Students recognized for leadership and service

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Credit: Penn State

WYOMISSING, Pa. — Penn State Berks held an award ceremony for its student leaders during the week of April 25.

The following students were recognized with Berks service and leadership awards:

Tahj Morales, recent alumnus biochemistry and molecular biology major from Reading, was named the 2021 recipient of the Eric A. and Josephine S. Walker Award. The award is presented annually to an undergraduate student whose outstanding qualities of character, scholarship, and leadership contribute to the prestige of the campus. The award was established in 1980 by Penn State President Eric Walker and is presented at each of Penn State’s 24 campuses.

Genesis Munoz Arias is the 2021 Howard O., Jr., and Jean S. Beaver Award for Community Service recipient. The award honors a student for their distinguished contributions through community service.

Derek DeTommaso was honored with the J. Dean Stephans Memorial Award for Student Leadership. The award was created with the intention of honoring a student who demonstrates strong leadership skills, while encouraging the involvement of others. 

Liz Sanchez Pena received the 2021 Blaine Steensland Award for Outstanding Student Leadership and Service. The award created in 2006 by the members of the Student Government Association to recognize outstanding achievement by an undergraduate student at Penn State Berks. This is the seventh year that this award will be given.  

In addition, Penn State Berks had the highest number of students of any campus outside University Park to receive University leadership and service awards.

Ja’nique Jules and Tahj Morales received the Craig and Maxine Millar Award, which was created to honor and recognize undergraduate students of at least junior status enrolled at the University who hold a leadership position in a club on campus, have achieved a minimum of 3.3 GPA, have displayed an ability to relate effectively with others, and have made meaningful contributions to student life at the University.

Kaitlyn Anders was honored with the Mary Lee Hobbs Steel Emerging Leader Award, created to honor and recognize outstanding achievement by a sophomore or junior student enrolled at Penn State who has demonstrated leadership within the campus, the community, and the classroom; and has demonstrated creativity, initiative, and continued involvement in Penn State and surrounding communities.

Salvatore DeFeo received the Smile for Sam Award, created to provide recognition and financial assistance to outstanding junior and senior undergraduate students enrolled or planning to enroll at Penn State who have a minimum GPA of 3.0 and who have demonstrated past and continuing leadership through community service and/or student organizations.