Student organizations, their leaders, and their advisors have been earning Student Organization Leadership (SOL) Awards at Virginia Tech for over 25 years.

Formerly known as the Undergraduate Student Leadership Awards, they were renamed in 2020 after the student organization development team decided it was time for a refresh.

“We have reimagined these awards to truly focus on celebrating students and the amazing work they are consistently doing for their organizations and for the Virginia Tech community,” said Katy Smith, graduate assistant for student organization development in Student Engagement and Campus Life. “We have over 900 student organizations on campus that stretch across so many different types, missions, and values, and it has been our highest goal to ensure the SOL Awards can affirm and uplift each and every one of them.”

Being part of a student organization is one way students can ExperienceVT and thrive during their time at college.

“To me, it opened a lot of doors as far as meeting new people with their new perspectives,” said Haseb Alim, who won the Commitment to Diversity and Inclusion Award in 2021 with his organization Closing the Gap. “For a lot of our initiatives we travel to other cities, like Richmond and Washington, D.C. It’s really helped to see how other people think in other cities and at other universities.”

All students, faculty, and staff can nominate student leaders and organizations for an SOL Award. The nominations are reviewed by a selection committee that evaluates the level of leadership, service, and involvement the recipient accomplished for the year.

“It truly did show us how much we have grown,” Kellyn Rivera, vice president of Latin Link, said about winning the SOL Award for Organization of the Year in 2021. “It makes us very proud to see how far we’ve come in just four years and to also see the school recognize us for all we have done.”

“It also reflects on the Source [a space that supports student organization leadership development] and the selection committee as far as recognizing that student organizations are out here looking to make a positive change on campus,” said Alim.

The 2022 SOL Awards winners are:

  • Commitment to Diversity and Inclusion: Tyler Pugh, Industrial and System Engineering Ambassadors.
  • Commitment to Service: Filipino American Student Association.
  • Commitment to Well-Being: Sunset Chasers.
  • Rising Star: Katie Ramboyong, Active Minds. 
  • Outstanding Advisor: Judie Reemsnyder, Alpha Delta Pi.
  • Outstanding Undergraduate Student Leader: Maha Shoaib, Association of Muslim Volunteers; Honorable Mention: Bryan Zapata.
  • Outstanding Graduate Student Leader: Victor Lopez, Biomedical Engineering Society; Honorable Mention: Kayla Award.
  • Outstanding Student Organization Program: Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority Inc., L.E.A.P. Mentoring Program. 
  • Excellence in Member Engagement and Development: Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets' Black Cadet Organization 
  • New Organization of Excellence: Fungus United at Virginia Tech; Honorable Mention: Delta Lambda Phi. 
  • Outstanding Organization of the Year: Closing the Gap; Honorable Mention: Latin Link.

Share the celebration by viewing the the 2022 event photo gallery from Student Affairs Communications.

Written by Gabby Taylor, a member of the Class of 2022 who majored in communication science and social inquiry with minors in psychology and sociology.

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