Ohio State CFAES names its top 25 seniors

CFAES Distinguished Senior Award

COLUMBUS, Ohio—Twenty-five seniors have received the most prestigious undergraduate award at The Ohio State University College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences (CFAES).

The Distinguished Senior Award honors top graduating seniors on the Ohio State Columbus campus who exemplify the CFAES mission in areas such as academics and scholarship, research and innovation, service and involvement, and influence and leadership.

“The 2021 recipients are our future innovators and leaders who have already made an impact within the academic environment at this university and beyond,” said Steven Neal, CFAES professor and associate dean for academic programs.

Listed below are the Distinguished Seniors, including their academic units, majors, and hometowns.

Department of Agricultural Communication, Education, and Leadership
Melanie Fuhrmann, Community Leadership, Wheelersburg, Ohio
Courtney Heiser, Agricultural Communication, Attica, Ohio
Olivia Pflaumer, Agriscience Education, Chillicothe, Ohio
Milan Pozderac, Agriscience Education, Mt. Vernon, Ohio

Department of Agricultural, Environmental, and Development Economics
Zeke Miller, Agribusiness and Applied Economics, Oceanside, California
Todd Peterson, Agribusiness and Applied Economics, Sabina, Ohio

Department of Animal Sciences
Annika Diaz, Animal Sciences, Upland, California
Brietta Latham, Animal Sciences, Thurmont, Maryland
Allison Rapp, Animal Sciences, Xenia, Ohio
Laura Tavera Montañez, Animal Sciences, San Juan, Puerto Rico
Cameron White, Animal Sciences, Washington, Pennsylvania

Department of Entomology
Vashti Tatman, Entomology, Columbus, Ohio

Department of Food, Agricultural and Biological Engineering
Chris Baird, Agricultural Systems Management, Springfield, Ohio
Rachel Leitson, Construction Systems Management, Pepper Pike, Ohio
Jacob Lesch, Agricultural Systems Management, Fredonia, New York
Clare Sollars, Food, Agricultural and Biological Engineering, Washington Court House, Ohio

Department of Food Science and Technology
Philip Eberly, Food Science and Technology, Wooster, Ohio
Jacqui Fox, Food Science and Technology, Dayton, Ohio
Natalia Jaspeado Becerra, Food Science and Technology, Mexico City, Mexico

Department of Horticulture and Crop Science
Rachael Cline, Sustainable Plant Systems, Toronto, Ohio
Jason Hollick, Sustainable Plant Systems, Dublin, Ohio

School of Environment and Natural Resources
Tara Allen, Environmental Science, Mason, Ohio
Brian Bush, Environmental Science, Columbus, Ohio
Melina Mallory, Environmental Science, Playa Del Rey, California
Jayson Velazquez, Environment, Economy, Development and Sustainability, Paterson, New Jersey

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this year’s recognition of the CFAES Distinguished Seniors will occur on Wednesday, April 7, 2021, via a YouTube Premiere video beginning at 7 p.m. on the Ohio State—College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences YouTube channel. Vice President for Agricultural Administration and CFAES Dean Cathann A. Kress will recognize award recipients during this special event.

“Unfortunately, we will be unable to gather in person, but the safety of our community is our top priority,” Neal said. “However, this honor and these 25 students remain an important focus of our college. Their commitment to their education and dedication to their time as an undergraduate student will still be recognized via social media, professional networking platforms, and the YouTube Premiere video. We invite everyone to view the video on April 7.”

In autumn 2020, there were 2,457 undergraduate students in CFAES pursuing 22 majors and 32 minors. Learn more about CFAES academic programs at go.osu.edu/B4V2.

Sherrie R. Whaley
For more information, contact: 

R. Warren Flood