It’s been a great spring for doctoral student Johana Thomas Zapata. In addition to moving one step closer to finishing her doctorate in mathematics education, Johana was the recipient of a WSU Chancellor’s Award for Leadership ($500), as well as the Virginia E. Thomas Endowed Scholarship ($2,500). She was also given the he Richard R. and Constance M. Albrecht Scholarship ($1,500) from the WSU Graduate School.

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The Chancellor’s Awards started in 1996 as the “President’s Award for Leadership” but was recently renamed under the auspices of the chancellor. The awards recognize individuals who demonstrate exceptional leadership and service to the WSU Pullman and surrounding community, as well as those who support leadership development in WSU Pullman students. The leadership experienced and qualities relate to:

  • Inquiry and Innovation
  • Excellence
  • Character and Integrity
  • Stewardship

To be considered for the Thomas endowment, nominees have to first be considered for the chancellor’s awards.

Virginia Thomas was the director of WSU’s Leadership Center from 1995-2003, serving the university and students in a variety of ways. About Thomas, WSU said: “As an advisor to the Associated Students’ officers and other organizations, Virginia demanded excellence, modeled integrity, and encouraged discovery and innovation. Virginia was a true servant leader to students, bringing passion, courage, and perspective to her work of student development. We honor her legacy with this award.”

Without question, Johana is a leader and she says that in every space she steps, she strives to make it better and contribute positively to people.

“My commitment to fostering growth and collaboration has clearly resonated with others, and I am honored that my efforts have been acknowledged,” she says.

Watch the 2024 ceremony