August 28, 2017
MBA Welcome and Awards 2017
To a determined group of graduate students, faculty and staff, the annual Tepper School Welcome and Awards Ceremony held on Aug. 27 marks the success made and yet to come as the academic year begins. Six awards were given throughout the evening ranging from spirit awards to merit awards.
Presented for the first time, the Class of 2015 Award for Excellence in Community Building was presented to Tea Gongadze. This award is presented to a rising second-year MBA student who exemplifies the spirit of inclusiveness which is key to the Tepper School community. This student demonstrates a commitment to diversity and cross-cultural connections through their curricular and co-curricular activities.
“This award represents Tepper community’s continuous dedication to diversity and inclusion. It is a clear voice of support and encouragement from alumni to keep and make Tepper even more collaborative,” Gongadze said. “Diversity and inclusion issues are very close to my heart, so I try my best to make my share of contribution. I have been active on campus to support raising awareness and educating our community in these issues, and to come up with best practices and solutions.”
Steve Feyer, co-chair of the 2015 Class Gift Committee, said giving the award was important for giving back to the Tepper School community.
“Our class felt a very strong sense of community with each other and felt that it was very important that we give back to each other and to the students who would come up behind us across generations,” Feyer said. “We wanted to recognize students each year who embodied the best traits of community building.”
The Class of 2015 set a record for dollars raised with 97 percent participation from the class according to Feyer. In addition, the class continued its record-setting by finishing their fundraising and reaching the endowment level a year early, which led to presenting the award in 2017.
Emily Gennaula received the Arjun V. Gokhale Spirit Award, which is given annually to a returning MBA student who demonstrates academic excellence, a zest for life, dedication to teamwork and the ability to bring together people from diverse backgrounds.
“I have been truly honored and humbled by the receipt of this award. The award prescribes distribution to a student who has a ‘zest for life,’ ‘dedication to teamwork’ and desire to bring ‘diverse people together,’ all of which I have seen in the culture of Tepper itself as demonstrated by both my classmates and the faculty and administration,” Gennaula said. “Given that, I think this award means living the goals of the Tepper community.”
Anna Mae Lawrence received the 2017 McGowan Fellowship Award, established in 2010 by the William G. McGowan Charitable Fund to create a select community of highly talented, emerging business leaders who are dedicated to ethical leadership and community building and show an interest in public service.
Additionally, three students were awarded with Henry Ford II Scholarship Awards, which are given to the student with the highest grade point average in each of the Tepper School MBA format: Anthony Ernest Sikorski for full-time, Zachary Martin White for part-time on campus, and Vishal Chandrasekar for part-time online hybrid.