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The award goes to the senior who “most nearly represents the Lafayette ideal”

Nicholas J. Albano ’09 (Cortlandt Manor, N.Y.) is the recipient of the 2009 George Wharton Pepper Prize, awarded annually to the senior “who most nearly represents the Lafayette ideal.”

The prize was established in 1923 by George Wharton Pepper, a U.S. Senator from Pennsylvania, attorney, and founding member of the Pennsylvania Bar Association. In his gift, Pepper noted that the “ideal” Lafayette student combines a “sound academic record” with “noteworthy participation in College activities and student life.”

“It is important to recognize that Lafayette does not groom students to fit a predefined mold but provides scholars with a wealth of opportunities to explore, grow, and succeed as individuals,” says Albano. “Therefore, in celebrating this ideal, Lafayette is celebrating each student’s unique approach to their college career and how it has influenced the institution as a whole.”

Albano, a biology major, was one of 11 finalists for the Pepper Prize. He was chosen through a vote of the student body and faculty, and will speak at Lafayette’s 174th Commencement Saturday, May 23.

Albano has been accepted into New York University’s School of Medicine. As a sophomore, he participated in the Summer Medical and Dental Education Program at Yale School of Medicine. The six-week intensive program is for highly motivated students who are considering a career in medicine.

Albano was very involved with student-faculty research on campus. He worked on two inorganic and organic chemistry EXCEL projects with Chip Nataro, associate professor of chemistry, and William Miles, professor and head of chemistry. He also served as a chemistry laboratory teaching assistant and is a member of Phi Beta Kappa, the national undergraduate honors society, and Sigma Delta Pi, the national collegiate Hispanic honors society.

Albano has been active in the Easton community participating in activities with the Landis Community Outreach Center, as well as volunteering at the Easton Hospital Emergency Ward. He also was a member of the College’s Division I baseball team.

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