater Philadelphia Philosophy Consortium. He is a member of Phi Beta Kappa. Dominic plans to work in public policy prior to attending Law School.
Student Accomplishments by Department and Program
Each year, our students are recognized for a variety of accomplishments in a range of fields and disciplines. Here is a selection of these accomplishments from the 2011-2012 academic year:
English Liberal Arts and English Secondary Education:
During the 2011-2012 academic year, 5 TCNJ students were selected by the New Jersey Council on the Teaching of English for the 2012 Marcia Holzmann Pre-Service Teacher Award: Micaela Ensminger, Amanda Rhea, Daniela Conte, and Kelly Kosch, and Allison Greer. This is a remarkable year – so many winners from TCNJ. It speaks volumes about our English Department’s preparation of excellent teachers, so kudos also to Dr. Meixner and the English Education team.
English major Rebecca McNulty, class of 2012, made another remarkable accomplishment when her essay was accepted for publication in the 2012 Sigma Tau Delta Review. Sigma Tau Delta is the international honor society for English majors. English majors Katelyn Bruffy, Rebecca McNulty, and Emily Witkowski all received competitively awarded scholarships from the national chapter of Sigma Tau Delta, in the amounts of $1,500, $1,000, and $3,000, respectively. We are so proud of all our students have accomplished, and continue to accomplish.
English – Journalism and Professional Writing:
The student newspaper the Signal, which is sponsored by the Journalism and Professional Writing department and run mainly by JPW students, received four awards at the annual New Jersey Collegiate Press Awards luncheon in Cranbury. Under Editor-in-chief Brianna Gunter and Managing Editor Jamie Primeau, and past editor Matt Huston, the Signal has continued to be a first-rate news organization. The awards granted were: Second Place in General Excellence, given to the staff, First Place in Feature Writing given to Katie O’Dell, Second Place in News Writing given to Emily Brill, and Second Place in Sports Writing given to Brandon Gould.
Junior journalism and professional writing major Jamie Primeau was also awarded a $10,000 scholarship for her senior year from New York Women in Communications. Jamie is the managing editor for The Signal so this is scholarship is a great match. Her scholarship was awarded at the annual Matrix Awards—the industry event of the year, on April 23 at the Waldorf-Astoria in New York City. She was one of the select few to receive this prestigious scholarship.
The Alan Dawley Center for the Study of Social Justice awards an annual prize for the best essay, film, work of art, or other creative project that addresses a social justice issue, from any disciplinary or interdisciplinary perspective, produced by a TCNJ undergraduate in the current academic year. The prize honors the work of TCNJ Professor of History Alan Dawley whose scholarship addressed historical and contemporary issues of social justice as a complex dialogue of many voices both in the American context and globally. The winner of the 2012 Alan Dawley Prize is Rebecca L. Stefaniak for her history senior honors thesis, “Appling Girls’ Rules to a Girl’s Fight: The Impact of Second-Wave Feminism on Rape Law Reform.”
History students Aimee Gray won the Sigma Delta Pi Undergraduate Study Abroad Award ($2500 to study at the Universidad de San Andreas in Buenos Aires, Argentina) and Trevor McLaughlin won the Bernice Samalonis Social Studies Award. History students also conduct valuable research on various subjects throughout the year, and some students are able to present their findings at national conferences. This year, three students presented papers and research at the Phi Alpha Theta History Honors Society confernce: Jessica Klama presented “Recourses and the History of Instability in the Democratic Republic of the Congo,” Trevor McLaughlin presented “The Extent of Empire: A Transnational Analysis of William Walker’s Nicaraguan Republic and the Legal Issues Confronting American Empire, 1855-1860,” and Lauren Wells presented “From the Ground Up: Analyzing the Role of the Ordinary Citizen in Trenton New Jersey’s Path Towards Desegregation, 1943-1946.”
This year, Bryan Furman was awarded a Foreign Language and Area Studies (FLAS) Scholarship to study Persian at the University of Wisconsin-Madison for the summer of 2012. Bryan has a minor in Central Eurasian Studies so this opportunity is a great fit for him.
We also had three-dozen students, including students from our International Student group (some of whom are spending study abroad here at TCNJ) attend the September 14 symposium on the International Day of Peace at the United Nations. The annual event coordinates observances and practical acts of peace across the globe. This year’s symposium, called “Give Peace a Chance,” began a weeklong celebration that ended with the International Day of Peace. The strong participation of the TCNJ student delegation reflects the College’s interests and strengths in the study of global affairs.
International Studies graduates continue to find acceptance in top graduate programs, publish articles and find rewarding work in the private and public sectors. A graduate from two years ago recently finished her Fulbright scholarship and will start graduate study, with the help of fellowships from the Soros Foundation and the State Department’s Pickering program, at Harvard’s Russian, East European and Central Eurasian Studies program. Other graduates have found work with in the financial sector, technological consulting, global human resource recruiting, journalism and teaching. Twelve students were inducted into Sigma Iota Rho, the International Studies honor society, last year.
The Department of Philosophy, Religion, and Classical Studies awards the Cummings Prize annually to the best essay on a philosophical topic by a TCNJ undergraduate written in the current academic year. The prize honors Professor of Philosophy Philip Cummings who helped to establish TCNJ’s philosophy major. The winner of the 2012 Cummings Prize was Yale Weiss for his essay “Wittgenstein’s Private Language Argument”. This year, philosophy major Michael Mullen was honored by the American Council of Teachers of Russian as a Post Secondary Russian Scholar Laureate. Another student, Jason Kane, delivered the presentation “Free Will and Moral Responsibilities” along with philosophy professor R. Kamber at the Felician Ethics Conference in Rutherford, NJ.
