Home | Campus Life | Student Affairs | Student Awards | 2018 Student Awards

2018 Student Awards

Student Awards Brunch - June 15, 2018

ETM Commencement Speaker: David Murphy

ETM Commencement Speaker: David Murphy

ETM Commencement Speaker

David Murphy

Business: Marketing Option

David Murphy came to Oregon Tech from Rogue River, Oregon and was a charter member of the men’s golf team in 2013. As a student-athlete, David excelled in the classroom and on the golf course. He shined in academia with multiple President’s/Dean’s List recognitions and was a two time Academic All American. He served as the captain of the golf team for three years and qualified for the NAIA national tournament.

Like many students, David held several jobs while being a student. He worked four years at the Bill Collier Ice Arena, refereed middle and high school basketball games, and worked for the Oregon Tech Admissions Office as an ambassador. His most recent venture, along with two other Oregon Tech students, was opening Brevada Brewhouse (a coffee shop) last September near campus. David is planning to stay in Klamath Falls after graduation and continue to work on expanding Brevada Brewhouse.

He will also continue to help coach the Oregon Tech golf team during his time in Klamath Falls


HAS Commencement Speaker

Alexandrya Steller

Alexandrya “Alex” Steller is from Terrebonne, Oregon and currently lives in Greeley, Colorado where she is completing her externship year at North Colorado Medical Center. Alex attended a couple of colleges before landing at Oregon Tech and finding her niche in Echocardiography.

Alex’s involvement on campus has been significant. She was a member of Alpha Sigma Alpha, a national sorority, and participated in various volunteer activities including the March of Dimes, the Polar Plunge fundraiser for Special Olympics; and served as an Echo Club officer, assisting the group with community service projects, like the first Medical Imaging Technology Rummage Sale. Alex was the student director for the 2015 New Student Orientation where she worked to make the orientation more inclusive for all students and promoted Oregon Tech spirit.

After graduation, Alex will continue at the North Colorado Medical Center in the Cardiovascular Institute as a cardiac sonographer.


HAS Commencement Speaker: Alexandrya Steller

HAS Commencement Speaker: Alexandrya Steller

Owens Citizenship Award: Kayla Pershall

Owens Citizenship Award: Kayla Pershall

Owens Citizenship Award

Kayla Pershall

Applied Psychology

A June 2018 graduate, Kayla earned her Bachelor of Science in Applied Psychology with an emphasis in Early Childhood Education and a minor in Communications.  

Kayla’s involvement in the Oregon Tech and Klamath County community began early in her educational career with involvement in the Circle K club, Psi Chi, and dance club. For the last two years, Kayla has served as president of Psi Chi, and secretary for the Circle K club. Kayla has also been involved in New Student Orientation and works as a TA for the Psychology Department. Along with her academic and extracurricular activities, Kayla is heavily involved in giving back to the Klamath County community. She has organized fundraisers for the Epilepsy Foundation, made dog beds for the local animal shelter, and is a regular volunteer at the Klamath Falls Children’s Learning Fair. Above all, Kayla’s passion is working with families for the Relationship Building Program and teaching as part of her externship with the Klamath Falls City School District.

After graduation, Kayla will pursue a career as an elementary school teacher—a field in which Kayla will surely, “extended her knowledge, skills, and caring to significantly benefit individuals and families in our community.”

Most Dedicated Student Award

Faith Lee

Healthcare Management (Spring 2019)

Faith’s journey into student leadership began when she was elected to ASOIT for the 2016-2017 school year. That first year gave Faith many exciting opportunities to serve the Oregon Tech community. After her first year of service as an ASOIT representative, she was elected as president for the 2017-2018 school year, and her leadership across campus and ability to collaborate effectively with students, staff, and faculty has made her one of ASOIT’s most engaging and effective leaders.

