Oct. 13 event will draw participants from across Iowa and nation
Friday, October 11, 2013
students and their teachers attend the Recognition Ceremony.
The recognition ceremony is a highlight of the year for gifted and talented students and their teachers. Photo by Mark Tade.

The University of Iowa Connie Belin and Jacqueline N. Blank International Center for Gifted Education and Talent Development will celebrate 470 outstanding fourth through 12th grade students and the teachers who inspired them at its annual recognition ceremony Sunday, Oct. 13.

The event will take place at 10 a.m. in the Iowa Memorial Union’s Main Lounge. It is by invitation only, but media representatives are invited to attend. Speakers will include UI President Sally Mason and College of Education Dean Nicholas Colangelo. U.S. Sen. Tom Harkin will speak via a video message.

Students from across Iowa and the nation were invited to be recognized by the center for exceptional performance in the Belin-Blank Center student talent search, for receiving scholarships for Belin-Blank Center summer residential gifted programs, for being meritorious awardees at the 2013 Invent Iowa State Invention Convention, for being gold key awardees from the 2013 Scholastics Art and Writing program, for being a student research presenters at the 2013 Iowa Junior Science and Humanities Symposium, or for participating in the 2013 Secondary Student Training Program.

Recognized students were given the opportunity to honor a teacher they credited for having a profound influence on their lives. Twenty-five UI graduates are among those honored teachers. They include the following, with school and hometown indicated:

  • Amy Miller, Alburnett Jr. Sr. High School, Alburnett
  • Carisa Danielson, Ames Middle School, Ames
  • Ariane Schmidt, Kate Mitchell Elementary School, Ames
  • Danielle Spaete, Pleasant Valley High School, Bettendorf
  • Kris Fry, McKinley Middle School, Cedar Rapids
  • Maria Granadillo, McKinley Middle School, Cedar Rapids
  • Stacy Karam, McKinley Middle School, Cedar Rapids
  • Stacie Smith, Northwest Jr. High School, Coralville
  • Ryan Barker, Lewis Central Middle School, Council Bluffs
  • Michael Marcketti, Central Academy, Des Moines
  • Nadine Weirather, Central Lee Middle School, Donnellson
  • Anna Basile, Southeast Jr. High School, Iowa City
  • Jan Bohnsack, Ernest Horn Elementary School, Iowa City
  • Andrea Harms, West Sr. High School, Iowa City
  • Ted Proctor, Ernest Horn Elementary School, Iowa City
  • Anne Spencer, Weber Elementary School, Iowa City
  • Diann Zirtzman, Regina Elementary School, Iowa City
  • Emily Duncan, Pleasnat Valley Jr. High School, Leclaire
  • Jennifer Brase, Oak Ridge School, Marion
  • Lacinda Gillen, B.R. Miller Middle School, Marshalltown
  • Jennifer Stater, Mt. Pleasant Middle School, Mt. Pleasant
  • Ted Lepic, North Central Jr. High School, North Liberty
  • Alisa Meggitt, North Central Jr. High School, North Liberty
  • Brad Fox, Clear Creek Amana Middle School, Tiffin
  • Tim Miller, Stilwell Jr. High School, West Des Moines

“The recognition ceremony is a wonderful opportunity to recognize some truly outstanding young students who have participated in Belin-Blank Center programs. These students also have an opportunity to acknowledge a teacher who has made a profound difference in their lives,” says Jan Warren, Belin-Blank Center administrator for student programs. “Sunday’s ceremony will showcase some of the very best students and teachers from across Iowa and the country.”

This year’s ceremony will also honor Iowa schools ranked among the Top 25 of the Iowa AP Index. The index rating was calculated by dividing the number of AP exams taken by the number of students in the school’s graduating class.

The Belin-Blank Center is part of the UI College of Education. For more information about the ceremony, contact Jan Warren at jan-warren@uiowa.edu.

Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend all UI-sponsored events. If you are a person with a disability who requires a reasonable accommodation in order to attend the ceremony, contact Rachelle Blackwell in advance at Rachelle-blackwell@uiowa.edu or 319-335-6148