Awards and Recognition

In the Department of Psychology, we recognize outstanding achievement for undergraduates, graduate students, faculty, and staff.  Please join us in congratulating the recipients of the following awards.

Department Recognition

Recent Winners

Wolfe Award: Grace Parolek
Jensen Award: Danielle Koch
Levine Diversity Enhancement Award: Molly Irvin
Graduate Research Mentor: Amanda Baildon and Lauren Laifer
Graduate Student Teaching: Olivia Checkalski and Morgan Jacoby
Teacher of the Year: Manda Williamson

Wolfe Award

The Harry K. Wolfe Award is presented annually to the outstanding senior psychology major at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Nominations are made by Psychology Department faculty and the winner is selected by a committee consisting of three psychology professors. The award is based on a combination of strong classroom performance in UNL coursework; research accomplishments, especially leading to a senior thesis; and other work, such as assisting with teaching, campus extra-curricular engagement, and involvement with off-campus organizations that provide experience related to psychology.

The award commemorates Harry K. Wolfe (1858-1918), a UNL alumnus who was the first professor of psychology at UNL. Wolfe was one of the first Americans to earn a Ph.D. in psychology, from the University of Leipzig, Germany in 1886. He is credited with establishing one of the first laboratory courses for psychology undergraduates in the United States.


2023 Grace Parolek
2022 Jessica Stump
2021 Allison Benda
2020 Rachelle Johnson
2019 Erika Boohar
2018 Alexius Hartman
2017 Shelby Wachal
2016 Madeline J. Schlosser
2015 Tyler Stading
2014 Kassie Guenther
2013 Kate Brungardt
2012 Kara Brostom
2011 Alyssa Lundahl
2010 Amy Proskovec
2009 Nicole Wells
2008 Dana Barnes
2007 Natalie Koziol
2006 Chia Li
2005 Alicia Klanecky
2004 Larissa Schmersal
2003 Ashley Wenger and Kelly Danaher
2002 Alison Mashek, Leann Maska, & Elizabeth Lefler
2001 Bridget faimon and Stephanie Carsten
2000 Justin Weeks, Sarah Newell, & Quinn Laging
1999 Kathleen Pierce and Heather Jensen
1998 Sarah Horn and Jennifer Kline
1997 Jennifer Maassen, Cindy Nash, Mindi Fudge, & Angela Hohbein
1996 Audrey Sanders, Tricia Cross, Genelle Campbell
1995 Mark Hankla & Kelly Fischer
1994 Laura Robinson, Melissa Taylor, and Jill Brown

Jensen Award

The Donald D. Jensen Award is given annually to the best undergraduate research project conducted by a psychology major. 

Don Jensen was born and raised in central Nebraska. He was educated at UNL, receiving his Bachelors and Masters degrees in 1951 and 1955.  He then went to Yale, where he received his Ph.D. in 1958. After a period as a post-doc in Holland, he joined the Indiana University faculty in 1960.

Dr. Jensen returned to UNL in 1969 where he served until his death in 2003. Don was extremely well read and loved to explore ideas.  He was a great supporter of research and of the evidence-based approach to answering questions.


2024 Danielle Koch
2023 Sydney Houser
2022 Daniel Nguyen
2021 Sophia Sanchez
2020 Allissa Flynn
2019 Elizabeth Alexander
2018 Emily Amen
2017 Amanda Dale
2016 Alia Noetzel
2015 Ellen Dudley
2014 Tran Lee
2013 Maggie Schauer
2012 Shaina Bergt
2011 Natalie Heimann
2010 Kristin Divis
2009 Dana Barnes
2008 Tara Steiner

Levine Diversity Enhancement Research Award

The Department of Psychology recognizes the need to develop and promote a psychological knowledge base that addresses the diversity of human behavior. In line with the mission statement of the Department’s Sarata Diversity Enhancement Committee, a research award to acknowledge students’ research contributions concerning diverse populations or of significance for diverse populations has been developed. This award is made possible by the family of Dr. David Levine, who was the chair of the department and an early proponent of research on diversity issues.

