WVU's 2020 Order of Augusta honorees (top row, left to right): Noor Dahshan, Thaiddeus Dillie, Abigail Kaufman, Caroline Leadmon. (Bottom row, left to right): Morgan McCardell, Kristin Ruddle, David Sokolov, Lindsey Zirkle.
Students who have exceeded classroom boundaries and demonstrated an unwavering commitment to solving complex global challenges and serving others—among them a distance learner with autism, a gymnast and an alternate Mountaineer Mascot—will receive West Virginia University’s highest student honor, the Order of Augusta.
“WVU looks forward each year to recognizing its top graduates with the Outstanding Senior award and the Order of Augusta,” said Maryanne Reed, Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs. “These students have already shown exceptional leadership, compassion and a commitment to service at the collegiate level. They are – without question – poised to lead positive change in local communities and around the world.”
A majority of the 2020 Order of Augusta scholars are members of the WVU Honors College.
“Our outstanding seniors are the best of the best, showing both academic achievement and the determination and adaptability of true Mountaineers,” said Dean of Students Corey Farris. “We look forward to their successes, knowing they are positioned to make a difference beyond campus while carrying the Mountaineer spirit with them.”
These eight students are among 49 students named WVU Foundation’s Outstanding Seniors.
Noor Dahshan, a member of the Honors College from Charleston, will graduate with a degree in biology. She serves as senator for the Student Government Association, a Presidential Student Ambassador and has served a two-year terms as a former president of the Muslim Student Association.
Thaiddeus Dillie, a member of the Honors College from Weirton, will graduate with a degree in biochemistry (ASBMB track) and a minor in business administration. He serves as a student ambassador for the Division of Student Life, peer mentor for the WVU Honors College and Student Government Association representative for the Davis College of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Design.
Abigail Kaufman, from York, Pennsylvania, will graduate with a in degree exercise physiology and a minor in medical humanities and health sciences. She is a member of the WVU Gymnastics Team, Student-Athlete Advisory Committee and serves as a leader with the Fellowship of Christian Athletes.
Caroline Leadmon, a member of the Honors College from Hurricane, will graduate with degrees in biochemistry and animal and nutritional sciences. She has served as the president and student coach of the WVU Figure Skating Club, president of the WVU Global Medical and Dental Brigades and was named the 2019 Ms. Mountaineer.
Morgan McCardell, a non-traditional student and student parent from Martinsburg, has earned her Regents Bachelor of Arts. A distance learner, she is a member of Phi Kappa Phi and the Mortar Board Senior Honorary.
Kristin Ruddle, from Brandywine, will graduate with degrees in biology and psychology. She serves as an ambassador for the WVU Tobacco- and Smoke-Free Campus, mentor for first-generation students and a member of the National Society Collegiate Scholars.
David Sokolov, a member of the Honors College from Morgantown, will graduate with degrees in biology and mathematics. He has served as a teaching assistant for the Department of Mathematics, a mentor for the Math Boot Camp and a member of the student advisory committee for the Allegheny Conference on Community Development.
Lindsey Zirkle, a member of the Honors College for Charleston, will graduate with degrees in International studies and English. She is a former vice president of community relations and vice president of campus affairs for the Beta Iota chapter of Alpha Phi International Fraternity and a student delegate for the Model United Nations Club.
The remaining 41 WVU Outstanding Seniors are:
- Katherine Adase, Wheeling
- Keanan Allen, Wayne, Nebraska (Honors College)
- Nasser Al-Rayyes, Bayan, Kuwait
- Brenna Cole, Machias, New York
- Olivia Darby, Charleston (Honors College)
- Marlee Dinterman, Morgantown (Honors College)
- Arlie Dolly, Romney (Honors College)
- Madelyn Dundon, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania
- Garrett Fink, Parkersburg (Honors College)
- Terezia Galikova, Morgantown (Honors College)
- Ashley Gall, Morgantown (Honors College)
- Brianna Grimes, Kingwood
- Morgan Hambel, Columbus, Ohio (Honors College)
- Alexa Harris, Morgantown (Honors College)
- Teresa Hoang, Hurricane (Honors College)
- Nolan Holley, Ripley (Honors College)
- Peyton Keener, Charleston (Honors College)
- David Koenders, Mossautal, Germany
- Taylor Lansberry, Patton, Pennsylvania
- David Laub, Martinsburg (Honors College)
- Molly Layne, Bridgeport
- Olivia Lee, Yawkey
- Alexis Lohm, Canonsburg, Pennsylvania (Honors College)
- Sydney Luther, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
- Eva MacFarland, Bridgeport (Honors College)
- Iain MacKay, Bend, Oregon (Honors College)
- Samantha Mehnert, Tuckerton, New Jersey (Honors College)
- Tyler Myatt, Charles Town (Honors College)
- Neyha Naveed, Bridgeport
- Patrick Orsagos, Avon, Ohio (Honors College)
- Katherine Rexroad, Buckhannon (Honors College)
- Anna Saab, Morgantown (Honors College)
- Courtney Saffle, Newburg (Honors College)
- Sadaf Sarwari, Morgantown (Honors College)
- Megan Scarano, Martinsburg (Honors College)
- Molly Sherlock, Morgantown
- Douglas Soule, Bridgeport
- Alyson Stevens, Altoona, Pennsylvania (Honors College)
- Kadra Tedrick, Clear Spring, Maryland
- Dylan Vest, Princeton (Honors College)
- Emilea Warnick, Kingwood (Honors College)
Established in 1995 to signify the 40th anniversary of the WVU Foundation, the Outstanding Seniors award recognizes students for their contributions and achievements in scholarship, leadership and service.
The Order of Augusta further recognizes the students’ superior scholarship, demonstrated leadership and record of community and public service. The award is named for its historical significance in the state. Augusta was among the original names considered by Legislature when the state seceded from Virginia in 1863.