Academic excellence


Departmental honors

Departmental Honors were earned by (top row) Kelly Bilen and MacKenzie Martin; and (bottom row) Brooke Barnes and Abby Bush.

Bluffton student scholars honored

Bluffton University recognized many of its top students for their academic achievements at the annual Academic Awards and Honors Forum on April 23.
Four seniors received departmental honors for independent-study projects: 

  • “Everyday Nutrition and its Effects on the Eyes,” by Brooke Barnes, a biology major from Shelby, Ohio
  • “Who Am I,” by art major Kelly Bilen of Archbold, Ohio
  • “Gerda and Kay,” by writing major Abby Bush from Marion, Ohio
  • “Earphone Epidemic?: Prevalence of Earphone Use and Listening Behaviors Among Students,” by MacKenzie Martin, a speech-language pathology and audiology major from Hartville, Ohio

Six seniors were recognized for completion of the Honors Program. 

  • Brooke Barnes, Shelby, Ohio
  • Kelly Bilen, Archbold, Ohio
  • Abby Bush, Marion, Ohio
  • Jackson Clark, Mount Blanchard, Ohio
  • Ethan Ly, Celina, Ohio
  • MacKenzie Martin, Hartville, Ohio

Thirty seniors were honored as distinguished scholars in their respective academic areas.

  • Rosanna Barber, Bowling Green, Ohio, Distinguished Scholar in Studio Art
  • Jenía Freewalt, Delphos, Ohio, Distinguished Scholar in Art Education
  • Matt DeRitter, Pompton Lakes, N.J., Distinguished Scholar in Graphic Design
  • Adrianna Ruiz Suarez, Reynoldsburg, Ohio, Distinguished Scholar in Pre-Art Therapy
  • Seth Altman, Hilliard, Ohio, Distinguished Scholar in Accounting
  • Rachel Larson, West Liberty, Ohio, Distinguished Scholar in Business Administration
  • Dakota Bricker, Bluffton, Ohio, Distinguished Scholar in Business Management
  • Brittany Ramirez, Archbold, Ohio, Distinguished Scholar in Marketing
  • Olivia Daugherty, Bradford, Ohio, Distinguished Scholar in Communication and Media
  • Abby Bush, Marion, Distinguished Scholar in both Theatre and Writing
  • Carina DiMarco, Hartville, Ohio, Distinguished Scholar in Primary (P-5) Education
  • Kryshel Dales, Defiance, Ohio, Distinguished Scholar in Intervention Specialist
  • MacKenzie Martin, Hartville, Ohio, Distinguished Scholar in Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology
  • Ezra Deitering, Miller City, Ohio, Distinguished Scholar in English
  • Ben Davidson, Greenville, Ohio, Distinguished Scholar in Exercise Science
  • Carson Kindred, Brookville, Ohio, Distinguished Scholar in Sport Management
  • Simon Shawk, Galion, Ohio, Distinguished Scholar in Strength and Conditioning
  • Garrett Rice, Coshocton, Ohio, Distinguished Scholar in History
  • Andre Wynes, Warren Mich., Distinguished Scholar in Criminal Justice
  • Olivia Zender, Fostoria, Ohio., Distinguished Scholar in Psychology
  • Leah Bowman, Lancaster, Penn., Distinguished Scholar in Social Work
  • Brady Johnston, Lima, Ohio, Distinguished Scholar in Sociology
  • Meredith Obringer, Tiffin, Ohio, Distinguished Scholar in Nutrition and Dietetics
  • Shelby Stammen, Fort Recovery, Ohio, Distinguished Scholar in Biology
  • Ethan Ly, Celina, Ohio, Distinguished Scholar in Pre-Medicine
  • Danielle King, Wauseon, Ohio, Distinguished Scholar in Pre-Physical Therapy
  • Lindsey Shaw, Findlay, Ohio, Distinguished Scholar in Nursing
  • Elijah Zimmerman, Archbold, Ohio, Distinguished Scholar in Mathematics
  • Jocelyn Shade, Galion, Ohio, Distinguished Scholar in Mathematics Education

Other awards went to:

  • Jenna Juarez of Fremont, Ohio; Jenía Freewalt of Delphos, Ohio; and Zachariah Boch of Lancaster, Ohio, C. Henry Smith Peace Oratorical Awards
  • Anton Miller, Springfield, Ohio; John D. Unruh Jr. Award for exceptional research paper written for humanities, “How the Hiss-Chambers Case Ignited the Flame of McCarthyism”
  • Emma Mueller, Delphos, Ohio; John D. Unruh Jr. Award for exceptional research paper written for humanities, “The Impact of Birth Order on Characters in Zadie Smith’s On Beauty and White Teeth”
  • Mara Ruhlen of Dunkirk, Ohio; Mary Ann Sullivan Award for “Generational Trauma and the Role of Community in Beloved and The Bluest Eye”
  • Adrianny Ruiz Suarez of Reynoldsburg, Ohio, Bluffton Creative Writing Award
  • Alexis Rippel, Mansfield, Ohio; Esta Lugibill Dye Award for Excellence in Chemistry by a Woman
  • Rosanna Barber of Ada, Ohio, Meredith Myers of Deshler, Ohio, Zach Slone of Mansfield, Ohio, and Mya Vernon of Toledo, Ohio; Art Show Juror’s Awards of Distinction
  • Rosanna Barber, Bowling Green, Ohio; Gregg Luginbuhl Award for Best of Show
  • Cami Hazelton, Ada, Ohio; Gregg Luginbuhl Award for Ceramics
  • Shaina Phillips, Ada, Ohio; The President’s Choice Art Show Award
  • Cierra Long, Urbana, Ohio; Jim Satterwhite Award in Peace Scholarship and Activism
  • Josie McCullough, Arcanum, Ohio; Dr. Elizabeth Hostetler Outstanding Educator Award
  • Braxton Lint, Killbuck, Ohio; Criminal Justice Merit Award
  • Taylor Born of Mount Cory, Ohio, Carson Kindred of Brookville, Ohio, and Simon Shawk, Galion, Ohio; Athlete with Highest Scholastic Record

Concluding the program was the recognition of 96 academic all-conference student-athletes; C. Henry Smith Scholars—9 graduating and 9 continuing; and 37 new members of Bluffton’s Pi Delta Society, an honor for graduating seniors with a grade point average of at least 3.75 during their college careers.