House Life

2015 Winners of the College House Deans' Integrated Knowledge Award

The mission of the College Houses at Penn is to provide supportive residential communities for undergraduate students. By design, the Houses integrate the intellectual and academic experiences of the conventional classroom with the everyday life—through programming, events, and powerful interactions between faculty, staff, and students.

In support of that academic mission, the eleven College House Deans, who serve as chief administrators of these communities, are pleased to announce the winners of the fifth annual College House Deans Integrated Knowledge Awards.

FIRST PRIZE: Mark Paraskevas, C'17, W.E.B. Du Bois College House
SECOND PRIZE: Laura Doherty, C'15, Stouffer College House
THIRD PRIZE: Camilla Schneier, C'17, Kings Court English College House

First Prize

Mark Paraskevas, W.E.B. Du Bois College House

Mr. Paraskevas has lived in Du Bois since he moved in as a first-year student, where he now takes a more active role as a member of Du Bois' House Council.  Coming to Faculty Director Dr. Will Gipson's attention as a leading participant in the House's residential programs, he turned his interests in research into a project for Philly's former Mayor, the Rev. Dr. Wilson Goode, Sr.  Under the auspices of the Fox Leadership Program, Mr. Paraskevas researched and produced a fifty-page outline of the history of Black political power in the city of Philadelphia, an outline which Mayor Goode is using in the writing of his autobiography.

"Mark has an appetite for the college experience that has served him extraordinarily well," says Faculty Director Gipson.  "He is a fine example of what the College House experience can offer our residents and how it can launch students into a memorable Penn experience."

Laura Doherty

Second Prize

Laura Doherty, Stouffer College House

Ms. Doherty quickly became involved in the inner workings of Stouffer College House when she moved in her freshman year.  She currently serves as President of Stouffer's Steering Committee, the group responsible for creating programming and community within the College House, and as a member of that committee she has organized many events both informative and social within the House.  Among her more notable achievements within Stouffer has been the Philadelphia Seminar Series, which she co-founded with another resident, bringing a cross-disciplinary series of Philadelphians into the House to discuss their work in the city.  She became the 2014 College House Research Fellow for Stouffer, presenting two papers in dermatology research to her peers and making her a stellar resource for other undergraduates interested in pursuing research goals.

"What I love about Laura," says Faculty Director Prof. Phillip Nichols of Stouffer, "is that she shares her broad interests and experiences with our community... She knows so much and she is active in really diverse activities, and she shares. She brings outside people who are experts in a broad range of subjects to our House. Her own life seamlessly incorporates scholarship and community, and because she shares, her lifestyle is – of course in varying degrees – infused into the lives of other students." 



Camilla Schneier

Third Prize

Camilla Schneier, Kings Court English College House

A Physics and Economics double major, Ms. Schneier pursues both sciences with rigor and passion, organizing events for her Perspectives in the Humanities residential program so that other students can experience her understanding that the humanities are vital in the pursuit of understanding in other disciplines.  She quadrupled the number of events in the program and provides research opportunities for the other residents, and the Women in Physics program she co-founded with two other Housemates has helped nurture a community of women in the sciences, fostering mentorship and fellowship to improve women's participation in physics and STEM fields.

"Camilla manages to integrate her job as PiH manager with great success," says Associate Director Dr. Marta Rivas-Olmeda. "She has been able to integrate her knowledge of physics, economics, art, management and the environment in and out of our College House, for the benefit of the Penn community." 

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