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First Awardees Announced for Presidential Leadership Medal of Excellence

Date: May 22, 2002
By: Dawn Fuller
Phone: (513) 556-1823
Photos by Colleen Kelley
Archive: Profiles

Four University of Cincinnati graduates will receive special recognition from UC President Joseph A. Steger for their leadership and commitment to service on campus and in the Cincinnati community.

Photo of the medalUC graduates Georgina Ginn, Yogini Kanthi, Jaime McCauley and Robert Richardson, all of Cincinnati, will each receive a bronze medal to wear at the University-wide Commencement to be held Friday, June 7, at 1:30 p.m. in Shoemaker Center. The medal displays the university crest on the front and has the name of the recipient engraved on the back of the medal.

The students were selected after nominations were submitted by UC administrators, faculty and staff last winter. To be considered for the award, students had to demonstrate a minimum 3.0 GPA, participation and leadership on campus outside the classroom (such as in student government or honorary, service, social or athletic organizations), citizenship and service to UC and the community, student advocacy, and the potential for future success and achievement.

The following students were chosen from a pool of 23 applicants, after the awards committee determined they best exemplified the spirit of the Presidential Leadership Medal of Excellence Award. UC President Joseph A. Steger approved the final selection:

Gina Ginn Georgina ("Gina") Ginn, graduating with a bachelor's of science degree in environmental studies, McMicken College of Arts and Sciences. Ginn grew up in Delhi and graduated from Oak Hills High School. Ginn, a member of Theta Phi Alpha sorority and outgoing president of UC's Panhellenic Association (the governing body of UC's sororities), was director of the Up 'Til Dawn student project that raised $15,000 for St. Jude's Hospital for children with catastrophic illness. She was praised for her high achievements in the classroom as well as her leadership in student organizations, including the Student Alumni Council, the RallyCats school spirit organization, Student Government and the Orientation Board.

Yogina Kanthi Yogini Kanthi, graduating with a bachelor's degree in civil and environmental engineering, College of Engineering. Kanthi previously served two years as a student member of the University of Cincinnati Board of Trustees, appointed by Ohio Governor Bob Taft. The Princeton High School graduate was instrumental in building the UC Racial Awareness Program (RAPP) to support students of color and is an advocate for social justice and racial diversity. She is a regular volunteer for the Urban League of Greater Cincinnati, as well as Ankur Gujarati Samaj, an Indian community group, and the Su Casa Hispanic Ministry Center.

Jaime McCauley

Jaime McCauley, graduating with a master's degree in sociology and a certificate in women's studies. McCauley lives in White Oak and is a 1994 graduate of McAuley High School. McCauley is the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Questioning (LGBTQ) coordinator for the Women's Center and is credited for paving new directions for the center through her service and research. Her community service includes a position on the board of Stonewall Cincinnati and volunteering with the Cincinnati Youth Group.

Robert Richardson

Robert E. Richardson, Jr., graduating with a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering, College of Engineering. Richardson established the first college chapter of the NAACP in the Tristate and was elected president of the UC Student Government in Spring 2001. He has tirelessly strived to raise student awareness of civil rights issues, encouraging them to become active on the local, state and national level.

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