Student Spotlights

Students in the Honors Program regularly earn the top awards at RIT, and are internationally recognized for their work and studies.


We are excited to celebrate the hard-earned accomplishments of our Honors community members, shared below.

2024 Fram Chair Awards

The Fram Chair Award comes from Gene Fram's philosophy of encouraging students to engage with interdisciplinary and deeper thinking. 

Honors Student Sam Hebbar, KGCOE, was part of the winning Large Group team for their presentation: BEEBO - Robotic Arm for Education. The BEEBO provides an example of control systems that Biomedical Engineering students can watch, manage, and edit to better understand how Control Systems can be set up and applied in a Biomedical setting. A robotic arm is one of many examples of rehabilitative assistive devices.

2024-2025 Student Government members

CHST Sentator: Sammy Deol

Cross-registered Senator: Emma Kane

ACA President: Guerline Guerrier

2023-2024 Outstanding Undergraduate Scholars

The Outstanding Undergraduate Scholar Award celebrates the top 1% of undergraduate students who achieve academic excellence while also giving back to the community through civic or volunteer work, by conducting research, or being engaged in a co-op or work in their field of study. 

Learn more at the Office of the Provost's Website! Please see the list below for this year's Honors Students Scholars. 

2023 Community Impact Award

The Center for Leadership and Civic Engagement coordinates the application and/or selection process for the Community Impact Awards. This year’s recipients of the Alfred L. and Ruby C. Davis Scholarship includes Honors student Buyi Owo-Odusi. This year’s recipients of the Fredrick Douglas Scholarship includes Honors student Victoria Newson. Elissa Sainthil was also a recipient of the Walls Olson Memorial Scholarship.

2023 Excellence in Student Life Award

The Excellence in Student Life Award (formally Alpha Sigma Lambda) was founded in 1964 to celebrate students who represent the guiding principles of engagement, scholarship and leadership and who demonstrate a healthy balance of academic success and student engagement. Students selected for this honor have a high GPA and hold significant leadership positions within RIT-related activities. This year’s awardees include Honors students:

  • Ann Byerley, Kate Gleason College of Engineering
  • Rachel Kogut, College of Art and Design
  • Serina Lin, College of Art and Design
  • Shane Lockhoof, College of Liberal Arts
  • Gabby Orfanides, College of Science
  • Michael Penna, Saunders College of Business
  • Michael Perez-Gelinas, College of Art and Design
  • David Prichett, College of Science
  • Griffin Warntz, College of Engineering Technology

2023 Annual Student Writing Awards

Rochester Institute of Technology’s College of Liberal Arts honored student achievements in writing which recognize exceptional student writers in our RIT community each year. 

Henry and Mary Kearse Writing Award:

  • Jenna Warren, COLA, Communication
  • Emma Eagan, COLA, International and Global Studies with Sociology and Anthropology

Stan McKenzie Endowed Writing Award: 

  • Abigail Block, NTID, ASL, English Interpretation
  • Raina Freeman, GCCIS, Computing Science

Fulbright Awardees

Established in 1946, the Fulbright prize is one of the most prestigious in academic circles and is sponsored by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, promoting cultural exchanges with more than 140 countries. Approximately 1,900 US students earn this award each year from around the country. A number of other Honors students have also been named finalists for this award in the past, including Matthias Hausman (double major in Mechanical Engineering, and International and Global Studies), Victoria Scholl (Imaging Science), Kaylin Beiter (Biomedical Sciences) and Rose Rustowicz (Imaging Science).

Goldwater Scholars

The Goldwater Scholarship is a prestigious national award for undergraduate students in the fields of the natural sciences, engineering, and mathematics. The award is based on academic merit and research experience, and virtually all intend to obtain a Ph.D. as their highest degree. 

Aidan Miller (Biochemistry) is a 2024 recipient for the Barry Goldwater Scholarship. Miller, who is from Rochester, N.Y., is one of 438 recipients out of 1,353 nominees and has engaged in research in the laboratories of Lea Michel, professor in the School of Chemistry and Materials Science, and George Thurston, professor in the School of Physics and Astronomy. Most recently, Miller has studied the biochemical and biophysical analyses of cataract-causing mutations in certain proteins through NMR spectroscopy and light-scattering, presenting his research at the national meeting of the American Society of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology in 2024. 

Head shot of Aidan Miller

Previous recipients include:
Emily Mahoney (Chemistry BS) and Quinn Kolt (double major in Applied Mathematics and Computer Science) 

portrait of Emily Mahoneyportrait of Quinn Kolt

Creative Excellence

Screen shot from the short film Limelight

Honors students Siobhan Gannon and Eryk White (Film and Animation) won special recognition for their short film, Limelight, at the Ithaca Short Film Festival (Best Animation) and at the Virginia Emerging Filmmakers Festival (Official Selection) with many festivals still to be decided. This work, created as a senior animation capstone, depicts a retired game show host struggling to let go of his glory days gone by. In an allegorical journey through the game show’s sound stage, Siobhan and Eryk address the challenge of what to do when the limelight fades away.