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DSU names 2014 Outstanding Graduate Award winners

Fri May 16, 2014 at 12:00 AM

Brenda Charles and Brandi Herauf were named Dickinson State University 2014 Outstanding Graduate Award winners at the Outstanding Graduate Reception held in the DSU Student Center Friday, May 16. The Outstanding Graduate Award is the highest honor bestowed on graduating seniors by the university.

Charles and Herauf were chosen from among 17 candidates nominated by faculty in their academic departments for exceptional performance in their fields of study.

Brenda Charles, a native of Antigua, is a double major in psychology and communication with a minor in leadership studies. Charles, a Theodore Roosevelt Honors Leadership Program (TRHLP) scholar maintained a 4.0 GPA and was recognized for academic excellence each semester. Charles has been active in campus events and organizations. She served as vice president of Students Other than Average (SOTA) and as a peer tutor for two years.

Charles has presented her scholarly work in numerous national, regional and local conferences. As a member of the TRHLP, Charles presented twice at the National Collegiate Honors Conference. She was also invited to present at the Red River Psychology Conference at NDSU in Fargo, at the Regional Honors Conference in Grand Forks, and at the CSTAND Communication Conference in Mandan. Charles has also participated in DSU’s Celebration of Scholarship research conference in 2012 and 2013.

Charles received offers from three graduate programs and has chosen to accept an offer of admission to the Clinical Psychology Doctoral Program at Regent University in Virginia where she will begin her studies this fall.

Brandi Herauf, a native of Dickinson, N.D., is a biology/pre-vet major. After receiving four offers for graduate school, Herauf recently accepted an offer of admission to Oregon State University College of Veterinary Medicine where will begin her studies in the fall. She will be pursuing research opportunities in the field of veterinary medicine including physical therapy and necropsy.

Herauf has embodies the DSU values of service and excellence. As a student she held leadership roles in the Science Club, Students Today Leaders Forever (STLF), the Agriculture Club and the Student Social Work Organization (SSWO). She has assisted with community based efforts including Science Olympiad, homecoming, and recycling drives. Herauf is actively involved in service to the Dickinson community.

Since 2008, she has volunteered with Hugh O’Brian Youth Leadership (HOBY) program where she has learned about global, local and personal leadership. As a leader in HOBY, she has led groups of student ambassadors in community service projects. She also volunteers her time working at Oreo’s Animal Rescue and at St. Benedict’s nursing home.

Herauf believes the confidence she gained while a student at DSU will help her continue challenge herself, to think critically and to not be afraid of the unknown. As she begins the next chapter of her academic career, Herauf plans to continue volunteering and using the leadership skills and academic knowledge she gained at DSU to make a positive impact on her new community.