Senior Awards

Scholarship and Citizenship

The Addison Brown Scholarship


From a fund established by Addison Brown of the Class of 1852, the scholarship is awarded to that senior who, being already on the scholarship list, shall have attained the highest standing in the studies of the first-year, sophomore and junior years.

Shanghui Li ’14

The Charles Hamilton Houston Fellowship

Awarded to a graduating senior who best personifies a commitment to realizing his/her humane ideals, much in the way Charles Houston, class of l915, devoted his life to the struggle for equal protection under the law for African-Americans in the United States.

Shared by Carlos Aldolfo Gonzalez ’14 and Adrianna Marie Turner ’14

The Howard Hill Mossman Trophy


Awarded annually to the member of the senior class who has, during his or her four years at Amherst, brought the greatest honor in athletics to the Alma Mater—the word “honor” to be interpreted as relating both to achievement and to sportsmanship.

Aaron Patrick Toomey ’14

The Psi Upsilon Prize


Established by the Gamma Chapter of Psi Upsilon in 1941, the Psi Upsilon Prize is awarded to that member of the graduating class who is considered preeminent in scholarship, leadership, athletics and character.

Shared by Matthew Christian Melton ’14 and Charles Pierson Reighard ‘14

The Stonewall Prize


Established by David L. Kirp of the Class of 1965 and other alumni, the prize is awarded annually to that student who produces a work of exceptional intellectual or artistic merit pertaining to the gay, lesbian or bisexual experience.

Yasmina Muthoki Martin ’14

The Thomas H. Wyman 1951 Medal


Awarded to that member of the senior class who best represents the highest standards in scholarship, athletics and/or extracurricular activities, community service, integrity, character and humanism as determined by the Dean of Students and the Prize Committee.

Julien Takeru Aoyama ’14


American Studies

The Doshisha American Studies Prize


A gift from Amherst House, Doshisha University, the prize is awarded for the American Studies honors thesis judged by the Department of American Studies as most likely to stimulate interest in and understanding of America overseas—with a view toward possible publication in Japan.

Shared by Hannah Perelson Gross ’14, Amelia Sumner Moore ’14 and Lindsay Elizabeth Oxx ‘14

The George Rogers Taylor Prize


Awarded to the student who, in the opinion of the American Studies Department, shows the most promise for creative and scholarly work in American studies.

Amelia Sumner Moore ’14


Anthropology

The Donald S. Pitkin Prize


The Donald S. Pitkin Prize in Anthropology-Sociology, established in honor of the founder of that department on the occasion of his retirement, is given to that student whose honors thesis best exemplifies the humane values to which Professor Pitkin committed his research and teaching.

Shared by Amber Najam Khan ‘14 and William Christopher Ruhm ‘14


Art and the History of Art

The Anna Baker Heap Prize


Established by Arnold N. Heap of the Class of 1873, the prize is awarded to that senior who submits the best essay in the field of art.

Thea Rebecca Goldring ‘14

The Athanasios Demetrios Skouras Prize

Given in memory of Mr. Skouras of the Class of 1936, who died in 1943 in Athens as a result of Nazi reprisal killings, the prize is awarded to a student who, in the opinion of the department, has created an outstanding work of art.

Gabriela Escovar ‘14


Asian Languages and Civilizations

The Doshisha Asian Studies Prize 


From the income of a gift from Amherst House, Doshisha University, the prize is awarded for the best undergraduate honors thesis pertaining to Asia.

Shared by Yi (Louis) Lu ‘14 and Catherine Mitsuko Morse ‘14


Athletics

The Manstein Family Award
Given by Carl H. ’72, Mark E. ’74 and Joanne L. Manstein ’83, the award is presented to the outstanding senior varsity athlete who intends to pursue a career in medicine or a medical field.

Adrienne Shanise Lightbourne ‘14


Biochemistry and Biophysics

The Biochemistry and Biophysics Prize

Awarded to the student who, in the opinion of the faculty, has prepared the best thesis in the Biochemistry and Biophysics Program.

Jacob Julian Seid Witten ‘14


Biology

The Harvey Blodgett Scholarship

Established by Frederick H. Blodgett in memory of his grandfather, Harvey Blodgett of the class of 1829 and awarded to aid student work in biology and geology in their educational phases as distinct from their more technical and strictly scientific phases.

COMBINED WITH

The Phi Delta Theta Scholarship

Established by the Phi Delta Theta Fraternity and awarded as a scholarship at the Woods Hole Marine Biological Laboratory to a student for proficiency in biology.

