Emily Rahn, a UW-Stevens Point senior and winner of the 2021 Melvin R. Laird Exceptional Artist Award, is pictured with College of Fine Arts and Communication Dean Valerie Cisler and Chancellor Thomas Gibson. (Contributed)

UW-Stevens Point students recognized for excellence

Metro Wire Staff

Excellence in student achievement has been recognized at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point.

The Department of Theatre and Dance’s student-created fall production of “In This Moment: Reflections of Our Time” was among the winners of the inaugural Kennedy Center Citizen Artist Award from the Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival in April.

The award recognizes theatrical productions that promote long-term societal impact through an artistic lens to encourage empathetic exploration of the complex cultural and physical world and advocate for justice on campus and throughout the world.

“In This Moment” was an online production of short plays, monologues, and songs created by students to reflect issues such as the COVID-19 pandemic, quarantine, Black Lives Matter, #MeToo, and other issues impacting the lives of students.

  • Emily Rahn, Oshkosh, won UW-Stevens Point’s 2021 Melvin R. Laird Exceptional Artist Award. A senior with a double major in instrumental education and trumpet performance, Rahn creates multimedia art by drawing pieces inspired by her music performances. The $5,000 award will support her efforts to create multisensory collaborations with artists to combine time-lapse drawings with classical performances.
  • Alexander Smetana, Stevens Point, a computer information systems major, won a $10,000 Live Más Scholarship from the Taco Bell Foundation. He has worked at the Stevens Point Taco Bell for two years and was among the 420 team members selected for the scholarship from nearly 10,000 video applications.
  • Two Dreyfus University Center student employees won ACUI (formerly the Association of College Unions International) Steal This Idea Awards. This national competition showcases work done for college unions and student activities.
    • Nathan Wegner, Cedarburg, a graphic design major, won third place in the digital campaign category for his “Food at the Brewhaus” campaign
    • Caitlin Kepler, Lake Geneva, a graphic design major, won honorable mention in the poster category for her “Local Food Fair” poster.