2012 winners of the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Student Excellence.

SUNY Chancellor’s Awards for Student Excellence

The Chancellor’s Award for Student Excellence was created in 1997 to recognize students who have best demonstrated, and have been recognized for, the integration of academic excellence with accomplishments in the areas of leadership, athletics, community service, creative and performing arts, campus involvement, or career achievement.

Each year, campus presidents establish a selection committee, which reviews exemplary students. Nominees are then forwarded to the Chancellor’s Office and are subject to a second round of review. Finalists are then recommended to the Chancellor to become recipients of the award. Each recipient receives a framed certificate and medallion, which is traditionally worn at commencement.

“The students we honor have taken full advantage of the academic and extracurricular programs that SUNY provides both in the classroom and in the community,” said Chancellor Zimpher. “These proven leaders, athletes, artists, and civic volunteers truly represent the power of SUNY. I congratulate all of the students being recognized today and thank them for the positive impact each has had on New York State, our university system, and the communities we serve.”

12 Honors College Scholars named 2016 SUNY Chancellors Award Winners


Jay Amin | Biomedical Sciences and Economics

Jay Amin of Rochester, N.Y., graduates with a bachelor of science in biomedical sciences and a bachelor of arts in economics. Amin was a Presidential Scholar in UB’s Honors College and is a member of Phi Beta Kappa. He received $33,000 in funding through Bausch & Lomb to research the toxicity of chemical impurities in ophthalmic products and investigate a potential threshold for impurities to support a Federal Drug Administration limit. Amin also has served as an academic assistant for UB Campus Living and was a dedicated tutor for various organizations.

Maxwell L. Bileschi | Computer Science and Mathematics

Maxwell Bileschi of Webster, N.Y., graduates with a master of arts and bachelor of arts in mathematics and a bachelor of science in computer science. Bileschi was named a Barry M. Goldwater Scholar and was a member of the Honors College. He has co-authored two articles in journals and one in conference proceedings, and was awarded “Undergraduate Researcher of the Highest Merit” by the University at Buffalo. Bileschi also has developed and sold proprietary software to an Australian educational software company.

Paul D. Garman | Chemical Engineering and Mathematics

Paul Garman of Webster, N.Y., graduates with a bachelor of science in chemical engineering and a bachelor of arts in mathematics. He was a member of the Honors College, as well as a Provost Scholar. After serving as an intern for both Eastman Kodak Company and Praxair, Garman conducted research on the synthesis and application of various nanoparticles. He was a four-year letter winner, was awarded most improved swimmer on UB’s Men’s Swimming and Diving Team, and was part of the team’s first MAC championship squad in 2011.

Sourobh Ghosh | Economics and Mechanical Engineering

Sourobh Ghosh of Pittsford, N.Y., graduates with a bachelor of arts in economics and a bachelor of science in mechanical engineering. Ghosh was a UB student representative at “Discovery: An Undergraduate Research Showcase,” hosted at the Legislative Office Building in Albany. A Presidential Scholar and member of the Honors College, Ghosh was co-founder and president of the Honors Student Council. He also was chief organizer of the Tau Beta Pi Honors Recruitment Dinner, an annual job fair.

Sharlene M. Green | African and African American Studies and Political Science

Sharlene Green of Staten Island graduates with a bachelor of arts in African and African American studies and political science. She completed a New York State legislative internship in Albany and a legislative summer internship in Buffalo, and has been involved with the Erie County Board of Elections. She is a certified paralegal and serves on the nominating committee for Buffalo School Board elections. Green was inducted into the National Honor Society for Political Science, served as vice president for the National Honor Society for College Seniors and was a member of the Honors College.

Megan E. Klyczek | Biomedical Sciences

Megan Klyczek of Clarence, N.Y., graduates with a bachelor of science in biomedical sciences. Klyczek has completed more than 400 community service hours as a regular volunteer with the WeCanRow cancer survivor group. She also rowed on UB’s Division I varsity team for four years. Klyczek was the co-author on a research project, conducted by the VA Center for Integrated Healthcare, and invited to present at a national conference in Washington D.C. Megan was a member of the Honors College.

Matthew G. Leibowitz | Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering

Matthew Leibowitz of Ronkonkoma, N.Y., graduates with a bachelor of science in aerospace and mechanical engineering. Leibowitz is a member of the Honors College, as well as Tau Beta Pi Engineering Honor Society. He completed an internship at General Electric Transportation and served as captain of the University at Buffalo’s American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics Microgravity Club. His research experience includes formation flying attitude determination, and building and conducting experiments involving shock tubes.

Peter J. Oldani | Biomedical Engineering

Peter Oldani of Clymer, N.Y., graduates with a bachelor of science in biomedical engineering. Oldani was both president and founder of the Biomedical Engineering Society. Through this organization, he became founder and leader of a student-led, non-invasive brain stimulation research project. Oldani was a member of the Honors College and a recipient of the James and Nancy McLernon Superior Scholar Award and the Dean’s Engineering Award.

Daniel P. Salem | Chemical Engineering

Daniel Salem of Liverpool, N.Y., graduates with a bachelor of science in chemical engineering. Salem, a member of the Ronald E. McNair Postbaccalaureate Achievement Program, was a recipient of the Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship and the UB Presidential Scholarship. Salem also was an active member of both the UB Jazz Ensemble and the UB Late Night Combo. Dan was a member of the Honors College.

Marlee E. Sroka | Dance and Mathematics

Marlee Sroka of Liverpool, N.Y., graduates with a bachelor of fine arts in dance and a bachelor of arts in mathematics. Sroka is founder and director of the first UB Dance Senior Showcase. Her choreography has been selected to represent UB at the 2013 American College Dance Festival Association’s New England Conference. She also was selected to choreograph for UB’s musical production of “The Threepenny Opera.” Sroka was a member of the Honors College and attended two summer dance intensives with scholarships from the Honors Council.

Paul M. Stephan | Social Sciences Interdisciplinary

Paul Stephan of Pittsburgh graduates with a bachelor of arts in the urban and public policy studies concentration, Social Sciences Interdisciplinary Program. Stephan published the Climate Action Plan for the Student Association, detailing a path to climate neutrality by 2020. He also has published many articles in Generation magazine focusing on study drugs, academic dishonesty, mental health stigma, and other topics. As a teaching assistant, Stephan led two class sections of Freshman Honors Colloquium. Paul is a Presidential Scholar and member of the Honors College.

Lauren B. Stutzman | Chemical Engineering

Lauren Stutzman of Elma, N.Y., graduates with a bachelor of science in chemical engineering. Stutzman was president of Tau Beta Pi Engineering Honor Society. She has completed two internships in the development of thin film solar cells, one at Darmstadt University of Technology in Germany and another at DuPont’s Experimental Station in Wilmington, Del., as a Society of Chemical Industry Scholar. Stutzman also was a grant writer for Engineers for a Sustainable World from May 2010 to May 2012 and the webmaster for the Society of Women Engineers. Lauren is a Presidential Scholar and member of the Honors College.

Jessica J. Walts | Dance and Psychology

Jessica Walts of North Syracuse, N.Y., graduates with a bachelor of arts in both dance and psychology. Walts was a member of UB’s Honors College and the National Society of Collegiate Scholars. She served as the assistant to the director of the UB Department of Theatre and Dance, and was dance student representative for the Class of 2013. Walts has been a regular volunteer for the Out of the Darkness Suicide Prevention Walk since 2008, and also served as a dance education specialist for the Bridging Communities through Dance project.

Last updated: October 24, 2017 11:17 am EST