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University Libraries

2024 Library Award Winners

The University of Dayton Libraries present annual awards for international students, teacher education majors and minors, and published student writers. Students apply in the winter term, and a committee for each award selects the winners. This year, each honor includes a $600 award. 

All are welcome to attend the University Libraries Awards and student recognition ceremony at 2:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 24, in the Gathering Place, Roesch Library second floor. Join us in congratulating these outstanding students, from left in the image: Lucy Waskiewicz, Rojan K C and Malena Coleman.


Malena Coleman is a junior pursuing a middle childhood education degree. She has a 4.0 GPA and is a lead peer adviser in the teacher education department, where she mentors incoming first-year students. After graduating, she plans to pursue a master’s in school psychology before teaching middle school. Through this career, she says, she aims to assist in “the empowerment of those in need, promoting a place where compassion makes a difference.” Outside of the classroom, she is highly active in her community, teaching Sunday school and volunteering as the head of photography at her church. Prior to transferring to UD in the fall of 2023, she attended Sinclair Community College.

Rochonda L. Nenonene, assistant professor in the Department of Teacher Education, noted in her recommendation, “Malena is kind, thoughtful and enthusiastic. She exhibits the dispositions we expect of our teacher candidates, and embodies the Marianist Characteristics of Education in all her interactions with professors and classmates.”

The Dr. Nicoletta Hary Award is named in memory of Nicoletta Mattioli Hary, a University of Dayton librarian for more than 50 years. The honor provides a scholarship to a returning full- or part-time sophomore or junior student with a major or minor in teacher education. Award criteria include financial need, a good academic record, and personal characteristics reflecting the Marianist tradition.


Lucy Waskiewicz is a senior from Pittsburgh, double majoring in English and communication with a creative writing minor she says she picked up “while following [my] favorite English professors around to whatever class they taught.” At UD, she's written stories about interesting people, places and events on campus for the College of Arts and Sciences blog and Flyer News, where she is news editor. She has published fiction, creative nonfiction and a personal narrative in the campus art and literary magazine Orpheus and has been featured on the Dayton Writers Movement fiction podcast Uncanny Valley. After graduation, she plans to work in marketing and communications while “chugging away at [my] stockpile of fiction drafts.”

The Ruhlman Award committee was uniformly impressed by the scope and depth of Waskiewicz’s reporting. Her writing uplifts and highlights the work of UD students, exemplified in “UD Pre-Medicine Graduate Spends Gap Year Volunteering at Local Homeless Shelter” and “UD River Stewards Collaborate with Community Leaders on Local Storybook Trail Project." Her reporting in Flyer News provided an introduction to the Roger Glass Center for the Arts and called attention to student struggles caused by construction delays to The Flight apartment complex. Waskiewicz’s writing conveys compassion for her subjects and demonstrates her ability to adapt to different writing styles.

The Brother Frank Ruhlman, S.M., Award of Excellence for Literary Achievement was established in 1975 by the Joseph Poelking Sr. family to honor an undergraduate student and memorialize Ruhlman, the former director of the Libraries (1936-1954), who served UD for over 50 years. The honor includes a scholarship for a UD undergraduate who demonstrates excellence in writing that has been published in University publications (electronic or print) within the previous 12 months. 


Rojan K C is a graduate student from Nepal studying civil engineering, maintaining a 4.0 cumulative GPA at UD. Namgyun Kim, assistant professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering and Engineering Mechanics, recommended him as “a determined and intellectual student, with a knack for curiosity and teamwork” based on his work in the course CEE 595, Building Information Modeling Systems, and in the Intelligent and Sustainable Infrastructure Construction Lab with JungHo Jeon.

Rojan K C also has been a UDayton Global student ambassador, helping international students acclimate to UD's campus life, and has participated in campus activities related to faith and social justice. In his application, he described his experience in two Campus Ministry BreakOut programs. In “From Father Tolton to Ferguson,” he learned more about race relations in the U.S. through the lens of Catholic social teaching. In the Appalachia immersion, he spent time “visiting the local residents and children in Salyersville, Kentucky, and learning of their rich culture while building relationships.”

The Rev. Theodore Koehler, S.M., International Student Award was established by University Libraries Professor Emerita Susan L. Tsui with the honorarium from her 1995 Lackner Award. The Koehler Award includes a scholarship for a returning international student; award criteria include financial need, a good academic record and personal characteristics that reflect the Marianist tradition.


The Library Awards committees and the faculty and staff in the University Libraries congratulate the honorees and thank all the applicants for their submissions. For more information about the Library Awards, visit

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