In her role as president, Faith is often called on to “represent the voice of students.” Faith sits on numerous councils and committees including:  Faculty Senate, FOAC, and campus search committees. Faith consistently demonstrates “sustained and motivated service to her fellow students and the broader Oregon Tech Community” not only due to her duties as ASOIT President, but also by being an active member of the community. Her community service and support of campus clubs are also avenues by which Faith facilitates lasting connections on campus and beyond. Faith is heavily involved with New Student Orientation, participating in community services projects, such as the Alternative Spring Break Trip to San Francisco, the I-Lead service project at L’Arche Tahoma Hope, and Campus Beautification Day.

Busy though she may be, Faith still finds time to serve her home community of Bly, OR and the St. James Parrish in any way she can and was the Youth Representative for the St. James Altar Society. Faith’s extracurricular hobbies include being an active member of the Newman Club, reading Jane Austen novels, and spending time photographing local wildlife with her grandfather.

Faith anticipates her graduation day in June 2019 when she will receive her Bachelor of Science in Healthcare Management and a minor in Medical Sociology and Human interactions. Until then, Faith looks forward to continued student leadership opportunities.

Most Dedicated Student: Faith Lee

Most Dedicated Student: Faith Lee

Student Achievement Award: Matthew Schacht

Student Achievement Award: Matthew Schacht

Student Achievement Award

Matthew Schacht

Embedded Systems Engineering Technology 

Matt is a June 2018 graduate of the Portland-Metro campus where he earned his Bachelor of Science in Embedded Systems Engineering Technology. Matt’s time at Oregon Tech can be summed up as one marked not only by academic achievements, but also one of encouraging others to pursue their academic goals. As one faculty member stated, “Diligence, creativity, and leadership stand out as the finest measures of an individual’s effectiveness”—characteristics that Matt shows in each interaction with his professors and peers. 

As a student, Matt has been an active member on campus. From being an assistant teacher for high school students to learn about digital logic, C++ programming, computer organization, and cryptography, to being an active member of the Gravity and Space Research Club (GRASP). As part of GRASP, Matt was able to participate in the development of the Eclipse Ballooning project, headed by Montana State University, to launch high altitude weather balloons to film the 2017 solar eclipse.

His junior and senior projects stand as a testament to his creativity and programming ability. For his junior project, Matt created a wireless throttle interface for the Ridekick electric bike assist. This project included working directly with the founder of Ridekick, which was an exciting opportunity. For his senior capstone project, Matt developed and built a remote controlled, motion sensing turret for keeping deer and other wildlife out of flower beds and gardens. In addition to his academic projects, Matt also works for Rohde & Schwarz as a software development intern, designing new features for Vector Network Analyzers.

Matt displays integrity both in and outside the classroom. He enjoys working as part of a team and has made it a goal to actively recruit students to the program because he is passionate about helping future Oregon Tech students find their own path to success.

Outstanding Non-Traditional Student Award

Brenda Odesha

Master of Science in Marriage and Family Therapy (Spring 2019)

Wife, mother, grandmother, mentor, colleague, friend, dedicated student— Brenda Odesha is an inspiration for Oregon Tech students, both traditional and non-traditional alike. Brenda graduated in 2015 with a bachelor’s degree in Applied Psychology and a minor in Human Communication. After earning her degree, Brenda became an academic specialist for Oregon Tech’s TRiO program, the Tech Opportunities Program (TOP), where she continues to mentor traditionally underserved students in their own academic pursuits. This fall, Brenda will begin her final year in Oregon Tech’s Marriage and Family Therapy master’s program.

As a non-traditional student, Brenda believes deeply in community and working collaboratively with her peers, students, and faculty to serve all students of Oregon Tech. In her role as a student, Brenda was the non-traditional student officer for ASOIT and secretary and president for the Psychology Club. She supported the Klamath Falls community as part of the DHS sponsored Relationship Building Program (RBP) as a family mentor and presented at the Western Psychological Association conference regarding her work with RPB.  Academically, Brenda maintains a 4.0 GPA while also going “above and beyond” in her full-time duties as an academic specialist for TOP.

Though her accomplishments speak highly of her academic success, it is her “generosity of spirit” that faculty, students, and colleagues most often speak of first. As one faculty member stated, Brenda has “worked hard and has great perseverance…she is generous and is always putting others first, with a big, bright smile on her face.” 

