Begor, Kearney, Rogg and Zhong named valedictorians
By Zack Doherty, The Dartmouth Staff
Published on Saturday, June 9, 2012
Wills Begor ’12, Glynnis Kearney ’12, David Rogg ’12 and Jie Zhong ’12 will receive valedictory honors at this year’s Commencement ceremony for maintaining a perfect grade point average of 4.0. Blakeley Brown ’12, Jonathan Erdman ’12, Elizabeth Faiella ’12 and Patrick Martin ’12, who each earned a grade point average of 3.99, will be recognized as the class salutatorians.
Begor, an economics major modified with mathematics and a Spanish minor from Wilton, Conn., has earned six academic citations during his time at Dartmouth. Begor was also an early inductee into the Phi Beta Kappa society, a four-time Rufus Choate Scholar and a Rockefeller Center Leadership Fellow. He is a member of the Dartmouth Ski Patrol and Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity. He also founded Project RightChoice, a fund-raising organization that raised over $195,000 in its first two years for the Fisher House Foundation and Water.org.
Begor attributed part of his success to the students he has interacted with over the last four years.
“This educational opportunity and being around so many talented students has been a very humbling experience,” Begor said. “My education at Dartmouth has happened just as much outside the classroom as it has inside. I have learned so much from my peers, interactions, involvements and off-terms, and I think that’s often overlooked when you join the Dartmouth community.”
After graduating, Begor will work as an investment banker in Morgan Stanley’s mergers and acquisitions division in New York.
Kearney, an economics and mathematics double major and studio art minor from Princeton, N.J., was a four-time Rufus Choate Scholar and received six academic citations. She was named a Presidential Scholar as a sophomore, inducted into Phi Beta Kappa as a junior and received the Economics Commendation Award during her senior year.
During her freshman fall, Kearney joined the business staff of The Dartmouth and became its advertising director during her junior year. She also previously served as the sisterhood chair and formal chair for Kappa Delta sorority.
Kearney said she felt honored to have the opportunity to speak at her class’s graduation. She recommended that students take advantage of all of the opportunities offered at Dartmouth and find a balance between academics and extracurricular activities.
Kearney said that although she has enjoyed her time at the College, she is ready to graduate and move on to the next phase of her life. In the fall, Kearney will begin working at McKinsey and Co. in Chicago as a business analyst.
Rogg, a double major in economics and Hispanic studies and a computer science minor from East Greenwich, R.I., was an early inductee into the Phi Beta Kappa society, a Rufus Choate Scholar for four years and received five academic citations. Rogg received the Joseph Dallet, Jr. 1927 Memorial Prize in Hispanic studies and a commendation award from the economics department.
Rogg was also a Presidential Scholar who performed research with economics professor Nina Pavcnik on global inequality and the informal labor sector in developing countries. Rogg received second place in the computer science department’s Kemeny Prize competition for developing Shmob, a social networking application for the iPhone, with two other Dartmouth students.
On campus, Rogg was the finance director of The Dartmouth, treasurer of Zeta Psi fraternity, member of the Dartmouth Investment in Philanthropy program and a participant in the music department’s chamber ensemble performances.
“I appreciate all that Dartmouth has given me during my college career,” Rogg said. “It has given me a space to study what I’m interested in and delve into a wide range of subjects. It was really a unique and wonderful place to spend four years.”
Next year, Rogg will be working as an analyst for Goldman Sachs’ investment banking division in New York.
Zhong, a double major in economics and mathematics and an Asian and Middle Eastern studies minor from Shanghai, China, was a Rufus Choate scholar for four years and received eight academic citations. He received the Francis L. Town Scientific Prize during his sophomore year. In 2012, Zhong was named a Presidential Scholar and worked with economics professor Jonathan Zinman to research the microfinance market. For his senior thesis in economics, Zhong looked into the imbalance in exchange rates.
At Dartmouth, Zhong was an instructor for the Dartmouth Outing Club. He has also worked as a teacher’s assistant, group leader and grader for both the economics and mathematics departments.
Zhong said that one of the things he enjoyed most about Dartmouth was the freedom it gives students to pursue their interests. Zhong said he wished he could have participated in more study abroad programs because his leave term was one of his greatest experiences at Dartmouth.
After graduation, Zhong will work for Goldman Sachs’ investment banking division in Asia.
Brown is a linguistics major with a double minor in French and Arabic from Williamsburg, Va. She is a Rufus Choate Scholar, member of Phi Beta Kappa society and the recipient of five academic citations.
At Dartmouth, Brown founded the off-campus program student advisory board and has participated in many programs hosted by the Tucker Foundation, including the Haven Homework Club.
Brown declined to comment on her post-graduation plans.
Erdman, a chemistry modified with economics major from Niantic, Conn., was a four-year Rufus Choate Scholar, an early inductee into Phi Beta Kappa, a recipient of 11 academic citations and the winner of the Merck Index Award for excellence in chemistry. He has also performed Presidential Scholar research through the chemistry department.
During his time at Dartmouth, Erdman was a volunteer for the Let’s Get Ready Program, which helps students to prepare for the SAT. He has served on the Council on Libraries and worked at Kresge Physical Sciences Library. Erdman also studied in Barcelona during his sophomore year and interned in the office of Sen. Joseph Lieberman, D-Conn., in Washington, D.C. his junior year.
Erdman said in an email to The Dartmouth that he is honored and proud to receive the recognition of salutatorian. He said he appreciates the “unparalleled” opportunities the College has offered and enjoyed exploring his interests with dedicated and inspiring professors, classmates and colleagues, he said.
Faiella is a history major from Northwood, N.H. who wrote a senior thesis on conscientious objectors in work camps in New Hampshire during World War II. She is a four-year Rufus Choate Scholar, a member of Phi Beta Kappa, and a recipient of the Hogan Memorial Scholarship. Faiella has earned four academic citations.
On campus, Faiella is a member of X.ado a cappella group and volunteers for the Tucker Foundation’s Generations Project. She previously served as the co-president of the Italian Club.
Faiella mentioned some of the difficulties she faced trying to maintain a near-perfect GPA for four years.
“It was really tough at one point I was working three jobs and trying to keep up a full load of academic work,” Faiella said. “It was a challenge, but people have been really encouraging and helpful all along. Without them, I couldn’t have had the kind of rewarding Dartmouth experience that I did.”
Next year, Faiella will be staying in the New Hampshire area, performing independent research to build upon her thesis topic. She will also be pursuing her interests in folk fiddle music.
Martin is a mathematics major and physics and linguistics minors from Poughkeepsie, N.Y. He is a four-year Rufus Choate Scholar, an early inductee into the Phi Beta Kappa society and the recipient of nine academic citations. Martin was also part of the winning team of the 2011 Oliver Wyman Business Case Competition at the Tuck School of Business.
On campus, Martin is a member of the men’s water polo team. He served as the team treasurer his junior year and president his senior year. In 2011, he was the marketing director of Mentors Against Violence, and he is a member of Chi Heorot fraternity.
Martin said that he is both humbled and excited by the honor. He said he looks forward to transferring the lessons he has learned at Dartmouth to his future careers and maintaining the relationships he has made with his friends at school. Next year, Martin will be working as an associate consultant for Bain and Company.