Appointments, honors and activities

April 29, 2011

• Campus activities:

- Purdue ROTC graduates will be commissioned as new officers at the Joint ROTC Commissioning Ceremony at 11 a.m. May 13 in the Purdue Memorial Union South Ballroom. Seventy ROTC graduates will be commissioned into the Army, Navy, Air Force and Marines at the event, which is open to the public. ROTC at Purdue dates back to 1888, and until 1964 male students were required to either join ROTC or band. ROTC enrollment at Purdue has ranged from 850 to 3,275 during World War II. Today, about 480 students are enrolled in all three ROTC branches. (GM) 

Faculty and staff honors:

     - Distinguished professor of agronomy Gebisa Ejeta will receive an honorary doctor of science degree from Oklahoma State University during commencement ceremonies May 7. Born and raised in a small rural community in Ethiopia, Ejeta completed his early education in 1973 in his own country at Alemaya College, which was built and staffed by Oklahoma State. He attended graduate school at Purdue, earning his master (1976) and doctoral degrees (1978) in plant breeding and genetics. Ejeta returned to Purdue in 1984 to lead a comprehensive education and research program emphasizing African agricultural research and development. He received the World Food Prize in 2009 for his sorghum research in Sudan. Last year, Ejeta was appointed a science envoy of the U.S. State Department, and President Obama in April appointed him to the board of the International Food and Agricultural Development. Ejeta currently holds the position of distinguished professor of plant breeding and genetics and international agriculture at Purdue. Also receiving honorary doctorates from Oklahoma State will be oilman C. Hubert Gragg and composer/choral master Morten Johannes Lauridsen. "The success of these individuals in their respective fields is a testament to their skills, leadership and service to society," said Oklahoma State President Burns Hargis. "They exemplify those who have dedicated their lives to improving the world for others."

- Alpha Lambda Delta Phi Eta Sigma, the two national freshman honor societies on campus, initiated five new honorary members during a spring induction ceremony on March 27. The new honorary members are Rita Baker, coordinating academic adviser for the Certificate in Entrepreneurship and Innovation Program; Mark Browning, senior instructional coordinator, Department of Biological Sciences; Christine Hrycyna, associate professor of chemistry; Beth LeBreton, lecturer in the Department of Psychology; and A. Dale Whittaker, vice provost for undergraduate affairs. More information about Alpha Lambda Delta Phi Eta Sigma can be found at  

Student honors:

- Jill E. Grable of Floyds Knobs, Ind.; Tara P. Driscoll of Mokena, Ill.; and Stephanie Johnston of Lombard, Ill., received the Amelia Earhart Scholarship, which is given to those who demonstrate exemplary leadership skills, determination and potential. Recipients of the $1,000 scholarship must have a minimum 3.2 grade point average. Grable is a senior in aviation flight technology and business management, Driscoll is a first-year student in the doctor of pharmacy program, and Wilson is a senior in aeronautics and astronautics engineering.