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Biology Major Hassan Elzein Named Outstanding University Scholar

College ScholarsOutstanding College Scholars (from left) Teresa McMahon, Kristin Anglin, Hassan Elzein, Alexandra Solymar, Tyrell Gardner and Stephanie Willis.

The Old Dominion University Alumni Association presented Outstanding College Scholar awards to six graduating students at the Student Honors and Awards Dinner on Thursday, May 9. One of the students, biological sciences major Hassan Elzein, also was honored as the overall Outstanding University Scholar.

The winners from the six colleges will be recognized again when they receive their undergraduate degrees from ODU during the university's 118th commencement exercises on May 10 and 11.

The top scholar from the College of Arts and Letters is Alexandra Solymar, who will graduate with a 4.0 grade point average (GPA) in criminal justice. Solymar, from Warrenton, Va., was a member of ODU's Diversity Institute and aspires to teach sociology at the university level. She named Jeff Toussaint, lecturer in sociology, as her most inspirational faculty member.

From the College of Business and Public Administration, the top scholar this year is Teresa McMahon, an accounting and information systems technology major who is graduating with a 3.98 GPA. McMahon, from Chesapeake, was a participant in the Beta Alpha Psi annual community service event. She named Vijay Kalburgi, senior lecturer in decision sciences, as her most inspirational faculty member.

This year's top scholar from the Darden College of Education is Kristin Anglin, an exercise science major with a 3.93 GPA. Anglin, from Portsmouth, was a member of the university's Dynasty Dance Team. She plans to enter the Doctor of Physical Therapy program at ODU. She named Ralph Stevens, associate professor of biological sciences, as her most inspirational faculty member.

From the Frank Batten College of Engineering and Technology, the top scholar is Tyrell Gardner, of Virginia Beach, a modeling and simulation engineering major with a 3.99 GPA. A future medical school student, Gardner was part of the first class of undergraduate modeling and simulation engineering students in the country. He named Jim Leathrum, associate professor of modeling, simulation and visualization engineering, as his most inspirational faculty member.

This year's top scholar from the College of Health Sciences is Stephanie Willis, a nursing major from Norfolk with a 4.0 GPA. Willis, who plans to obtain a Doctor of Nursing Practice degree and work as a certified nurse midwife, named Linda Bennington, senior lecturer of nursing, as her most inspirational faculty member.

Elzein's recognition as the outstanding scholar in the College of Sciences and Outstanding University Scholar stems from his 4.0 GPA in biological sciences. Elzein, who is from Suffolk, plans to attend medical school. He named Ralph Stevens, associate professor of biological sciences, as his most inspirational faculty member.

Presented by the ODU Alumni Association, the Outstanding College Scholar awards recognize the undergraduate student in each college with the highest academic average above 3.40 who has completed at least 60 hours at the university.