Alumni With Perfect GPAs Receive Hofstra Honor

Photo: Provost and Senior VP for Academic Affairs Herman Berliner, Tia Turner, Dr. Zenia DaSilva, Philip Borger, and President Stuart Rabinowitz

Hofstra 2013 graduates – Philip Borger of East Rockaway, NY; Joseph Burg of Lindenhurst, IL; Jesse Crosson of Reedsville, PA; Tia Turner of Hewlett, NY;  and Cindy Schmelkin of Longmeadow, MA  have been named recipients of Hofstra’s Albert I. DaSilva Memorial Endowed Scholarship for each earning a 4.0 G.P.A. The scholarship may be used toward graduate school or other academic pursuits.

The late Mr. Albert DaSilva was a noted entertainment lawyer. His wife, Zenia DaSilva, is a professor of Romance Languages and Literature at Hofstra. She is Hofstra’s longest-serving professor, currently in her 54th year of teaching at the University.

On November 22, 2013, Dr. DaSilva, Hofstra President Stuart Rabinowitz, and Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs Herman A. Berliner, met with Borger and Turner. Dr. DaSilva talked to them about her and her husband’s shared commitment to education, the humanities and to helping young people achieve their professional and academic goals.

About the recipients:

Philip Borger earned a BS in biology with a concentration in cell and molecular biology and is in the process of applying to MD and PhD programs. He is currently working as a research assistant in the Laboratory of Multimodal Human Brain Mapping at the Cushing Neuroscience Institute.

Joseph Burg was a Rhodes Scholarship finalist in 2012 and the second-ever Hofstra student to earn the distinction. He double majored in physics and mathematics. He was also a pitcher for the Hofstra baseball team and became Hofstra’s second overall Colonial Athletic Association Scholar-Athlete of the Year. Burg also received the Dr. James M. Shuart Award as Hofstra’s top male scholar- athlete at the end of year banquet, Hofstra’s Outstanding Senior Scholar Award in recognition of his 4.0 grade point average and the Outstanding Graduating Mathematics Senior Award. He is currently a PhD candidate at Stanford University (Department of Materials Science and Engineering).

Jesse Crossen majored in political science and had a double minor in mathematics and philosophy. He has a political science fellowship at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.

Cindy Schmelkin earned a degree in biochemistry at Hofstra. As a Hofstra undergrad, she presented at many conferences including American Chemical Society national meetings, American Chemical Society New York Section Undergraduate Research Symposia, and Hofstra Undergraduate Research Days. She is currently attending Harvard Medical School and intends to graduate with MD in 2017.

Tia Turner majored in pre-med studies and minored in psychology. She is applying to MD and PhD programs and hopes to begin her graduate studies in the fall of 2014. Currently, she is conducting research full-time at the Feinstein Institute for Medical Research, in the Laboratory for Brain Tumor Biology. Her research focuses primarily on developing new treatments for glioblastoma multiforme.

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