Outstanding Non-Traditional Student: Brenda Odesha

Outstanding Non-Traditional Student: Brenda Odesha

Hiram M. Hunt: Kelly Honsinger

Hiram M. Hunt: Kelly Honsinger

Hiram M. Hunt Award

Kelly Honsinger

Embedded Systems Engineering Technology & Computer Engineering Technology

In June 2018, Kelly double majored and earned a Bachelor of Science in Embedded Systems Engineering Technology and Computer Engineering Technology.

For his senior project, Kelly designed a pitch recognition system that can transcribe a musician’s hand-written sheet music into digitally editable sheet music in real time. The complexity, originality, and creativity of this project alone made Kelly an outstanding recipient for the Hiram M. Hunt Award.

As Kelly stated, “Music is a natural phenomenon that doesn’t follow any strict rules. Humans have evolved the ability to recognize pitches and sounds…implementing a single algorithm for a computer to emulate this ability is no easy feat.” Through trial and error, Kelly used an approach called cross-correlation and implemented his algorithm into a Field Programmable Gate Array (FPGA) processor. Kelly’s professor in the CSET program also commended his ingenuity saying, “through reviewing his work and mentoring him, he has demonstrated he is thorough in his designs, and he is also willing to change techniques or designs until the goal is achieved.” Congratulations to Kelly on the success of a truly unique project.


Outstanding Community Service Award

Craig Cedros

Technology and Management

Graduating in June 2018, Craig completed his BAS degree in Technology and Management through the Oregon Tech Online Program. Craig is also a committed volunteer at the Friends of the Multnomah County Library (FoL), where he has dedicated 10 years of volunteerism in helping them find creative and successful funding opportunities.

As a full-time student, and also parent to two children, Craig has donated significant time and effort to the FoL and the surrounding communities it serves. As mentioned, Craig has been an active volunteer for the FoL. Before his role of student, Craig served on the board from 2008 to 2014 and served as FoL’s President of the Board from 2009 to 2013. Craig is also responsible for leading the library through multiple funding campaigns and a rebranding effort resulting in stable funding for the library. As a student, Craig continued to volunteer by conducting a service audit providing recommendations to increase the visibility of the bookstore and increase marketing and revenue.

As the current board president for FoL stated, “we are grateful to Craig for his data and report…his was no mere school project…we are particularly happy with his thoughtful, open and engaging discussions with the many levels of our organization.”


Outstanding Community Service: Craig Cedros

Outstanding Community Service: Craig Cedros

Outstanding Graduate Student: Jordan Preston

Outstanding Graduate Student: Jordan Preston

Graduate Student Achievement Award

Jordan Preston

Masters and Bachelors in Civil Engineering

Graduating in June 2018, Jordan Preston earned both her bachelor and master’s degree in Civil Engineering and be the first civil engineering student at Oregon Tech to graduate with a minor in Geographic Information Systems (GIS). Jordan’s academic achievements and her interest in sustainable transportation infrastructures are highlighted by numerous scholarships and awards throughout her academic career, the most prestigious of which was winning the National Institute for Transportation and Communities (NITC) Student of the Year 2017. Not only was Jordan the first Oregon Tech student to win this award, but she is also one of few students, nationally, to achieve it at the master’s level rather than the doctorate level.

Jordan is a remarkably high achieving student whose involvement in the Oregon Tech and Klamath County community span a variety of professional and extracurricular activities including: research assistant for Marc Schlossberg, founder of the Sustainable Cities initiative at the University of Oregon for the book, Rethinking Streets for Bikes, of which Jordan is a co-author; serving over the last three years as vice president, president, and graduate representative for the student chapter of the Institute of Transportation Engineers; member of Tau Beta Pi, Oregon Tech’s local chapter of the Engineering Honor Society, member of the American Society of Civil Engineers and Christian Fellowship Club. A study abroad opportunity in Copenhagen, Denmark in the summer of 2017 revitalized Jordan’s passion for reminding engineers that transportation design is about community and changed her perspective on transportation design to a more “people-centric” approach.

