When President David A. Greene presented the Condon Medal at the eighth annual Colby Student Awards Ceremony May 3, he prefaced the reveal by saying, “It’s like the Oscars. … Sometimes you get hints throughout the night.” The biggest surprise wasn’t that Bonnie Maldonado ’16 was the winner (Greene had already handed her four other academic and community awards) or that she got a rousing standing ovation. It was when she turned to see her parents, Bonifacio and Cristiana Maldonado P’16, who had traveled from the Bronx, that the tears and the hugs began in earnest.
The other big reveal was the class speaker for commencement, Brendan Leonard ’16. His classmates elected the theater and dance and English double major to share the stage with commencement speaker Arianna Huffington May 22.
The Student Awards Ceremony in Lorimer Chapel recognized students’ academic achievements, leadership, and other contributions to the College. All-campus prizes and awards were presented, more than 30 academic departments and programs recognized outstanding performance within their disciplines, and additional awards were presented by academic centers, student services, and student groups.
The Condon Medal, the only award presented at commencement, honors Maldonado for constructive citizenship. Greene said the Posse Scholar and American studies major “has contributed tremendously to the campus community and beyond, as a scholar, an activist, and a leader. Her contributions to this campus have been thoughtful, collaborative, and vision driven.” Maldonado has minors in Italian and in women’s, gender, and sexuality studies.
A PDF, 2016 Student Award Recipients, lists all award winners.
Introducing the ceremony Greene called the event bittersweet. While the accomplishments being recognized are inspiring, he said, “The bitter part is that it’s a little bit of a countdown” to graduation and the departure of the seniors, who will be missed.
Also announced Tuesday was the Student Government Association’s 24th annual Charles Bassett Senior Class Teaching Award, which will go to Visiting Associate Professor of Geology and Senior Teaching Associate Bruce Rueger. Rueger will give the Last Lecture to seniors at 4 p.m. Monday, May 16, and video of the address will be streamed live at colby.edu/livestream.