Anthropology Recipients

Outstanding Anthropology Students

Chandini Marie Irene Dahlberg
Outstanding Student in Archaeology

Marie came to UCCS with both coursework and practical experience in archaeology. She was originally drawn to the discipline because she loves to be outside and explore the world and history around her; that passion was solidified by the first fieldwork that she did in Mexico when she was 18. Marie’s coursework is excellent and she completed an internship working with Drs. Larkin and Church analyzing archaeological materials from the archaeological field school. After graduation, she would like to pursue a Master's in either GIS, or Cultural Anthropology with a focus on immigration. Outside of school she enjoys spending time with her family, long distance running, mountain biking, and gardening.

Brynn Jackson
Outstanding Student in Anthropology
Brynn Jackson is an anthropology major with minors in both Interdisciplinary Linguistics and Spanish, and is currently learning ASL. Upon taking introductory courses in Cultural and Linguistic Anthropology her freshman year, she discovered an unparalleled passion for studying the development of a diverse world of human cultures and languages. Now, she cannot imagine an academic career in any other discipline! She is fascinated by the power that language holds within and between cultures in shaping the ways we think and interact. Although her plans for the future are uncertain, Brynn plans to continue in Academia as a lifelong learner with an enthusiastic curiosity about humankind.
Hazel Luka Key
Outstanding Student in Cultural Anthropology
Hazel Luka Key (they/them) is a cultural anthropologist interested in using art to open conversations about everything from philosophies of aesthetics to persistent inequity. While in our program, Hazel served as an intern for the Heller Center, assisted other students with making storymaps for Cultural Diversity in the United States, and presented their work at CSURF. Hazel enjoys studying every aspect of our world, from wildflowers to cultural intersectionality, creating art, and sharing their love of both with others. After graduation, they are moving to France to travel, work with a family, and have the chance to see and produce more art.
Emerson Cyrus Utopia Olson
Outstanding Student in Linguistic Anthropology
Emerson Cyrus Utopia Olson is a linguistic anthropology and music performance major at UCCS. Their interests are in linguistic activism and policy, education, and descriptive art performance. As a two-year intern for Diversity in Practice, Emerson worked with several students and faculty across the college to develop tools for opening conversations around equity in the classroom. They used their cultural anthropological skills as a dramaturg for Theatreworks and were a volunteer at the 2022 Society for Linguistic Anthropology conference. They are an avid writer, reader, and consumer of all things anthropology.
Sarah Mackenzie Riley
Outstanding Student in Biological Anthropology

Sarah is an Anthropology major at UCCS with a minor in Criminal Justice. She has worked with Dr. Cepon-Robins on her Rural Embodiment and Child Health (REACH) project to help Dr. Cepon-Robins with literature reviews and to help create dissemination materials for participants and the general public. When she is not studying or working, she is typically hiking some of her favorite trails, such as the Bluffs and Red Rock Canyon, with her dog. She also spends her free time watching her favorite shows like Criminal Minds and Bones. She hopes to pursue a graduate degree in Forensic Anthropology. Sarah is well deserving of the Outstanding Student in Biological Anthropology award.

Samantha Wagner
Outstanding Student in Archaeology
Sam was first drawn to anthropology because it looks at humans throughout time through a holistic lens. She is fascinated by how we can reconstruct the past based on clues "like a giant puzzle!" Sam has excelled in her classwork and completed an internship working with Drs. Larkin and Church analyzing archaeological materials from the archaeological field school. After graduation, she plans to spend time with her children and hopes to volunteer at a local museum; she has a passion for curation and exhibit design. Once her kids are in school, she plans to pursue an M.A. in Archaeology with a long-term goal of becoming a professor, sharing her passion and inspiring others. She'd like to thank her amazing husband Jeremy for always supporting her dreams and being the best dad. She also wants to thank her professors Dr. Larkin, Dr. Church, and Dr. Wren for sharing their passions and being truly inspiring.