In truth, this short biography cannot adequately describe all of Jordan’s personal, professional, and academic accomplishments achieved in only four short years. What can be communicated is the passion, determination, and professionalism she exhibits in every aspect of her education. Jordan’s mentors and faculty agree that Jordan brings an “active, sensory” approach to her courses and gives “equal attention into creating work that is original as well as innovative.” Indeed, her work ethic is “consistent with a mid-career professional”— truly high praise for a deserving student.


Oregon Tech Pride Award

2018 Geomatics NSPS Team

Katharine Singleton (Captain), Mosier Locke, Saul Preciado, Riley Edwards, Jon Hennon and Marcus Helm.

This year’s National Society of Professional Surveyors (NSPS) Student Competition Team was composed of the following students: Katharine Singleton (Team Captain), Mosier Locke, Saul Preciado, Riley Edwards, Jon Hennon, and Marcus Helm—all are enrolled in the Bachelor of Science Geomatics program and all put in “many hours of study and field practice” which ultimately led to Oregon Tech’s first, first place win at the 2018 NSPS Student Surveying Competition in Las Vegas, NV.

This is truly a prestigious and significant achievement for this team and Oregon Tech alike as these students came out on top over well-known past competition winners such as: Texas A&M, Corpus Christy, and University of California-Fresno. The competition itself asks students to go above and beyond what they might experience in the classroom. The surveying and mapping test for this year’s competition was titled “Surveying Service” and was designed to model what engineers would experience in an Engineers Without Borders project. Not only were they tested on their data collection, mapping, and surveying skills, they were also put to the test on their ability to effectively work as a team in difficult circumstances and presenting their final results. It was noted that the Oregon Tech team “was the only team to use advanced mathematics to quantify their work.”

It is with great pride that we all celebrate the hard work and determination these six students displayed in their journey to victory. Team captain, Katharine Singleton, led her team to the win by example and making sure every team member’s skill and expertise did not go unnoticed. The team practiced every weekend for two months before the competition, refining their technique and workflows. As Singleton noted, “In all our interactions with the competition judges and other surveyors, we demonstrated on a national stage the skill and professionalism that Oregon Tech’s Geomatics program fosters.”

Oregon Tech Pride: 2018 Geomatics NSPS Team

Oregon Tech Pride: 2018 Geomatics NSPS Team

ETM President Senior Cup: Brayden Jones

ETM President Senior Cup: Brayden Jones

ETM President’s Senior Cup

Brayden Jones

Mechanical Engineering

A June 2018 graduate, Brayden began his Oregon Tech education at the age of fifteen. Since the start of his academic career, Brayden has been a standout student in the Mechanical Engineering major at Oregon Tech. When Brayden graduated from high school, he already had junior credit status in the Mechanical Engineering program. While taking full-time credits, Brayden also worked as an intern for JELD-WEN, volunteered with the Bonanza Community AWANA club, and was an integral member of the Oregon Tech Baja SAE team. In addition, Brayden has received numerous accolades from the mechanical engineering faculty for his work in Computational Fluid Dynamics and Machine Design II for his exceptional work. Indeed, faculty and his JELD-WEN supervisors agree that Brayden displays all the characteristics of an outstanding scholar. Brayden “is the kind of student professors love to have class; not only does he clearly love to learn, but he is an active leaner who participates consistently and constructively and turns a critical eye on the material.” It is not just Brayden’s capacity and passion for learning that his faculty and peers appreciate, but also his integrity. After presenting at the Industry Advisory Board (IAB), where Brayden spoke about his work experience at JELD-WEN, an attendee noted that “Brayden is fun to work with, has a unique sense of humor, and is very humble and patient.”

While academics have always been important to Brayden, he also enjoys playing the piano, baking desserts, playing baseball and bowling, and of course, is interested in aviation and automobile design. Brayden has been accepted into the Master’s Program for Mechanical Engineering at Oregon State University, Washington State University, and University of Nevada-Reno. Given his success here at Oregon Tech, Brayden “will undoubtedly be a valued and contributing alumni for Oregon Tech for many years to come.”

