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2023’s IRSC Student and Faculty Award Winners Announced

2023’s IRSC Student and Faculty Award Winners Announced

April 25, 2023 Jon Pine

FORT PIERCE—At the culmination of each academic year, Indian River State College recognizes students and faculty for their leadership, community outreach, and contributions to developing a dynamic and engaging campus environment. Friends, family, and the College community joined to celebrate these achievements at two ceremonies this month—a Student Awards Ceremony on Thursday, April 6, and the Student Engagement and Leadership (SEAL) Awards Celebration held Wednesday, April 12.

Images from the 2023 IRSC Student Awards Ceremony held on Thursday, April 6. 

Images from the 2023 Student Engagement and Leadership (SEAL) Awards Celebration held on Wednesday, April 12.

Photos by James Crocco, IRSC Staff Photogrpaher

All-Florida Academic Team

Twelve (12) high-achieving IRSC students were selected for the 2023 All-Florida Academic Team. Team members are selected based on their academic achievements, leadership, and service to the community. Shea Dermody, Frenchtown, New Jersey, currently residing in Jensen Beach; Margaret Embody, Hyattsville, Maryland, currently residing in Fort Pierce; Jurie Angelo Fontanilla, Vero Beach; Alvaro Huaman Ruiz, Deltona, Florida; Payte Khoom, Palm City; Nathan Martinez, Deltona, Florida; Evan McCarthy, Palm City; Robert Osteen, Fort Pierce; Moya Smith, Port St. Lucie; Derek Smith Nautel, Port St. Lucie; Coral Strohl, Palm City; and Rylie Walker, Vero Beach.

Student of the Year

The 2023 IRSC Student of the Year award recipient is Mudley Duge of Fort Pierce. Mudley is a standout with her infectious smile, kind heart, and willingness to lend a helping hand when needed. She came to IRSC from Aux Cayes, Haiti, and is a freshman majoring in Political Science with a 4.0 GPA. She completed more than 60 hours of community service this year, she is president of the LEAPers Club, which serves under-represented students to help them acclimate to the College and the IRSC experience. She also is a member of Adobe Creative Club, DECA, the Haitian Cultural Club, International Club, and Writing Club. This year she completed all three Student Engagement Leadership Programs—the National Society of Leadership and Success, Emerging Leaders, and Legacy Leaders.

Academic Awards

Associate in Arts Academic Award recipient is Shea Dermody of Frenchtown, N.J. Shea has been a full-time student at IRSC since Fall 2021 and is a Physics major with a perfect 4.0 GPA, which also earns her a spot on this year’s All-Florida Academic Team. She earned her Emerging Leaders certification last year and joins IRSC’s Legacy Leaders Program this year. She also served as Secretary of the Student Council, Vice President of the Student Veterans of America IRSC Chapter, and Chair of student-led Historian Committee. Additionally, she works at IRSC as a STEM Pioneer learning assistant dedicated to helping other students succeed. She will graduate this May and plans to attend the University of Florida to earn her Bachelor’s Degree. Her goals include serving in the U.S. Air Force, enjoying a career in genomics/bioinformatics, earning a Doctorate Degree, teaching college, starting a non-profit organization supporting equitable education, and one day retiring to a farm with many goats.

This year's Bachelor's Degree Academic Award recipient is Neriah Nicholas of Fort Pierce. Neriah is known for helping other students in her classes, forming study groups and creating online chats to share information with others. She is a member of the Science Club and took a large number of courses last semester, all while dealing with some personal struggles and working full-time at Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute.

Community Service Award

The Community Service Award was presented to Rolande Darville of Port au Prince, Haiti. Rolande is a student leader on campus and throughout the community. She is an active member of the International Club, Vice President of the Student Government Association, a graduate of the Emerging Leaders Program, and a Legacy Leader at IRSC. She also chairs the Helping Hands Committee, leading various community service projects along the Treasure Coast.

