SRU recognizes students including Ali-Zaidi Award nominee at Celebration of Achievement


Student receives her award

From left, Adriana Gonzalez Sanchez was recognized for being Slippery Rock University's  finalist for Syed Ali-Zaidi Award for Academic Excellence by Michael Zieg, SRU’s interim provost. 

April 12, 2023

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. — Slippery Rock University recognized several students at its Celebration of Achievement ceremony, April 11, in the Smith Student Center, highlighted by the announcement of SRU's nominee for the Syed Ali-Zaidi Award for Academic Excellence.

Adriana Gonzalez Sanchez, a senior dual physics and mathematics major from Moralzarzal, Spain, will represent SRU as a finalist for the Ali-Zaidi award, which is given to a graduating senior in Pennsylvania's State System of Higher Education who exemplifies academic excellence and involvement. A selection committee appointed by the State System chancellor reviews all nominees' accomplishments and selects a winner. The winner will receive $1,000 and will be announced later this month.

Gonzalez Sanchez is a peer tutor in statistics, Statistics Club secretary, and an SRU statistical consultant. In 2022, she won a highly competitive summer appointment as a research assistant at Carnegie Mellon University. During this 10-week program, Gonzalez Sanchez worked on a research project focused on sports analytics. She continued to collaborate with her CMU mentor to write a peer-reviewed journal article following the conclusion of the summer program. As a member of the SRU women's tennis team, Gonzalez Sanchez is a four-time all-Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference West honoree, the 2021 PSAC West Athlete of the Year, and a 2022 Academic All-American. She plans to pursue a doctoral degree in business analytics, operations and information systems at the University of Cincinnati in the fall.

Other awards presented at the Celebration of Achievement included:

The Outstanding Students in Research, Scholarship or Creative Activity. These awards recognize students from each of SRU's five colleges -- College of Business, College of Education, College of Health Professions, College of Engineering and Science, and College of Liberal Arts -- based on their involvement in a variety of research, scholarly and creative projects:

  • Tyler Anderson, a senior dual dance and Spanish major from Allison Park.
  • Anikin Glassmire, a senior information systems major from Leesport.
  • Jenna Kriley, a senior biology major from Butler.
  • Merritt Montgomery, a senior early childhood and special education major from Allison Park.
  • Maddie Nehlen, a senior exercise science major from Mercer.

The Outstanding Student Academic Leaders. These awards recognize students from each of SRU's five colleges based on their outstanding leadership within an academic department or college:

  • Morgan Conrad, a senior exercise science senior from Seven Fields.
  • Candace Corvino, a senior mathematics major from Mercer.
  • Doug Moore, a graduate student majoring in secondary education from Evans City.
  • Alyssa Phifer, a senior English writing major from Pittsburgh.
  • Brandon Pierce, a senior strategic communication and media major from Gibsonia.

The Global Engagement Awards (International and Domestic). These awardsare presented to students who exemplify the desire to grow from a truly global education through committed involvement in the opportunities provided by SRU for global learning, global experiences and meaningful engagement with people from other countries and cultures:

  • Natalia Siles, a senior dual dance and resort, recreation and hospitality management major from Cochabamba, Bolivia (International).
  • Colleen Sodano, a senior secondary education-Spanish major from Quakertown (Domestic).

SRU President's Award recipients, consisting mostly of SRU employees, were also recognized at the Celebration of Achievement.

MEDIA CONTACT: Justin Zackal | 724.738.4854 |