Barlow Trophy Winner Leads by Example

Maighdlin (Maggie) Patterson has immersed herself in campus life while serving her fellow students.

Maighdlin (Maggie) Patterson Maighdlin (Maggie) PattersonALMA — Maighdlin (Maggie) Patterson is the 2021 recipient of the Barlow Trophy, Alma College’s most prestigious award for a graduating senior.

Established in 1949 by Dr. Joel Barlow, 1929 honors graduate of Alma College, the award recognizes academic achievement for students in the top 10 percent of their class as well as contributions to campus and community.

Patterson has led students on campus, literally, through her involvement with Student Congress, while leading by example, through her studies and extracurricular involvement. She is a double major in German and integrative physiology and health science (IPHS).

Patterson has served as parliamentarian of Student Congress for three terms; a new role that she was vital to defining for future generations of students. Among her responsibilities in this role were running meetings and upholding the Student Congress Constitution.

She has been deeply involved in IPHS research and education. She has worked as a supplementary instructor for two courses and has studied hibernating ground squirrels for the past three years. She is president of the German Club and has taken a Spring Term course in Germany and Poland.

Patterson is further involved with the Catholic Student Organization, Chemistry Club, Student Alumni Association, Alpha Phi Omega and the Ultimate Frisbee Club, among other affiliations. She has worked as a tutor for various courses, a peer writing consultant, a First-Year Guide and filled other jobs on-campus.

Patterson is a native of Grand Rapids and is the daughter of Kimberly and David Patterson.

Traditionally, the winner of the Barlow Trophy is announced on Honors Day, which is held on the first Thursday in April at Alma College. Honors Day recognizes the scholarly and creative work produced by students during the past academic year and provides an opportunity to gather as a community. Though the COVID-19 pandemic prevented students, faculty and staff from gathering in person for presentations and poster sessions, the Honors Day book, with summaries of each student’s project, has been made available online in celebration of their hard work.

Two other students were recognized as finalists for the Barlow Trophy:

Kaleb Ramon has lifted up Alma College by helping facilitate growth in a number of campus organizations, while volunteering in community activities and maintaining a stellar GPA. Ramon is a biology major.

Ramon is one of the founding member of the Alma College iGEM club, and its most recent president. He helped grow the organization from an original four members in 2018 to more than 50 today. He was one of the first student mentors in the Transition Assistance Program (TAP), which benefits incoming transfer students.

Ramon has been a research lab assistant, where he works with other students and faculty members to study plants native to Michigan, for the past three years. He is a member of XEM Chemistry Honorary, the Chemistry Club, the Pre-Medicine Club and is current president of the Hockey Club.

He also volunteers with the PEAK after-school program and local youth sports programs.

Ramon is a native of Mount Pleasant and is the son of Terri and Steve Ramon.

Grace Hearth has combined strong academic performance with a wide range of involvement in campus activities. She is a biology major and a religious studies minor. She plans to pursue a degree in veterinary medicine.

Hearth is deeply involved in the Alternative Breaks student organization at Alma; where she most recently served as co-president. She has served as a site leader twice and represented Alma at the Alternative Breaks Leadership Conference in Arizona.

She has taken part in a number of research opportunities while at Alma, including a trip to the Galapagos Islands, where she studied lava lizards, and at the Alma Ecological Center, where she studied snakes.

Hearth is a leader across a wide variety of campus organizations; including team captain of the track and field team, co-leader of the Pre-Veterinary Club and an administrator and project manager at the Alma College Chapel.

Hearth is a native of Freeland and is the daughter of Kim and Mike Hearth.

Story published on April 20, 2021