Congratulations to 2023 Chemistry graduate Wisdom Ibikunle, a 2023 Indiana University Elvis J. Stahr Distinguished Senior Award recipient. Ms. Ibikunle completed degrees in Chemistry and Sociology with minors in History and Psychology. Each year, the Stahr Award is presented to three to five IU students. Selection criteria focuses upon the candidate’s leadership through various roles on campus, significant academic achievement often with research experience, and breadth of experience domestically and/or abroad to inform worldview. Preference is given to students with a 3.6 GPA or higher.
Ibikunle served as a member of the Board of Aeons, the College of Arts and Sciences Diversity and Inclusion Advisory and Action Committee (DIAAC), and Hoosier Scholar Ambassadors. Passionate about improving health equity and education for people of color and bringing their concerns from the margins to the center, she was an undergraduate researcher with the Center for Research on Race and Ethnicity in Society (CRRES) and works with Dr. Tennisha Riley in the School of Education on health disparities research. Additionally, for the past two years, Ibikunle has been Co-President of U Bring Change to Mind, a student organization dedicated to de-stigmatizing mental illness. She has also been a tutor for the Department of Chemistry for three years and an organic chemistry teaching assistant for two years. In her free time, Ibikunle loves cooking, baking, visiting museums, and watching historical documentaries and dramas. After graduation, Wisdom plans to pursue an MD-PhD in Sociology and study the social determinants of health.
Elvis Jacob Stahr Jr. was inaugurated as president of IU on November 19, 1962. He is the successor to Herman B Wells. Dr. Stahr came to IU with broad experience. He had been a Rhodes Scholar, a practicing attorney, provost of the University of Kentucky and University of Pittsburgh, president of the West Virginia University, and Secretary of the Army under John F. Kennedy.
In 1966, he established awards to honor IU seniors who excelled academically while serving as active campus and community leaders. In an open letter to the award recipients, Dr. Stahr wrote, “You have already distinguished yourselves and honored your Alma Mater, and I encourage you to aim high in both your personal and your professional lives. I am confident that your futures hold ever-increasing opportunity, challenge, distinction, and reward.”
The Department of Chemistry congratulates Ms. Ibikunle for her many achievements.