The Department of Life Sciences Communication recognizes 26 outstanding scholars and their donors

Chatty excitement filled the Pyle Center on April 28, 2022, as proud parents and donors watched outstanding students receive their scholarship awards for the next academic year. An annual event that never disappoints, the Life Sciences Communication (LSC) Department hosted its scholarship and donor recognition reception to highlight its excellent students, generous donors, and departmental accomplishments from the 2021-2022 academic year.

Dominique Brossard, LSC Department Chair recognizing the Farm Journal/Andy Weber Discover and Explore Ag Media Scholarship winners, Megan Moede and Molly Olstad.

This year, LSC affiliates, partners, and donors awarded 26 students with scholarships – all of which will increase student success and help them achieve their goals. These scholarships were created by alumni, previous faculty, and other friends of LSC, and support students in a variety areas of science communication research and practice.

Graduate student scholars

Students attending this event were given the opportunity to connect with their donors, as well as share their stories and gratitude. Upon receiving their award, students shared what the award meant to them. Jocelyn Cao, a master’s student in LSC and a Nellie McCannon LSC Scholarship recipient, stated, “a scholarship from LSC means I can focus more on the things that matter; being a better student, collaborator, and overall, a better science communicator.” Olivia McDonald, an undergraduate student in LSC and the J.W. Watt Agricultural Journalism Memorial scholarship recipient, stated, “a scholarship from LSC means that I am one step closer to achieving my aspirations of bridging the gap between the agricultural industry and the public through journalism, advocacy, and strategic communication!”

Undergraduate student scholars with Dietram Scheufele, Director of Academic Programs

And of course, the celebration would not be complete without acknowledging the support LSC students receive from their friends and family. This point was highlighted by the keynote speaker at the reception, Mike Cacciatore, who graduated with his M.S. from LSC in 2009 and Ph.D. in 2013. In his speech, Mike expressed his gratitude for his family’s commitment to give him an exceptional education at LSC. Mike is now the Co-Director of the Center for Health and Risk Communication and an Associate Professor of Public Relations at the University of Georgia. Mike concluded his remarks by encouraging the students to take advantage of all the opportunities that come with studying in the top science communication program in the country.

LSC’s Larry Meiller, Emcee for the event and Department Chair, Dominique Brossard

“LSC’s generous donors are making such a difference in our student’s educational experience,” says Professor and Chair Dominique Brossard, “warmest thanks to all of them, and congratulations to all 2022 student scholars!”

2022-2023 Scholarships and Awardees

Robert Bjorklund LSC Scholarship – Benett Halbleib, Lauren Jenny, Ruthie Kaufman, Peyton Mueller, Emma Roberts, Britta Wellenstein

Lloyd & Genevieve Bostian Scholarship – Eleyna Escobedo and Daniluz Schueller

Farm Journal/Andy Weber Discover Ag Media Scholarship – Megan Moede and Molly Olstad

Jean W. Fewster LSC Scholarship – Ashley Cate

Brian Howell Scholarship – Bobbi Burgess and John Lilek

Lenore Landry Internship – Julia Wiessing

Frank Lessiter Ag Media Scholarship – Olivia Spaight

Nellie McCannon LSC Scholarship – Becca Beets, Jocelyn Cao, Hannah Cheren, Thomas Jilk

NAMA Marketing Leader Scholarship & NAMA President Scholarship – Olivia Spaight

John E. and Elizabeth B. Ross Science Writing Scholarship – Lydia Larsen, Alison Luedke, Hope Nelson

Thomas P. and Gail G. Schomisch Scholarship – Amy Ceas

Claire H. Sink Scholarship – Mikhaila Calice

J.W. Watt Agricultural Journalism Memorial Scholarship – Olivia McDonald

Maurice E. & Grace White LSC Scholarship – Eliza Lindley


Story by Brianna Van Matre, LSC M.S. ’22