Barrett, The Honors College recognizes five Outstanding Graduates at May 2020 virtual convocation

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May 8, 2020

Every student in Barrett, The Honors College at Arizona State University is talented and special in their own way. In each graduating class there are many accomplished students with skills in a vast array of disciplines.  

Every spring, Barrett, The Honors College recognizes Outstanding Graduates in several categories who are representative of the excellence of all honors students. 

“The outstanding graduates represent excellence in the particular values of the ASU Charter: they are leaders, they are accomplished student scholars, and they are true university and community citizens,” said Barrett, The Honors College Dean Mark Jacobs.

Five members of the May 2020 Barrett, The Honors College graduating class have been chosen as Outstanding Graduates and will be honored in the Barrett, The Honors College virtual convocation on May 11.*

These students have excelled in academics and research, as well as contributed significantly to their communities through volunteerism, public service, and the arts.


ASU Alumni Association Outstanding Graduate Award: Justin Heywood

Justin Heywood

Heywood is graduating summa cum laude with a double major in Political Science and in Civic and Economic Thought and Leadership with a minor in Spanish and an overall GPA of 4.0.  

He has been a Tillman Scholar, a Lincoln Scholar and a Spirit of Service Scholar.  He was a Fulbright Summer Institute Awardee in Wales.  He is the USG-Tempe Director of Civic Engagement and an Army ROTC cadet.  

Heywood has been an Arizona State Senate Page and Page Captain and served as a Campaign Intern for Senator John McCain. He took part in the Inside-Out Arizona Department of Corrections program and in Talent Match at Barrett. He is the Co-Founder and President of BridgeASU and served as both a community assistant and teaching assistant at Barrett, The Honors College.





Outstanding Research Award: Rohini Nott

Rohini Nott

Nott is graduating summa cum laude with a double major in Biology (Biology and Society) and Business (Public Service and Public Policy) and an overall GPA of 4.0.  

She is a National Merit Scholar, a Helios Scholar at the Translational Genomics Consortium, and a Flinn Scholar. She received the School of Life Sciences Outstanding Service Award and has served as Patient Advocate and Clinic Coordinator for SHOW, the Student Health Outreach for Wellness Community Initiative in downtown Phoenix.

Her research experiences and contributions have been extraordinary. She has completed six different research experiences as a research intern between high school and her undergraduate studies, and published three scientific research papers, four encyclopedia entries and presented six times at national or regional research conferences.  Her topic at many of those conferences is also the subject of her thesis on stapled peptide analogs and their use in cancer therapy.


Outstanding Creative Work Award: Adele Etheridge Woodson

Adele Etheridge Woodson

Etheridge Woodson is graduating summa cum laude with a major in Music and a certificate in Arts Entrepreneurship and an overall GPA of 3.93. 

She is a composer working this spring with Morphonics Music and Sound in Los Angeles, engaging with full-time composers to score short-form films.  

During her time as an undergraduate honors student she was the assistant stage manager of the Phoenix Symphony, installed an original electronic work using her own violin samples in the ASU Art Museum, and had her first string quartet composition premiered at the Vienna Summer Music Festival in Austria.  

Her nominating professor said that Etheridge Woodson is “the most mature, intelligent and engaged student with whom I have worked, and has contributed greatly to the local music community as a positively empowered woman in the music business and as a film composer.”




Outstanding Service Award: Noah Appelhans

Noah Appelhans

Appelhans is graduating summa cum laude with a double major in Business - Human Resources and Business - Public Service and Public Policy.  He will additionally receive two certificates, one in Political Economy and one in Public Administration and Management.  He is a President’s Scholar and has an overall GPA of 4.0.  

Noah has for four years been an Operations Assistant in the Morrison School of Agribusiness, the Secretary of the Student Chapter of the Society for Human Resource Management and a Human Event teaching assistant. He also served as the Head Writing Tutor at Barrett-Polytechnic for two years.  

In the summer of 2019, Appelhans won an HR Officer Internship at the Department of Defense National Geospatial Intelligence Agency in Washington, DC.  He was nominated by six of his professors at ASU-Poly, who said Appelhans “exemplifies academic excellence, leadership, a commitment to community and a love of learning and scholarship.”


Outstanding Leadership Award: Primrose Dzenga

Primrose Dzenga

Dzenga is graduating with bachelor’s degrees in Global Studies and Creative Writing and a master’s degree in Political Science.  She is a Lincoln Scholar, a Garcia Scholar, a member of the Clinton Global Initiative University, a member of the Barrett Oral History project and the recipient of a Zimbabwe National Arts Literary Award for her poetry and non-fiction writing.  

She founded and has directed for the last four years the Machikichori Citrus Reforestation Project in Zimbabwe, a 12,000-tree community orange orchard run by rural women in Wedza, Zimbabwe.  She won a Barrett Global Explorers Grant this past summer to travel to three continents to conduct research on citrus farming techniques that will help in her emergence as a true global leader in international development.






*Due to the coronavirus pandemic and public health recommendations for social distancing, Barrett, The Honors College will be celebrating with its graduates in the 2020 Spring convocation in a virtual, online ceremony scheduled for 9 a.m., Monday, May 11. The format may be different, but our enthusiasm for celebration has never been more inspired and we encourage you to join us in honoring Barrett graduates. A link to the virtual honors convocation ceremony will be posted soon.

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