SBU students receive academic honors at “A Cup of Excellence” ceremony

Dr. Lee Skinkle presents honors cords to Hailey CampbellBOLIVAR, Mo. – Southwest Baptist University students graduating in December were recognized for their contributions to their academic areas and divisions during “A Cup of Excellence” ceremony Tuesday evening, Oct. 12.

This ceremony recognizes three groups of students – honors graduates, Gordon and Judy Dutile Honors program graduates, and Division-specific academic awards. The ceremony also featured a time of devotion, a personalized coffee bar, scones and vintage photo booth.

The honorees included:

Outstanding Art Graduate – Lauren Kerby, Norborne, Mo.

Outstanding Elementary Education Major – Morgan Essary, Cape Fair, Mo.

Outstanding Kinesiology Senior – Amber Sorenson, Arnold, Mo.

Kelly Martin Outstanding Criminal Justice Senior – Britnie Woosley, West Plains, Mo.

Pearlene Breshears Outstanding Psychology Senior – Lacy Gregory, Springfield, Mo.

Outstanding History Senior – Travis Griessel, Ozark, Mo.

Outstanding Business Area Senior – Triniti Grant, Camdenton, Mo.

Outstanding Computing Area Senior – Emily Wipf, Marshfield, Mo.

Outstanding Natural Sciences Senior – Mikayla Becker, Bolivar, Mo.

Outstanding Language & Communication Senior – Mariah Barber, Bolivar, Mo.

Outstanding Christian Ministry Award – Anna Saffels, Harrisonville, Mo.

Academic Excellence & Servant-Leadership Award – Jessica Davis, O’Fallon, Ill.

Gordon & Judy Dutile Honors Program Graduates – Mikayla Becker, Bolivar, Mo.; Jewel Bramley, Harrison, Ark.; James Friesen, Olathe, Kan.; Travis Griessel, Ozark, Mo.; Riley Linscott, Lampe, Mo.; Alberto Rodriguez, Plano, Texas; and Emily Wipf, Marshfield, Mo.

Amber Sorenson and Dr. Julie Bryant visit at a receptionIn addition to the individual honors, SBU Provost Dr. Lee Skinkle presented cords to 38 seniors graduating with honors - 15 Cum Laude, 8 Magna Cum Laude and 15 Summa Cum Laude. 

SBU will host two Winter commencement ceremonies – one ceremony for bachelor and graduate degree recipients at 3 p.m., Friday, Dec. 10 and one for associate degree recipients at 6 p.m. The ceremonies also will be available for viewing simultaneously on livestream. Visit for more information about the ceremonies.

PHOTO 1: SBU Provost Dr. Lee Skinkle (left) presents honors cords to Hailey Campbell during “A Cup of Excellence” academic honors ceremony. 

PHOTO 2: Amber Sorenson (left), Outstanding Kinesiology Senior, and Dr. Julie Bryant, professor of education at SBU, visit during the reception for “A Cup of Excellence.” 

*Published: 10-13-2021