Recognizing Excellence in Honors

Katie Essing and Catherine Rymph laugh during an awards ceremony.
Katie Essing, pictured left, was honored with the Outstanding Faculty Award during the annual Honors College spring awards ceremony. Photo by Logan Jackson.

There were plenty of laughs to go around during the annual Honors College spring awards ceremony, as well as plenty of faculty, staff and students who were honored. 

Multiple students pursuing the Honors Certificate were recognized for their outstanding achievements over the past year. The college also gave an award to an outstanding faculty member, Katie Essing, and an exceptional campus partner, Susan Hartnagel. The final honor of the evening was given to Alexandra Socarides, associate provost for academic programs, who has been a major supporter of the Honors College over the years. Socarides will soon join Emerson College, in Boston, Massachusetts, as the college’s next provost and vice president of academic affairs and was celebrated for her dedication to Honors throughout her time at MU.

The ceremony was held on Tuesday, April 16, at the State Historical Society of Missouri.

Outstanding Faculty Award

  • Katie Essing – assistant teaching professor, marketing

Each year, the Honors College recognizes faculty who have made a substantial and lasting contribution to the academic and intellectual lives of our students. Nominees are solicited from students and other faculty and chosen by a selection committee based on the criteria of who best represents the mission and values of the Honors College through their teaching, outreach, collaboration and engagement.

Essing is an assistant teaching professor in the Marketing Department in the Trulaske College of Business, who regularly teaches Honors sections of a variety of courses, such as: “Principles of Marketing;” “Retail Marketing;” “Integrated Marketing Communications;” and “Digital Marketing.” Here is what a couple students said about Essing:

“Katie is one of the best professors I’ve ever had. Her energy and enthusiasm for the course content is contagious, and it is clear she cares and is knowledgeable on the subject well beyond the purpose of the course. She also takes time to get to know each of her students … her caring and passion made me want to come to class even on days I wasn’t feeling motivated.” 

“Professor Essing is wonderful! I’m so glad she taught the Honors section of this course so that I could have her! She welcomes everyone into the class and is so passionate about what she teaches. Her real-world experiences add so much to the lectures.”  

Outstanding Campus Partner Award

Susan Hartnagel and Catherine Rymph posing for a picture.
Susan Hartnagel
  • Susan Hartnagel – senior assistant director, student financial aid

The Outstanding Campus Partner Award is given to a staff member who supports the Honors College at a high level. Their passion and dedication to aiding the college is felt across our many programs and offerings. 

Hartnagel is the senior assistant director in the MU Office of Student Financial Aid. Her guidance and expertise through complicated scholarship questions has been vital for our students. Hartnagel is an exceptional communicator and helps families across Mizzou navigate the oftentimes confusing process of applying for financial aid. That generosity is extended to the Honors College in numerous ways.

Outstanding Senior Award

  • Maggie Courtney – journalism and sociology
  • Jayden Francois – physics

Excellence in Honors Scholarship (Junior)

  • Emma Baker – secondary education
  • Beth Carlson – journalism
  • Rianna Ellis – information technology and linguistics
  • Kayla Fichtel – elementary education

Excellence in Honors Scholarship (Sophomore)

  • Asher Ferguson – geography and romance languages
  • Abigail Klinkerman – journalism
  • Caitlin McGarrah – biochemistry
  • Liberty Stone – civil engineering

Excellence in Honors Scholarship (Freshman)

  • Christina Fugate – English
  • Anna Jensen – natural resource science and management
  • Michael Kloeppel – mechanical engineering
  • Andrew Kula – constitutional democracy and journalism

Outstanding Undergraduate Research Awards

  • Miles Farmer – computer science and mathematics
  • Taylor Forillo – textile and apparel management
  • Michael Hark – business and music
  • Jasper Holland – computer science
  • Samara Lewis – nursing
  • Emma McDougal – chemical engineering
  • Jordan Meininger – anthropology, German, and linguistics
  • Andrew Smith – computer science and digital storytelling

Charles M. Hudson Scholarship

Originally established in 1984 and endowed in 1992 by Mrs. Clara M. Hudson, in honor of her husband Charles, the founder of the Humanities Sequence, the Charles M. Hudson Scholarships are given each year to students who have completed at least two semesters in the Humanities Sequence, and who have — or intend to — complete the four-course sequence. Students are nominated by faculty and considered on the basis of their written work over multiple semesters. 

  • Bella DeFranco – political science
  • Sam Skelton – parks, recreation, sport and tourism

Harry J. and Richard Hocks Endowed Fellowship

Established in 1993, the Harry J. and Richard Hocks Scholarship in the Humanities was created by Dr. Richard Hocks, a 20-plus year veteran of the Sequence, in memory of his father, Harry J. Hocks. It is awarded for outstanding performance in the Humanities Sequence, regardless of financial need.

  • Nina Funk – psychology

Elaine Hocks Memorial Endowed Scholarship

Dr. Hocks earned both her master’s degree and Ph.D. from MU. In addition to teaching in the Honors Humanities Sequence, she served as the Director of the Writing Center for 30 years. Thanks to the continual support from the Hocks family, we have the joy of awarding three currently enrolled MU students who are also tutors at the Writing Center. These awards are divided into three facets of the overall work of writing tutoring. 

  • Molly Nash – English (for public relations)
  • Maddie Reiser – political science (for synchronous tutoring)
  • Isabella Trost – English and journalism (for online tutoring)

Hayden Scholarship

The Hayden Scholarship was established in 2006 through a gift to MU by Mrs. Anne Hayden, now of Atlanta, Georgia. She earned her bachelor’s degree in English, with honors, in 1969. During her 30-year career with Metropolitan Life Insurance Company in New York City, Hayden became well known and respected in human resources management. In 1996, Hayden received the highest human resources honor when she was elected a Fellow of the National Academy of Human Resources. She currently serves as the secretary/treasurer of the National Academy’s Foundation and is active in other Atlanta service organizations. Each year the Hayden Scholarship is bestowed on an Arts and Science/Honors College students based on demonstrated excellence in scholarship and engagement with the Honors College’s programming.  

  • Kameron Hahn – biological sciences
  • Nora Pryor – chemistry and romance languages
  • Jessica Schroeder – mathematics

Senator Wayne Goode Scholarship

Senator Wayne Goode served 42 years in the Missouri state legislature, including 21 years in the senate, where he spent his time advocating for education and environmental issues. Goode also served seven years on Mizzou’s Board of Curators, passing legislation necessary to create the University of Missouri-St. Louis. Before his passing, the 1960 Mizzou graduate, left this scholarship gift to the Honors College to make an impact on his home state and alma mater. Students are selected for this award based on their involvement in undergraduate research through the Honors College. 

  • Allison Bivens – environmental sciences
  • Reiley Heffern – biological sciences
  • Platinum Liang – health science
  • Emma Morrow – nursing 

W. Alton Jones Memorial Scholarship

Established in 1964, when the college was just 6 years old, through an original gift from the W. Alton Jones Foundation, this award, based on academic achievement, is given to a College of Arts and Science freshman or sophomore. 

  • Luke Duffy – economics and journalism
  • Jake Hipsher – journalism, public administration, and sociology