Valpo Athletics Unveils Academic Honors Sunday; Germann Earns Laurel Award

Senior Katherine Germann earned the Laurel Award, the department’s highest academic honor, among the awards announced as part of a social media presentation Sunday in lieu of the yearly Student-Athlete Presidential Academic Honors Banquet.

The Laurel Award is presented to the graduating senior student-athlete with the highest cumulative GPA. Germann, a senior member of the women's cross country and track and field teams, posted a perfect 4.0 GPA in her time at Valpo as a biology major.

Sunday’s social media presentation included a welcome video from Valparaiso University President Mark A. Heckler, as well as videos from senior baseball player Easton Rhodehouse and senior women’s soccer player Olivia Janke, both of whom were originally slated to speak at the Presidential Academic Honors Banquet. Other awards unveiled on Sunday included the Dean's Award and the Top of the Class Award.

Dean's Award (highest cumulative GPA by a student-athlete in each college)

Katherine Germann, women's cross country/track and field, 4.000 GPA, biology major

Ross Lazar, men's golf, 3.833 GPA, finance major

Keegan Maris, women's soccer, 4.000 GPA, nursing major

Peter Rhodes, men's track and field, 3.869 GPA, bioengineering major

Top of the Class Award (graduating seniors with a 3.9 or better cumulative GPA)

Steven Fitzsimmons, baseball, 3.958 GPA, political science major

Katherine Germann, women's cross country/track and field, 4.000 GPA, biology major

Taylor Justison, women's cross country/track and field, 3.962 GPA, psychology major

Breanne Mason, cheerleading, 3.927 GPA, management major

Kate Mitchell, women's cross country/track and field, 3.963 GPA, Chinese and Japanese studies major

Ali Quillen, women's soccer, 3.954 GPA, exercise science major

Presidential Academic Honors are awarded to student-athletes who have earned a term GPA of 3.25 or higher for at least two consecutive semesters at Valpo. A full list of this year’s 132 honorees is available at