Two of Eastern Connecticut State University’s top students were named Barnard Scholars on April 6 at the Aqua Turf Club in Plantsville, CT. The annual Henry Barnard Distinguished Student Awards recognize 12 outstanding undergraduates from Connecticut’s four state universities (Central, Eastern, Southern and Western). Quanece Williams ’16 of Bridgeport and Sabreena Croteau ’16 of North Kingstown, RI, were Eastern’s awardees; both are double majoring in political science and history.
The Barnard awards program is the premier academic recognition event for the Connecticut State University (CSU) system. To be considered for the award, a student must have at least a 3.75 GPA, a record of community service and be nominated by their respective university president. Eastern’s awardees fulfill these requirements, and further standout because of their research achievements and global perspectives.
From studying abroad in Eastern Europe, to assisting professors in their research, to interning with the state government, to volunteering with local Hispanic children to develop English literacy, Williams has been a broadly involved, quintessential liberal arts student. With particular interest in immigration law, she aspires to be an attorney. “I want to be a person who is able to represent someone whose rights have been infringed upon,” she said. “It’s important to advocate for those who can’t advocate for themselves, or don’t know how to.”
Croteau’s impressive research projects — several of which she presented at national conferences — and travels abroad helped earn her the distinction. From the Middle East to France to Honduras, Croteau says of traveling, “When you go out of your comfort zone and go somewhere that counters your worldview, your mind opens and you grow as a person.” Croteau aspires to attend graduate school to study international relations and comparative politics in pursuit of a career in the U.S. Foreign Service.