Numerous Political Science majors distinguished themselves during 2011-12 through induction into prestigious honor societies, awards, and other recognitions of their achievements. Three majors were inducted into Phi Beta Kappa, five into Phi Kappa Phi, and a record nineteen into Pi Sigma Alpha, the National Political Science Honor Society. The faculty selected Robert Harrington for the annual Political Science Academic Achievement Award and the majors and faculty selected Corey Dwyer for the annual Political Science Community Service Award. Corey also earned a special Dean’s Award for excellence in the study of the liberal arts. At the invitation of our faculty, about two dozen majors presented their research at Celebrations of Student Achievement in December and April.
Political Science major Olaniyi Solebo comprised half of the team that came in second in the national tournament of the American Collegiate Moot Court Association. Olaniyi, the Student Government president, was also named the College’s outstanding student leader of the year and will join several other graduates in Teach for America. Several graduates are law-school bound to Georgetown University, the University of Virginia, and other excellent institutions.
Several graduates are law-school bound to Harvard University, Columbia University, Georgetown University, William and Mary University, and the University of Virginia, among other excellent institutions.
Psychology majors at TCNJ continue to make strides in the field, winning awards, publishing articles, and presenting research at national conferences. During the 2011-2012 academic year, student Marissa Marshall was awarded the Gilman Scholarship, a national scholarship given to students studying abroad, with which she studied abroad for a semester in Greece. Student M.B. Gutworth also achieved great recognition this year, publishing the article “Managing organizational deviance: Focusing on causes, not symptoms,” which he co-authored with two psychology faculty members, D.M. Morton and J.J. Dahling, in Received Wisdom, Kernels of Truth, and Boundary Conditions in Organizational Studies, and delivering the presentation “Applying the normative conflict model to organizational deviance” along with professor J.J. Dahling at the 27th Annual Conference of the Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology in San Diego, CA, in April.
Sociology and Anthropology:
Sociology students at TCNJ have made many contributions to scholarly sociology discussion through research, articles, and presentations. Three sociology majors from three different grade levels, Lyndsay Albert, Carolyn Filipski, and Hanna Paster, collaborated on the article “Sexual Violence and Deaf Comminuties,” which was published in the Summer 2011 Volume 11 Issue 2 edition of New Jersey Coalition Against Sexual Assault (Voices in Action). Senior Leah Ruediger presented her research on the topics “Working a Double Shift: Differential Impact of Work/Life Balance on Male and Female Academics” and “Deinstitutionalization and Liberalization of Beliefs: Framing Gay Marriage and Abortion Debates Among Argentine Young Adults” at two conferences, the Northeast Regional Honors Conference and the Eastern Sociological Society 82nd Annual Meeting, respectively, during the 2011-2012 academic year. Sociology major Grace Slobodzian also presented her research, “All About Eve – Actresses in the 1940s and 1950s: a comparative analysis of Betty Davis and Margo Channing” at the Northeast Regional Honors Conference, in Baltimore, MD, on April 14, 2012.
World Languages and Cultures:
The success of the students in the Department of World Languages and Cultures is evidenced in the many awards students have been granted and conference presentations students have given over the past year. First, the department’s team was chosen as the “Popular Vote Winner” in the post-secondary contest of the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages. Our community is especially proud of all the students who participated in the video: Michael Mullin, Maryan Escarfullett, Tyler Liberty, Jake Ehrlich, Haruka Oda, Julie Centifonti, and Joe Puzzule. You can see the video at www.DiscoverLanguages.org.
Individual awards include two honorable mentions in the National Russian Essay Contest for First Year Students for Stehpanie Cregg and Ian Highcock, an honorable mention in the National Russian Essay Contest Advanced Category for Bryan Furman, the Programma Ponte Scholarship from the Association of Italian-American Educators for Michael Santoro, the ACTR Russian Scholar Laureate Award for 2012 from the American Council of Teachers of Russian for Michael Mullin, a scholarship from the Council on International Educational Exchange (CIEE) toward the costs of study abroad in St. Petersburg, Russia, by Luis Aguilar, and a Fullbright Scholar Award to study in the Republic of Azerbaijan from 2011 to 2012 by Esther Tetruashvily.
Many WLC students also made presentations at national conferences held across the country. Samantha Coughlin presented “Origins and Development of Written Accentuation in / Spanish” at the Annual Meeting of the Linguistic Association of the Southwest in September 2011, Jeremy Frusco presented “Italian Pop Music as Poetry” at Indiana University Bloomington, and Samantha Zimbler, along with professor M. Sow, presented “Expressions Corporelles et Frontieres Culturelles dans l’oeuvres de Fatou Diome” at the 43 NeMLA conference in March 2012.
Women’s & Gender Studies:
Students studying women’s and gender studies at TCNJ receive many scholarships, awards, and invitations to present papers or research at conferences for their hard work exploring the issues relevant to this major of study. This past year, student Carolina Chica was awarded a Fulbright Award to teach English in India, James Flesher won First Place in The New Jersey Women’s and Gender Studies Consortium, Valerie Lavigne won the Critical Language Scholarship from the US State Department to study Chinese in Shanghai, China, Summer, 2011, and Raymond McCue was awarded a scholarship from National Sigma Delta Pi Honor Society to study at Universidad Internacional in Cuernavaca, Mexico during summer 2011.
Women’s and gender studied majors also make conference presentations, including Brittany Lang’s presentation of “This Terror of Silence With Nothing Diverting to Do”: The Dialogic Concept of Boredom within The Pale King” at The Research Unit for American Studies at the University of Antwerp and Adrian Sisko’s two presentations. “Dude Looks Like a Lady” at the Northeast Regional Honors Conference in Baltimore, MD and “Queering Portal: Camp Cake and Posthuman Robots” at The New Jersey Women’s and Gender Studies Consortium, both in April 2012.