Academic And Leadership Awards

All-college awards

Alpha Zeta Mu

These Greek letters symbolize leadership, living and learning. The society publicly recognizes academic excellence as evidenced by potential members of the organization and promotes intellectual and creative activity among Central students. Membership is awarded to those full-time students who are within 60 credits of graduation, have completed at least three semesters at Central and have achieved a minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.8.


John Allen Writing Award

All Central College students are eligible for the John Allen Writing Awards regardless of major or class standing. Professors from all disciplines are encouraged to submit student papers that exhibit superior rhetorical competence, high levels of readability, originality and insight. Papers are judged by an independent evaluator or committee who selects about 10 of the best papers to be published in the college’s annual Writing Anthology. From these, the evaluators may name two writers for the John Allen Writing Awards. The award, in the form of a commemorative book, honors the late John Allen, former Central English professor.


Henry G. Eggink Award

The Rev. Henry G. Eggink Award is given to deserving preministerial students preparing for the parish ministry. Grant recipients are encouraged to use the funds provided for the purchase of books that will become the nucleus for a theological library.


Marjorie Giles Student Life Leadership Award— to Athletics

The Marjorie Giles Student Life Leadership Award is given annually to a junior or senior who has demonstrated positive values through faith-based leadership in a variety of co-curricular activities, in addition to Central athletics as an athlete, trainer, student coach or related athletic role.


Graham Distinguished Scholar Award

The Graham Distinguished Scholar Award is given to students who are distinguished in both academic performance and in promise of future service to worldwide societies as revealed, in part, in personal perspectives that have been significantly enhanced by participation in an international education program. It is in honor of James Graham, former Dean, whose pivotal leadership catapulted Central’s international programs to national prominence.


Prins Sportsmanship Award

The Prins Sportsmanship Award is given to honor the memory of Tunis W. and Harriet B. Prins. Together, they served Central College and the Pella community for a period of 24 years. Mr. Prins was Director of Athletics and Professor of Physical Education from 1938 until his untimely death in 1949 at which time Dr. T.G. Fultz presented a bronze plaque to the College in Prins’ memory. In that same year Mrs. Prins became Residence Director of Graham Hall and later Dean of Women until her retirement in 1962. Tunis and Harriet Prins exemplified and encouraged good sportsmanship—in contests on the field and in all human relationships. Candidates for the award are recommended by members of the senior class and the faculty. From these recommendations, the award committee picks a student to receive the certificate of award and have his or her name engraved on the plaque.


The winner will be a student, athlete or non-athlete, who has demonstrated outstanding sportsmanship in dealing with fellow students on campus or in meeting life’s challenges.


Ron Schipper Leadership Award

The Ron Schipper Leadership Award is presented annually to a senior who, in either formal or informal leadership roles, reflects the character, commitment and enthusiasm for Central College displayed by Coach Schipper during his 36 years of service to Central’s students. The recipient must demonstrate a willingness to set lofty goals and the drive to achieve them, high ethical standards and strong Christian values, a joyous spirit, genuine concern for others and a deep, personal loyalty to Central College.


Julia Van Houweling Award

This award is given to the student who has completed a minimum of 12 credits each semester and earned the highest grade point average during the three preceding semesters. If two or more students have identical averages, the college honors committee will make the final selection. Previous winners are not eligible.


Service Award

This award recognizes a volunteer or student organization that demonstrated a superior commitment to the greater community during the past academic year through active service (i.e. hands-on service activities, philanthropic and fundraising events, political and/or advocacy efforts, or other civic engagement-related pursuits.)


Organizational Excellence Award

This award honors a student organization for making positive contributions to and building community at Central College, outstanding programming, and/or strong organizational structure, leadership, and action.


Outstanding New Leader Award

This award honors a first or second year student volunteer who shows leadership promise while not necessarily holding a leadership position through their exemplary contributions to a recognized student organization and have helped the organization grow their participation.


Outstanding Event Award

This award recognizes a successfully-planned, efficiently-run, effectively-advertised, and well-attended event that enhanced the social, educational and/or cultural life at Central College which was sponsored by a recognized student organization or student-led volunteer group.


Bridge Builder Award

This award recognizes a student volunteer, recognized student organizations or paraprofessional who have worked to establish connections across campus, i.e., collaborative social or educational events, exploration of diverse cultures, or education about issues that have challenged the campus.


Unsung Hero Award

This award recognizes a student volunteer(s) or student paraprofessional(s) that has/have positively influenced a program or organization from behind the scenes through a positive attitude, a willingness to help in whatever capacity necessary, and a commitment to excellence in the completion of tasks and duties.


Student Organization Advisor of the Year Award

This award recognizes an individual Central College employee who exemplifies Central’s ideals of leadership, service and excellence through the individual’s dedication, mentorship, compassion, and wisdom while serving as an advisor to a campus student organization.


Senior Student Development Award 

This award is presented to a student paraprofessional who has made notable contributions within student development while at Central College. This award recognizes sustained, outstanding leadership in integrated, co-curricular, and/or extracurricular activities and involvement to improve an aspect campus life for students.


Diversity & Inclusion Award

This award is presented to a student volunteer or recognized student organization that actively demonstrates commitment to issues of diversity, inclusion, and social justice through its programming and campus initiatives.