Shared by Claire F. Hoffmann ’14 and Joseph Myungkyu Kim ‘14

The James R. Elster Award

Created in memory of James R. Elster ’71, by his parents, Dr. and Mrs. Samuel K. Elster, this fund has been established for the purpose of providing support in the summer months for a research project in the Department of Biology.

Shared by Fadi Joseph Hamati ’14, Mariah M. Servos ‘14, and Monroe Anita Wolf ‘14

The Oscar E. Schotté Award


Given to that member of the graduating class who, in the opinion of the department, has done the best independent work in biology.

Shared by Caitlin Marie Blank ’14 and Paul Michael Tyler ‘14


Black Studies

The Edward Jones Prize 


Given in honor of the college’s first black alumnus. The prize is awarded by the Black Studies Department to a graduating senior for the best senior thesis which addresses a present or future issue of concern to black people in Africa and the Diaspora.

Shared by Ruodi Duan ’14 and Dylan Alexander Vasey  ’14 


Chemistry

The Howard Waters Doughty Prize


Awarded to that member of the senior class who, in the opinion of the Chemistry Department, has prepared the best honors thesis.

Shared by Christopher James Gerry ’14, Joseph Peter Messinger ‘14, and Emma Walters Vaimberg ‘14

The Frank Fowler Dow Prize 


Established by Fayette B. Dow in memory of his father, the prize is awarded to a senior who is preparing to enter medical school and whose undergraduate work indicates a career of distinction in medicine.

Shared by Christine Bierema ’14 and Raysa Gabriela Cabrejo La Torre ‘14

The Everett H. Pryde Research Award


Presented annually to a senior who has been an outstanding teaching assistant in chemistry and who shows great promise for carrying out research in science or medicine.

Shared by Christopher James Gerry ’14 and Joseph Peter Messinger ’14


Computer Center

The Computer Center Prize


Awarded for outstanding contributions in the application of the computer to a broad range of academic disciplines, and for generous help to many students and faculty at the Computer Center.

Andre L. Antunes de Sa ‘14


Computer Science

The Computer Science Prize


Awarded to a senior who has completed an honors thesis and who, in the opinion of the Department of Computer Science, has achieved the best performance in the study of computer science. The award is based on the thesis and overall achievement in computer science.

Shared by Allison Chun Yi Koo ’14 and Colin Robert Willson White ‘14


Economics

The Bernstein Prize


Funded by a gift from the family of Jeffrey Bernstein, Class of 1991, the prize is awarded to the senior who, in the opinion of the Economics Department and the Dean of the Faculty, has done particularly distinguished honors work in economics.

Audrey Tiew ‘14

The James R. Nelson Memorial Award
Presented to that senior who, in the opinion of the Economics Department, has achieved excellence in the study of economics while pursuing a broad liberal education.

Shared by Jaskaran Singh Bains ‘14 and Shanghui Li ‘14

The James R. Nelson Prize


Awarded to the senior who, in the opinion of the Economics Department, has written a distinguished honors thesis that applies economic analysis to an important question of public policy.
Shared by Christopher Leighton Friend ’14, Alvaro Manuel Morales ’14, and George Nicholas Tepe ‘14


English

The Collin Armstrong Poetry Prize

Established in part by Mrs. Elizabeth H. Armstrong and awarded to the undergraduate author of the best original poem or group of poems.

Danielle Renae Trevino ‘14

The Elizabeth Bruss Prize


Presented to that senior English major  who,  in the judgment of the English Department, best represents those qualities of breadth and imagination exemplified by Elizabeth Bruss.

Kimberly Bain ‘14

The Corbin Prize

Awarded for an outstanding original composition in the form of poetry or an informal essay.

Danielle Renae Trevino ‘14

The G. Armour Craig Award For Prose Composition

Awarded to the junior or senior who writes the best autobiographical essay on an experience of intellectual discovery.

Shared by Victoria Sayo Turner ’14 and an underclass student

The Peter Burnett Howe Prize

The prize, for excellence in prose fiction, was established by a gift of Robert B. Howe of the Class of 1930 in memory of his son Peter Burnett Howe, 1960.

Shared by John (Peter Marion) Jody ‘14 and Victoria Sayo Turner ‘14

The Rolfe Humphries Poetry Prize


Presented to that senior who has achieved the greatest sense of poetic form in his or her undergraduate writing. The award is made on the basis of three submissions to the English Department in the applicant’s senior year and may include writing produced during the undergraduate years.

Shared by Diana Beatrice Babineau ’14 and a first semester senior

The Ralph Waldo Rice Prize


Established by Mrs. Mary Rice Jenkins in memory of her brother, of the Class of 1910, the prize is awarded for the best essay on “The Liberal College and Christian Citizenship” or any subject named by the faculty. The prize is traditionally given to the author of the best portfolio submitted to the department in candidacy for honors.

