2016 Bucky’s Award Ceremony Winners

Student Organization Awards

Dean’s Award of Excellence: Enactus

Cosponsored by: The Division of Student Life

Enactus is an international nonprofit organization dedicated to inspiring students to improve the world through entrepreneurial action. Here in Madison, they focus solely on social entrepreneurship, and they improve the community through collaborative, team-driven action. Each semester, the organization meets for three weeks of brainstorming, developing, and eventually creating two to five projects to help tackle social issues. They have currently been working on projects including; Project Redistribute, Help the Homeless Project, Community Wellness Project, and Students Eating Healthy. Enactus understands that social justice issues are best understood through direct involvement and they exemplify the Wisconsin Idea through their everyday actions.

 Dean's Award of Excellence

Best New Student Organization: Eye to Eye

Cosponsored by: Love Your Melon 

Eye to Eye embodies the Wisconsin Idea by using what they have learned through their personal experiences and using this knowledge to give back to the community. Their art-based mentoring program teaches middle school students different types of self-advocacy and ways to be successful with a learning disability or ADHD. Their mission is to improve the lives of every person with a learning disability. They do this volunteering at a local charter school for underprivileged students in the Madison area. These sessions allow the student to put their learning issues and daily troubles aside through art and the powerful bond formed with their mentor. In just one year they have nearly tripled their mentor/mentee count. This group looks forward to continuing to empower these middle schoolers with the mentality that they can do anything they set their mind to.

Best New Student Organization

Conservation and Sustainability: Ethical and Responsible Business Network 

Cosponsored by: Office of Sustainability

Ethical and Responsible Business Network has put students’ skills and passion to practice in the Madison business community. This group has helped organizations including Reynolds Transfer and the American Family Dream Bank integrate sustainability goals into their business operations. In doing so, they have empowered students to apply the skills they learn in the classroom to real-world problems. They truly embody the ceremony’s theme, Dream. Learn. Do.

Conservation and Sustainability


Excellence in Post-Graduate Preparation: Health Occupation Student of America UW-Madison

Cosponsored by: School of Human Ecology Student Academic Affairs and Career Development Office 

The Health Occupations Students of America has served as a role model for our community in demonstrating the campus wide impact one student organization can have. Through their hard work and dedication, they have organized a large-scale campus wide event for students interested in healthcare professions. They have worked to unite both undergraduate and graduate students alike with local practitioners and professionals in the field, to help students identify potential career paths, learn more about the skills and training required for various careers in healthcare, and begin building their professional networks through the All Campus Healthcare Symposium. This organization benefits students by offering the incredible opportunity for students interested in medicine, occupational therapy, public and global health (just to name a few) connect with each other at keynote presentations, and in breakout sessions and panels, to explore their interests, options and passions related to the wide variety of opportunities related to the field of healthcare.

Excellence in Post-Graduate Preparation

Health and Wellness: Kinesiology Club

Cosponsored by: Division of Recreational Sports 

Kinesiology Club is dedicated to health and wellness through physical activity, they strive to promote physical activity as a vehicle for improving health and disease prevention on campus and in the community- especially with children. Hosting a variety of projects annually such as their Poker Run and blood drive. In addition, this org reaches out to the community such as the winter carnival for children at Randall elementary school, Special Olympics and the Kinesiology department’s Adaptive fitness program. Collectively this year’s recipients touch a wide range of people throughout the campus and community in promotion of physical activity as a vehicle to good health.

Health and Wellness

Inclusivity: Badgers for Special Olympics

Cosponsored by: The PEOPLE Program

Badgers for Special Olympics took the ideology of being an inclusive organization and displayed it to their volunteers, coaches, families and participants. Their mission is “to provide year-round sports training and athletic competition in a variety of Olympic-type sports for children and adults with intellectual disabilities, giving them continuing opportunities to develop physical fitness, demonstrate courage, experience joy and participate in a sharing of gifts, skills and friendship with their families, other Special Olympic athletes and the community.” Through their basketball tournament members and volunteers actively engage participants by distributing and educating individuals about healthy eating habits, creating posters to cheer from the stands, hands-on coaching, score keeping and refereeing. They take their mission statement seriously and work hard to connect with a variety of people in order to build a successful community on campus.  

 Inclusivity Award


Outstanding Leadership: Peer Learning Association

Cosponsored by: Center for Leadership & Involvement

The Peer Learning Association is dedicated to making a positive change on campus, and they demonstrated resilience when facing organizational obstacles. This organization is striving to redefine how students look at their education. Not only do they provides opportunities for members to develop new skills and discover their own leadership style, but they also increase the skills and knowledge of students across campus. They have become an essential resource to students across campus and provide students with an environment where they are able to maximize their educational experience. Additionally, this organization not only provides opportunities for their fellow students to grow, but they also provide opportunities for their members to reach their potential and grow through their involvement. This organization not only provides education on pedagogy which is essential for their role in the organization, but they go above and beyond by providing additional educational workshops about diversity, stress and mental health, socio-economic sensitivity, professional development, and many more.

Outstanding Leadership Award

Outstanding Service: Kappa Delta Chi Sorority, Inc.

