BETHANY, W.Va. – Bethany College sophomore Taylor Sasak received the Richard B. Kenney First-Year Leadership Award for the 2014-15 school year during Fall Convocation held in Commencement Hall Thursday, Sept. 10.
The award is granted to a student who, in his or her first year at Bethany, has demonstrated outstanding leadership and character, has been actively involved, and has contributed service and devotion to the College community. The student who receives the award must also achieve at least a 3.5 GPA during their first year at Bethany.
Sasak is from Berea, Ohio, and the daughter of Todd and Marie Sasak. She is pursuing a degree in environmental science with minors in mathematics and environmental biology.
Dean of Students Gerald Stebbins presented Sasak with the award.
According to her professors, Stebbins said, Sasak exemplifies an ideal student. She maintained a perfect 4.0 GPA during her freshman year. Her engagement on campus helps make Bethany a better place, and she sets an example with her leadership, Stebbins said.
Sasak is a Kalon Scholar, associative member of Tri Beta, and received a Women’s Leadership award last year. Outside of the classroom, she is involved in many activities, including the women’s soccer team. She also worked as a life guard and an athletics assistant while taking courses.
Sasak credits time management skills for her successful freshman year. “It’s truly an honor to be recognized for my hard work," she said. "It really means a lot to me to receive this prestigious award.”
The award, which honors the late Dr. Kenney, the T.W. Phillips Professor of Old Testament Literature who taught at Bethany from 1964-86, was established by the Freshman Activities Council of 1986-87.
Bethany, a small college of national distinction, is located on a picturesque and historic 1,300-acre campus. Bethany, the oldest degree granting institution in West Virginia, was founded in 1840 and traces its origins to the founding of Buffalo Seminary in 1818 at what was then Bethany, Virginia.