Kansas State University


Graduate School

Student successes

University Distinguished Professors Graduate Student Award

Three Kansas State University doctoral candidates have been awarded University Distinguished Professors Graduate Student Awards for exceptional achievement in graduate studies.

Jessica Rupp, doctoral candidate in plant pathology, received a $5,000 scholarship. Bryan Cafferky, doctoral candidate in marriage and family therapy, and Clark Holdsworth, doctoral candidate in anatomy and physiology, each received $2,500 scholarships.

Rupp’s research focuses on reducing annual wheat loss due to the wheat streak mosaic virus and Triticum mosaic virus, where there is currently little resistance available. Her major professor is Harold Trick, professor of plant pathology.

Cafferky’s research analyzes the link between substance use and intimate partner violence. His major professor is Jared Anderson, associate professor of family studies and human services.

Holdsworth’s research focuses on the role of KATP channels in vascular and metabolic control during exercise. His major professor is Timothy Musch, professor of kinesiology.

The University Distinguished Professors Graduate Student Award is supported by the office of the vice president for research and contributions from individual university distinguished professors. These are professors who have received one of the university’s highest honors for their contributions to teaching, research and service, and who have made major contributions to their professions and communities.

Graduate student regionally recognized for teaching excellence

A Kansas State University doctoral student in family studies is a regional award winner for excelling in teaching and mentoring.

Jaimee Hartenstein, doctoral candidate in family studies, has received the 2014 Midwestern Association of Graduate Schools Excellence in Teaching Award for the doctoral level.

The award recognizes graduate students who excel in classroom teaching and promote awareness of graduate teaching contributions to the university’s scholarship and the teaching mission. Hartenstein received a $750 honorarium and represented Kansas State University from April 9-11 at the Midwestern Association of Graduate Schools annual meeting in Chicago. She also presented and discussed her teaching philosophy at the annual meeting.

“We congratulate Jaimee on this tremendous achievement,” said Carol Shanklin, dean of the Graduate School. “Jaimee exemplifies Kansas State University’s commitment to teaching and mentoring. Through her hard work and dedication, she inspires our undergraduate students to succeed in their classes. She serves as a role model for other graduate students and continues to enhance her effectiveness through her engagement in the scholarship of learning.”

Hartenstein is a teaching assistant for family studies and human services courses that examine the family in-depth throughout the life cycle. In the courses, students learn about family law, public policy and support services. Hartenstein’s faculty advisers are Mindy Markham, assistant professor of family studies and human services, and Walter Schumm, professor of family studies and human services.

“Words cannot express how honored I feel in receiving this award,” Hartenstein said. “It is wonderful to be supported by the faculty and administrators in my department, the college and the university. I am grateful to K-State for the amazing teaching opportunities I have received while attending the university.”

Hartenstein has accepted a position as an assistant professor of family services in Eastern Illinois University’s School of Family and Consumer Science. She will start in August.

At Kansas State University, Hartenstein is involved in the university’s Honor and Integrity Council and is a co-founder of the School of Family Studies and Human Services graduate teaching assistant support group. She is also part of several national organizations, including the National Council on Family Relations, the Society for Personality and Social Psychology, and the Family Science Association.

Article written by Jennifer Tidball and originally published in K-State Today.

Alumni Association Graduate Student Awards

Four graduate students have been recognized by the K-State Alumni Association for their contributions to the university.

Raghavendra Amachawadi, doctoral graduate in pathobiology, received the Graduate Award for Outstanding Academics, and Kyle Probst, doctoral graduate in grain science and industry, received the Graduate Award for Outstanding Academics. Lori Kniffin, master’s graduate in counseling and student development, and Marcie Lechtenberg, doctoral graduate in marriage and family therapy, received inaugural Tony Jurich Community Commitment and Leadership Awards.

“We are excited to honor these individuals for what they have achieved at K-State,” said Amanda Brookover, assistant director of student programs for the Alumni Association. “These winners were chosen from a group of exceptional candidates. We appreciate the efforts of the K-State faculty, staff and students and Alumni Association board of directors who nominated and selected these individuals for this outstanding recognition.”

Tutors Make a Difference Award

Three graduate students were recognized for their service as outstanding peer-tutors.

Damien Downes, doctoral candidate in genetics, Michelle Gutknecht, master’s student in architectural engineering, and Kelsey Welliver, master’s student in modern languages, received Tutors Make a Difference Awards. Downes serves as a tutor for athletics, Gutknecht for ARC/DARC and Welliver for Leasure Hall.

The three students work as tutors through Totally Tutoring, a collaboration of tutoring services at Kansas State University. The program’s goal is to help K-State students succeed by providing outstanding tutoring services and excellent tutors. The program also helps tutors maintain and improve their tutoring skills by providing workshops and lectures.

Notable Scholarly Achievements Newsletter

Want to know what else our graduate students have accomplished?  View the Spring 2014 Notable Scholarly Achievement newsletter.