Cornerstone winners announced Friday


            Ten exemplary seniors will be each honored for the legacy they will leave on Allegheny College.     

            According to the official application, the award aims to give recognition ‘recognize the accomplishments of outstanding seniors who have contributed positively to the Allegheny community,’ but while the award appears to be all inviting, the acceptance is selective.

            “The key in defining a Cornerstone recipient is really asking the question: ‘how has the student left his or her legacy on the college after he or she graduates,” said Katie Gullatta, Assistant Director of Student Involvement.

             Via e-mail, all seniors with a GPA of 3.0 or higher are invited to apply. However, to apply, seniors must submit a resume of one to two pages, answering the question, “What lasting impact have you made on the Meadville community?”

            When considering the award, a committee, consisting of faculty, staff, and student representatives, spend several hours reviewing a student’s academic achievement, community service, and involvement with groups on campus.

            According to the Office of Student Involvement, sixty students applied in the 2010 school year. However, only ten from this number received the honor.

            When told, many recipients were particularly surprised to have received the honor.

            “I did not expect to win the award at all. When I was talking to people about whether or not they applied I knew that it could go to just about anyone. There are so many amazing people in the senior class who do really great work and they are all qualified to win this award,” said Katelyn Kelly ’11, a part of the most recent recipients of the award.

            The award was designed in 2001 by a group of students as a result of solution to what many felt was a problem in selecting a homecoming king and queen.

            “Instead of a popularity vote, students wanted to honor and identify those seniors who have left a legacy here to give more weight to the award,” Gullatta.said.

            While the award is not an official award from the college and originates solely out of the Office of Student Involvement, there appears to be a general level of future success among winners. Past recipients include Fulbright Award winner Afua Osei ’08, Pittsburgh attorney and Boston University grad Jeffery Weimer ’05, and Duke PhD candidate Christopher Desante ’05.

            “I think this award will benefit me. It shows potential employers and graduate schools that I have the ability to make a lasting impact. It will hopefully show that I am a well rounded person dedicated to both the community and campus,” said Kelly.

            Winners will be recognized on October 23 by a public ceremony during halftime of the homecoming football game. A trusted family member, faculty, or close friend of the student’s choice will accompany them to the field where they will be honored by Allegheny President James Mullen and Joe DiChristina, Dean of Students.