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Student Awards and Honors

The Undergraduate Distinguished Achievement Award and Outstanding Dissertation and Thesis Awards are available for Oakland University students. To view awards and honors available for faculty and staff, please see our Awards and Honors page on the OU Employee Resource Network.

Undergraduate Distinguished Achievement Award


Any regularly enrolled undergraduate student is eligible upon nomination by a faculty member or staff member.


Nominations minimally should consist of a letter of nomination and preliminary documentation of the specific effort that is being recognized.


The purpose of these awards is to recognize extraordinary academic achievement beyond that required for good grades. Thus for instance a student-originated publication in the arts or sciences, a publication with major student input, presentation of research or creative endeavor at a professional conference, a literary work, an exceptional research report, the creation or performance of an artistic work, or the construction of a device or instrument could all be the basis for this award.

The following criteria will be used to evaluate the nominations:

  • Originality
  • Extent of effort
  • Scholarly significance
  • Artistic merit/significance

Obviously only some of these criteria will apply to any given nomination. Furthermore the criteria will be refined as a specific history of nominations develops. It may be necessary, in certain cases, to seek additional help in evaluation from experts outside the committee.


Upon receipt of a letter of nomination, the chair of the committee will distribute copies of the letter and supporting information to the committee members. Additional requests for back-up information and documentation will be made promptly.

All members of the committee will read the letters of nomination and supporting materials. The committee will meet no later than two weeks after the deadline for nominations to discuss its decision. The committee's recommendation will be forwarded to the Office of Academic Affairs. Upon approval of the Academic Affairs office, the committee will notify the recipient of the award and the nominating faculty member. The committee chair will write a commendation to be read to the student at the graduation ceremony and printed on the award certificate.

The awards will be presented at the Fall Commencement exercises.

Outstanding Dissertation and Thesis
Outstanding Dissertation Award Recipient Degree Year
Ke Qu Chemistry 2019
Amy Siebert-McKenzie Biomedical Sciences 2018
Deirdre Pitts Educational Leadership 2018
Taraneh Matloob Haghanikar Reading Education 2017
Xin Xie Mechanical Engineering 2017
Shinko Kondo Music Education 2016
Jia Li Biomedical Sciences 2016
Simon Omekanda Electrical and Computer Engineering 2015
Hypaitia Rauch Biology 2014
Brandon Scott Twardy Biomedical Sciences 2013
Lisa Ann Strurgs Early Childhood Education 2012
Jiman Han Mechanical Engineering 2012
Benjamin A. Buller  Medical Physics 2011
Kishor Karki Medical Physics 2010
Adam K. Sniady Health and Environmental Chemistry 2009
Betty Savel Kozma Educational Leadership 2008
Deborah L. Janks Medical Physics 2007
Mingkun Li Electrical Engineering 2006
Deborah VanderLinde Blair Music Education 2006

Outstanding Thesis Award Recipient Degree Year
Leart Sejdarasi Chemistry 2018
Zoe Johnson-Ulrich Psychology 2017
Margo Rae Stanfa Exercise Science 2016
Stacey Marie Wensink  Biology 2015
Nan Xu Mechanical Engineering 2014
Xin Xie Mechanical Engineering 2013
Jeffrey P. Stephens Biological Sciences 2012
Ann Marie Wambeke History 2011
Jennifer Ann Laam History 2009
Noel Balzan Mechanical Engineering 2008

Office of the Provost

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