College of Arts and Sciences

Department of Mathematics

2012 Scholarship & Awards Ceremony

Thursday, April 26, 2012, 3:45pm, Neill Hall 216

Scholarships and awards are given each year to students with high academic achievement, and are possible because of the generosity of our donors. We deeply appreciate the financial contribution from each donor. The history of each scholarship and its donor may be found on the department scholarships page.

Please read about the outstanding scholarship recipients for 2012, below. Following the awards ceremony, cake and punch were served. You may click on any photo to view a larger image of the same photo.

Raeanne Marks received the Bell Outstanding Freshman Award

Raeanne is a sophmore at WSU from Spokane, Washington. In high school, she received an award naming her as an outstanding student of mathematics. She has a 4.0 grade point average at WSU and is on the President's Honor Roll. She feels the greatest honor given to her from WSU has been receiving the Distinguished Regents Scholar Award, which covers all tuition and mandatory fees for four years. She is a member of the WSU Women's Novice Rowing Team and serves as a coxswain, the leader of a boat. She practices with the team 5 days a week and often twice a day. Upon graduation she would like to become an actuary.

Sengthian Sisayaket received the Paul and Marjorie Clement Memorial Mathematics Scholarship

Sengthian is a sophmore from Pasco, Washington. She received a Regents Scholars Scholarship for four years at WSU and says she is glad she made the choice to attend WSU. The College of Sciences awarded her with a Boeing Outstanding Student/Sciences Scholarship and an Edward Meyer Sciences Scholarship for her high academic achievement in high school. She is a member of the WSU Cougar Marching Band and a member of the WSU Women's basketball pep band. She is also a member of the Washington State University Symphony Orchestra, playing the French horn. Her goal is to become a high school teacher in her hometown teaching alegebra or calculus.

Samuel Shellabarger received the Ames Family Scholarship in Mathematics

Samuel is a junior majoring in mathematics from Cheney, Washington. He has been on the President's Honor Roll every semester at WSU, was a WSU Mortar Board Outstanding Freshman Scholar and received a Bell Outstanding Freshman Scholarship Award from the Mathematics Department for 2010 to 2011. He played varsity football, basketball, as well as track and field in high school. He continues to play intramural sports at WSU. He was the pledge class treasurer for his fraternity and is currently its programming chair. His cumulative WSU gpa is 3.98. He plans on becoming an actuary after graduation and five years after that he may start his own actuarial firm.

Justing Englund received the Morris Knebelman Outstanding Senior Award

Justin is a senior at WSU majoring in mathematics. He is from Federal Way, Washington. He runs track and cross-country for WSU, and his cumulative gpa is 3.89. In 2011 he received the Richard and Bonnie Winkwenwerder Scholarship in Mathematics. In 2010 he received the Julie Kerr Undergraduate Scholarship in Mathematics, and in 2009 he received the Bell Outstanding Freshman in Mathematics Award. He has also received several awards in track and cross-country while he has been at WSU. Upon graduation he plans to work as an actuarial student for an insurance firm and five years after that he hopes to have all of the actuarial exams completed and have an established career.

Daryl DeFord received the J. Russell and Mildred H. Vatnsdal Memorial Scholarship

Daryl is a junior from Kennewick, Washington. He has a cumulative gpa of 3.98 and has been on the President's Honor Roll every semester at WSU. In both 2005 and 2006, he received an Advanced Placement Scholar with Distinction Award for achieving a 3.57 average score on a total of fourteen A.P. exams. In 2006 he was named a National Merit Finalist. After high school he worked for Swire Coca-Cola as a merchandiser, team leader, utility employee, and account manager before coming to WSU. Upon graduation he plans to attend a graduate program in pure mathematics and would like to obtain a PhD to eventually teach as a professor of mathematics in a university.

Cara Davis received the Julie Kerr Scholarship in Mathematics

Cara is a junior from Issaquah, Washington and has been on the President's Honor Roll every semester at WSU. Her cumulative gpa is 3.76. She received the University Achievement Award in her freshman and sophomore years, as well as a Knebelman Memorial Scholarship in Mathematics last year. She has worked part-time at the WSU libraries, been a Math UTA, and a volunteer tutor. She was also president of the Math Club in the fall of 2011. After graduation, she would like to attend graduate school to obtain a PhD in mathematics. She plans to pursue a career in academia or industry.

Jian Wang received the Richard and Bonnie Winkwenwerder Scholarship in Mathematics

Jian is a junior majoring in mathematics. She has been on the President's Honor Roll and works part-time at the WSU libraries. She is a member of the Chinese Student Association and enjoys singing for the Spring Festival Gala event which is put on by the Chinese Student Association. She is also an organizer and planner of the event. She planned the 2011 Spring Festival Gala and helped with the rehearsal. Upon graduation, she would like to become an actuarial assistant and pass all of the exams to become an actuary. Her long-term goal is to work in one of the four largest insurance companies in the United States.

