Portraits of the 2022 Valedictorians and Salutatorians

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Melissa Barales-Lopez ’22 will deliver the valedictory address at commencement.

The valedictorians of the Class of 2022 assembled on Saturday. In the front row, from left, are Clayton Bass, Melissa Barales-Lopez, Mien Nguyen, Archita Harathi, Kristina Strommer, Kimberly Tan, and Victor Wu. In the back row are Aaron Lee, Ana Furtado, Max Pumilia, Keara Dennehy, and Jason Zavras. Not pictured is Matthew Roth. (Photo by Eli Burakian ’00)

At commencement this Sunday, Dartmouth will recognize 20 undergraduate members of the Class of 2022 who have earned top academic honors in their class.

Each of the 13 valedictorians earned a cumulative 4.0 grade point average across their Dartmouth careers. These include Melissa Barales-Lopez, Clayton Bass, Keara Dennehy, Ana Julia dos Santos Furtado, Archita Nitya Harathi, Aaron Lin Lee, Mien Nguyen, Max Ashok Pumilia, Matthew Roth, Kristina Strommer, Kimberly Tan, Victor Wu, and Jason Zavras.

A committee representing the dean of the Faculty of Arts & Sciences and the dean of the College selected Barales-Lopez to deliver the valedictory address to the Class of 2022.

“These outstanding student-scholars exemplify the depth and scope of the liberal arts,” says Elizabeth Smith, dean of the Faculty of Arts & Sciences. “On behalf of the faculty, I congratulate them on all that they have achieved at Dartmouth and wish them the best in all their future pursuits.”

This year’s salutatorians, who each earned at least a 3.99 grade point average, include Twisha Bhardwaj, Matthew Gannon, Zachary LaPorte, Sophia Miller, Connor Morris, Ian Stiehl, and Andrew White.


Melissa Barales-Lopez
East Los Angeles, Calif.
Government and Spanish double major; Latin American, Latino, and Caribbean Studies minor; Phi Beta Kappa

The former co-director of the Coalition for Immigration Reform and Equality at Dartmouth (CoFIRED), Barales-Lopez says she hopes one day to practice labor law.

Barales-Lopez was community outreach director at the Golden Heights Project, which provides civic education to young children from underserved Los Angeles neighborhoods, a mentor for the First Year Student Enrichment Program, and an ambassador for College Match, which supports low-income students with the college application process. In 2019 she received the Katherine B. Brock Prize for her service to the Dartmouth community.

She served as a James O. Freedman Presidential Scholar, a Politics and Law research assistant, an associate at the Novack Café, and an academic tutor for “Government 10”—all while earning four citations for outstanding achievement in her classes and finding time to enjoy cycling, running, and photography.

She also interned with the global investment firm D.E. Shaw, the Immigration Institute of the Bay Area, and Solar United Neighbors, and was a policy fellow at the Latino Coalition for a Healthy California and a litigation legal assistant at Davis Polk and Wardwell LLC.

After graduation Barales-Lopez plans to return to D.E. Shaw as a legal and compliance analyst while applying to law school.

Clayton Bass
Harrison, N.Y.
Mathematical Data Science major; Phi Beta Kappa

Bass says his primary academic interest is in predictive games—applying machine learning to finance, sports, and business decision-making. He also is passionate about how data science can help inform medical decisions.

As a James O. Freedman Presidential Scholar with Assistant Professor of Computer Science Soroush Vosoughi, he developed machine-learning models to predict NFL games. He was an early inductee into Phi Beta Kappa and received 10 citations for outstanding performance in his coursework.

Among his Dartmouth activities, he was fundraising project leader for The Dartmouth student newspaper’s business development staff, for which he won a business development award. He was also treasurer for the Dartmouth Mathematical Society, a member of the club squash team and Beta Alpha Omega fraternity, and a business development member of the Aegis yearbook staff.

He interned at the hedge funds WorldQuant and Point72. After graduation, Bass will return to Point72 in New York City as a data scientist/quantitative analyst.

Keara Dennehy
Simsbury, Conn.
Geography major; Psychology minor; Phi Beta Kappa

Dennehy is interested in using data science to analyze resource distribution in urban spaces, with a focus on how environmental hazards and social inequities impact residents’ mental and physical well-being.

As a research assistant on three projects in environmental studies and geography, one for which she was a James O. Freedman Presidential Scholar, she has built geographic information system databases of rice paddies in the Dominican Republic, analyzed gender representation and other measures of equity in humanitarian health evidence, and analyzed census data to calculate neighborhood racial change throughout the United States. She has earned six citations for excellence in her coursework.

Among her Dartmouth activities, she was a tutor at the RWIT peer writing center and chair of RWIT’s inclusivity development committee. She also led a Dartmouth Outing Club first-year trip, mentored a younger student through SIBs, and served as assistant stage manager for several theater productions.

