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Student Awards


The Blackwell Award for Excellence in Creative Expression

The Blackwell Award in Creative Expression was established in 2006 and recognizes those who have excelled in the evocative representation of the human condition through the genres of poetry, fiction, creative non-fiction, music, or the artistic representation of academic inquiry. This $250 award is granted semi-annually. The HASS faculty nominate students who have produced a creative work of stunning originality. Valued themes for this award include the human condition; humanity’s relationship with nature, technology, and/or science; the essence or spirit of a given culture; globalization. Submissions represent a unique vision, revelation, or insight and show mastery of a chosen genre.

The Frank Oppenheimer Science and Society Award

The Frank Oppenheimer Science and Society Award was founded in 2005 and is awarded jointly each semester by the Department of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences and the Department of Physics. The award recognizes excellence in first-year (freshman) writing in the form of a paper produced in HASS100, Nature and Human Values (NHV) that examines social, ethical, economic, historical, political, and/or environmental issues. Named after Frank Oppenheimer, atomic physicist and brother of J. Robert Oppenheimer, whose role in the Manhattan Project is studied in LAIS 100. This is a $400 award. Each NHV writing instructor submits one paper for consideration. The recipient is chosen by a panel of two judges from the NHV lecturing faculty and one judge from the Physics faculty. HASS and Physics gratefully acknowledge Mr. Oppenheimer’s family for allowing us to use his name for this award.

The Maryanna Bell Kafadar Humanities Award

The Maryanna Bell Kafadar Humanities Award was established in 1987 by Ahmed D. Kafadar (Engineer of Mines, 1942; M.S., 1943) in honor of his late wife. This $500 award is given each semester to a graduating senior who has excelled in the study of the humanities and who has contributed to the cultural life of the CSM campus. HASS faculty nominate students; a selection committee then reviews nominations and makes a determination as to whether there is an appropriate recipient in any given semester.

The Sacks Fund for Excellence in Environmental Sustainability

Established in 2006 by former HASS Division Director, Associate Vice President for Academic & Faculty Affairs, and current Professor Emeritus Arthur B. Sacks, this award is designed to recognize an academic project or activity that promotes thoughtful environmental sustainability.