Alumni Relations



Graduated May 9, 2018:

Kathleen Bendele

20180509-Commencement-Medals-JW-015Kate Bendele is a is a returning adult student who is completing her Bachelor of Science. She is an education major with a concentration on English Language Arts at IPFW. Kate has had multiple works published in IPFW's Confluence, a student-run    literary and arts magazine. As an education major, she is dedicated to the pursuit of knowledge as a means of fostering engaged, fully-developed minds. During a dual   listed ENG/ WOST course, Kate became interested in health education and the way in which such education influences students' future health, well-being, and opportunities; this interest became the impetus for this honor's project. 


Bre Anne Briskey

20180509-Commencement-Medals-JW-009Bre Anne Briskey is a senior history and psychology major at IPFW. She is a fourth-year Chapman Scholar. Bre Anne is a member of Alpha Sigma Alpha, Phi Kappa Phi, Psi Chi, The National Society of Leadership and Success, and the current president of Phi Eta Sigma. She received the Top 50 Award in 2017 and 2018. During her time at IPFW, Bre Anne presented at the 2015, 2016, 2017, and 2018 Student Research Symposiums along with presenting at the 8th, 9th, and 10th Annual Undergraduate History Conferences. She is a student mentor for the Department of History as well as working with the IPFW Institute for Holocaust and Genocide Studies. After graduating from IPFW in May, Bre Anne plans on attending graduate school in history.


Rachel Caruso

20180509-Commencement-Medals-JW-008Rachel Caruso is a senior English Literature major at IPFW with double minors in Professional Writing and Linguistics. She has spent her undergraduate career delving  into many different areas of English because of her passion for the subject.  She spent several years working for the Writing Center before procuring a job at Northrop High School this past winter. At Northrop, Rachel works mainly with Level One ESL students, who are mostly Hispanic students just beginning to learn English. Working with high school students sparked a love of teaching in Rachel, and she has decided to  go to graduate school to get her Master’s degree in English with a teaching specialization. She hopes to teach high school English and then eventually move to a curriculum position. Rachel’s passion for reading and literature – particularly young adult literature – is something that she hopes to pass on to high school students.

Helena Carvalho Schmidt

20180509-Commencement-Medals-JW-011Helena Carvalho Schmidt is a senior majoring in English, political science, and communication at IPFW, with a certificate in international studies. As an international student from Brazil, Helena has tried to get integrated into the community by being involved in many areas on campus. She is a writing consultant at the writing center and the leadership intern for the Office of Student Life and Leadership, where she helped structure the new leadership program and the support structure for the Disney College Program applicants. She is currently the vice president of the IPFW Model United Nations student organization (in which she was the permanent representative in this year's American Model UN conference in Chicago), Lambda Pi Eta (national communication honors society) and the International Student Organization, while being involved in other groups like Pi Sigma Alpha (political science honors society) and the Dean's Diplomats. She was a Top 50 student in 2017 and received the Georgiana Kryzminski Scholarship for excellence in English (academic writing), as well as an award for Excellence in International Studies. Helena tries to maintain an international perspective; she practices and expands that perspective with a coursework in international studies, involvement with the local international community, and her study abroad in Belgium in the summer of 2017. Once she graduates she plans to pursue a career path with international impact in human rights and socioeconomic development (wherever that may be), involving a masters program in international relations, serving in international/intergovernmental institutions, and - possibly - a PhD. Eventually, she aims to return to Brazil and become a catalyst for change in order to perpetuate social development in her region. 


Cody Davison

20180509-Commencement-Medals-JW-005Cody Davison is a senior Chemistry Pre-medicine major at IPFW. His favorite Chemistry course is Physical Chemistry, since it's where Physics meets Chemistry to explain how many real-world processes happen down to the molecular level. He has researched Inorganic and Organic Chemistry with both Dr. Linn and Dr. Stevenson. His exploration of complex molecules with Dr. Stevenson has led to his honors project. His passion to help people drove him to volunteer at a hospital for three years and pursue medical school. After he graduates in May he plans on taking a year off before entering Indiana University's School of Medicine in efforts to become a surgeon.

Adrita Iman

20180509-Commencement-Medals-JW-004Adrita Iman is a senior biology major at IPFW, with dual concentrations in Genetics, Cellular and Molecular Biology, and Microbiology and Immunology. Adrita is a Chancellor’s Distinguished Scholar and has been doing research at Dr. Mourad’s genetics and molecular biology lab at IPFW since fall 2016. She is a member of the IPFW AmbassaDons, the International Student Organization, the interdisciplinary honors society, Phi Kappa Phi and the biology honors society, Beta Beta Beta. She received the Research Assistantship scholarship from the Honors Program in spring 2017, was the recipient of the Emil R. Seidel scholarship award from the IPFW Biology Department for conducting research contributing to the advancement of agriculture and has recently been named IPFW’s Outstanding Senior in Biology. She has been a student worker for IT services and the Honors Program. Adrita will be finishing classes and graduating in May with a Bachelors in Biology, an Associates in Chemical Methods and a Biology Research Certificate and will be continuing her academic journey as a PhD student at Indiana University in Bloomington, IN under the Genetics, Cell and Developmental Biology program starting fall 2018.


