Academics, activity and leadership honored at WMC awards ceremony

Academic, activity and leadership awards were presented to members of the Class of 2000, faculty and alumni April 30 at the annual Senior Investiture and Honors Convocation at Western Maryland College.

Local honorees included foreign languages professor Thomas Deveny of Westminster, who received the Ira G. Zepp Distinguished Teaching Award for his inspired classroom work and dedication to his students.


He started teaching at WMC in 1978 after earning a Ph.D. from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He majored in Spanish and minored in Portuguese.

He has earned several Faculty Scholarly Publication honors from WMC, including awards for an article and two books on Spanish cinema.


Deveny has been faculty adviser to the Spanish Club and Phi Sigma Iota, the international foreign language honor society. He also serves as an interpreter and does translation work for clients.

Graduating seniors and three alumni also received awards at the annual spring ceremony.

Alumni career and service achievement awards were given by the WMC Board of Trustees to L. Stanley Bowlsbey, '52, master of education, '59; Edward J. Kasemeyer, '67; and David Selikowitz, '63.

Bowlsbey, who returned to teach at WMC after earning his Ph.D. in 1969, retired in 1989 as dean of graduate students and professor of education emeritus.

A member of the Maryland Senate from 1987 to 1990, Kasemeyer was elected again in 1995 and currently serves as deputy majority leader.

A businessman and humanitarian, Selikowitz is founder and president of Paris American AIDS Committee, which funds research for AIDS and supports AIDS patients in France.

Students received an array of endowed honors and awards, including the top male and female student. Also recognized were students inducted into the following organizations: Phi Beta Kappa, the paramount honor society in the United States; Who's Who Among Students in American Colleges and Universities; Omicron Delta Kappa, a national honor society recognizing leadership qualities; and the Trumpeters, a local honor society honoring students dedicated to service.

Graduating members of the college's four-year honors program also were recognized.


Gaelen Cross of Sykesville received the John D. Nawrocki Memorial Award, given to the male member of the senior class who has participated in lacrosse and/or soccer, emulates leadership through example, shows concern for teammates and friends, and gives fully of himself.

Jeanette Frye of Hampstead, a history major, received the U.S. History Award. Set up through a bequest of the late H. Peyton Gorsuch, the award honors students excelling in U.S. history.

Nicholas Johnson of Mount Airy received the Wall Street Journal Student Achievement Award. The award is presented annually to the student who has exhibited the best overall academic performance in the economics and business department. He also was recognized as a graduating member of the honors program.

Corrie Leyshon of Westminster received the Michael and Polly Beaver Award for Excellence in Education. Recipients are seniors who have had distinguished college careers in their scholarship and contributions to life on- and off-campus.

Amy Pritchett of Hampstead received the Frank and Margaret Malone Award for Excellence in a Foreign Language. A Spanish major, Pritchett also was recognized for her selection to Phi Beta Kappa.

Matthew Rittler of Reisterstown received the Richard A. Clower Award for Excellence in Exercise Science and Physical Education. Rittler also was recognized for his selection to Phi Beta Kappa.


Meggan Robinson of Westminster was recognized for her selection to Phi Beta Kappa. She received the Philip & Azalea Myers Award for Creativity in English and the Phi Delta Gamma Award, set up by WMC's Psi chapter for graduate students and given to a senior to encourage graduate study.

Other local students inducted into Phi Beta Kappa were: Jessica Antonakos of Westminster; Shawna Brophy of Marriottsville; Lindsey Drager of Eldersburg; Kenneth Fischer of Sykesville; Megan Friday of Westminster; Scott Maas of Westminster; Jaime Rauser of Hampstead; Angela Weaver of Finksburg; and Jennifer Whalen of Sykesville.

Local students inducted into Who's Who were Veronica Esteves of Westminster and Timothy Kulp of Taneytown.