Luther announces Steven Mark Anderson Scholarship winners

April 11, 2012       

Four Luther College students have each received a $1,000 Steven Mark Anderson Scholarship for the 2012-13 academic year.

Recipients of the scholarship were announced during the 11th annual Luther College Student Support Services Celebration Banquet held March 28. Recipients include Emmanuel Avila, Emily Banitt, Johanna Mueller and Sarah Nicla.

The Steven Mark Anderson Scholarship benefits Luther students involved in Student Support Services, a Federal TRIO program sponsored by Luther for more than 40 years. The student success program provides services ranging from tutoring and advising to leadership development and graduate school preparation for 160 students annually.

The Steven Mark Anderson Scholarship was established in 2001 by Lloyd and Kathy Anderson of Ames, Iowa, in memory of their son, Pastor Steven Mark Anderson, who graduated from Luther in 1985.

Emmanuel Avila of Coachella, Calif., is a political science major and biology minor who studied in Turkey and Jordan last J-term. He is a member of Student Senate, Diversity Council, Launching Luther Leaders and the Hispanic Organization of Latinos and Allies. A resident assistant, he also serves on the Northeast Iowa Peace and Justice Center's Immigration Committee. He will graduate from Luther in 2013.

Emily Banitt of Rochester, Minn., will also graduate from Luther in 2013. She has served as a resident assistant in a first-year residence hall and is currently an assistant hall director. She is involved in the Launching Luther Leaders Program and participated in the selection process for the new Dean of Student Life. A psychology major and sociology minor, Banitt will continue on to graduate school in preparation for a career in counseling and/or higher education administration.

Johanna Mueller of St. Charles, Minn., a Luther sophomore, is studying to become a nurse. In preparation for her career, she works as a certified nursing assistant and is a member of the Pre-Registered Nurse organization on campus. She also tutors students in anatomy and physiology for the Student Support Services program. She will spend next year studying in Rochester, Minn. as part of the Luther nursing program.

Sarah Nicla of Devils Lake, N.D., plays the viola in the Luther College Philharmonia, the college's 70-member symphonic ensemble, and sings in Cantorei, one of Luther's auditioned choral ensembles. Last year she served as vice president of Aurora, Luther's first-year women's choral ensemble. Nicla servers others by working as a resident assistant, helping with the annual phonathon campaign, assisting with campus worship and serving on the Performing Arts Committee. A sophomore biology major, she is also a member of the Health Science Club.

Scholarship winners celebrate with members of the Anderson family. (Back row, left to right): Sarah Nicla, Emmanuel Avila, Emily Banitt and Johanna Mueller. (Front row, left to right): Stuart Anderson, Kathy Anderson, Lloyd Anderson and Scott Anderson.