Upstate News

May 2, 2007
Doretta Royer 315 464-4833

Doctoral student Leisenfelder wins SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Student Excellence

SYRACUSE, N.Y. — SUNY Upstate Medical University doctoral student Stacey Leisenfelder has been named the recipient of 2007 Chancellor’s Awards for Student Excellence.

The award is presented annually to students who earn a grade point average of 3.78 or higher and who make significant contributions to their campus or local community.

Leisenfelder, of Albany, N.Y., is one of 283 students from SUNY campuses throughout the state to receive the award that consists of a certificate and a medallion that is traditionally worn at commencement.

“Recipients of this year’s awards have excelled academically and, in many cases, far exceeded even their own expectations in their pursuit of higher education and community involvement,” said State University of New York Chancellor John R. Ryan. “I commend the campus presidents and their faculty and staff for discovering and enhancing student excellence throughout the year.”

Leisenfelder is a doctoral student in the Department of Microbiology and Immunology working in the laboratory of Associate Professor Jennifer Moffat, Ph.D.

“Stacey’s achievement in all areas of her doctoral program has been exemplary,” said Moffat. “She has made the most of her education and training at SUNY Upstate and is now poised to launch her career as an independent scientist. She epitomizes the best of what we offer at SUNY, and her success promises to enhance our reputation as she moves forward.”

Leisenfelder has received international recognition for her research into Varicella-Zoster virus infection. She is the recipient of numerous awards and has presented posters annually since 2003 at the International Herpesvirus Workshops. In 2000 she assisted the New York state Department of Health in the surveillance of West Nile virus in the state’s mosquito and bird populations.

At SUNY Upstate, Leisenfelder has participated in the Graduate Student Association (GSA) since her first year here, being elected as the GSA vice president in 2003 and as president in 2004. She has also served as a peer educator in the Department of Microbiology and Immunology.

Leisenfelder received her bachelor’s degree in biology with high distinction from Worcester Polytechnic Institute in Massachusetts in 2001. She will graduate from SUNY Upstate May 20 with a doctor of philosophy degree in microbiology and immunology.

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