Hannah Jones, Jules Kessler, Madison LaPole, Marcus Larrson, Maggie Lohmann, Brandon Richter, and Casey Stallman have been named Outstanding Seniors at West Virginia Wesleyan College. The formal announcement was made on April 19 during the College’s Annual Awards Program.
Jones is a business administration and international studies double major and member of the volleyball team from South Charleston. She has achieved a 3.87 GPA and has been named a four-year All-Mountain East Conference Academic team member. She has supplemented her double major with an Honors minor and boasts membership in several honor societies including Alpha Lambda Delta, Delta Mu Delta, Omicron Delta Kappa, and the National Society of Leadership and Success. She was a Bruhns Scholar which allowed her to study religion and culture at Chiang Mai University in Thailand. She also studied business and international politics at the EM Strasbourg Business School in France. Jones gained valuable work experience as a Governor’s Intern within the Department of Environmental Protection, a Social Media Ambassador for the CEPA Foundation promoting study abroad programs, as a researcher with the Upshur County Development Authority, and as an International Trade intern with the West Virginia Development Office. Her extensive contributions to the campus community also include a variety of service and leadership roles with Alpha Xi Delta sorority, WE LEAD’s Human Rights team, a Wesleyan Student Ambassador, and an English as a Second Language tutor.
Kessler, a gender studies major, will complete his studies at Wesleyan in three years with a 4.0 GPA. The Lewisburg native has been an integral part of the social justice and social awareness movement on Wesleyan’s campus. He is an active member of the Black Student Union, Prism, and Center for Community Engagement. He has facilitated events around social justice week and the community organizing for the Poor People’s campaign, where he was the regional organizer. He has hosted the Holler Network to help community members understand and participate in activist movements. He has presented at the WVWC Gender Studies Conference, attended the Racial Justice Summit and Duke Feminist Theory Workshop, and presented at the Center for Popular Democracy’s People Convention. He is a steering committee member of Stay Together Appalachia, where he focused on enriching Appalachian culture through music, poetry, skill-sharing, and political education. During the past academic year, he served as an intern in the Office of Multicultural Programs and Services, Restorative Justice, and Our Future WV where he focused on research and infrastructure building in regards to civility and access. Kessler was also active in a number of campus musical ensembles and served on the campus conduct board.
LaPole of Inwood, is a history and political science double major. She holds a 3.88 cumulative GPA and is a member of Pi Sigma Alpha, Phi Alpha Theta, and Alpha Lambda Delta honoraries. She pursued an international study experience at Waseda University in Tokyo. She is a finalist in the U.S. State Department’s Critical Language Scholarship Program. A member of the women’s soccer team, Lapole earned numerous awards for her work in the classroom and on the field. She was named to the Division 2 Conference Commissioner’s Association (D2CCA) All-South Academic first team and All-Atlantic Region first team in addition to Mountain East First Team All-Conference. She has served on the Student Conduct Board, Student Athlete Advisory Committee, and the WE LEAD Human Rights Team and Peer Council. LaPole is also active in Collegiate 4-H and is a charter member of WV 4-H and a WV 4H All-Star. She attended a 4H China Learning Adventure in Beijing and the Shanxi Province, and served as both a counselor and extension camping instructor responsible for facilitating youth camps across the state. LaPole has also pursued a variety of work and internship experiences including the WV House of Delegates, the Upshur County Development Authority, and the Klie Law Office in Buckhannon.
Larrson of Solna Sweden, made quick work of leaving a mark on Wesleyan’s campus after transferring to WVWC in his sophomore year. He holds a 3.59 GPA and is a political science and history double major. The co-captain of the men’s basketball team, Larrson also served as vice president of the Black Student Union, president of Pi Sigma Alpha Political Science Honorary, a member of Phi Alpha Theta honorary, Student Athlete Advisory Committee representative, and a resident assistant. Larrson was the recipient of the prestigious Benjamin A. Gilman Scholarship from the U.S. Department of State and the Dr. John Saunders International Travel Scholarship, which allowed him to study in both Uganda and Rwanda. He plans to pursue a master’s degree in international relations focusing on Africa.
Senior Class President Maggie Lohmann of Bridgeport, is an English major with minors in biology, history, political science, and honors. She holds a 3.99 cumulative GPA and has served on Student Senate Executive Council, as a WVWC Campus Ambassador, Freshman Seminar Leader, Honors Program vice-president, and several other student government committees. This past summer, Lohmann completed an international study abroad experience in Khon Kaen, Thailand, where she studied Thai Language, Global Health, and the History of the Greater Mekong Sub region. She has also traveled to Prague, Paris, and Florence with the College’s Honors program. Lohmann has also served as an intern with the WV House of Delegates, where she researched the topics of Rolling Coal and the Mental Health of African American males to assist with current bills. She has completed and served in major Center for Community Engagement projects including Appalachian Impact and Buddy for Bridgeport Little League. In addition, she has assisted as a Writing Center tutor each of her four years at Wesleyan.
Richter, a biochemistry major from Salem, WV, has dedicated his college experience to pursuing opportunities and gaining knowledge. His path has included supplementing his major with minors in math and honors and completing summer research with the WV IDEA Network of Biomedical Research Excellence. His impressive 4.0 cumulative GPA and involvement gained him access to three honors societies – Alpha Lambda Delta, Phi Kappa Phi, and Omicron Delta Kappa. He served in leadership roles in two of those three organizations as well as Service Chair, Vice President, and President of his fraternity, Alpha Sigma Phi. Throughout his Wesleyan career, Richter has enriched his skill set and abilities by serving others. His work ranges from tutoring at Stockert Youth Center to invasive species pulls at the river walk, annual clean-ups at Buckhannon’s Old Heavener Cemetery, and Jaw Bone Park. He has been instrumental in coordinating Red Cross Blood Drives on campus and helping his fraternity to increase their annual philanthropic donations by more than $900. This impressive array of involvement and academic success opened doors for him to attend the University of California, Berkeley, for medical school. However, he plans to attend either West Virginia University or Pittsburgh this fall.
Stallman of Bridgeport, is a biology major with a concentration in molecular biology and biotechnology and a minor in psychology. She holds a 3.9 GPA and is on track to becoming a leading medical researcher. Last summer, Stallman spent six weeks in Madagascar where she studied traditional medicine and healthcare systems. She worked on a project that researched traditional remedies for diabetes and the integrated healthcare system in Madagascar. She is a member of Zeta Tau Alpha where she served as Corresponding Secretary, Think Pink Chairman, and Executive Council Recording Secretary. She is a member of Alpha Lambda Delta Academic Honorary, Benzene Ring Chemistry Club, and Beta Beta Beta Biological Honor Society. She is a member of Wesleyan Service Scholars with 400 service hours and team leader for We Lead, where she helps organize the Engage Conference as a coordinator and presenter. During her time with We Lead, she tackled causes related to invisible illness. She established a donation-based fund to help students fund access to counseling. As a team leader, she coordinated big events like the Suicide Prevention Walk where she helped raise $3,000, Coffee and Conversations: interactive conversations about mental health, Mind, Body, and Athletics: a mental health program for student-athletes, and educating the community about the opioid crisis.