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05/03/2016

Three Chemistry Majors Win ACS Outstanding Student Leadership Award

Quick Facts

 Three Winthrop senior chemistry majors were recently honored with the Carolina-Piedmont Section of the American Chemistry Society’s 2016 Outstanding Student Leadership Award.
 The trio established the on-campus Iota Kappa Iota chapter of Alpha Chi Sigma.
 The trio plans to attend graduate school following May graduation.

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Katja Hall
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Danielle Thibault
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Jessica Zinna
ROCK HILL, SOUTH CAROLINA – Three Winthrop University senior chemistry majors were recently honored with the Carolina-Piedmont Section of the American Chemistry Society’s 2016 Outstanding Student Leadership Award.

Katja Hall of Vienna, Virginia; Danielle Thibault of Lexington, South Carolina; and Jessica Zinna of Lexington, South Carolina, were recognized on April 27 with the award at the ACS local section meeting in Charlotte, North Carolina.

The trio established the on-campus Iota Kappa Iota chapter of Alpha Chi Sigma in order to promote the understanding and interest of chemistry and its related fields through education, philanthropy and professional advancement.

“We are very honored to have received this award from the local ACS section. This organization started as an idea we had our freshman year, and it's been an amazing experience watching it grow and flourish during our time here,” said Zinna, president of the organization. “Since our first pledge class we have more than tripled our membership, and I am hopeful this growth will continue in the future. Our organization has hosted webinars sponsored by the American Chemical Society, performed several community service projects such as a canned food drive, and held professional development events. This organization has truly made an impact on my Winthrop experience by allowing me to connect with other students in the STEM fields, and I am excited to see what it will accomplish in the future.”

Nicholas Grossoehme, an associate professor of chemistry, recalled in his nomination letter for the trio that his assistance was requested to help the group get the organization started. “The time commitment that I predicated was a vast understatement – this team has dedicated an incredible amount of time to this over the last three years. Katja, Danielle and Jessica are amazing people that have accomplished an incredible task that will continue to benefit Winthrop students and the Charlotte community for years to come.”

According to Grossoehme’s letter, the organization inducted its first class in November 2014 and its second class in April 2016. “They have already made a mark on the community by reaching out to a local elementary school each term to engage these young students with science; their program has been actively sought out by other schools,” Grossoehme added.

The trio plans to attend graduate school following May graduation. Hall will study chemistry at Clemson University; Thibault will attend the University of Virginia to work towards a master's degree in commerce; and Zinna will study chemistry at the University of Notre Dame.

For more information, please contact Monica Bennett, director of communications, at bennettm@winthrop.edu or 803/323-2406.

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