Shared by Elizabeth Murice Alexander ’14 and John (Peter Marion) Jody ’14 

The Stephen E. Whicher Prize

Established in memory of Stephen E. Whicher, Class of 1936, the prize is awarded to the senior who has submitted the best essay in the interpretation of American literature in the Department of English or American Studies.

Daniel Mayer Adler ‘14

Film and Media Studies

The Film and Media Studies Award

Awarded to an honors student in the Film and Media Studies Program for outstanding thesis.

Alexander K. Morgan-Welch ‘14


French

The Frederick King Turgeon Prize
Established by former students of Professor Turgeon upon the occasion of his retirement. The prize is used for the award of a book to the student who has done particularly distinguished work in French during the year.

Megan Leigh Rothe ‘14


Geology

The Walter F. Pond Prize
Established in honor of Walter Pond of the Class of 1907, the prize is awarded to the senior who has submitted the best honors thesis in geology.

Benjamin David Boatwright ‘14

The David F. Quinn Memorial Award


Awarded in memory of David Quinn, Class of 1980, to an outstanding senior who, during his or her undergraduate career, has made a positive contribution to geology at Amherst through character, leadership, enthusiasm and participation in departmental activities.

Mollie Jean McDowell ‘14


German

The Consulate General Prize for Academic Achievement


The prize, made available by the Consulate General of the Federal Republic of Germany in Boston, is awarded to that student who, in the judgment of the Department of German, has written the best paper as part of a German course.

Luca Raphael Antonucci ‘14


Greek

The Hutchins Prize


Established by Waldo Hutchins of the Class of 1842, the prize is awarded to a senior for excellence in Greek.

Shared by Sarah Elizabeth Ashman ’14 and Andrew James Kaake ‘14


History

The Asa J. Davis Prize


Given each year to the student who has demonstrated outstanding achievement in the study of the history of Africa and the black Diaspora and whose work best reflects the comprehensive interest of Asa Davis in historical and cultural contacts between Africa, the Old World and the Americas.

Tiffany A. Arnold ‘14

The Alfred F. Havighurst Prize History


The prize, intended for the purchase of books, is awarded to that student, a major in the Department of History, who, in the opinion of the faculty in history, has, in his or her four years at Amherst, best fulfilled the standards of excellence and humane scholarship exemplified by Alfred F. Havighurst during the many years of his teaching career at Amherst College.

Shared by Hannah Micaela Greenwald ‘14 and Yi (Louis) Lu ‘14


Latin

The Bertram Prizes


Established by John Bertram of Salem, these two prizes are awarded to students who, together with attaining a high average in the Latin courses of the senior year, present the best essays connected with these courses.

First and second combined and shared by Noelle Jing-Wan Niu ’14 and Sasha A. Smith ‘14

The Dr. Ernest D. Daniels Latin Prize Latin

The prize, established in honor of Dr. Daniels of the Class of 1890, is awarded to the graduating senior who has submitted the best honors thesis on a Latin subject.

Sarah Elizabeth Ashman ‘14


Law, Jurisprudence and Social Thought

The Robert Cover Prize


Awarded to honor the memory of Robert Cover, a distinguished legal scholar whose work inspired the humanistic conception of law in the liberal arts embodied in Amherst’s Department of Law, Jurisprudence and Social Thought. The prize is given to a graduating senior for distinguished achievement in that major.

Shared by Maia Margo Cole ’14 and Nica Matisse Siegel ‘14


Mathematics

The Robert H. Breusch Prize


Awarded to the senior who, in the opinion of the faculty in mathematics, has presented the best honors thesis in mathematics.

Yang (Sunny) Xiao ‘14


Mead Art Museum

The Wise Award for Collection Research


Presented annually to a student in any academic department whose senior thesis, in the judgment of the Mead Art Museum’s curators and director, most effectively analyzes, interprets or responds to an object in the museum’s collection.

Sylvia Ngo ‘14

The Wise Award For Studio Art is awarded annually in the spring to a student in the College for distinction in the completion of an original work or works of art and the purchase thereof. The prize-winning work of art will become the property of the Trustees of Amherst College.

Sylvia Jijung Li ‘14


Music

The Sylvia and Irving Lerner Piano Prize


Awarded to that student who has demonstrated the greatest skill and musicianship as a pianist.

Shared by Benjamin David Boatwright ‘14 and William N. Savino ‘14

The Lincoln Lowell Russell Prize


Established by J. W. Russell, Jr., of the Class of 1899 in memory of his son, and awarded to the senior who has done most to foster the singing spirit at Amherst.

