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Awards

Every year, The Graduate College presents students and faculty with a variety of awards, including the Outstanding Master's ThesisOutstanding Dissertation and Outstanding Mentor Awards. All awards are in alignment with the Conference of Southern Graduate School (CSGS), thus earning the winners a trip to the annual CSGS spring conference with a chance to win at the regional level. 

Outstanding Master's Thesis Award Recipients

Mael Le Noc

Maël Le Noc, who earned his master’s degree in Geography, has won the 2016–2017 Graduate College Outstanding Master’s Thesis Award in Digital Scholarship. His thesis, “Family Arrest and Separation during the Holocaust in Italy”, was directed by Dr. Alberto Giordano, Professor of Geography.

Maël also received regional recognition for his work by winning the CSGS Outstanding Master’s Thesis Award in Digital Scholarship! He was awarded $1000 and will be commended in a special awards ceremony at the CSGS annual meeting in Annapolis, MD. 

Sepideh Maleki

Sepideh Maleki, who earned her master’s degree in Computer Science, has won the 2016–2017 Graduate College Outstanding Master’s Thesis Award in Mathematics, Physical Sciences, and Engineering. Her thesis, “Higher-Order and Tuple-Based Massively-Parallel Prefix Sums”, was directed by Dr. Martin Burtscher, Professor of Computer Science. 

Sepideh also received regional recognition for her work by winning the CSGS Outstanding Master’s Thesis Award in Mathematics, Physical Sciences and Engineering! She was awarded $1000 and will be commended in a special awards ceremony at the CSGS annual meeting in Annapolis, MD. 

Heather Haley

Heather Haley, who earned her master’s degree in History, has won the 2016–2017 Graduate College Outstanding Master’s Thesis Award in the Humanities and Fine Arts. Her thesis, “Strategic Surprise: The Dispersal of Agent Orange in Vietnam and Korea in the Late 1960s”, was directed by Dr. Ellen Tillman, Assistant Professor of History.

Andrea MacLaren

Andrew MacLaren, who earned his master’s degree in Biology, won the 2015–2016 Graduate College Outstanding Master’s Thesis Award in the Life Sciences. His thesis, “Automated Detection of Rare and Endangered Anurans Using Robust and Reliable Detection Software”, was directed by Dr. Michael Forstner, Professor of Biology.

Andrew also received regional recognition for his work by winning the CSGS Outstanding Master’s Thesis Award in Life Sciences! He was awarded $1000 and was commended in a special awards ceremony at the CSGS annual meeting in Charlotte, NC. 

Sergio Carvajal

Sergio Carvajal-Leoni, who earned his master’s degree in Mass Communication, won the 2015–2016 Graduate College Outstanding Master’s Thesis Award in Digital Scholarship. His thesis, “The Texan-Italian Stories Documentary Series: Fostering Social Connections Among Members Of A Geo-Ethnic Community Through The Process Of Media Creation”, was directed by Dr. Sandy Rao, Professor of Mass Communication.

Sergio also received regional recognition for his work by winning the CSGS Outstanding Master’s Thesis Award in Digital Scholarship! He was awarded $1000 and was commended in a special awards ceremony at the CSGS annual meeting in Charlotte, NC. 

Koreena Villarreal

Koreena Villarreal, who earned her master’s degree in Health Education, won the 2015–2016 Graduate College Outstanding Master’s Thesis Award in the Social Sciences, Business, and Education. Her thesis, “Attitudes About Partner Communication Regarding Contraceptive Use Among Hispanic Male College Students”, was directed by Dr. David Wiley, Professor of Health Education.

Brian Brown

Brian Brown, who earned his master’s degree in History, won the 2014–2015 Graduate College Outstanding Master’s Thesis Award in the Humanities and Fine Arts. His thesis, “The Mexico-U.S. Business Committee and the Foundations of the North American Free Trade Agreement”, was directed by Dr. Paul Hart, Associate Professor of History.

