Finalists Named for 2011 Barlow Trophy
Alma College seniors Marcy Gilstad of Midland, Brianna Harfmann of Midland and James Young III of Saginaw are the 2011 nominees for the Barlow Trophy, Alma’s most prestigious award for a graduating senior.
Established in 1949 by Dr. Joel Barlow, a 1929 honors graduate of Alma College, the award will be presented at the Senior Dinner on Wednesday, April 6.
The award recognizes academic achievement for students in the top 10 percent of their class as well as contributions to campus and community. The Barlow winner is determined by a vote of Alma’s Student Congress and faculty.
Marcy Gilstad is the founding president of Alma College’s Active Minds chapter, which seeks to educate students about mental health issues. She also is a Center for Responsible Leadership fellow, a member of Students in Free Enterprise and a volunteer basketball coach for Special Olympics. A graduate of Midland High School, she is the daughter of Terry Gilstad.
Leading campus efforts to fight the stigma of mental awareness, Gilstad launched the Active Minds chapter by creating a constitution and budget and planning awareness events for the campus. Last fall, Active Minds hosted “To Write Love on Her Arms,” a non-profit organization that attracted students from all over the state to hear mental health awareness messages.
In her role as a volunteer coach for the Alma Tigers, Gilstad has helped the Gratiot County Special Olympics basketball team grow from 23 to 44 athletes. Gilstad has led the recruitment effort for more coaches and helped organize an annual local basketball tournament.
Gilstad also has been involved in marketing and fund-raising campaigns as a member of The Michigan Colleges Foundation Van Andel Millennial Board, which organizes projects that help spur economic development. In addition, Gilstad has studied abroad in Peru and Ecuador, participated in Alternative Break projects, and served as a Spanish teaching assistant and tutor.
Brianna Harfmann has served as a senior resident assistant, academic tutor and mentor, president of the Exercise and Health Science Honors Society, science laboratory assistant, swimming and diving team member, and choir participant. A graduate of Herbert Henry Dow High School in Midland, she is the daughter of Robert and Carolyn Harfmann.
As a resident assistant, Harfmann has worked hard to build strong living communities and train other resident assistants. As a mentor in the Academic and Career Planning office, she has tutored students studying statistics and human physiology. She also has led EHS review sessions to help students prepare for tests.
As president of the EHS Honors Society, Harfmann has expanded the student organization’s campus presence and involvement in specific ways. The Society has sponsored fundraisers to support local families at Christmas, participated in the annual meetings of the Michigan Section of the American College of Sports Medicine, joined a regional effort called “Exercise Is Science,” organized field trips and student networking forums, and staged the annual Matt Reinke 5K Run at homecoming.
Harfmann also has participated in Alternative Break projects and has been a member of the Alpha Phi Omega service fraternity.
James Young III has contributed to Alma College in numerous ways. He has served as president of the Multicultural Student Union, was elected captain of the varsity football team, and participated in Center for Responsible Leadership activities and Alternative Break service projects. A graduate of Saginaw Arts and Science Academy, he is the son of Corla Young.
A vocal and active leader of the Multicultural Student Union, Young has promoted racial and ethnic diversity across the campus through programming for students and cooperation with faculty and administrators. He helped develop and coordinate Race Week, a series of educational campus events to help students understand more about race and cultural diversity.
A four-year letter winner as a defensive lineman on the football team, his leadership ability was recognized with his election as a team captain in 2010. He also was a three-year resident assistant in Wright and Mitchell halls, helping organize hall activities and build community.
Young also was a site leader for Alternative Breaks, a volunteer teacher’s assistant in inner city schools in Philadelphia and Trenton, N.J., a mathematics tutor, Relay for Life team captain, and participant in intramural athletics.
Posted: Fri, March 4th, 2011 at 4:37PM