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Waikoloa Resident Nominated for Top UW Award

May 14, 2015
head portrait of man
Christian Bopp

Christian Bopp, a wildlife biology and management/environmental and natural resource major with a Spanish minor, from Waikoloa, Hawaii, was among the seven finalists for the 2015 Tobin Memorial Award as the University of Wyoming’s (UW) outstanding graduating man.

Cheyenne’s Joshua Messer was the recipient for this year’s Tobin Memorial Award. Callie Berman, of Boulder, Colo., received the Rosemarie Martha Spitaleri Award as UW's outstanding graduating woman.

The annual Tobin award is based on academic excellence and achievement, service to the university, participation and leadership in the community and campus activities, and citizenship qualities. Other finalists were Kyle Bochanski, Fairfax, Vt.; Stanley DeVore, Casper; Andy Kulikowski, Atascadero, Calif.; Mathias McCormick, Laramie; and Jose Rivas, Gillette. Students were honored at a recent luncheon.

To be considered for the Spitaleri and Tobin awards, students were judged on academic excellence and achievement; contributions and service to UW; participation and leadership in co-curricular activities; and demonstrated character and citizenship.

“During my undergraduate journey, I have tried very hard to achieve academically, to develop as a leader while helping to create leaders, and to contribute to the lively and academic atmosphere present at the University of Wyoming,” Bopp says. “I aim to continue being a leader. I am currently in the Peace Corps’ review process for placement in Panama, where I would volunteer teaching students about environmental science, fostering opportunities aimed at developing future leaders that are environmentally conscious.”

Nominators wrote letters of support for each of the students.

“Christian presents a refreshing combination of intelligent, informed thought; a competent, careful work ethic; and indefatigable good humor. He communicates proactively, a very welcome behavior as we organized and implemented field work,” wrote one instructor.

Another said, “I love his verve, the way he seems to engage every bit of his brain, heart and soul in learning. Not in the name of grades, but because he authentically wants to make an unjust, damaged world more fair, healthier and more nourishing for all of us living beings.”

His personality won over this nominator:

“Christian is held in high regard by his peers and his teachers, and he is an all-around likeable fellow. He is the perfect kind of student -- he is laid back (but not too laid back!), and maintains an upbeat mood, thereby creating positive morale for the whole group.”

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