Jonathan Anderson

Jonathan Anderson, who earned his master’s degree in Physics, won the 2014–2015 Graduate College Outstanding Master’s Thesis Award in Math, Physical Sciences, and Engineering.  His thesis, “Metalorganic Chemical Vapor Deposition and Investigation of Algainn Microstructure”, was directed by Dr. Edwin Piner, Professor of Physics and Materials Science, Engineering, and Commercialization.


Outstanding Dissertation Award Recipients

Dr. Matthew Milholland

Matthew Milholland, who will earn his Ph.D. in Aquatic Resources this summer, won the 2017–2018 Graduate College Outstanding Dissertation Award in the Biological and Life Sciences.  His dissertation, “Ecological Factors of Rodent Assemblage Structure Affecting Hantavirus Prevalence at Varying Spatial Scales”, was directed by Dr. Iván Castro-Arellano, Assistant Professor of Biology.

Dr. Anne Li Kringen

Dr. Anne Li Kringen, who earned her Ph.D. in Criminal Justice, won the 2016–2017 Graduate College Outstanding Dissertation Award in the Social Sciences. Her dissertation, “Understanding Barriers that Affect Recruiting and Retaining Female Police Officers: A Mixed Method Approach”, was directed by Dr. Joycelyn Pollock, Distinguished Professor of Criminal Justice.

Dr. Adam Duarte

Dr. Adam Duarte, who earned his doctoral degree in Aquatic Resources, won the 2015–2016 Graduate College Outstanding Dissertation Award in the Life Sciences.  His dissertation entitled “Population Dynamics and Habitat Conservation for the Golden-Cheeked Warbler (setophaga chrysoparia)” was co-directed by Dr. Floyd W. Weckerly, Professor of Biology and Dr. Jeff S. Hatfield, Research Ecologist at the U.S. Geological Survey. 

Dr. Kanika Verma

Dr. Kanika Verma, who earned her doctoral degree in Geographic Education, won the 2014–2015 Graduate College Outstanding Dissertation Award in Social Sciences, Business, and Education. Her dissertation entitled “Geospatial Thinking of Undergraduate Students in Public Universities in the United States” was directed by Dr. Lawrence Estaville, Professor of Geography.


Outstanding Mentor Award Recipients

Dr. Benjamin Zhan

The 2016–2017 Graduate College Outstanding Mentor Award recipient is Dr. Benjamin Zhan, Professor of Geography. Dr. Zhan was also selected by the CSGC committee as the winner of The CSGC Outstanding Mentor Award for his outstanding efforts in working with numerous Texas State master’s and doctoral students, shepherding them through timely degree completion and setting them on a path to their own successful careers.

Dr. Floyd Weckerly

The 2015–2016 Graduate College Outstanding Mentor Award recipient is Dr. Floyd (Butch) Weckerly, Professor of Biology, for his work with master’s students.

Dr. David Butler

The 2014–2015 Graduate College Outstanding Mentor Award recipient is Dr. David Butler, Professor of Geography, for his work with doctoral students.


Outstanding Contributions to Graduate Education in the Southern Region Award

Dr. Paula Williamson

Dr. Paula Williamson, a faculty member in Biology and a former associate dean in The Graduate College, is the 2016–2017 recipient of the regional CSGS Outstanding Contributions to Graduate Education in the Southern Region Award. She received the award for her excellent contributions to graduate education at Texas State and at the regional and national levels.


Distinguished Alumni Award

Dr. Kenneth WIlson

Distinguished Texas State Biology Graduate Alumnus (1966) Dr. Kenneth Wilson received the 2013 Distinguished Alumnus Award on October 25, 2013 at the Distinguished Alumni Awards Gala organized by the Texas State Alumni Association.

Wilson has worked both in the biotechnology industry and taught at universities including at the Royal University of Phnom Penh in Cambodia. The Wilsons have established the Wilson International Exchange Scholarship through the Center for International Studies at Texas State University. The scholarship allows faculty and students to carry out collaborative research and teaching in Cambodia and other parts of the world.