Bridging GAPS award winners announced

Graduate students from across Washington University gathered April 4 for the Graduate Professional Council’s (GPC) Bridging GAPS Awards Ceremony in Danforth University Center.

The annual ceremony, organized by the GPC, is a recognition and celebration of the important role that graduate student leadership plays in enhancing interdisciplinary endeavors and the graduate student community.

Award winners are graduate students and groups who have been nominated by their peers. This year, awards recognize their work in building interdisciplinary collaborations that contribute to the areas of community service, professional development, diversity and sustainability.

Awards also are given to a graduate student leader and a faculty/staff leader.

“We all recognize that, in the real world, projects and initiatives don’t fit nicely into buckets like ‘business, art and engineering.’ People are bridging these functional areas to produce the ideas and products that are changing our world,” says Matthew Fyock, a graduate student at Olin Business School and the chairperson of the GPC Bridging GAPS Committee.

“This ceremony aims to recognize, promote and encourage this powerful practice of bringing different disciplines together to produce results,” says Fyock, who is a May MBA degree candidate.

This year’s Bridging GAPS award winners are:

  • Community Service Award: Deepti Adlakha, a master’s student in architecture in the Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts
  • Professional Development Award: Shira Berkowitz and Andrea Degener, master’s students in art in the Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts
  • Diversity Award: Raphiel Murden, a master’s student in mathematics in the Graduate School of Arts & Sciences
  • Sustainability Award: Melissa Holtmeyer, a doctoral student in the School of Engineering & Applied Science
  • Graduate Student Leader Award: Nicholas Miller, a doctoral student in English in the Graduate School of Arts & Sciences
  • Faculty/Staff Award: Community Service Office, which is directed by Stephanie Kurtzman, who is also associate director of the Richard A. Gephardt Institute for Public Service.

All graduate students are eligible to submit nominations, win an award or to serve on the committee that hosts the ceremony.

For more information about the Graduate Professional Council or the Bridging GAPS awards, visit