The events Rolande has volunteered for include Tim Tebow’s Night to Shine, which provides prom experiences for special needs children; mentoring children at High Point Church; and volunteering for the Inner Truth Project, a non-profit organization that provides services to survivors of sexual violence. Rolande is a mother of two and works as a nurse at Lawnwood Hospital. She will graduate in May with a Bachelor’s Degree in Nursing at the same time her daughter graduates from the University of Central Florida.

General Excellence Award

Valerie Delgado Maceira of Port St. Lucie is this year’s General Excellence Award recipient. In addition to her studies, Valerie works in a dental lab and as a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA). She is a mentor to other students, and is Treasurer and Vice President of the Science Club. “Valerie faces challenges with a courage and self-assuredness that is uncommon for students so young,” said IRSC professor Kyle Bartow. “She works harder than anyone else to get good grades and pass her classes and does all this while working several jobs, leading an on-campus archaeological excavation, and balancing her personal and family relationships.”

Valerie also is a Learning Assistant for IRSC and an embedded peer tutor for several classes, creating review materials, recording review lessons, and organizing in-person lab review sessions before exams.

Leadership Award

This year’s Leadership Award was presented to Pedro Sanchez from Okeechobee. While working toward his Bachelor’s Degree in Biology at IRSC, Pedro at one time took classes at three different campuses so that he could learn face-to-face in a classroom environment, rather than take some courses online. He also serves as the Student Government Association President, a college ambassador, Chair of the Student Life Committee, a peer educator, and a member of the Campus Safety Task Force. As a peer educator he worked closely with the SEAL Team to mentor and educate students about the people, resources, and opportunities available at IRSC while facilitating workshops in leadership programs and representing students at special events.

Pedro began his higher education journey at IRSC as a dual-enrolled student, with support from the College’s Farmworker Career Development Program, a planned program of vocation and on-the-job training, work experience, job placement assistance, and basic education. He has graduated from all three IRSC leadership programs—the National Society of Leadership and Success, Emerging Leaders, and Legacy Leaders.

Special Achievement Award

Seth Maurer of Port St. Lucie received the Special Achievement Award. In addition to helping and encouraging other students, Seth is president of the IRSC Chapter of Distributive Education Clubs of America (DECA). Under his leadership, DECA raised an impressive sum during the DECA Bazaar. As a result, DECA members were able to compete at this year’s competitions. Seth earned First Place on the Business Administration State Exam and First Place in the Human Resources Management Competition. He also participates and volunteers for the Student Government Association (SGA), the Haitian Cultural Club, the LEAPers Club, and others.

SEAL Award Recipients

The SEAL awards celebrate those who run the more than 70 student clubs, organizations, and athletic teams at IRSC, as well as the hard work and initiative of the Student Government Association (SGA) and the outgoing executive board throughout the academic year.

  • RiverLife Achievement Award: Hallstrom Astronomical Society
  • Trident Award: Volleyball
  • IRSC Pride Award: Sexuality & Gender Alliance (SAGA)
  • Outstanding Community Service: Science Club
  • Pioneer Impact Award: Alpha Phi Sigma National Criminal Justice Honor Society
  • Individual Impact Award: Ashley Boyle of Vero Beach
  • Rising Star: Criminal Justice Club
  • Hart Award: Audrey Delaune, Administrative Assistant to the Vice President of Student Affairs
  • Unsung Pioneers: Joseph Lemieux, Academic Advisor; and Jason Fletcher, Coalition for Christian Outreach Co-Advisor and Community Partner
  • Outstanding SGA Representative of the Year: Markus Klein, Pioneer Inclusion Club, Port St. Lucie
  • President's Award: Sophia Licata, Health Occupation Students of America (HOSA), Jensen Beach
  • Club Advisor of the Year: Alex Arnold, SAGA & Financial Aid Advisor, Chastain Campus
  • Club of the Year: Health Occupation Students of America (HOSA)
  • Student of the Year: Mudley Duge of Aux Cayes, Haiti
  • Faculty of the Year: June Wells, Assistant Professor of English and Communications, celebrating 50 years at IRSC.

