The Service to the School Awards are presented by the Cooper Union Alumni Association to graduates who have demonstrated exemplary service and leadership to the Cooper Union during their time as students. The students are selected by the Deans of each of the schools.
Alumni Affairs and Development Service to the School Award: Mary K. Vavruska CE22
Mary K. Vavruska grew up in Queens, NY. Mary was president of the Cooper chapter of the American Society for Civil Engineers, and also participated in Cooper’s Steel Bridge Team. Mary was featured in this Senior Snapshots Engineering 2022 article.
Architecture Service to the School Award: Annabella Grace Chen, Kevin Chow, Sanjana Lahiri
Annabella Chen was born and raised in Vancouver, Canada. Prior to transferring into the architecture program at the Cooper Union, she studied linguistics and environmental sciences at McGill University. At Cooper, she was an Administrative Chair for the student council, served on the admissions and faculty committees, was a coordinator for the faculty lecture series, and was a co-founder of the Cooper chapter of the Architecture Lobby. She was a recipient of the IDC fellowship, and a co-recipient of the Menschel Fellowship, which she used to research and prototype outdoor dining furniture and structure for food delivery couriers, and the Diane Lewis Memorial Fellowship, which she used to research the American landscape through a month-long train trip around the perimeter of the country. She is eager to be working as a designer in New York, continuing many pursuits that started at Cooper.
Kevin Chow was born in the Bay Area of California. He graduated from the Irwin S. Chanin School of Architecture of the Cooper Union with a Bachelor of Architecture. As a student, he served on a variety of committees, including the Architecture Curriculum Committee, the Undergraduate Architecture Admissions Committee, and the Humanities Curriculum Committee. Next fall, he will be attending the Princeton University School of Architecture for a post-professional degree in architecture.
Sanjana Lahiri is from Singapore. While at Cooper, she was part of the Cooper Climate Coalition. She helped design the humanities course “Climate, Culture, and Society” by Kit Nicholls. She designed an independent study program with her classmate, Annabella Chen, that focuses on climate legislation related to New York City housing. She and Annabella started the Cooper chapter of the Architecture Lobby. She was a curator of the school’s student lecture series in her fourth year. After graduation, Sanjana will work as a curatorial intern for Professor Lydia Kallipoliti, who is the curator of the Tallinn Biennale.
Kevin Chow and Sanjana Lahiri are both featured in this Senior Snapshots Architecture 22 article.
Art Service to the School Award: Isabel Margaret Jerome, Yeji Kim
Isabele Jerome came to the Cooper Union from Albuquerque, New Mexico. She was recently featured in this Senor Snapshots Art 22 article.
Engineering Service to the School Award: Sanjna Rao
Sanjna Rao moved to New York City in 2018 from Bangalore, India, to study at the Cooper Union. This past May she graduated summa cum laude with a degree in chemical engineering and a minor in biomedical engineering. During her time at the Cooper Union, she was a peer mentor to first year students, worked in the Chemistry Lab as a stockroom assistant, was an admissions ambassador for the admissions department, tutored students in general chemistry and general chemistry laboratory, and was a resident assistant for three years. She was also elected class representative to the Engineering Student Council for three years and Treasurer for two years, after which she was elected as one of the three administrative chairs of the Engineering Student Council. After two months in Bangalore over the summer, Sanjna will return to the United States to pursue a Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering at the University of Delaware, supported by a Research Assistantship.