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Release: December 23, 2002

Local Student Among Top Graduates In UI College of Liberal Arts & Sciences

The University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts & Sciences honored the College’s top December graduates at the semi-annual Commencement Honors Reception Friday, Dec. 20, in the Iowa Memorial Union. The reception honored students who earned highest distinction, high distinction, distinction or honors in a particular department. To graduate with honors, students must complete the honors requirements for their major, including an honors thesis supervised by a faculty advisor. Students graduating with honors wear white cordons draped over their shoulders at the commencement ceremony.

Earning distinction, high distinction or highest distinction depends on the student's class rank. Students in the top 2 percent of the class (for December 2002 graduates this includes those with grade-point averages between 3.98-4.00) earn highest distinction. Students in the next highest 3 percent (for December 2002, 3.87-3.97 GPA) earn high distinction. Students in the next highest 5 percent (for December 2002, 3.73-3.86 GPA) earn distinction. To graduate with distinction students must also have completed the final 60 semester hours in residence in the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences and at least 45 of the final 60 semester hours must have been completed prior to the final semester of registration. These students can be identified at commencement by stars worn on the left sleeve: three stars for highest distinction, two stars for high distinction, and one star for distinction.

Below are photos of some of the college's top graduates, listed alphabetically according to hometown. Click on each photo for a high resoulution version.

AMES
Jacob Wedemeyer, a 1997 graduate of Bridgeport High School in West Virginia, graduated from the University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts & Sciences on Saturday, Dec. 21, with higheest distinction. He earned a degree in Spanish and linguistics with minors in history and Latin American studies. He is the son of Blue Maas of Ames.
Left to right: Fred Antczak, Associate Dean for Academic Programs, University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts & Sciences; Jacob Wedemeyer, December 2002 graduate, University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts & Sciences; Alejandra Menchaca, Wedemeyer's wife; Raul Curto, Executive Associate Dean, University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts & Sciences

ATLANTIC
Wendy Nehring, a 1998 graduate of Atlantic High School, graduated from the University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts & Sciences on Saturday, Dec. 21, with honors. She earned a degree in health and sport studies. She is the daughter of Robert and Sara Nehring of Atlantic.
Left to right: Wendy Nehring, December 2002 graduate, University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts & Sciences; Fred Antczak, Associate Dean for Academic Programs, University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts & Sciences

 

AUBURN
Jennifer Otto, a 1998 graduate of Southern Cal High School, graduated from the University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts & Sciences on Saturday, Dec. 21, with honors. She earned a degree in dance with a minor in business. She is the daughter of Henry and Lorie Otto of Auburn.
Left to right: Fred Antczak, Associate Dean for Academic Programs, University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts & Sciences; Jennifer Otto, December 2002 graduate, University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts & Sciences

 

 

CLINTON
Andrew Haan, a 1998 graduate of Clinton High School, graduated from the University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts & Sciences on Saturday, Dec. 21, with distinction. He earned a degree in mathematics education. He is the son of Mike and Bess Haan of Clinton.
Left to right: Raul Curto, Executive Associate Dean, University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts & Sciences; Andrew Haan, December 2002 graduate, University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts & Sciences; Fred Antczak, Associate Dean for Academic Programs, University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts & Sciences

DAVENPORT
Kimberly Farrell, a 1998 graduate of Davenport Central High School, graduated from the University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts & Sciences on Saturday, Dec. 21, with highest distinction. She earned a degree in computer science and mathematics. She is the daughter of Linnea and Gordon Farrell of Davenport.
Left to right: Kimberly Farrell, December 2002 graduate, University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts & Sciences; Raul Curto, Executive Associate Dean, University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts & Sciences

 

 

FARLEY
Stephanie Hingtgen, a 1998 graduate of Western Dubuque High School, graduated from the University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts & Sciences on Saturday, Dec. 21, with high distinction. She earned a degree in Spanish with an international business certificate. She is the daughter of Janet and Duane Hingtgen of Farley.
Left to right: Stephanie Hingtgen, December 2002 graduate, University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts & Sciences; Raul Curto, Executive Associate Dean, University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts & Sciences

 

 

FARMINGTON
Casey Wilmesmeier, a 1998 graduate of Harmony High School, graduated from the University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts & Sciences on Saturday, Dec. 21, with highest distinction. She earned a degree in Spanish and German with a minor in Portuguese. She is the daughter of Steven Wilmesmeier and Karen Wilmesmeier, both of Farmington.
Left to right: Casey Wilmesmeier, December 2002 graduate, University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts & Sciences; Raul Curto, Executive Associate Dean, University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts & Sciences

 

 

MARION
Jana Bodensteiner, a 1998 graduate of Linn-Mar High School, graduated from the University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts & Sciences on Saturday, Dec. 21, with distinction. She earned a degree in anthropology and communication studies. She is the daughter of Margie and Ken Bodensteiner of Marion.
Left to right: Fred Antczak, Associate Dean for Academic Programs, University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts & Sciences; Jana Bodensteiner, December 2002 graduate, University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts & Sciences; Margie Bodensteiner; Ken Bodensteiner

PELLA
See West Des Moines

PORTSMOUTH
Katherine Leinen and Sarah Leinen, both 1998 graduates of Harlan Community High School, graduated from the University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts & Sciences on Saturday, Dec. 21, with highest distinction. Each earned a degree in biological sciences. They are the daughters of Peggy Leinen of Portsmouth.
Left to right: Peggy Leinen; Katherine Leinen, Fred Antczak, Associate Dean for Academic Programs, University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts & Sciences; Sarah Leinen, December 2002 graduate, University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts & Sciences

TAMA
Amanda Burk, a 1998 graduate of South Tama County High School, graduated from the University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts & Sciences on Saturday, Dec. 21, with honors. She earned a degree in art with a minor in women's studies. She is the daughter of Jack and Nancy Burk of Tama.
Left to right: Amanda Burk, December 2002 graduate, University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts & Sciences; Raul Curto, Executive Associate Dean, University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts & Sciences

 

 

WASHINGTON
Molly Thomas graduated from the University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts & Sciences on Saturday, Dec. 21, with honors and high distinction. She earned a degree in dance and journalism and mass communication. She is the daughter of Lyn Thomas of Washington.
Left to right: Molly Thomas, December 2002 graduate, University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts & Sciences; Fred Antczak, Associate Dean for Academic Programs, University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts & Sciences

 

WEST DES MOINES
Lori Stouwie, a 1998 graduate of Des Moines Christian High School, graduated from the University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts & Sciences on Saturday, Dec. 21, with honors. She earned a degree in health and sport studies. She is the daughter of Carolyn Valk of West Des Moines and Ken Stouwie of Pella.
Left to right: Lori Stouwie, December 2002 graduate, University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts & Sciences; Fred Antczak, Associate Dean for Academic Programs, University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts & Sciences