Fairfield University presents 2014 Student Awards


Fairfield University recently honored eight members of the Class of 2014 with prestigious Student Achievement Awards.

Image: Student Awards

Image: An accomplished group of seniors at Fairfield University were recognized at the recent 2014 Student Awards Ceremony in the Aloysius P. Kelley, S.J. Center.
(L-R) Fairfield University President Rev. Jeffrey P. von Arx, S.J., C. Spencer Colpitts, Jr. '14, Vincent Romano '14, Eric S. Lynch '14, Cody Reinold '14,
Astrid Quiñones '14, Bayan Abunar '14, Alexander Long '14, Laura Stakey '14.

The award recipients selected are members of a distinguished group of students who have demonstrated a commitment to the Jesuit ideals of high academic standards, participated in co-curricular and extra-curricular activities and community involvement, and maximized their opportunities for spiritual, intellectual, and personal growth while at Fairfield. These undergraduates were nominated for these awards by faculty, staff, administrators, and fellow students:

Image: Eric LynchThe St. Ignatius Loyola Medal was presented to Eric Lynch, a Politics major with a minor in Peace & Justice Studies from Harrison, N.Y. It is given to one senior who has demonstrated commitment to the Jesuit ideals of high academic standards, community engagement, and participation in co-curricular activities. "In my time at Fairfield, I am most proud of my commitment to first-year student transitional programs, such as the orientation program, the fall welcome process, and the First Year Experience Program," Lynch said. "Most recently, I'm proud to claim that I helped establish South Side Cafe, a new and popular late night program, and served as Fairfield University's Chapter President of Alpha Sigma Nu."

Image: A QuinonesThe William J. Kramer '60 Humanitarian Award was presented to Astrid Quinones, a social work and justice major from Walpole, Mass. The award recognizes one outstanding senior who has committed him or herself to volunteerism and service to an external community activity that best exemplifies the Ignatian tradition of being men and women for others. "I am most proud of my opportunity to direct Take Back the Night (a candlelight vigil in memory and protest against the violence women have experienced physically and sexually)," she said. "It's an event near to my heart, and I am so glad to be able to celebrate survivors that I know and those who may still be hidden in the dark."

The Student Achievement Awards are given out each year to recognize outstanding seniors who have enhanced a specific University program. The senior's commitment to this activity must have resulted in the program or organization attaining a new level of achievement not possible without the senior's leadership and guidance. This year the University honored six students with the awards:

Bayan Abunar, of Fairfield, Conn., for her commitment to WISTEM (the Women in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics living and learning community on campus), as well as the Muslim Student Association, a group she helped found. A biochemistry major in the College of Arts and Sciences, she said she was able to find "parallel passions" in her extracurricular activities. "I am most proud of the events that the Muslim Student Association has put together year after year not only to educate the campus about Islam, but most importantly it was the commitment to fostering a deep understanding between people of all different faiths and beliefs."

C. Spencer Colpitts, Jr., an economics major from Milford, Mass., for his commitment to development of the Man2Man Living and Learning Community. Man2Man is a community that assists first-year males with their transition to college. The program is for male residents who are searching for a community of brotherhood that they either enjoyed in high school or want to be a part of in their time at Fairfield.

Alexander Long, a communications major and mathematics minor from Bayonne, N.J., for his commitment to the Fairfield University community. " When I took on the position of student body president, I looked to unify Fairfield University from administration all the way down to the students," Long said. "My prior experience throughout the vast areas of campus I've been involved in was vital to my success as I utilized these relationships to bring together people who hold different perspectives and expectations in order for us all to share in the common goals of academic enrichment and a rewarding student experience. It's hard to say that I changed the culture of this institution in one years' time, however, I feel as though my effort toward the unity of this university has laid the foundation for a bright, unified vision for the future of this Fairfield community, that which I will forever remain invested in."

Cody Reinold, an information systems and operations management major from Sutton, Mass., for his commitment to development of the Compass Fellowship Program. A student in the Charles F. Dolan School of Business,Reinold started his first business, Elligson, a web design firm, at the ripe old age of 12. In keeping with his affinity for developing new things, he led the initiative to bring to Fairfield University, The Compass Fellowship - a program developed to help students design and build their own socially conscious business. The Compass Fellowship is a network of young social innovators. Member schools span the country.

Vincent Romano, an economics major minoring in mathematics and history from Briarcliff Manor, N.Y., for his commitment to the Economics Club and Federal Reserve Challenge Team. "In my time at Fairfield, I am most proud of being able to grow, not just intellectually, but in a multitude of ways," he said. "Whether it is excelling in class or engaging in community service activities, Fairfield truly cultivates the whole person."

Laura Stakey, a double major in accounting and economics major from Laurel, N.Y., for her commitment to development of Free Trade Initiatives on campus. "During my time at Fairfield, I'm happy I was able to be involved in so many different activities and groups here on campus," she said. "I think the most rewarding experiences I have participated in has been Students for Social Justice and the various service trips I have been on both domestic and abroad."

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Media Contact: Meg McCaffrey, (203) 254-4000, ext. 2726, mmccaffrey@fairfield.edu

Posted on May 8, 2014

Vol. 46, No. 291