Angelina Frances Gomez ‘14

The Eric Edward Sundquist Prize


Established in memory of Mr. Sundquist of the Class of 1936; awarded to that senior who has demonstrated excellence in musical composition and performance.

Shared by Abigail Mansfield Beaton Gray ‘14 and John (Peter Marion) Jody ‘14


Neuroscience

The James Olds Memorial Neuroscience Award


Established by the Swerdlow Family Foundation in recognition of the contributions made to the neurosciences by Dr. Olds, Class of 1947, and presented to the student whose research in the neurosciences is judged, by the faculty of the neuroscience program, to be of highest quality.

Shared by Razina Aziz-Bose ’14 and Charles Pierson Reighard ‘14


Philosophy

The Gail Kennedy Memorial Award


Awarded to a senior major in philosophy in recognition of a distinguished honors essay.

Shared by Jane Elizabeth Kessner ‘14, Slyvie Jude Ramirez ‘14 and Carlyn Leigh Robertson ‘14


Physics

The William Warren Stifler Prize


Established by Professor Stifler, the prize is awarded to a senior who has majored in physics and especially excelled in the course on electricity and magnetism.

Shared by Shah Saad Alam ‘14 and Phyo Aung Kyaw ‘14


Political Science

The Densmore Berry Collins Prize in Political Science


Given annually in memory of Mr. Collins, of the Class of 1940, for the best honors thesis in political science.

Shared by Madeline Chan ’14 and Aaron Spencer Mathias ’14


Psychology

The Haskell R. Coplin Memorial Award


Established in memory of Mr. Coplin, Professor of Psychology, recognizes that member of the graduating class who, in the opinion of the Psychology Department, displays the scholarly and humane qualities that best exemplify Professor Coplin.  The prize is to a senior who has shown distinguished work in psychology classes and in an honors thesis, and who has contributed to the life of the department.

Rebecca Jill Zakarian ‘14


Public Speaking

The Bancroft Prizes

Established by Frederic Bancroft of the Class of 1882, these prizes are awarded to the two seniors who produce the best orations. Both composition and delivery are considered.

First Prize Jane Elizabeth Kessner ‘14
Second Prize Laurence Vivek Pevsner ‘14

The Hardy Prizes

Established by Alpheus Hardy of Boston, the prizes are awarded for excellence in extemporaneous speaking.

First Prize an underclass student
Second Prize Jane Elizabeth Kessner ’14

The Rogers Prize

Established by Noah C. Rogers of the Class of 1880, the prize is awarded for excellence in debate.

Shared by Christopher Leighton Friend ‘14 and Jane Elizabeth Kessner ‘14


Religion

The Moseley Prizes


Established by Thomas Moseley of Hyde Park, are awarded to seniors for the best essays on a subject approved by the Department of Religion.   

First Prize shared by Colby Daniel Jantzen ’14 and Liya Naomi Person Rechtman ‘14
Second Prize shared by Bridget Ferrell Bennett ‘14 and Noel Lee McCann ‘14


Russian

The Carol Prize in Russian


Given by David James Carol ’77 in honor of his parents, Joseph and Roberta, is awarded to the student who has demonstrated the greatest dedication and commitment to Russian.

William Clay Viguerie ‘14

The Mikhail Schweitzer Memorial Book Award

Established by students, parents and friends in fond memory of Mikhail Schweitzer, survivor of the Soviet Gulag, author, and custodian at Amherst College, for the award of books to the student who, in the judgment of the Russian Department, most shares Misha's love of Russian literature and culture.  

Shawna Marie Grajek ‘14


Spanish

The Pedro Grases Prizes for Excellence in Spanish


Given by a member of the Class of l939 to honor a great teacher and cordial scholar, the prize is awarded each year to that senior who has shown the greatest progress in the ability to read Hispanic literature with insight and to write and speak Spanish with intelligence and humane sensitivity.

Nicholas Connor Schcolnik ‘14


Theater and Dance

The Raymond Keith Bryant Prize

An annual gift from Robert E. and Ethel M. Bryant in memory of their son of the Class of l936, is awarded to that student who, in the opinion of the judges, gives the best performance of the year in a Masquers' play.

Shared by Patricia Yessenia Cardenas ‘14 (A Quinceanera) and Joshua Wren ‘14 (Wholly Man Again)


Women’s and Gender Studies

The Women’s and Gender Studies Prize


Awarded for excellence in scholarly or creative work in Women’s and Gender Studies.

Shared by Maia Brigitte Mares ’14 and Yun (Nancy) Tang ‘14