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President Aoun honors student achievements

Photo of President Aoun addressing the 2015 Huntington 100

North­eastern Uni­ver­sity rec­og­nized the impres­sive accom­plish­ments of a select group of stu­dents on Wednesday evening, hosting a recep­tion in honor of the “Hunt­ington 100.”

North­eastern Uni­ver­sity rec­og­nized the impres­sive accom­plish­ments of a select group of stu­dents on Wednesday evening, hosting a recep­tion in honor of the “Hunt­ington 100.”

The third annual cel­e­bra­tion acknowl­edged those who have excelled in the class­room and in the com­mu­nity, with a par­tic­ular focus on research, entre­pre­neur­ship, expe­ri­en­tial learning, and service.

Many of the high-​​achieving stu­dents hold lead­er­ship posi­tions, like Stu­dent Gov­ern­ment Asso­ci­a­tion Pres­i­dent Noah Carville, SSH’15; Stu­dent Alumni Asso­ci­a­tion Pres­i­dent Courtney Cowell, S’15; and women’s soccer cap­tain Amy Steele, BHS’15. Some have excelled on co-​​op in coun­tries across the globe, like Carlos Vil­lalobos, DMSB’16, who picked up and moved to London to work as an invest­ment ana­lyst for Wellington Man­age­ment, and Har­rison Ack­erman,SSH’15, who linked up with the non­profit orga­ni­za­tion Threads of Peru to con­nect the indige­nous pop­u­la­tion to the global market. Others have founded star­tups, like Curtis Bur­rowes, DMSB’16, who launched Cur­b­View, a smart parking solu­tion; or honed their research prowess, like Theodore Bowe, S’16, a Gold­water Scholar who ana­lyzed the nesting dis­tri­b­u­tion of weaver birds in Cape Town, South Africa; or pio­neered uncharted ter­ri­tory, like Matt Bilotti, DMSB’15, and Caitlin Morelli, SSH’16, Northeastern’s first two Global Officers.

You all have made an impact,” North­eastern Pres­i­dent Joseph E. Aoun told the dis­tin­guished group of stu­dents. “You are leaders on a global level.” Flanked by fac­ulty, staff, and sev­eral Hunt­ington 100 mem­bers who received the honor in either of the past two years, he added, “You are now part of our future lead­er­ship. No matter where you go, you will always be Huskies.”

Many stu­dents in this elite class noted that co-​​op has shaped their career outlook—and helped them to secure their first full-​​time jobs. Matthew Clamp,CIS’15, lived the startup life, working as a soft­ware engi­neer for Hub­spot, a com­pany that develops and mar­kets a soft­ware product for inbound mar­keting. After grad­u­ating in May, this fourth-​​year com­puter and infor­ma­tion sci­ence major will be recon­necting with the com­pany, whose perks include unlim­ited vaca­tion and nap rooms.

Photo of Abdul Hafiz, SSH’15, took a selfie with Pres­i­dent Aoun.

Abdul Hafiz, SSH’15, took a selfie with Pres­i­dent Aoun.

I’m grad­u­ating early because Hub­Spot enjoyed my work so much that they gave me a full-​​time job offer,” Clamp said. “Without Northeastern’s co-​​op pro­gram,” he noted, “I’d be grad­u­ating stressed out and looking for a job. Now I’ll be working for a com­pany that is using cutting-​​edge tech­nology in an awe­some atmosphere.”

Cowell com­pleted two co-​​ops with the U.S. Army Natick Research, Devel­op­ment, and Engi­neering Center, which designs and then tests new mate­rial sys­tems for U.S. Army sol­diers. She con­ducted tex­tile research to ensure that sol­diers have the best clothing pos­sible, and then accepted a full-​​time posi­tion there begin­ning in May.

I feel like I was able to make the most out of my time at North­eastern,” said Cowell, a fifth-​​year bio­chem­istry major. “My co-​​ops helped me to learn how sci­ence is applied in the field and showed me what other oppor­tu­ni­ties are avail­able to me after grad­u­a­tion,” she added, noting that she will be applying to med­ical school this summer.

Sev­eral stu­dents reflected on their lead­er­ship roles at North­eastern, noting that the lessons they’ve learned as team cap­tains, stu­dent orga­ni­za­tion pres­i­dents, and project man­agers will serve them well in their future pursuits.

I think the biggest lesson I learned as cap­tain of the women’s soccer team is how impor­tant it is to stay pos­i­tive, keep an open mind, and never give up,” said Steele, who led her Huskies to the second round of the NCAA Tour­na­ment in November. “By approaching each sce­nario with pos­i­tivity, an open mind, and resilience, we were able to accom­plish some pretty amazing feats this year.”

The fifth-​​year health sci­ence major will be taking her con­fi­dence and her never-​​quit atti­tude to the Uni­ver­sity of Cal­i­fornia Davis School of Med­i­cine in the fall. Her expe­ri­en­tial learning opportunities—including her work as a clin­ical research coor­di­nator in the depart­ment of endocrinology at Brigham and Women’s Hos­pital and her role as the co-​​founder of Score to Cure Boston, which raises aware­ness for the finan­cial need of fam­i­lies with child­hood cancer—have pre­pared her for the next phase of her life.

I hope to con­tinue to be a leader in my new com­mu­nity and an advo­cate of healthy living and healthy com­mu­ni­ties,” Steele said. “I am com­mitted to making a dif­fer­ence in the health of those around me in what­ever shape that takes.”

As pres­i­dent of Northeastern’s under­grad­uate stu­dent body, Carville helped to estab­lish the Social Impact Council and a student-​​to-​​student online text­book exchange. He knows that these ini­tia­tives never would have come to fruition had it not been for key col­lab­o­ra­tions across col­leges and departments—a con­cept that he’ll be taking with him wher­ever he winds up.

I know that what­ever I do, I want to be in a demanding, fast-​​paced, team-​​based envi­ron­ment that chal­lenges me to grow as a thinker, leader, and employee,” said Carville, a fifth-​​year eco­nomics major who will grad­uate in the fall. “I plan to sat­isfy those cri­teria wher­ever I go, whether it’s a tech start up, ven­ture cap­ital firm, or lemonade stand.”

Clamp noted that his campus lead­er­ship posi­tion played a big part in his con­necting with Hub­Spot, his soon-​​to-​​be full-​​time employer. As oper­a­tions chair of the Husky Ambas­sadors, he har­nessed his com­puter sci­ence acumen to design a web portal for North­eastern tour guides, a project that has rev­o­lu­tion­ized the pro­gram. “I had free reign to build the appli­ca­tion,” he explained. “Without this lead­er­ship posi­tion, I would never have secured my second co-​​op with Hub­Spot, which was impressed with the website.”

Three Hunt­ington 100 stu­dents will be hon­ored at the Aca­d­emic Honors Con­vo­ca­tion, which will be held in Blackman Audi­to­rium on Thursday at 3 p.m. Lindsay Weigel, BHS’15, will receive the Harold D. Hodgkinson Award, one of the highest honors bestowed upon grad­u­ating seniors; two students—Katie Brag­gins, SSH’16, and Marco Muzio, S’15—will receive the des­ig­na­tion of Pres­i­den­tial Global Fellow, an honor given on the basis of stu­dents’ aca­d­emic standing, lead­er­ship qual­i­ties, and under­standing of the impor­tance of the global experience.

-By Jason Kornwitz

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