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Mountaineers of Distinction

Congratulations to the 2022 Mountaineers of Distinction

Twenty twenty-two Mountaineers of Distinction pose on the field during halftime ceremonies
From left to right: Callyn Zeigler, Giana Loretta, Trevor Swiger, Sonia-Frida Ndifon and Matthew Hudson.

This prestigious award honors WVU seniors who have an outstanding record of academic achievement in addition to exemplary community and extracurricular involvement. 

2022 Finalists

Aubrey Cumberledge

Aubrey Cumberledge is a biology major from Wallace, West Virginia. She is a Presidential Student Ambassador, a member of Mortar Board National Honor Society and is the founder of the WVU Creative Writing Club. Cumberledge also serves as a Crisis Text Line counselor and served on the Student Voice Panel at the 2021 NSF (National Science Foundation) INCLUDES.

Samuel Cyphert

Samuel Cyphert, from Morgantown, West Virginia, is pursuing a dual major in mechanical and aerospace engineering. He is a Presidential Student Ambassador, a student representative on the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee of the WVU Statler College and a member of the WVU Microgravity Research Team. Cyphert has served as an intern at NASA's Ames Research Center and is the lead mechanical engineer at RocksatX WV.

Michael DiBacco

Michael DiBacco, from Elkins, West Virginia, is majoring in biology and English. He is a Foundation Scholar, a Presidential Student Ambassador and Editor-in-Chief of Calliope, WVU's undergraduate literary magazine. As a member of the Honors EXCEL Program, DiBacco is working to create a collection of magical realist, Appalachian short stories. He is also an Eberly Scholar.

Matthew Hudson

Matthew Hudson is an immunology and medical microbiology major from Scott Depot, West Virginia. He serves as president of the WVU Global Medical Brigades and as a Student Government Association College Senator for Health Sciences. Hudson also serves a WVU Presidential Student Ambassador and as a WVU School of Medicine Ambassador for the Immunology and Medical Microbiology undergraduate program. He has received his early-decision acceptance into the WVU School of Medicine's M.D Class of 2027.

Lydia Knutsen

Lydia Knutsen is an industrial engineering major from Glen Dale, West Virginia. She is a Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources Ambassador, and Engineering Learning Center Tutor and the outreach chair of Alpha Omega Epsilon Professional and Social Sorority. Knutsen is a member of the Society of Women Engineers Executive Board and is the recipient of Statler College Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Student Award.

Giana Loretta

Giana Loretta, from Shinnston, West Virginia, is majoring in political science, philosophy and communications studies. She is a 2022-2023 Newman Civic Fellow, a 2019 WVU Neil S. Bucklew Scholar and an Eberly Scholar for both 2021-2022 and 2022-2023. Loretta serves as president of WVU Mountaineer Mentors and is working to improve education in West Virginia through her research in the Honors EXCEL Program.

Sonia -Frida Ndifon

Sonia-Frida Ndifon is a biomedical engineering major originally from Cameroon who now calls Elkridge, Maryland, home. She is a Resident Assistant, the president of the African Students Association and a Statler College Ambassador. Ndifon is two-time recipient of the undergraduate tuition merit scholarship awarded by the Office of Global Affairs and presented her Honors EXCEL Program research at the 2022 Biomedical Engineering annual conference.

Elizabeth Sexton Elizabeth Sexton is an accounting and finance major from Williamstown, West Virginia. She Presidential Student Ambassador and a Chambers College Ambassador with more than 1,900 lifetime hours of volunteer service to more than 10 nonprofit organizations. Sexton founded Modern Folklore West Virginia as part of her work in the Honors EXCEL Program, served as an analyst for the WVU student-managed investment fund and as a past president of Collegiate DECA.

Trevor Swiger Trevor Swiger is a communications studies and interdisciplinary studies major from Grafton, West Virginia. He is an Honors College Foundation Scholar and Student Mentor Teacher, and has served as the WVU Laurel Mortar Board Chapter President and National Chapter Nominating Committee Chair. Swiger worked as an intern with WVU Vantage Ventures and has served as an American Legion Mountaineer Boys State Mentor where he logged more that 120 service hours.

Callyn Zeigler Callyn Zeigler is a computer engineering and computer science major from Charleston, West Virginia. She is a Neil S. Bucklew Scholar, a Presidential Student Ambassador and a WVU Statler College Ambassador. Zeigler is also a member of the Society of Women Engineers and Tau Beta Pi Engineering Honor Society.

The 2022 Mountaineers of Distinction will be named during halftime ceremonies of Saturday's WVU versus Oklahoma football game.