IRSC 2022-2023 Faculty of the Month Recipients

  • September:Jon Bell, Associate Professor, Physical Sciences
  • October:Kurt Efinger, Adjunct, Humanities
  • November:Kelly Caffery, Associate Professor, Social Sciences
  • December:Rosemarie Mason, Associate Professor, Nursing
  • January:Richard “Dick” Dewey, Assistant Professor, Public Service Education
  • February:Roger Rosenthal, Master Instructor, Mathematics
  • March:June Wells, Assistant Professor, English and Communications
  • April 2022: Elizabeth Zeiss, Assistant Professor, Mathematics

Outgoing 2022-2023 Student Government Association (SGA) Officers

  • President:Pedro Sanchez, Okeechobee
  • Vice President:Rolande Darville, Por Au Prince, Haiti
  • Secretary:Shea Dermody, Frenchtown, NJ
  • Treasurer:Hayden Mickley, Jupiter
  • Press Secretary:George Sofikitis, Port St. Lucie

Incoming 2023-2024 Student Government Association (SGA) Officers

  • President:Pedro Sanchez, Okeechobee
  • Vice President:Erika Diaz, Bronx, NY
  • Treasurer: Emily Villegas, Port St. Lucie
  • Secretary: Elizabeth Flores, Vero Beach
  • Press Secretary:Lena Clausen, Port St. Lucie

The 2022-2023 Indian River State College Distinguished Scholars

The following 98 students were selected for outstanding academic achievement and participation in extracurricular activities. These students have completed more than 30 credit hours at the College and maintain over 3.3 GPA.

Arly Alexis
Samantha Alzime
Rekik Amme
Melany Anton
Brandon Arias
Marvela Armah
Erika Beyel
Gabriela Borrero
Ashley Boyle
Nicolina Burrell
Sarah Byrd
Alex Caraballo
Leslye Casas
Taylor Copeland
Miguel-Angel Cruz Nunez
Briannie Curtis
Rolande Darville
Emily Decker
Valerie Delgado Maceira
Shea Dermody
Bianca Desreuisseau
Max Dodson
Yamile Dominquez
Cheyenne Dunaway
Delaney Dyer
Samuel Eastmond
Isabella Elg

Langley Elg
Margaret Embody
Wyatt Evans
Zachary Farnell
Jurie Angelo Fontanilla
Ella Gagliardo

Yesenia Gamez
Keira Gaskins
Kyle Gransee
Bridget Green
Brooke Green
Katie Hale
Oscar Hance
Curtis Head
Carissa Hennessey
Katie Hernandez
Yamilet Hernandez
Alvaro Huaman Ruiz
Kenya Johnson
Payte Khoom
Travis King
Greta Klotz
Anderson Kruize
Kreston Lane
Yen Lang
Colin Lawerence

Liam Lepak
Sophia Licata
Kathleen Lott
Nathan Martinez
Mia Masmela
Ella Crissy Massimino
Evan McCarthy
Summer McDonough
Summer McGlamory
Jess Metzgar
Gwen Miller
Victoria Mills

Neriah Nicholas

Robert Osteen
Rodrinay Parker
Brett Pavlik
Sterling Pearson
Sienna Perez
David Perez-Rivera
Victoria Pianelli
Porsche Pickett
Jacob Rich
Nicole Rodriquez
Guadalupe Rosas
Joseph Rosselli
Ivana Saborit
Cynthia Sanchez
Amanda Sandstrom
Mekhi Sappleton
Mariel Scher
Joseph Semprevivo II
Jennifer Sharr
Derek Smith Nautel
Moya Smith
Coral Strohl
Pablo Tamba
Paola Villarroel
Rachel Vold
Rylie Walker
Zoe Williams
Tanner Wise
Wesley Woodard
Morgan Wright
Najeli Zamora
Tania Zamora

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