Two students receive Faculty Honors

Two graduating seniors at Northwestern College received Faculty Honors during the college’s commencement exercises on May 11. Hannah Barker of Orange City and Shelby Vander Molen of Pella, Iowa, were recognized.

The Faculty Honors award is bestowed upon graduates who excel in academic achievement, Christian influence, general attitude and participation in worthwhile campus activities. The highest honor the faculty gives to graduating seniors, it is determined by a vote of the entire faculty.

Barker, a theatre major, graduated Summa Cum Laude. A member of the Sigma Tau senior honor society and an Honors Program Scholar, she won awards for her writing in Spectrum, the college’s literary arts magazine. The daughter of Jeff and Karen Barker also received the 2013 Barry Boersma Award, which is given to a student who has loyally served in the Drama Ministries Ensemble and theatre productions and who best reflects the philosophy of these groups artistically, intellectually and spiritually. 

Vander Molen graduated Summa Cum Laude with majors in theatre and writing/rhetoric. Active in the Drama Ministries Ensemble and theatre productions, she received the Outstanding Graduating Senior Award in theatre. An Honors Program Scholar and member of the Sigma Tau senior honor society, she has served as a tutor, student ambassador and member of the orientation staff. The daughter of Tim and Verna Vander Molen also won an award for poetry published in the college’s literary arts magazine. The national winner of the Eugene O’Neill Theatre Center’s National Critics Institute Scholarship, she wrote a play that was selected for presentation at the Region Five Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival.