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Student Spotlight

Honors College students are representative of our bigger West Virginia University community — from 40 states and multiple countries, our students can be found in every college at the University. 

Each week during the school year, we choose a student to profile in our weekly email newsletter. Read more about some of our students below.

Mackenzie Halliday

Mackenzie Halliday headshot.

Mackenzie Halliday is the president of the Honors Student Association for the 2018-2019 school year. 
Hometown: Washington, Pa.
Major: Management with an Area of Emphasis in Entrepreneurship & International Business
Quirky Fact: When she gets really excited about something, she dances no matter where she is
Favorite Experience at WVU:  Planning and executing a benefit concert for the Rape and Domestic Violence Information Center through her Introduction to Business (BCOR 199) class.  
What She's Excited for This Year: Working with other Honors students through HSA to partner with the Morgantown community to help make it a better place."It's already wonderful — let's make it better!" 

Alexa Harris

Alexa Harris photo in princess costume.

Hometown: Morgantown, WV
Major: Public Health and Spanish
Quirky Fact: I am named after a Billy Joel song.
Favorite Experience at WVU:  Last year I joined WVU's chapter of A Moment of Magic , a nonprofit organization that facilitates sending college students to dress up as characters and visit and put on events for kids with serious illnesses. I have met so many amazing people and had so many magical experiences with this club! 
What She's Excited for This Year: Attending CureFest , a huge event for pediatric cancer awareness held in Washington, D.C. Sept. 15-16. 

Kathryn Wolfe

Kathryn Wolfe photo, in nature.

Name: Kathryn Wolfe
Hometown: Morgantown, WV
Major: Biochemistry and a minor in Human Nutrition and Foods
Quirky Fact: I share a birthday with John Lennon.
Favorite Experience at WVU: I traveled with a group of students this past summer to Santarém, Brazil. We had the opportunity to engage with the culture, provide service work for the community, and experience the true nature of healthcare in the area. 
What She's Excited for This Year: More travel, getting involved with new orgs, and watching the Pride play during home games! 

Jessica Hogbin

Jessica Hogbin, holding "The First Line" magazine.
Jessica Hogbin published her short story, "Fell Into Darkness" in The First Line magazine in Winter 2017.

Name: Jessica Hogbin
Hometown: Hedgesville, WV
Major/Minors: Major in History, as well as World Languages, Literature, and Linguistics—Italian Studies, and minors in Religious Studies and Medieval Renaissance Studies
Quirky Fact: I can make balloon animals!
Favorite Experience at WVU: I loved going to Italy this summer to study the language while being immersed in it. Also, getting to eat a different kind of gelato everyday for six weeks was an unexpected perk!
What She's Excited for This Year: I am excited to begin doing research with the History department.  

Hannah Coffey

Hannah Coffey hiking in Alaska.
Hannah Coffey on a recent trip to Alaska, where she spent several days backpacking in Denali National Park & Preserve.

Name: Hannah Coffey
Hometown: Hedgesville, WV
Major/Minors: Sociology
Quirky Fact: I have a cat named Walter who's a polydactyl, and I'm absolutely obsessed with him.
Favorite Experience at WVU: Going on a service learning trip to Brazil during the summer after my freshman year.
What She's Excited for This Year: Finishing up data analyses on my Honors thesis and presenting my findings at the Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies annual national conference! 

Oriana Ovide

Oriana Ovide at Randyland in Pittsburgh, in front of multicolored steps.
Oriana Ovide visiting Randyland in Pittsburgh, PA.

Name: Oriana Ovide
Hometown: Columbia, MD
Major/Minors: Double major in Forensic Investigative Science and Chemistry
Quirky Fact: I am related to one of the reality stars from the TV show "Basketball Wives" 
Favorite Experience at WVU: This summer I participated in the Summer Undergraduate Research Experience (SURE) . I got to experience real research working with gunshot residue under the direction of Dr. Tatiana Trejos . At the end of the summer, I presented a poster on my results at the Summer Undergraduate Research Symposium!
What She's Excited for This Year: Creating fun events as part of the fundraising committee for Alpha Omega Epsilon, and going to home football games! 

Brice Shumate

Brice Shumate is on the Honors College Walk to End Alzheimer's team.
Brice Shumate is on the Honors College Walk to End Alzheimer's team. Learn more about how you can help .

Name: Brice Shumate
Hometown: Premier, WV
Major/Minors: Accounting
Quirky Fact: I’m named after both of my grandpas.
Favorite Experience at WVU:  I don’t believe I have a favorite experience at WVU. I have great experiences every day, and it’s too difficult to pick one!
What He's Excited for This Year: I’m excited to make lifelong friends. 

Ineke Knudsen

Ineke Knudsen at the 2018 Arts Walk.
Ineke Knudsen pictured in front of her painting, "Garden of a Nervous Child," at the fall Arts Walk on Friday, Sept. 28 this year.

