Banquet Celebrates Excellence

December 05, 2019

Members of the graduating class of 2019 pose for a group photo at the Pursuit of Excellence banquet Dec. 3 in Stotler Lounge in Memorial Union.

Mizzou Engineering’s Office of Diversity and Outreach Initiatives (DOI) and the MU Center for Academic Excellence and Success hosted the third-annual Pursuit of Excellence (POE) Banquet Dec. 3. This banquet celebrates outstanding students, faculty and staff from Mizzou Engineering and offers an opportunity to inspire and congratulate members of the engineering community.

Hillary Mueller

Hilary Mueller, COE Director of Diversity and Outreach Initiatives, speaks at the Pursuit of Excellence banquet.

During the banquet, the DOI Staff/Faculty Council, Multicultural Engineering Program (MEP) and Center for Academic Success & Excellence (CASE) Scholars, MEP Graduate Fellowship recipients, and MEP Success Award recipients all were recognized. DOI also handed out its 1907 Women in Engineering and Pursuit of Excellence in Engineering Diversity and Inclusion Awards.

The 1907 Women in Engineering Award recognizes students, faculty, staff and alumni who have made significant contributions to the College and to the engineering field in regards to academic achievement, leadership and service. The Pursuit of Excellence in Engineering Diversity and Inclusion Award recognizes advocates, allies and champions of diversity who, through their passion and commitment, have steered the engineering community towards a bolder, brighter and more inclusive future. This year’s banquet included a record number of nominations—over 60, and 24 people received awards with four honorable mentions, a new feature this year.


  • 2 Staff/Faculty/Alumnae Women in Engineering Awardees:
    • Sarah Mounter
    • Xueju “Sophie” Wang
  • 16 Student Women in Engineering Awardees:
    • Danae Nash
    • Dilruba Parvin
    • Elizabeth Freihaut
    • Hayley Ockerhausen
    • Jamie Flores
    • Jessica Austin
    • Komal Vekaria
    • Lara Bakula
    • Lauren Parker
    • Lydia Schreiber
    • Madison Williams
    • Ola Babalola
    • Omiya Hassan
    • Rasha Gargees
    • Soumya Purohit
    • Yasmin Kassim
  • POE Staff
    • Honorable mention: Lindsey Wisnewski
    • Awardee: Victor Bradford
  • POE Alumni
    • Awardee: Marlon Taylor
  • POE Faculty
    • Awardee: Carlos Sun
    • Awardee: Enos Inniss
  • POE Students
    • Honorable mention: Melinda Groves
    • Honorable mention: Janae Bradley
    • Honorable mention: Siyang “Sandy” Zhang
    • Awardee: Samira Shamsir
    • Awardee: Evonne Weeden

For photos of the winners, please visit the Mizzou Engineering Facebook page.