President’s Prize, Gold Axe recipients, Distinguished Seniors honored at banquet

President's Prize winners

Nov. 20, 2019

Northern Arizona University announced 28 Gold Axe recipients, three of whom were named President’s Prize recipients, at a banquet on Nov. 19, recognizing the most accomplished students in the class of 2019 as well as distinguished seniors from each college.

The President’s Prize winners, who are chosen from among the Gold Axe winners, were honored Tuesday night with the most prestigious award for undergraduates at NAU. The President’s Prize winners this year are Alison Bauers; a nursing student, who, through her years of leadership in the Student Nurses’ Association, helped to improve mentorship between new and returning students; Emma Gray, a hotel and restaurant management student who overcame her fear of public speaking to create and lead events in her job at SUN Entertainment; and Adrián Luna, who double-majored in physics and astronomy and secondary education-physics, who spent his career doing undergraduate research and now plans to become a high school teacher who inspires students to love physics as much as he does.

The distinguished seniors, who each college selects from its graduates, are Austin Dikeman (also an Honors College student), Adelyne Gomez, Luna, Sierra Cottle, Bauers, Danielle Bartlett, Marvol Barnard, Jaymie Montgomery and David Roach.

“Some of these students are the first in their family to attend college or have dedicated their talents and skills to helping others; some have overcome significant challenges to get to where they are today,” President Rita Cheng said. “These students’ passion and commitment to their education and to our university distinguish them as outstanding students.”

December 2019 Gold Axe and President’s Prize recipients and Distinguished Seniors. Top: President Rita Cheng with President’s Prize recipients Emma Gray, Adrián Luna and Alison Bauers.

The tradition of the Gold Axe Award dates back to 1933, a year after the student body adopted the axe as the symbol for Lumberjack athletics. NAU adopted the tradition of awarding small gold axe pins to outstanding members of the student body. To this day, the gold axe pin is considered the official emblem of the Associated Students of NAU and is presented each semester to recognize students’ outstanding achievements and distinguished service to the university and the greater community.

Gold Axe winners

Distinguished Seniors