An award is always nice to win, but there is something special about an award from your peers. That’s what makes the Dr. Jeanine B. Samuelson Student Distinction Award so unique.
This year’s winner is Clare Danner, a double-major in communication and English. Danner’s classmates spoke strongly of her commitment to the core qualities of what make a HAC student. They mentioned her ability to rally students together for study groups. Her general positivity was an inspiring quality that was noted to be on display even when she was having a bad day. Said one student, “People just like her. They gravitate to her.”
Mention was made of her commitment to her values and faith, and how those around her admired that in her. Those values shine through in her integrity in and outside of the classroom, with her unwillingness to ever take the easy route out and copy someone’s homework or even study guide. It was maybe best summed up by one nominator who said, “Clare embodies everything that the award stands for in a fun-sized, red-headed package, and I am so proud of who she is, what she has accomplished, and where she is going.”
Danner is a sophomore who plays soccer for Trine University. Additionally, she has worked this past year as part of the HAC Media Team, writing articles for this website.
The Samuelson Student Distinction Award is given each year. Faculty from the department choose based on nominations from other students. They are asked to pick a classmate that best exhibits the key qualities the department feels are instrumental to a successful Humanities and Communication student. Those are:
- Teamwork, exhibiting great communication skills
- Leadership in the classroom and departmental activities
- Valuing of diversity in the classroom and across campus
- Commitment to academic excellence
- Dedication to the HAC department and his or her professional field
- Excitement and passion in the classroom and departmental activities
- Ethical behavior and decision making in and outside of the classroom
The award is named for Dr. Jeanine Samuelson, who worked at Trine University for over 20 years. In that time, she served primarily as a German instructor, who also taught many sections of speech and developed student trips to Europe as part of the study abroad program. She was beloved by her students as she took a personal interest in their lives, and brought them cookies on Friday afternoons—all the while demanding and receiving academic excellence. She remains active with the department.