She has interned with The Nature Conservancy and TomTom, where she plans to work as a business analyst before pursuing a master’s degree in GIS, urban planning, or geography.

Ana Julia dos Santos Furtado
Santa Rita do Passa Quatro, Brazil
Hispanic Studies major; Phi Beta Kappa

An undergraduate fellow and scholar with Dartmouth’s Race, Migration, and Sexuality Consortium, Furtado conducted independent research under the supervision of Associate Professor of English Kimberly Juanita Brown into the cultural interplay between alimentary politics and nationalist projects of whiteness during the First Brazilian Republic.

As a Human Development Fellow, she conducted research with Associate Professor of Anthropology Maron Greenleaf on forest protection and carbon evaluation in the Brazilian Amazon, and helped Associate Professor of Spanish and Portuguese Israel Reyes create a syllabus for a course on Boricuan identity.

She was co-president of the Dartmouth Brazilian Society, programming coordinator and chair for the Visibility 2020 and 2021 Campaign, and student adviser for the women and gender program at the Office of Pluralism and Leadership. She also worked on the Historical Accountability Project, participated in a foreign study program in Buenos Aires, served as a Spanish and Portuguese teaching assistant and drill instructor, and worked throughout all four years for Dartmouth Dining Services.

She received funding from the John Sloan Dickey Center for International Understanding to intern with the Launch Gurls and Global G.L.O.W; from the Neukom Institute for Computational Science to assist Neukom Fellow Jeremy Mikecz on a project reconceptualizing the early Indigenous experience after the Spanish invasion; and from the Leslie Center for the Humanities to explore the perpetuation of colonial violence on contemporary Brazilian sugar plantations.

Before graduate school, Furtado plans to spend a year working as a humanities research assistant or to return to Brazil to teach at the Escola Nacional Florestan Fernandes.

Archita Nitya Harathi
Portland, Ore.
Mathematics and Economics double major; Computer Science minor; Phi Beta Kappa

Harathi cites development and educational economics, mathematical biology and evolutionary dynamics, machine learning, and law among her academic interests.

She received a Jack Byrne Scholarship to conduct research in mathematics throughout her time at Dartmouth. She was a UI/UX Designer and a Neukom Scholar at the Dartmouth Applied Learning and Innovation Lab and completed a presidential scholarship as a research assistant for Nina Pavcnik, the Niehaus Family Professor in International Studies and a professor of economics. This past year, she joined her “Economics 70” class on a winterim trip to Chile.

Among her Dartmouth activities, Harathi has been a member of The Sings a capella group and was a finalist in the Dartmouth Idol Competition. She is on the Raaz dance team and has taught Indian classical dance to local children in Hanover. She played on the women’s club basketball team and the Dartmouth running team. She is also a member of the Palaeopitus Senior Society and the Shanti Hindu Society and served as a team captain of the Mock Trial Society, president of the Dartmouth Math Society, and risk management chair for her sorority, Kappa Kappa Gamma.

After graduation, Harathi will be joining Goldman Sachs as an investment banking analyst.

Aaron Lin Lee
Berwyn, Pa.
Mathematics and Economics double major; Computer Science minor; Phi Beta Kappa

Lee’s academic interests in pure math, macroeconomics, game theory, statistics, and machine learning “converge around the theme of trust,” he says. “How can we ensure that our research findings are as robust and understandable as possible, especially when the models we use are difficult to interpret?”

As a section editor and member of The Dartmouth directorate, he was responsible for data journalism and surveys, writing numerous stories covering student opinions on politics and College administrative decisions, among other topics.

A pianist who studied with Professor of Music Sally Pinkas through the music department’s Individual Instruction Program, Lee played with the Dartmouth College Wind Ensemble and performed large-scale works by Stravinsky, Beethoven, and Ravel at a solo senior recital this spring.

He also accumulated 15 citations across seven different departments.

He has completed internships with Amazon, Chubb, and Jane Street. After graduation, he plans to move to New York City as a full-time quant trader at Five Rings Capital.

Mien ‘Josephine’ Nguyen
Quang Yen, Vietnam
Computer Science major; Phi Beta Kappa

During her Dartmouth career, Nguyen served as an ambassador for the Office of Pluralism and Leadership, working on projects to promote diversity and inclusion at Dartmouth and facilitating discussions about identity and social justice for various student organizations on campus. In addition, she was a teaching assistant and section leader for several computer sciences courses, and she was a peer tutor for “Computer Science 1” with the Academic Skills Center. She was also a research assistant working with Professor of Linguistics James Stanford to process audio transcripts in Cantonese and visualize the relationships between tone mergers and the speakers’ various social factors, such as gender, age, and location.

Nguyen has earned numerous citations for excellence in her coursework in computer science and music and interned for two summers with Bloomberg LP working in software engineering and development. After graduation, she plans to join Bloomberg full-time as a software engineer.