Kelsey Buckles received the Robert and Nancy Strong Scholarship in Mathematics

Kelsey is a junior from Kennewick, Washington majoring in mathematics. She has received the following scholarships: Future Cougars of Color Scholarship, Metzger Leona M. Endowed Scholarship, Washington State Schools Retirees Association Scholarship, Benton Franklin Schools Retirees Association Scholarship, Linkous Foundation Scholarship, University Achievement Award as a competitor in the American Math Competition, and a Presidential Service Award, presented in person by former President George W. Bush. She is a member of the WSU Pre-Service Teachers of Mathematics Club and the WSU Math Club. She plans on becoming a teacher and would like to teach in Department of Defense schools to make a positive influence on the children of military parents. Eventually, she plans to return to teach in the Tri-Cities. She is a first-generation college student.

Rachel King and Nathaniel Blair, each received an award from The Wiliam and Mary Lynn Graber Endowment Fund.

Rachel King is a junior from Mead, Washington majoring in mathematics with a 4.0 cumulative gpa. She has been on the President's Honor Roll, received a WSU Transfer Achievement Award and a Mary Crouse Memorial Scholarship from the Community Colleges of Spokane Foundation. In the summer of 2010 she volunteered in the immigration office of World Relief to provide assistance to refugees. She has also been a math tutor. She is enrolled in a cryptography course from Stanford University, which is outside of her normal studies. She plans to earn a masters degree in mathematics and is interested in computer applications of math, including cryptography and computer security. Five years after graduation she would like to be working as a mathematician at the National Security Agency supporting the defense of our country.

Nathaniel Blair is a junior from Olympia, Washington majoring in mathematics with a cumulative gpa of 3.78. His dream job is to become a Washington high school teacher to influence students, "the way my AP Calculus teacher and pre-calculus teacher influenced me." His alternative plan is to obtain a Masters or PhD in mathematics. He received the Bell Outstanding Freshman Award in the Spring of 2011. He is a member of the Honors College and outside of school he referees soccer and tutors for the math department. He has been on the President's Honor Roll. He received an Honors College Scholarship, an L and E Bottling Company Scholarship, and placed second in a Future Business Leaders of America State Competion. He is an avid soccer player.

Gavin Smith received the Sidney J. Hacker Memorial Mathematics Scholarship for Graduate Research

Gavin is a graduate student pursuing a PhD in mathematics. He has been a TA for the department since 2010. His current emphasis of research and coursework is on integer programming, computational topology, and algorithms. His cumulative gpa is 3.95. Gavin has been solving problems in the area of computational topology and other research which he will be presenting at the Symposium on Computational Geometry to be held this summer at Chapel Hill, NC. This summer he will also work as a research intern in the Boeing Mathematics Group. He and his advisor, Bala Krishnamoorthy, expect to publish at least two papers before he graduates.

Yingzi Li received the Sidney J. Hacker Memorial Mathematics Scholarship for Graduate Teaching

Yingzi is a graduate student in the Department of Mathematics and expects to obtain a master's degree in statistics. She has been a TA for an introductory statistics course directing 3 laboratory sessions a week, grading lab papers, homework, and helping grade exams. She is well liked by the students, other graduate students, and faculty in the Departmenf of Mathematics. She is making good progress toward completing a degree for a PhD in Economics as well as a Masters in Statistics.

Jared Aurentz received the Nancy J. Robertson Endowed Graduate Fellowhip in Mathematics.

Jared is a graduate student from Minnesota who is pursuing a PhD in mathematics. He has been a TA in the department since 2010 and carries a cumulative gpa of 4.0. He has been an instructor and lab instructor for second semester calculus, and a grader for Introduction to Partial Differential Equations. He is interested in numerical analysis, computational linear algebra, and high performance and parallel computing. He and his advisor, Dr. David Watkins, have a research paper currently under review at SIAM Journal on Scientific Computing. In addition to working on two research projects with his professor right now, he is also working this semester as an RA for Professor Catherine Cooper during which time he is running large-scale codes simulating movement of the earth's crust and mantle on high performance parallel machines.

People cake
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To view a larger image of the same photo, please click on it.


Raeanne Marks received the Bell Outstanding Freshman Award, presented by Dr. Mano Manoranjan.


Sengthian Sisayaket received the Paul and Marjorie Clement Memorial Mathematics Scholarship, presented by Dr. Sandy Cooper.


Daryl DeFord received the J. Russell and Mildred H. Vatnsdal Memorial Scholarship, presented by Dr. Bill Webb.


Cara Davis received the Julie Kerr Scholarship in Mathematics, presented by Dr. Matt Hudelson.


Jian Wang received the Richard ad Bonnie Winkwenwerder Scholarship in Mathematics, presented by Dr. Matt Hudelson.


Kelsey Buckles received the Robert and Nancy Strong Scholarship in Mathematics, presented by Dr. Sandy Cooper.


Nathaniel Blair received the William and Mary Lynn Graber Endowment Fund Award, presented by Dr. Mark Schumaker.


Gavin Smith received the Sidney J. Hacker Memorial Mathematics Scholarship for Graduate Research, presented by Dr. Matt Hudelson.


Yingzi Li received the Sidney J. Hacker Memorial Mathematics Scholarship for Graduate Teaching, presented by Dean Johnson.


Jared Aurentz received the Nancy J. Robertson Endowed Graduate Fellowship in Mathematics, presented by his advisor Dr. David Watkins.

Department of Mathematics, PO Box 643113, Neill Hall 103, Washington State University, Pullman WA 99164-3113, 509-335-3926, Contact Us