May 18-24, 2001
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IN THIS ISSUE
Waters' mission runs deep
Two graduates honored for their service to humanity
Student aids the homeless

Mellon winner redefines "Jim Crow" era

Pre-med student shares his passion for music
Fast-track grad driven to help his family
Student leads effort to install Braille on Lawn room doors
Creative recycling: Students convert crate into studio
Lawson lives richly
Can you go home again? Issues facing international students
Education delayed but not denied
Weaver finds election laws discriminatory
Quilter gets A+
Students to go abroad on Fulbright scholarships
Weddle will research Peruvian women
Graduate rich in lessons learned
Anthony defender of public good
Affinnih plays her cards strategically
After earning degree in two years, graduate going for two more
Student develops new sign language system
Student trio pushes for late-night joe

Two graduates honored for their service to humanity

Kevin Whelan and Bridget Kuczkowski
Stephanie Gross
Kevin P. Whelan and Bridget J. Kuczkowski are this year’s students receiving the Algernon Sydney Sullivan awards.

Staff Report

Improving the world on Grounds and abroad is what this year’s Algernon Sydney Sullivan Award-winners share. Given annually at Valediction Exercises to a female and male graduating fourth-year student and a U.Va. faculty member, the award recognizes excellence of character and service to humanity.

M. Rick Turner, dean of U.Va.’s Office of African-American Affairs, received this year’s Sullivan Award for a faculty member. Under his direction, U.Va.’s graduation rate for African-American students is the highest among public institutions nationwide. An article about him winning the award will run in next week’s May 25 issue of Inside UVA.

The two student award-winners are Bridget J. Kuczkowski and Kevin P. Whelan.

Kuczkowsski, of Arlington, Va., helped found Nursing Students Without Borders, an organization that leads a health campaign for migrant workers in farm camps in Virginia, along with an international education and research initiative in San Sebastian, El Salvador.

Whelan, of Vienna, Va., has been deeply involved in Madison House, where he has served on various committees for three years and been a member and buddy with Best Buddies for four years.

Kuczkowski is receiving her bachelor’s degree in nursing. A former resident of La Casa Bolivar, she participated in a summer foreign language program at La Universidad de Costa Rica. The following fall, she led a student initiative for a School of Nursing Spanish language course, “Spanish for Health Care Professionals,” for which she served as teaching assistant. This year she served as president of Nursing Students Without Borders. Articles about the program, which she co-authored, will be published in a U.Va. School of Nursing faculty textbook and by the National League of Nursing.

She has served as a Nursing School representative on the Honor Committee for two academic years, a Class of 2001 trustee, a resident coordinator for the residence-life program (1999-2000), a tutor for Migrant Aid (1999-2000), assisting school-age children living in migrant farm communities and as a volunteer for the Central American Relief Effort (1998-99), helping to raise funds and coordinate information in the U.S., as well as performing a month of relief work in Nicaragua in the summer of 1999.

Her honors include receiving the Patricia Bergman Memorial Scholarship and the Haggerty Scholarship for the Study of Health Sciences (twice), a Raven Award, being a Lawn resident and membership in the Omicron Delta Kappa Leadership Honor Society and the Thirteen Society.

“The committee was impressed with Bridget’s unmatched commitment to improving the world at U.Va. and beyond,” said Corrie Hall, a student member of the awards committee. “Not only has she made a difference on Grounds, representing the Nursing School on the Honor Committee, but as one of the founders of Nursing Students Without Borders, she has made an important contribution on the international scene as well.”

Whelan, an Echols Scholar and Jefferson Scholar, is completing the Honors Program in government and foreign affairs. While at U.Va., he has been involved in Madison House, serving on various committees for three years, including a stint as co-chair of its board of directors this year. He has also been a member and buddy with Best Buddies for four years and director of the U.Va. chapter for two years. He was a member of University Mediation Services for two years as well.

In addition to his public service, Whelan has played French horn with several University ensembles for three years and was an active member of the Catholic Students Association for a year.

Last summer, he served as an intern with the policy-planning unit of the U.S. Department of State, in the office of former Secretary of State Madeline Albright. A year before that, Whelan journeyed to Europe as part of the Jefferson Scholar’s Program, following Mark Twain’s travel journal, A Tramp Abroad. In the summer of 1998, he was a resident assistant at Johns Hopkins University’s Center for Talented Youth and performed mission work in Kingston, Jamaica, with St. Patrick’s Foundation.

His honors include the Raven Award, residency on the Lawn, finalist status for numerous awards, and selection as a Robert Kent Gooch Scholar.

“We were deeply impressed with three things,” said Pablo Davis, assistant dean of students and a member of the awards committee, speaking of Kevin Whelan’s nomination. “Kevin’s selflessness and service to others impressed us as did his intellectual curiosity and the thoughtful nature of his orientation to service, the way in which he calls on others to consider their consciences in decision making. He also has an extraordinarily self-effacing nature and is concerned with letting others shine.”

The Algernon Sydney Sullivan awards were established by the New York Southern Society in 1925 to honor its first president. The awards are presented annually at U.Va. and at about a dozen other universities in the United States to two undergraduate degree candidates, a man and a woman, and a member of the university community. Recipients receive medallions, certificates and books on Sullivan.


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