UC Blue Ash celebrates top students in COVID-safe event

The University of Cincinnati Blue Ash College is recognizing its top students for academic achievement and service to the college.

UC Blue Ash hosted its 2021 Celebrating the Best event on April 24 but, like most events these days, it had a COVID-era twist. Instead of a formal ceremony, the event took the form of a walk-through where invited students and up to two guests arrived at Muntz Hall on campus at their scheduled time to receive an ovation from volunteers before proceeding to pick up their certificates, honor cord (for honors graduates) and gift bag. They also got to meet with UC Blue Ash Dean, Dr. Robin Lightner, and pose for photos by the college’s photographer and at ‘selfie stations.’

Eleven top students from different academic departments across the college were nominated for Honor Student of the Year. This year’s winner is Stephanie Garcia, a student ambassador and biology major who was recently surprised with the good news by Dean Lightner in a video that was shared on the college’s social media sites.

Video link: https://www.youtube.com/embed/HZ2wEvtAHIE?rel=0

“I was not expecting this,” says Garcia about the Honor Student of the Year recognition. She noted that she balances part-time work with a full class schedule and studies several hours each night to pursue her goals. “I truly believe that if you try your hardest and put in the effort you can accomplish anything.” Garcia plans to double-major in biology and neurobiology when she transitions to the UC Uptown campus and will pursue a career in medicine, either as physician or in medical research.

Dr. Robin Lightner greets a student and mother at the Celebrating the Best Walk-Through.

UC Blue Ash Dean, Dr. Robin Lightner (left) greets Alexis Lemen and her mother, Wendy, at the Celebrating the Best Walk-Through.

Below is the full list of the UC Blue Ash 2021 Honor Student of the Year nominees.

  • Talia Butler, Veterinary Technology
  • Jenna Dipuccio, Radiologic Technology
  • Stephanie Garcia, Biology (2021 Honor Student of the Year)
  • Casey Harloe, English & Communication
  • Shaina Kalmanson, Nursing
  • Shareese Lee, Applied Graphic Communication
  • Jessica Maguire, Business Administration
  • Brian Mueller, Bachelor of Technical and Applied Studies
  • Logan Myers, Liberal Arts
  • Wendy Oppong, Pre-Pharmacy
  • Erika Troutman, Dental Hygiene

Several students were also honored for their service to the college and their engagement on campus. This group included student ambassadors, student government leaders and those who took a leadership role in student organizations and clubs.

A total of 94 UC Blue Ash students were recognized as graduating with honors, meaning they maintained a grade point average (GPA) of 3.6 or higher (out of 4.0 scale).

Each year, an average of 700 UC Blue Ash students transition to the UC Uptown campus to complete their bachelor’s degree or attend graduate school. Statistics show they are well prepared for this next step — they have a combined GPA of 3.07 in their first year after making the transition

About UC Blue Ash College

UC Blue Ash College is a regional college within the University of Cincinnati. It offers one of the best values in higher education with access to a nationally recognized UC education in more than 50 degree and certificate programs, as well as tuition that is about half of most colleges and universities. The college is located on a scenic 135-acre wooded campus in the heart of Blue Ash, Ohio. To learn more, call 513-745-5600, visit us online, like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter and Instagram.

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