Alumni Senior Awards 2019

The Grinnell College Alumni Council along with a committee of alumni faculty and staff selected two graduating seniors to receive Alumni Senior Awards at Baccalaureate 2019. This year we honored the following individuals:

Rachel Bass ’19 and Bryce Lew ’19

Rachel Bass

Our first recipient is known as a creative problem solver and a first-rate researcher. This student has consistently demonstrated outstanding leadership and is known as a team-builder in various campus organizations, such as founding secretary of the student dining hall workers union, and as a peer mentor for the Sexual Health Information Center. She was elected by her classmates to the physics department’s Student Educational Policy Committee. She has also helped her fellow Grinnellians by serving as a physics mentor, science peer mentor, and calculus tutor.

A Salem, Oregon native, this student is majoring in physics and mathematics. Her outstanding academic record extends to a pair of highly-competitive undergraduate research programs. In the summer of 2017, she went to Cornell University to research beam-steering magnets. The following summer she traveled to Geneva to participate in a program at CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research, where she wrote her own Python scripts to model the performance of an electrostatic deflector. Her superb analytical ability and proven computer modelling skills enabled her to develop a strong track record in research.

She was recently awarded a Marshall Scholarship for study in the United Kingdom, becoming the first Grinnell student to earn this honor in 26 years. She will attend the University of Edinburgh in 2019 to study experimental physics and then King’s College in London in 2020 to study mathematics education.

For her insightful observations, academic achievements, and peer leadership, it’s my pleasure to present an Alumni Senior Award to Rachel Bass, class of 2019.

Bryce Lew

One criterion for the Alumni Senior Awards is exemplifying the spirit of Grinnell. That is unequivocally the case for our next honoree. As a Phonation employee, Admission student representative, and senior-class ambassador, he is one of the most positive-minded people in the Grinnell community. His school spirit is genuine and spreads quickly to those around him.

A Pasadena, California native, this student is an economics and psychology double major. Like our first recipient, he has used what he learned in the classroom to excel in summer positions with Warner Brothers, Universal Studios, and others companies. From developing marketing plans and film editing, to conducting brand audits and leveraging data analysis skills, he has made the most of his liberal arts education.

As the 2019 Co-Class Ambassador for the last four years, this student has executed numerous events to build class affinity. In addition, he serves as a senior interviewer and tour guide in the Admission office. Like many Grinnellians, he has a quirky sense of humor; however, in the flip of a switch he has also demonstrated great poise, leadership, and maturity as demonstrated by his service as the Senior Class Gift Committee co-chair. He also is the student representative to the College’s Campaign Committee and has been a fixture at numerous Grinnell events. The list of how he has served the Grinnell community could go on and on.

For being dedicated and invested in all things Grinnell, we are proud to present this Alumni Senior Award to Bryce Lew, Class of 2019.

Previous Recipients