Cosponsored by: The Morgridge Center for Public Service

Outstanding Service


Philanthropic Achievement: Sigma Lambda Gamma Sorority

Cosponsored by: Panhellenic Association

Sigma Lambda Gamma National Sorority Inc. is exceptional in the efforts they took to plan events and become activists for their cause. Their events directly engaged the local community by creating spaces of inclusivity and awareness for women of color, especially those who have been affected by breast cancer. Most notable was their annual Maureen Perez Survivor Gallery, an event where members invited breast cancer survivors of diverse backgrounds to share their stories against a backdrop of art created by the members and cancer survivors alike. This event not only raises funds but also encouraged open dialogue about their cause.

Philanthropic Achievement


Social Justice Advocacy: Muslim Student Association

Cosponsored by: Multicultural Student Center

The Muslim Students Association served as a model for our campus and Madison community through their social justice programs and partnerships with many organizations and departments. From the Candlelight Vigil:#PrayfortheWorld, Orphan Sponsorship Dinner, Black Muslims in Islamic History for Black History month the organization has been busy advocating for social justice with many organization across campus such as Badger Catholic, Arab Student Association, Amnesty International, Indian Students Association amongst other collaborations. They have united others for the cause of promoting unity, understanding and joint action for positive social justice change. This organization seeks to also joint action among students and promotes providing opportunities for charitable activities among members in the Madison Community like raising around $21,000 at the Orphan Sponsorship Dinner to help provide orphans with food and housing. These students work first-hand with others through the opposition viewpoints and other members of the community to help create dialogue and conversation.

Social Justice Advocacy


Individual Awards

Global Citizenship Award: Wyatt Rufener

Cosponsored by: The International Internships Program  

Wyatt Rufener, reflected on how global citizenship is necessary for students in all disciplines. He has learned how in depth knowledge of a culture and language can help facilitate business and engineering collaborations and recognized the interdependence of our global economy. He describes his understanding of global citizenship through his experiences interning with two different Japanese companies as being “open to experiences and other countries and not afraid to take on challenges that might require [you] to operate in a new, unfamiliar culture.” He shows commitment to understanding Japan and the greater global engineering world through study on campus, first-hand experience, and his future career goals.  

Global Citizenship Award

Individual Leadership: Maikou Vang  

Cosponsored by: The Wisconsin Alumni Association

This year’s winner, Maikou Vang, has led social justice initiatives on campus and across the country. She has held multiple leadership roles, from camp teacher to conference planner – and uses her natural positive attitude to inspire others.

Individual Leadership


Most Involved: Caroline Zellmer

Cosponsored by: Center for Leadership & Involvement

Caroline Zellmer has served on the Dean of Students Advisory Board and UHS’s Healthcare Advisory Board, volunteered at Wingra Clinic and in Madison Metropolitan School District and been active in Associated Students of Madison, serving on the Finance Committee and as the CALS Representative and in HOSA, serving as the Special Events Chair. She also helped educate others, by serving as a Teaching Fellow for the Center for First Year Experience CP: 125 Course, as well as the center’s Academic Initiatives Intern, who not only coordinates the 20 other teaching fellows, but also planned the Wisconsin Experience Symposium. She has played a critical role in educating our faculty, when they assisted in the coordination of the Teaching and Learning Institute. Lastly, she has served as a GUTS tutor, a CALS Ambassador, an Intern for UW Health and student newspaper reporter.

Outstanding Freshman: Nathaniel Jones

Cosponsored by: The Center for First Year Experience

Nathaniel Jones has filled his first year at UW-Madison with meaningful involvement in several student organizations—including volunteering, ASM, rec sports, and several on-campus jobs. He strives for academic excellence and embraces the Wisconsin Idea by applying lessons in the classroom, such as social media marketing, to their volunteer work at A Just Brew. One of his most impactful lessons came from the words of a wise professor who shared “do not let your vision be limited to what you have control under.” He admits at no point in college has he had his “life together”, but he has embraced this message to continue dreaming, learning, and doing each day.

Outstanding Freshman


Outstanding Senior: Erica Anderson

Cosponsored by: The Wisconsin Alumni Association

Erica Anderson has passionately pursued opportunities in leadership and service. She recognizes the impact and importance of strong communities and dreams to be a sociologist to influence local-level policy. We look forward to seeing all she accomplishes as a UW alumna.

Outstanding Senior


Outstanding Transfer Student: Sarah Laudon

Cosponsored by: The Center for First Year Experience

Sarah Laudon reflects about vulnerability and commitment for change. She currently conducts research on the Fragile X Syndrome and Autism Spectrum Disorder, and has even written a grant to begin quality of care studies with patients at the Mayo Clinic Emergency Department. While balancing her passion in research, she has also left a lasting legacy on UW-Madison’s campus as a founder of WISER: Women in Scientific Education and Research, as well as increasing awareness to combat gender-based violence by leading the Greek Life Sexual Assault Task Force. Her involvements on campus has not only left an impact on the students who currently attend this institution, but has successfully developed a sustainable plan for her impact to reach all future Badgers.

Outstanding Tranfser