Mortar Board Chapter at UNK Receives Top National Awards

Dr. Kenya Taylor
Mortar Board adviser, 308.865.8843

UNK – The University of Nebraska at Kearney Mortar Board chapter was among the outstanding chapters that took top honors at the 2010 Mortar Board National Conference held in Chicago.

The UNK chapter was one of only 22 chapters to take home the Golden Torch Award, which is presented to outstanding, well-run chapters, who exceed the minimum standards, accomplish significant achievements and contribute meaningful service to their institutions.

In addition, the UNK chapter was one of only 19 in the national to receive the Project Excellence Award. This award is given to chapters for notable achievement in scholarship, leadership, fundraising, service and involvement. The chapter also received two awards, one of which was for “Give Love – Give Books!,” a book drive held in conjunction with the National Honor Society chapter at Kearney High School. The book drive collected more than 1,300 books. The second award was for their leadership with the UNK Honors Convocation, which Mortar Board has hosted since 1992.

Finally, the chapter was a finalist for Mortar Board’s highest national honor for a collegiate chapter– the Ruth Weimer Mount Chapter Excellence Award. This award is presented to the nation’s most exceptional chapter.

UNK Mortar Board President Jordan Gonzales of Morrill attended the national conference and accepted the awards on the chapter’s behalf. The UNK chapter was chartered in 1988 and currently has 21 members.

Members of the award-winning UNK chapter are listed below, alphabetically by hometown, with Nebraska students listed first followed by out-of-state students:


 – Laura Slaymaker 
 – Amanda Simmons 
Broken Bow
 – Emilie Ross 
 – Rachel Vogel 
 – Sarah Mach 
Falls City
 – Emmalena Kelly 
Fort Calhoun
 – Kathleen Tinkham 
 – Jessica Grasmick 
 – Allie Nightingale, Sarah Nordhues, Andrew Prososki, Stephanie Rash and Megan Schliefert
McCook – David Paprocki 
 – Jordan Gonzales 
 – Amanda Olson 
 – Nate Summerfield 
 – Caryn Vincent

Out of State

Windsor – Michele Hermesch

 – Kendra Solko