Name: Ineke Knudsen
Hometown: Morgantown, WV
Major/Minors: Major in Painting with Minor in Art History
Quirky Fact: I ALWAYS have food with me, whether it be curry or a fruit cup. 
Favorite Experience at WVU: My favorite experiences at WVU have been hanging out with artists in other disciplines, like music, poetry, philosophy and visual arts. The community of creators I've found at school has really inspired me to push harder in my own artistic practice.
What She's Excited for This Year: This year I am very excited to be involved in community projects, like teaching middle school art lessons and working with my artists collective, The Bench. The Bench runs cross-disciplinary shows of music, poetry, and visual art at local venues, and our next show is on Saturday, Nov. 3 at 123 Pleasant St. We are accepting submissions of any artistic medium through Oct. 25. Submissions and questions should be emailed to

Adam Craig

Adam Craig this past summer in front of waterfalls in Salalah, Oman.
Adam Craig this past summer in Salalah, Oman. Adam was in Oman to study Arabic with the Critical Language Scholarship.  Learn more about this and other scholarships on the ASPIRE website.
Name: Adam Craig
Hometown: Wheeling, WV
Major/Minors: International Studies
Quirky Fact: My car is a bright yellow Fiat 500 named Salvatore, and he is my pride and joy, largely because I bought him entirely with money that I had earned working part-time in high school. The stick shift gets a little tedious on the hills of Morgantown, however. 
Favorite Experience at WVU: My favorite experience at WVU (so far) would be traveling abroad for the first time in my life. I went to Jordan on a spring break trip with the Honors College. I not only got to experience a part of the world I heavily study, but I also met people who have become some of my best friends.
What He's Excited for This Year: I’m really excited about the project I am working on at the  Immigration Law Clinic

Allie Satterfield

Allie Satterfield headshot.

Name: Allie Satterfield 
Hometown: Morgantown, WV
Major/Minors: General Business, with minors in Political Science and Spanish
Quirky Fact: I had my FIRST grilled cheese sandwich over the summer...and I’m 18 years old! (I have been in love with them ever since).
Favorite Experience at WVU: One of my favorite experiences at WVU has been going to home football games as a college student in the town I grew up in. I have also loved being able to view Morgantown in a new perspective now as a college student, and I am very grateful I get to go to a college that feels like home.
What She's Excited for This Year: I am excited to join Dr. Clement and fellow honors students on a trip abroad to Paris and Amsterdam over spring break. It will be my first time out of the country!  

Kaley Hensley

Kaley Hensley on study abroad.

Name: Kaley Hensley
Hometown: Morgantown, WV
Major/Minors: English with a focus in Creative Writing
Quirky Fact: I am the mother of a handsome pug named Toby.
Favorite Experience at WVU: Traveling to Vietnam and Cambodia with the Religious Studies Department
What She's Excited for This Year: Serving as the Editor-in-Chief for WVU's undergraduate literary journal, Calliope.

Kevin Donnelly

Kevin Donnelly in Paris in front of the Eiffel Tower lit up at night.
Kevin Donnelly in Paris.

Name: Kevin Donnelly
Hometown: Morgantown, WV
Major/Minors: Chemical Engineering
Quirky Fact: I have webbed toes on both of my feet, but I have never been on a swim team.
Favorite Experience at WVU: I was able to represent WVU as a delegate at the  CAACURH Regional Leadership Conference this semester as a part of the Residence Hall Association. The conference gave me all kinds of new ideas for campus and the encouragement to put them into place at WVU.
What He's Excited for This Year: I'm excited to serve as a Diversity Representative for the Student Government Association and to help RHA plan the CAACURH Regional Business Conference happening at WVU next semester. I'm also excited to keep meeting new Mountaineers every day!

Hannah Petronek

Hannah Petronek headshot.
Hannah Petronek at the  Governor's STEM Institute summer camp in Green Bank, WV this past summer, where she worked as a counselor.

Name: Hannah Petronek
Hometown: Wheeling, WV
Major/Minors: Biochemistry major, American Chemical Society track.
Quirky Fact: If you see me on campus, chances are I am carrying a backpack and at least two other bags filled with items I claim I “need” to have with me when I leave my apartment.
Favorite Experience at WVU: I have recently started research with Dr. Moon and Dr. Waterland in the Plant Sciences department, and I am ecstatic!  Working and being around the greenhouse may seem like a dull and uninteresting experience, but it has been marvelous so far.
What She's Excited for This Year: I am a part of a rural, first-generation STEM student program known as  First2Network. As of this year, we are excited to announce the National Science Foundation INCLUDES program has given us funding to continue pioneering and developing our program. The program has been an exceptional experience for me, and I credit my success during my freshman year at WVU to my participation. I am still a First2 Ambassador and now work with WV SPOT as well in order to spread STEM consciousness to rural West Virginia. My goal is to provide other first-generation students with a support system—hopefully as great as the one the First2Network has provided for me. For more on the program, visit the website or check out this video:  

Alexa Marks

Alexa Marks in Pisa, Italy, pretending to hold up the Leaning Tower of Pisa,
Alexa Marks in Pisa, Italy.

Name: Alexa Marks
Hometown: Harrisburg, PA
Major/Minors: Journalism major, Spanish minor
Quirky Fact: I had the opportunity to travel to Australia as a student ambassador for the People to People Student Ambassador Program at age 11. I have traveled to seven more countries since. 
Favorite Experience at WVU: My favorite experiences at WVU so far would have to be involving myself on campus with Greek Life and Club Gymnastics. Both organizations have allowed me to meet great people and broaden my horizons. 
What She's Excited for This Year: I am excited to expand the presence of  Her Campus at WVU for female journalists through my efforts on the executive board.