Shannon LaClaire Rahn

20180509-Commencement-Medals-JW-017Shannon LaClair Rahn is a senior psychology major at IPFW, with a special interest in education and prevention of Non-Suicidal Self-Injury, as well as suicidal thoughts and behaviors. Shannon is a student board member for Active Minds, a student group geared to suicide education and prevention. Previously, she served as a COMPASS Suicide Prevention Intern, as well as a work-study student, in the psychology department. While working in the medical department of a large hospital in Illinois, Shannon worked with underprivileged patients who needed assistance with their medical bills. Through her work at that hospital, she witnessed first-hand the lack of access many uninsured or underinsured patients had to quality mental healthcare. This knowledge, combined with her ongoing interest in psychology, inspired Shannon to return to college and complete her undergraduate degree. She will finish classes in May and plans to obtain her graduate degree in mental health counseling.


Rachel Roberts

20180509-Commencement-Medals-JW-014Rachel Roberts is a senior business major at IPFW, with concentrations in Marketing and Management.  She has participated in externships with Career Services and Student Life and Leadership.  She is a member of Intervarsity, and Honor Dons. She enjoyed previously being involved in International Table where she engaged in discussion with International students to learn of different cultures and enjoy a variety of cuisines from other cultures.  She also had the privilege of being a peer mentor for different international students for 4 semesters. The fall semester of her sophomore year she had the honor of studying at the University of Northern Iowa through the National Student Exchange.  During her junior year she traveled to Morocco, Africa with her International Business Class.  In Morocco, they were able to conduct focus groups at AUI University with DeBrand Fine Chocolates and Hoosier Hill Farm.  During the summer of 2017 she gained valuable experience being an intern Group Leader at General Motors.  She has gained unique marketing experience at Fort Wayne Newspapers working in the Advertising and Customer Service departments.  She has enjoyed being a part of the 4th Annual Communication Showcase and the 21st Annual Student Research and Creative Endeavor Symposium.  She is currently working on her Black Belt Lean Six Sigma certificates as well as her Endorsed Certificate.  Rachel enjoys helping people through customer service and is interested in ways to improve the customers’ experience. This inspired her to do her honors research on brand loyalty with mobile applications.  Rachel will graduate in May. 


Fiona Sackett

20180509-Commencement-Medals-JW-007Fiona Sackett is a senior history major, minoring in theatre. As part of her IPFW Honors’ program, she acted as the dramaturg for Frankenstein: An Act of Creation. In addition to that, she has been involved with the  theatre department acting as a carpenter for the past three and a half years and acted as the prop master for the production of Stupid F*@%ing Bird. Sackett has also presented at the IPFW History Symposium and Indiana University Women’s and Gender Studies Conference both in 2016 and 2017. Sackett is currently planning to continue to graduate school in order to become a professional dramaturg.


Tianna Schuerman

20180509-Commencement-Medals-JW-006Tianna Schuerman is a senior communication sciences and disorders major with a minor in linguistics and a gerontology certificate. She is the President of the IPFW Speech & Hearing Club, and is an active member of the IPFW ASL Pah! Club and sign choir. She recently received the IPFW Top 50 award for the second time and received  3rd place at the 2018 Student Research and Creative Endeavor Symposium. She spent  the last two summers volunteering her time at Turnstone Center for Children and Adults with Disabilities Summer Speech Camp and actively volunteers in the community.   During the fall of 2017 semester Tianna volunteered for the IPFW AAC Poss-Abilities Theatre Camp which ignited her interest in augmentative/alternative communication. This ultimately led her interest in this honors research project. Tianna will be finishing classes in May and from there hopes to attend graduate school for Speech-Language  Pathology.


Meg Steigerwald

20180509-Commencement-Medals-JW-010Meg Steigerwald is a senior communication sciences and disorders major minoring in psychology. She is an active member and officer of the IPFW Speech and Hearing Club and member of the IPFW ASL Pah! Club. Meg spent six months in South Africa prior to beginning her undergraduate studies: a time that heavily influenced her decision to pursue speech-language pathology. Upon returning home, her volunteer experiences with the Deaf community, at Turnstone, and alongside her other peers solidified her decision. Completing this honors research project was both a challenge and an opportunity for Meg. She hoped to learn more about child language while simultaneously preparing for potential research opportunities in graduate school. Meg will be pursuing her master’s degree at Indiana University in Bloomington this fall to become a speech-language pathologist.