The purpose of the Diversity Enhancement Research Award is to encourage and honor those students who make a contribution to the advancement of knowledge concerning issues that face diverse populations or that are of concern to diverse populations. Consequently, this award will be given to an undergraduate and a graduate student whose work best exemplifies a contribution to psychological knowledge about diversity.

Undergraduate student winners

2023 Jessica Stump
2022 Clarice Santos
2021 Daniel Nguyen
2020 Sage Volk
2019 Elizabeth Otto
2018 Myrianna Bakou
2017 Amanda Dale, Joseph Hams
2016 Madeline J. Scholsser
2015 Sydney Gaylord
2014 David Orozco-Garcia
2013 Haley Mullin & Maggie Schauer
2012 Taylor Flairty
2011 Ryan McGough
2010 Nicholas Miller
2007 Andrea Lowe
2004 Melissa Tehee
2003 Christina Dorsey
2003 Bryon Zamboanga
2003 Maria deGuzman

Graduate student winners

2024 Molly Irvin
2023 Allison Cipriano
2022 Katherine Bogen
2021 Laura Acosta
2020 Allura Ralston and Natalie Holt
2019 Allura Ralston
2018 Abigail Riemer
2017 Grant Shulman & Natalie Holt
2016 Alisha D. Caldwell
2015 Antover P. Tuliao
2014 Rosa Delgado & Vincenzo Roma
2013 Libier Isas
2012 Jill Allen & Lindsay Wylie
2011 Miriam Martinez & Brandon Weiss
2010 Jules McLawsen
2009 Amy Hillard
2008 Maria I. Iturbide
2007 Leslie Davila Martinez and Samantha Schwartz
2006 Brian Armenta
2005 Lisa Knoche
2004 Russ Espinoza
2003 Maria Rosario T. de Guzman and Byron Zamboanga

Graduate Student Teaching Awards in Psychology

Research mentorship

2024 Amanda Baildon and Lauren Laifer
2023 Kimia Akhavein and Rebecca Wolfe
2022 Kathleen McNealy and Nicholas Harp
2021 Kelsey McCoy and Sarah Eagan
2020 Katherine Hazen
2019 Molly Franz and Michelle Haikalis, Y. Wendy Huynh, Kate Theimer
2018 Abigail Riemer
2017 Katie Kidwell
2016 Hazel Delgado, Steven Pittenger
2015 Katlyn Farnum
2014 Rosy Maldonado and Laura Watkins
2013 Leah Georges, Mark Mills, Tiffany West

Classroom instruction

2024 Olivia Checkalski and Morgan Jacoby
2023 Evan Lintz
2022 Sarah Eagan
2021 Evan McCracken
2020 Grace Sullivan
2019 Catherine Brown
2018 Juan Duque
2017 Greg DeGirolamo
2016 Chelsie Temmen
2015 Gerald McDonnell
2014 Josh Haby
2013 Michelle Petracca

Teacher of the year

2024 Manda Willamson
2023 Chelsea Witt
2022 Cal Garbin
2021 Eve Brank
2020 Cary Savage
2019 Catherine Brown
2018 Timothy Nelson
2017 Carolyn Brown-Kramer
2016 Cynthia Willis-Esqueda
2015 Gerald McDonnell
2014 Cal Garbin
2013 Mike Dodd
2012 Cal Garbin
2011 Sarah Gervais
2010 Cal Garbin
2009 Mike Dodd
2008 Anne Schutte
2007 Dennis McChargue
2006 Cal Garbin
2005 Rick Bevins
2004 Marc Kiviniemi
2003 Monte Page

University Recognition

Harold and Esther Edgerton Junior Faculty Award: Kathryn Holland
Susan J. Rosowski Associate Professor of Psychology: Jeffrey Stevens

Graduate Studies Recognition

Dean’s Award for Excellence in Graduate Education: Rebecca Brock
Graduate Student Excellence in Mentoring Award: Jessie Tibbs
Dean's Fellowship: Josh Zosky

College of Arts and Sciences Recognition

Inclusive Excellence and Diversity Award: Allura Ralston