Trine recognizes distinguished students for Class of 2020

April 21, 2020

Trine University has named Jenna Niemeyer, an English education major from Hoagland, Indiana, the winner of the Robert B. Stewart Award for the Class of 2020.

The Robert B. Stewart Award is presented to the graduate who most clearly exemplifies the traditions and values of Trine University through achievement in scholarship, leadership and citizenship. Each academic school at Trine nominates a graduating senior for this award; Niemeyer represented the Franks School of Education.

Niemeyer earned a cumulative 4.0 grade point average at Trine. Franks School of Education Anthony Kline, Ph.D., said, “Trine faculty and clinical educators in area schools rave of her dedication, passion and effectiveness in all she does.”

During her junior year, she was the lone undergraduate to make it through a professorial review process to present at the 33rd Midwest Association of Teacher Educators (ATE) Spring Conference. Conference presenters are typically higher education faculty and some graduate students. 

She spoke about a website she and another student created to incorporate socio-emotional learning (SEL) and English language arts (ELA) instruction, and received very positive feedback from the approximately 30 people who attended.

Her passion for social and emotional learning also led to her taking an independent study to create her own podcast, where she interviewed state and national leaders on the topic. She also joined a Franks School of Education faculty member in a spotlighted session at the Indiana ISTE educational technology conference.

Niemeyer has earned Google Educator Certification during her time at Trine. 

On campus, she served as a senator for Trine's student government. She was director of academic success, Tau honor delegate and bylaw committee member for the Alpha Sigma Tau sorority. She won multiple first-place recognitions in the Cunningham Writing contest.  She was a Humanities and Communication Media Team staff writer and consultant for Trine's Writing Center.

She has served as a teen program instructor at the YMCA, math and literacy tutor for local families, summer intern in Project Transformation in a low-income neighborhood in urban Tennessee, and program assistant for a local after-school program. She recently was named a 2020 Indy 500 Festival Princess, where she will participate in statewide outreach to nursing homes, sports teams, hospitals and non-profits.

Other Trine University Distinguished Students included Robert Dick, a chemistry major from Lawrence, Michigan, representing the Rinker-Ross School of Health Sciences; Brooke Hardy, a chemical engineering major from Wauseon, Ohio, representing the Allen School of Engineering and Computing; Madison Sanderson, a communication major from Leo, Indiana, representing the Jannen School of Arts and Sciences; Jacklyn Peas, a management major from Lagro, Indiana, representing the Ketner School of Business; and Sheri Boughton, a psychology major from Sturgis, Michigan, representing the College of Graduate and Professional Studies.

Robert Dick has been accepted into seven different graduate schools across the country for Ph.D. programs in chemistry. He participated in undergraduate summer research opportunities at Northern Illinois University and the University of Cincinnati, and is completing a senior research project at Trine University.

He is credited as a co-author in an article published in the Journal of Materials Chemistry. He has presented his work five different times, including twice in Trine University’s STEM Symposium, where he received honors both times.

Consistently named to Trine University’s President’s List, he serves as president of the university’s ACS Chemistry Club. He is a member of the National Society of Leadership and Success, Phi Eta Sigma Honor Society, the Trine University Marching Band, Trine University Wind Ensemble, Trine University Bridge Club and Trine University Magic the Gathering Club. He served as vice president for Trine’s Gay Straight Alliance.

He also has served as a judge for the Northeast Indiana Tri-State Regional Science Fair.

Brooke Hardy, who earned a 4.0 grade point average, is planning a career in the pharmaceutical industry and will continue working for Pfizer, where she previously completed two internships, in its Rotational Development Program upon graduation. She also completed an internship for North Star BlueScope Steel, LLC in Delta, Ohio, while at Trine.

She has served as principal flutist and drum major in Trine University’s marching band, where she increased the member retention rate by 50 percent by implementing engaging marching warm-up procedures. She is president of Trine’s Bridge Club, which tripled its membership this year and placed 14th last year in national collegiate competition.