HAS President’s Senior Cup

Chloe Smith

Environmental Sciences

Chloe Smith graduates with a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Sciences (ES) with minors in Biology, Chemistry, and Sustainability, which makes Chloe the first ES student to pursue and graduate with three minors. Chloe’s academic career at Oregon Tech can be summed up as a genuine curiosity for learning and a strong commitment to sustainability.

Chloe’s passion for environmental sciences and sustainability have provided her many opportunities to serve our local community as well as taking her outside the state to pursue research and other sustainability efforts. Chloe’s efforts began here, at Oregon Tech, where she “brought back to life” the campus Sustainability Club, serving as its president and leading campus and community engagement efforts such as: Sustainapalooza, Winter Wings, Klamath Give Back Day, and the completion of Oregon Tech’s first ever community garden. Two of her most meaningful projects were working with USFWS and the Natural Sciences Department to host a native planting activity on the Geo-Trail above campus and leading a large scale effort to audit the amount of waste produced on campus.

For Chloe, her passion for learning and for sustainability go hand in hand. The summer of her junior year, she was awarded a highly competitive internship with the National Science Foundation Research Experiences for undergraduates at the University of California, Santa Barbara where she developed an independent research project in analytical chemistry and coastal research efforts. As a result, Chloe presented her findings at the 2018 Oceans Sciences Meeting as a member of the Association for Limnology and Oceanography Multi-Cultural Program.

In all her endeavors, Chloe is most well-known for her motivation, hard-work, and demonstrated commitment to help make Oregon Tech a better, healthier community for all. Her professors and supervisors all agree that she is someone who exhibits deep compassion and is a motivated thinker with a contagious enthusiasm for bettering the health of our communities.


HAS President's Senior Cup: Chloe Smith

HAS President's Senior Cup: Chloe Smith

Outstanding Scholars

The Outstanding Scholars Award honors those students appointed by their respective department chairpersons or program directors who, in the opinion of the faculty, have demonstrated academic excellence in their majors. Only one Outstanding Scholar is awarded per major (bachelor’s degrees).

College of Engineering, Technology and Management (ETM)

College of Engineering, Technology and Management (ETM)

Colton Hinricksen Business with Accounting Option
Lynzee Wortman Business with Marketing Option
Nicole Buck Civil Engineering
Jazmine Hancock Electrical Engineering
Katharine K. Singleton Geomatics with Option in Surveying
Beaudy Harrington Information Technology
Brayden Jones Mechanical Engineering
Baker McDonald Renewable Energy Engineering
Molli Drivdahl Software Engineering Tech

College of Health, Arts and Sciences (HAS)

College of Health, Arts and Sciences (HAS)" title="College of Health, Arts and Sciences (HAS)

Dakotah Webb Applied Mathematics
Haleigh Aubut Applied Psychology
Jennifer Jennings Biology-Health Sciences
Rochelle Banta Communication Studies
Laney Jensen Dental Hygiene
Amanda Brooks Diagnostic Medical Sonography
Jasmine Lewis Echocardiography
Chloe Smith Environmental Sciences
LeAnne N. Littleton Health Care Management with Administration Option
Erica Bennett Nuclear Medicine Molecular Imaging
Megan Green Population Health Management
Paul Srisarakorn Radiologic Science
Haley Wright Respiratory Care
Brandon Butler Vascular Technology

Recognition of our Student Award Nominees:

  • ASCE-AGC Student Chapter
  • CSET Ambassadors
  • RockSat-C Team
  • Sarah Adams
  • Kyle Armstrong
  • Paige Bruce
  • Nicole Buck
  • Matthew Del Fante
  • Molli Drivdahl
  • Garrett Fechter
  • Trenton Fender
  • Robin Ferschweiler
  • Susie Garza
  • Beaudy Harrington
  • Peggy Hawkins
  • Daniel Iwicki
  • David Kirkendall
  • Keith Lester
  • Sarah Levesque
  • LeAnne Littleton
  • Morgan Massey
  • Damian Matzen
  • Philip McGovern
  • Alyssa Morris
  • Trava Sanders
  • Samuel Sowanick
  • Don St John
  • Shelly Whitlock