Jordan Dunn '21

At the halftime of each home basketball game, a person or group from within the Siena community is honored with the Siena College Award for Excellence. This award recognizes its honorees for achievements and service.

The award winners for the 18-19 season were:

Bonner Service Leaders

Siena’s Bonner Service Leaders team is a diverse and vibrant mix of passionate undergraduates who serve nonprofit organizations in the Capital Region. This year Siena’s 54 Bonners were nominated as part of their Next Generation of Philanthropy Awards and presented the honor at the National Philanthropy Day conference on November 14 at Union College. They were congratulated for their continued dedication to our community.

Tom Coohill, Ph.D., professor of physics

Coohill was recognized for his recent invitation to become a part of NASA’s upcoming mission to Mars. Coohill will join other scientists as a part of the missions sterilizations team. Read more.

G.O.L.D. Standard Award

The 2019 Award recipients, Caitlin Walsh, Steven Schwartz, Patrick Creegan, Burgandy-Leigh Mccurty, Joe Watroba and Mackenzie Watroba, were honored at the first game of the year. The G.O.L.D. Standard Award is presented to those alumni who have connected back with Siena after graduation, had professional success, service, and engagement to the community. Meet the winners. 

MBA Program

This year Siena rolled out The Siena MBA, which features four main disciplines: business analytics, finance, marketing, and strategic management.

Chuck Seifert, Ph.D., dean of the school of business; Jim Murtagh, Ph.D., associate professor and the program director of The Siena MBA, and Lori Lash, associate director of graduate programs were recognized for their profound contributions to the development of the program. Learn more about The Siena MBA. 

George Barnes, Ph.D., associate professor of chemistry 

Barnes was awarded a grant of more than $282,000 from the National Science Foundation to help fund further research at the College as well as workshops for area high school teachers. This grant was due large in part to Barnes’s extensive work with peptide molecules. Read more. 

Don Levy, Ph.D., and the Siena College Research Institute

This fall Levy and SCRI partnered with The New York Times to conduct a major political poll. The team was able to conduct 96 polls of U.S. House and Senate races in 27 different states which yielded 3.1 billion impressions worldwide through news coverage and direct viewership of the polling. They were congratulated on their diligence and the effectiveness of their project. Read more.

Spark Tank

Each semester Siena’s Stack Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship allows Siena students to come together and present their ideas for potential products and business plans. Spring winner Joshua Daly won for a device that manages a pest problem while supporting sustainable agriculture. Fall semester’s top spot went to a pair of brothers, Vincent and Zachary Mills, for their business, Funletz, which sells fun charms to attach to aglets.


Last semester Siena College debuted its new communications major. Current Siena students can enroll in the major beginning this fall. The program will feature four distinct tracks: journalism, marketing communications and digital marketing, political communications, and sports communications. Learn more. 

Dr. Edward LaRow

Creator of the renowned Siena College/Albany Medical College Program, LaRow began his journey at the College all the way back in 1968. LaRow was honored for his dedication and service to Siena and his students and was wished much luck in his new journey of retirement.

Joel Madru

For his instrumental role in growing the future of intercollegiate competition in the sector of E-sports, Madru was recognized. While new to Siena's campus, Esports is the fastest growing collegiate competition in the country. This past fall, Madru led Siena’s League of Legends squad to an undefeated regular season.

Mr. Siena

Taking home the crown this year was senior, Thomas Schlink. Mr. Siena is an annual campus highlight that benefits Habitat for Humanity. Eight contestants show off their various talents before a packed house in the ARC for a great cause. This year’s event brought in more than $3,500 to support upcoming spring break Habitat for Humanity trips for Siena students. Committee co-chairs Erica Sullivan and Rob Morvillo were also honored for their hard work and dedication to such a wonderful event.

Spencer Tibbitts

Tibbitts, a double major in physics and math, spends his summers as a scholar through Siena’s Center for Undergraduate Research and Creative Activity. Working with Matt Bellis, Ph.D., assistant professor of physics, Tibbitts conducts research on NBA player tracking data, looking at video analysis of how players move on the court in order to track fatigue. Spencer’s passion for research and new discovery is why he was honored. Read more. 


Rugby is the fastest growing sport in the United States, and thanks to the Siena community, our program is on the rise. Alumni Amy Zamenick-Hepp, Bridget Woebbe, Ron Bjorklund, Terrence Hunt, Tom Rienzo, Joe McCrudden, Jim Daley, Kevin Quinn, Tom Thornton, and Doug Colbeth were all honored for their contribution to the growth of this program. A special welcome was also extended to Greg Matthew who was recently hired as the Rugby programs first-ever coordinator. Learn more about Siena Rugby. 

Zackary Terry

Terry, a member of the Class of 2021, is a full-time management major at Siena who, in-between classes, has been working full-time at Northwestern Mutual. He was recently selected as one of Northwestern’s top ten college financial representatives nationwide, out of more than 3,500 contenders. Terry was the only college freshman to be honored. Learn more.