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Up Close with Student Award Winners: June 2022

Boothe Prize booklets

We close out the 2021-2022 academic year by celebrating the winners of the Winter 2022 Boothe Prize and Lunsford Award, The Boothe Prize hessays written for PWR1 classes while the Lunsford Award recognizes the best oral presentations delivered in PWR 2 classes. These students wZoom ceremony in mid-May; their award-winning work will be available through our Prizes and Awards website in mid-June 2022.

Zarif Ahsan: Boothe Prize Winner (Winter 2022)

Zarif Ahsan won the Boothe Prize for his essay, “An Archive of Half-Silence: Incorporating Female Sexual Violence Narratives into Public Histories of the 1971 Bangladeshi Genocide,” which he wrote for Efrain Brito’s PWR 1 class, “Changing the Story.” Zarif  is a prospective Math and Symbolic Systems double major from Chandler, AZ. He enjoys reading plays and novels, with some of his favorite authors/playwrights being Arundhati Roy, Anna Burns, Tennessee Williams, and Emily Bronte. Writing for him is a means to connect with his experiences and background; in his PWR 1 class, he had the privilege of exploring a topic tangentially mentioned by his father when he was a child. Exploring the 1971 Bangladeshi genocide, he realized idiosyncrasies of the Bangladeshi-American identity, insights he hopes to explore further as he engages with South Asian scholarship in the future.

Cassidy Dalva: Boothe Honorable Mention (Winter 2022)

Cassidy Dalva won a Boothe Honorable Mention for "Syncretism or Disappearance? Understanding the Acculturation of Sephardic Jews.” She wrote her essay for Sangeeta Mediratta’s PWR 1 class, “Beyond the Boundary: The Rhetoric of Maps, Borders, and Networks.” Cassidy is  a prospective economics major from Los Angeles, CA. At Stanford, she writes  as a beat reporter for The Stanford Daily, sings in choirs, and serves as a Residence Ambassador for the Sexual Harassment/Assault Response & Education Title IX Office. Her interests range from public policy to journalism and media, and she is excited to get involved on campus this summer in research related to political psychology.  When asked about her PWR 1 experience, Cassidy writes, “PWR 1 was an unmatched experience to calibrate my writing and research skills in an academic setting. My instructor, Sangeeta Mediratta, encouraged me to take advantage of the class as an opportunity to explore a subject that was personally meaningful and test out-of-the-box ways to illustrate my argument, which are invaluable tools for writing in other classes and in my journalistic endeavors.” 

Boothe Prize Finalists

We would also like to recognize the finalists for the 2021-2022 Boothe Prize: Solal Afota, Julia Biswas, Carolina de Sá, Audrey Dickinson, Lucy Duckworth, Osose Ewaleifoh, Anna Kiesewetter, Mason Krohn, Ivy Manna, Victor Meza, Naomi Mo, Auddithio Nag, Ella Norman, Summer Royal, Emilio Rueda, Alex Shaffer, Kawther Said, and Emily Winn.

Amantina Rossi: Lunsford Award (Winter 2022)

Amantina Rossi won the Lunsford Award for her presentation,  “Pelo Malo: An Exploration of the Dominican Mother-Daughter Dynamics Regarding Hair, Beauty, and Professionalism”; in particular, the judges noted that “the data presented was thorough and well-done.  She conducted her research and developed the presentation for Brittany Hull’s PWR 2 course, “You're Supposed to Set an Example: Rhetoric of Professionalism.” 

Amantina, who is originally from Sacramento, CA,  plans on majoring in Computer Science with a concentration in Human Computer Interaction, and minor in Spanish. As she writes, “so far, I’ve really enjoyed exploring the design process and learning about the ways technology can solve (and cause) problems in our world. I am also interested in learning more about my Dominican heritage and the Spanish language.”  Amantina is currently the VP of Marketing for Stanford Data and Mapping for Society, and she helps lead a statewide high school leadership program with a focus on youth voice and activism. Amantina is also part of Stanford’s DV8 Hip Hop Dance Group, and enjoys sunbathing, listening to music, spending time with friends and family, and watching rom coms.

When asked about her research and PWR 2 experience, Amantine reflected: “I didn’t realize how substantial writing about, conducting research on, and presenting a topic that affected me personally could be until this class. My research paper and presentation grew into a passion project where I was able to explore complex questions on a large as well as deeply intimate scale. Writing about beauty standards in my own Dominican community helped me see how much writing can be a mirror that aids in self-reflection as well as a window into experiences I’d never thought about before. I’ve learned in PWR to follow my curiosities and challenge traditions to seek a deeper understanding. This is a practice I will carry with me in the rest of my education and future career as I work to take part in creating a more diverse, inclusive, empathetic,  and equitable world.

Additionally, the work I did in PWR 2 has helped me feel more confident in my abilities to translate passion in a topic to a well-researched and well-received oral presentation. I really enjoy public speaking, and I draw much inspiration from Ted Talks, spoken word, and storytelling. The practice and feedback I got in my PWR class, as well as my continued interest in oration and speech is something I know I will take with me for the rest of my education and beyond. Whether it’s giving a pitch for a mobile app or even sparking a conversation with my family members in Spanish, I know my words have weight, so it is important to choose them carefully and with intention and know that they can change the world.”

Haley Stafford: Lunsford Award (Winter 2022)

Haley won the Lunsford Award for her presentation,  “Environmental Equity At Bay: Climate-Driven Evictions in Jakarta, Indonesia” which she developed for Lisa Swan’s PWR 2 class, “Writing about Cities.” The Lunsford judges particularly noted the excellence of Haley’s “original thesis that deeply engages the existing scholarship with a compelling delivery.” Upon enrolling in the class, Haley Stafford knew she wanted to explore the impact of climate change on urban areas. She was drawn to examining the effects of sea-level rise on Jakarta, Indonesia after learning that her aunt is moving out of the city to avoid catastrophic flooding. From visiting family members across the island of Java, Haley has seen the rapid degradation of Indonesia’s tropical rainforests and waterscapes over the years. Her research, entitled, “Environmental Equity at Bay: Climate-driven Evictions in Jakarta, Indonesia,”  allowed her to explore her interests in climate change and resiliency and connect with her Indonesian roots. 

Born and raised in Logan, Utah, Haley is an aspiring engineer and activist majoring in Materials Science Engineering and minoring in Sustainable Architecture. This summer, she will continue to explore public policy and climate-resilient communities as an intern at the National Resources Defense Council, where she will work on its Energy Efficiency for All initiative. Ultimately, Haley hopes to attend law school and shape public policy by placing environmental justice and sustainability at its forefront for a cleaner, more sustainable future.

Lunsford Award Finalists

We would also like to recognize the Lunsford finalists for Winter 2022: Aden Beyene, Max Du, and Nikita Salunke.

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