She has served as vice president of operations of the Alpha Sigma Tau sorority, where she helped create the Gigi’s Playhouse Crazy Christmas Sweater 5K fundraiser. She also has been part of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers, where she was the Jeopardy team captain and competed nationally at the first Chem esports simulation; Tau Beta Pi Engineering Honor Society; Alpha Chi Honor Society; Omega Chi Epsilon Chemical Engineering Honor Society, where she served as treasurer; Phi Eta Sigma Honor Society; and the Chemical Engineering Society.

Hardy was named Trine University’s 2019 Homecoming queen.

Madison Sanderson earned the Outstanding ECO Center Intern award for her work with Earth Fest as an intern for Trine University’s Art Eberhardt Environmental and Community Outreach Center. She also has completed summer internships with Ambassador Enterprises and the Indiana Republican Party, and will rejoin the Indiana Republican Party following graduation in a full-time position with its fundraising and finance committee.

She placed second in the academic writing category in this year’s Cunningham Writing contest, and her capstone presentation depicted how she was able to use skills gained in courses and apply them to the workforce in terms of fundraising events, publications and multimedia productions.

She was a member of Trine’s Women’s Soccer Team, where she was named to the MIAA Academic Honor Roll and attended the NCAA Student Athlete Leadership Forum. She also served as vice president of Trine’s Student Athlete Advisory Committee.

She was president of Trine’s student government this past year, and is a member of the Skull and Bones Society and SPEAK for the Earth. She also has volunteered with Walk Into My Future and Special Olympics of Steuben County.

Jacklyn Peas is graduating from Trine University in only three years with a perfect 4.0 grade point average. Her extracurricular activities have included Phi Eta Sigma, intramural sports and the Trine University Bass Club.

She was honored as one of the first Ketner Pioneers during the 2018-19 school year for an internship she completed with Merrill’s Detector Dog Services, based in Maine. She worked with the Miami Heat, training dogs and working NBA games, including the NBA All-Star game. This followed a previous internship with Merrill’s Detector Dogs where she learned how to properly care for detection dogs and train them.

While in Angola, she worked at the Fremont Dog Lodge. Once she graduates, she will operate the new business she founded with her mother, Heaven Scent K9, to continue working with detection dogs.

Sheri Boughton will graduate summa cum laude and is focusing on substance abuse counseling within her psychology degree. She is married and has three grown children, one of whom is also graduating from Trine, and two grandchildren.

She served several years as a reserve deputy sheriff before taking time off as a stay-at-home mom. She returned to work helping individuals with developmental disabilities and those experiencing mental illness.

For the past 10 years she has been executive director of the not-for-profit St. Joe Community Co-op. She also volunteers with her local United Way Chapter.

  • Stewart Award/Franks School of Education

    Stewart Award/Franks School of Education - Jenna Niemeyer

  • Rinker-Ross School of Health Sciences

    Rinker-Ross School of Health Sciences - Robert Dick, winner of the Best REU/Graduate Project award at Trine University's second STEM Research and Design Symposium in 2018, shares about his project with attendees at the symposium.

  • Allen School of Engineering and Computing

    Allen School of Engineering and Computing - Brooke Hardy, left, was named Trine University Homecoming queen in 2019. Evan Radtke was Homecoming king.

  • Jannen School of Arts and Sciences

    Jannen School of Arts and Sciences - Brandy DePriest, left, assistant professor in Trine University’s Department of Humanities and Communication, presents the Outstanding ECO Center Intern award to Madison Sanderson, in the spring of 2019.

  • Ketner School of Business

    Ketner School of Business - Jacklyn Peas completed an internship in 2019 for the Miami Heat with her K9, Sjefke.

  • College of Graduate and Professional Studies

    College of Graduate and Professional Studies - Sheri Boughton

Last Updated: 06/30/2020

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