NAU Graduate College
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Graduate Student of the Month
Graduate Students of the Month are nominated for exhibiting the qualities and behaviors that we value in our graduate students. The Graduate College is pleased to recognize Sarah Begovac, an English- Rhetoric, Writing, and Digital Media Studies M.A. student as September’s Graduate Student of the Month.
Sarah is not one who excels because of exceptional preparation, but because of exceptional talent and dedication. She has grown leaps and bounds from her first year as a graduate student and has become an excellent researcher and a strong writer. Sarah is the dream student; she does all the work, does it in an exemplary fashion, and seeks out opportunities to do additional work–all with a cheerful and humble attitude. She excels in class and is usually one of the first ones to post comments in the BBLearn discussions. Sarah is not only a stand-out student and peer, but also a stand-out teacher as a GTA.
As a GTA, Sarah works hard to make her classroom the best experience for first-year students. She is currently working on a music video with some peers based on the English 105 textbook. Sarah also works as a writing assistant in the University Writing Commons where she tutors incoming freshmen and also sophomores, juniors, and seniors. Sarah is a careful and thoughtful teacher, one who cares for her students’ success as students and as humans. As a tutor in the Writing Commons, Sarah’s work is so strong and she is so readily able to relate it to her coursework that she was asked to stay on for a second year and work on research projects with the Interdisciplinary Writing Program. Sarah exceeds expectations in every aspect of her work on campus.
One of her nominators reported that, in a colleague’s class, Sarah came up with a legitimately original theory–one the professor brought to the nominator to double-check that something wasn’t missing, because it was so well thought-out. It was revealed that her theory was original and affects how rhetoric and composition considers the concepts of audience and collaboration–both critical concepts in the field on their own. Sarah’s contribution is being revised into an article submission; she will most likely leave NAU with that publication.
Sarah also presented at the ASU Composition Conference last spring, as one of a handful of students asked to join a panel. She performed impressively, not only crafting a top-notch paper, but helping to facilitate a practice run with the panel and a round of peer review so all were very prepared.
Graduate Students of the Month are nominated by faculty, staff and administrators. Next month: faculty, staff and administrators in the College of Engineering, Informatics, and Applied Sciences (CEIAS) nominate an outstanding graduate student.
Sarah was nominated by her mentors: Dr. Sibylle Gruber and Dr. Kim Hensley Owens; their nominations were used to construct this biography with their permission.
Graduate student spotlight
Shyanne (Shy) Dustrud is a phenomenally talented student, with enormous grit, who exudes infectious enthusiasm. Shy has worked in areas ranging from quantum chemistry to Raman spectrography. As a member of NAU’s inaugural PhD class in Applied Physics and Material Science, she will apply these skills to challenging problems involving the nonlinear optics of metafluids—artificial fluids comprised of nanoparticle suspensions.
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