May 22, 2020 | Featured

Columbia State Names Abigail Haney Outstanding Student of The Year

Outstanding student winner and nominees.
Outstanding student winner and nominees.

(COLUMBIA, Tenn.  May 22, 2020) - - -Columbia State Community College named Abigail Haney the 2019-2020 Carolyn Allred/Lewis Moore Outstanding Student during a virtual presentation May 12. 

“Today is a change in presentation but not in distinction,” said Dr. Janet F. Smith, Columbia State president. “Today we honor five students who have been nominated for the Carolyn Allred/Lewis Moore Outstanding Student Award, the most prestigious and distinctive award a student can receive at Columbia State. Each student has an outstanding record of accomplishment, and are all deserving of the honor.”

Every year, Columbia State faculty nominate the finest of our students for this award. Criteria include outstanding academic achievements, extracurricular activities and dedicated service to Columbia State and our communities.

“This award represents all that I have worked so hard for over the last three years. I strive to achieve the highest standards in all that I do and the Outstanding Student Award really is the epitome of excellence,” Haney said. “I am so thankful for the opportunities I have been given to serve my community and for the chance to be recognized for all of the blood, sweat and tears that have gotten me to this point.”

During her time at Columbia State, Haney served as president of the Student Nurses Association and the nursing class representative. The Columbia resident led many efforts including a record-setting fundraiser for the SNA. Haney has been a tutor in the Tutoring and Learning Center for pre-nursing courses, anatomy and physiology I and II, and microbiology.

“I have known Abigail for two years now,” said Alissa Long, Columbia State nursing instructor. “Abigail earned superior grades in class and lab and excelled in the clinical setting as a student nurse. She is an innate leader with a positive attitude. Her positive attitude, diligence and perseverance transmits to others, and she would be a positive asset to any team. I highly recommended Abigail for this honor and honestly will be sad to see her leadership, hardworking ethics and positive attitude leave our program.” 

As a Spring 2020 graduate, Haney will enter into the workforce as a registered nurse where she is eager to start her career and make a difference where she can. 

Photo Caption: 
Abigail Haney

“When I first applied to Columbia State, I was a first-time college student pursuing my second career,” Haney said. “I was unsure if I was ‘cut out’ for college or if I would ever accomplish what I set out to do. I am proud to be a Columbia State alum because this experience has shown me what I am capable of and that with hard work and determination, anything truly is possible.” 

Other Outstanding Student nominees include Benjamin Edwards (Lawrenceburg), Liam Pangelinan (Nolensville), Tristen Peters (Columbia) and Dakota Villers (Nashville).

Edwards, a social work major, was a member of Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society. He has volunteered with the Kiwanis Club and has logged over 50 hours at Kid’s Place Child Advocacy Center in Lawrenceburg. Edwards plans to transfer to Western Kentucky University where he will continue his social work pathway. Ultimately, Edwards hopes to achieve his master's degree in social work and earn the coveted licensed clinical social work credential.

Photo Caption: 
Benjamin Edwards

Pangelinan, a university parallel student, was a member of Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society and Sigma Kappa Delta English Honor Society. He volunteers at the Nolensville Food Pantry and worked on the Veterans History Project at Columbia State. Pangelinan plans to continue his education at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville to earn a bachelor’s degree in nursing so he can pursue his dream of being a family practice nurse practitioner.

Photo Caption: Liam Pangelinan

Peters, a theatre arts major, served as president of Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society, and was a member of Sigma Kappa Delta English Honor Society and the President’s Leadership Society. She has volunteered her time at local theaters, with the annual angel tree, the Veterans History Project, has taught children’s theater for first to fifth graders and assisted in the production of Arsenic and Old Lace. Peters plans to transfer to Trevecca Nazarene University to pursue her bachelor’s degree.

Photo Caption: 
Tristen Peters

Villers, a film crew technology major, took on leadership roles in the 77 Hour and 54 Hour film projects. Villers does freelance camera work and sound mixer operations for live events, film and video productions. He has volunteered his time mentoring his peers on the proper use of equipment, safety and processes. He takes it upon himself to repair items around the studio and keeps rooms clean and organized. Villers has already impressed many within the film crew industry and has had opportunities rarely offered to someone so new in the film business.

Photo Caption: Dakota Villers

Mathematician Carolyn Allred-Winnett and historian/political scientist Dr. Lewis E. Moore were two of Columbia State’s first faculty members. With their fellow pioneering colleagues, Allred and Moore established a standard of excellence for teaching, scholarship and service - a proud Columbia State tradition that continues today.