Arcadia University’s 78th Honors Convocation Marks Student and Faculty Excellence

By Purnell T. Cropper | April 3, 2014

On Saturday, March 29, Arcadia University honored the academic excellence of more than 1,000 students and two faculty members at the 2014 Honors Convocation. More than 70 individual students received awards for their achievements on the college-, school-, and University-levels, and undergraduate and graduate students on the Dean’s Honor and Distinguished Honor lists were recognized. In addition, 49 students were inducted into the national honors societies Phi Kappa Phi and Alpha Epsilon Lambda, and 17 students were listed in 2014 Who’s Who Among Students in American Universities and Colleges.

In her student address, Rebecca Lynne Camacho Cate ’14M, a dual degree candidate in public health and counseling psychology, challenged students to understand how social justice impacts their lives, to develop educated opinions, to overcome discouragement they may face, to get involved in their communities, and to focus on impacting an individual.

“My wish for all of you is to take what you have learned here at Arcadia, in our classes, internships, and volunteer work, and continue to take action,” Camacho Cate said. “Education and knowledge are immensely important but are only part of the equation of becoming agents of change.”

In her welcome to the Convocation audience of approximately 1,000 people in the Kuch Center Gymnasium, President Nicolette DeVille Christensen spoke about the profound impact the students’ efforts have on the University.

“Your scholastic achievements impact more than just your individual collegiate careers; these achievements help influence the academic climate of Arcadia University as one that is enriching and engaged in work that is meaningful and thought-provoking. It also serves to add another layer of history onto our prestigious legacy and reputation,” said President Christensen. “Students and faculty, on behalf of Arcadia University, I salute you for your academic accomplishments and for the commitment you display in making Arcadia University a true community of scholars.”

Dr. Joanne Lucena, chair of the Department of Modern Languages and Cultures, received the Christian R. and Mary F. Lindback Award for Distinguished Teaching, while Dr. William Jacobsen, adjunct professor of international peace and conflict resolution, was honored with Arcadia University’s 25th Adjunct Professor Award.

Both teaching award recipients received high praise for student nominators for their intentional interactions and mentorship.

Provost Steve O. Michael quoted one student’s comments about Lucena, saying “‘She is a professor that possesses the perfect balance of camaraderie with her students, while still maintaining the professionalism that deters students from slacking off.’”

Similarly, Michael quoted a student who nominated Jacobsen, citing the fact that he “invests so much of his time and attention assessing [each student’s] strengths and endeavoring to build upon these with each interaction.”

Read more about Jacobsen, who recently was named Most Valuable Peacemaker for 2014 by The Pennsylvania Council of Mediators.