School of LER Spring 2023 Student Awards Ceremony (April 2023)

School of LER Spring 2023 Student Awards Ceremony (April 2023)

June 20, 2023

On Friday, April 21, 2023 the School of Labor and Employment Relations held our annual Spring Awards Ceremony on a sunny afternoon on campus. The awardees were joined by faculty, staff, and numerous Alumni Board Members, many of whom have made these awards possible.

Please join us in congratulating the Spring 2023 awardees (including our two student marshals) listed below!




Dilip and Bharati Shah Award for Highest Junior Grade-Point-Average

Alexa Jordan and Gabrielle Ranieri

This award was established by the generosity of alumnus Nik Shah ’95 in honor of his parents and recognizes the outstanding achievement of a junior in Labor and Human Resources (LHR) who has achieved the highest cumulative GPA.

Learn more about Alexa and Gabrielle, via their social media feature HERE.


Frieda Rozen Award

Michael Irizarry

This award is named after a former School of Labor and Employment Relations professor and recognizes a graduating senior who, as an adult, or member of the Armed Forces, has excelled academically.

Learn more about Michael, via his social media feature HERE.


Outstanding Senior Award

Brooke Hass

This award recognizes the hard work and success of a member of the senior class.

Learn more about Brooke, via her social media feature HERE.


Robert R. Kohler Memorial Award

Jeremy Sanville

This award goes to an undergraduate student from the Lehigh County area who has exhibited exemplary academic achievement.

Learn more about Jeremy, via his social media feature HERE.


Strand-Lumpkins Writing Award

Lauren Mazzei

This award is given out for the best undergraduate paper! Our School’s faculty voted to rename this award to honor Charles Lumpkins, who recently retired. Professor Lumpkins, has for many years, worked to help our students become better writers through his writing-intensive labor history course. Our faculty thought it was appropriate to recognize his efforts in this regard by adding his name to the School’s writing award. The award will also continue to honor John Strand, an alumnus of the School.

Learn more about Lauren, via her social media feature HERE.




Joseph and Karin Costello Graduate Award

Tao Liu

This award is presented to a Human Resources and Employment Relations (HRER) graduate student in their first year who has demonstrated excellence in their area of study.

Learn more about Tao, via his social media feature HERE.


Chartwell Investment Partners Scholarship Award

Matthew Bronstein

This award is given out to full-time graduate student enrolled or planning to enroll in Human Resources and Employment Relations (HRER), who has achieved superior academic records or who manifests promise of outstanding academic success!

Learn more about Matthew, via his social media feature HERE.




Labor and Human Resources

Olivia Cordano

Olivia is the daughter of Gina and Eugene Cordano of Far Hills, New Jersey. As a Paterno Fellow and Schreyer Scholar, she graduated in May 2023 with a B.S. degree in Labor and Employment Relations and a B.S. degree in Finance with a minor in the Legal Environment of Business. Olivia was the Vice President of Finance and Administration of the Nittany Lion Consulting Group. She also served as the Director of Operations and Senior Advisor for the Penn State Asset Management Group. Since graduation, Olivia has moved to Dallas, Texas, to work for Goldman Sachs full-time as a Global Markets Legal Analyst before attending law school.

Olivia’s advice to other students is to:

“Explore courses outside your set discipline. See what else is out there! You will never know what the perfect combination to satisfy your intellectual palette is until you try," says Olivia.

Watch Olivia's video, via her social media feature HERE.


Organizational Leadership – World Campus

Jenny Brunson

Jenny is the daughter of Mischelle and Paul Patterson of Greybull, Wyoming. She graduated in May 2023 with a bachelor of arts degree in Organizational Leadership. Jenny is an emergency operations center manager for an influx care facility for unaccompanied children in the process of sponsor reunification. She was involved in Penn State's Online Leadership Development Institute (OLDI) and awarded the Military Outstanding Volunteer Service Medal from the U.S. Navy for her twenty-two years of volunteer service. Since graduating, Jenny has plans to attend graduate school next year to pursue a master’s degree in human resources and employment relations through the World Campus.

“As a current employee in a culturally diverse environment, I find the skills and education I’ve gained are very beneficial to the community I serve as a manager. I expect to further hone my skills as I grow in professional experience,” says Jenny.

Watch Jenny's video, via her social media feature HERE.



Spring 2023 LER Awardees Group Picture