Max Ashok Pumilia
Denver, Colo.
Religion and History modified with Medieval and Renaissance Studies double major; Phi Beta Kappa

With an interest in medieval Islamic history, Pumilia researched the Shiite Muslim sect known as the Ismailis, which developed in the 9th century, as a James O. Freedman Presidential Scholar and completed a senior honors thesis titled “Navigating Errancy: Ismaili Perspectives on Dhimmis from the Fatimid Revolution to the Fall of Alamut.”

As a sophomore research scholar, he studied the development of the middle class in modern South Asia. He was a member of the Dartmouth Undergraduate Research Association executive board, participated in several club and intramural sports, and served as president of his fraternity, Kappa Pi Kappa (formerly Tri-Kap).

He has interned with a national golf company and spent summers with a small investment fund and a small private equity shop, both based in Denver. Last summer he interned at Bain & Company in New York and will be joining their San Francisco office after graduation.

Matthew Roth
Wilmette, Ill.
Computer Science major; Phi Beta Kappa

With an interest in computer science, history, and economics, Roth has interned in business development with TripActions and business operations with Salsify. The summer after his junior year, he was a software development intern at Amazon.

Inducted into Phi Beta Kappa, Roth has earned citations for academic excellence in his economics, physics, and computer science courses. He served as a teaching assistant in computer science.

Among his other Dartmouth activities, Roth played on the club baseball team and was a member of the Gamma Delta Chi fraternity.

He plans to join Amazon as a software engineer.

Kristina Strommer
Portland, Ore.
Spanish and Intercultural Rhetoric double major; Phi Beta Kappa

An aspiring attorney, Strommer is interested in immigration advocacy as well as Spanish literature, communications, and rhetoric.

She has earned eight citations for excellence in her coursework.

Among her Dartmouth activities, she was part of FUERZA Farmworkers’ Fund, a member of Chi Delta Sorority, a ski instructor, an admissions tour guide, a student assistant in the Dartmouth Library, an administrative assistant in the Student Employment Office, and a volunteer with Dartmouth Feeding Neighbors.

She completed a legal internship the Oregon-based Bend Immigration Group, as well as communications and marketing internships with the World Forestry Center, Little Love Organics, Arendt Consulting, and Kimberly Park Communications.

Before law school, Strommer plans to live in Yakutat, Alaska, and continue working remotely for Kimberly Park Communications.

Kimberly Tan
Engineering Sciences and Philosophy modified with Asian Societies, Cultures, and Languages double major; Phi Beta Kappa

With academic interests in mechanical engineering, physics, and Western and Chinese philosophical traditions, Tan received undergraduate research funding for leave-term research into the May Fourth Movement in China, where she investigated the relationship of Confucianism to modernity and the influence of American Pragmatism on Chinese thought. She also received funding from UGAR and a Neukom Institute CompX grant to research quantum music with Eleanor and A. Kelvin Smith Distinguished Professor in Physics Miles Blencowe.

Her faith communities—including the Agape Christian Fellowship, the Christian Union (of which she was co-president), Edgerton House Episcopal Campus Ministry, and Daily Prayer Group—have made up a large part of her Dartmouth experience, as has music. A violinist, she served as concertmaster and performed the Sibelius Violin Concerto as a soloist with the Dartmouth Symphony Orchestra.

She won the Marcus Heiman-Martin R. Rosenthal ’56 Award for her contributions to the DSO, Best Overall Performance in the 2022 Culley Concerto Competition, and the Macdonald-Smith Prize for her achievements in musical performance. She has served as treasurer and executive team member of Musical Empowerment of the Upper Valley and was a trip leader for the Dartmouth Outing Club first-year trips.

In 2019, Tan participated in the language study abroad program in Beijing. In the fall, as a Yenching Scholar, she will pursue a master’s degree in China studies with a concentration in philosophy and religion at the Yenching Academy of Peking University.

Victor Wu
Hercules, Calif.
Government, Environmental Studies, and Quantitative Social Science triple major; Phi Beta Kappa

Wu, who will attend Stanford Law School this fall, plans to pursue a PhD in political science in addition to a JD, with the goal of becoming a law professor.

At Dartmouth, he coauthored publications on economic mobility and on correcting climate and COVID-19 misinformation. He earned high honors and the Downey Family Prize in Environmental Studies for his honors thesis exploring community choice aggregations—programs that allow local governments to procure energy on behalf of their residents. He also received the Stamps Scholarship for a two-year research project on hydropower development in the Mekong River.

A member of the Dartmouth triathlon team who competed in the 2021 Olympic-Distance Triathlon National Championships, Wu says the sport—which requires hours of training in the outdoors—has inspired his passion for the environment. And his experience as a policy debater, most recently with the Dartmouth Forensics Union, has helped him focused his interest on environmental policy and law. He participated in the fall 2021 environmental studies off-campus program, studying community-based natural resource management throughout New England.

Wu has completed internships with the Environmental Law Institute and the U.S. Department of Justice’s Natural Resources Division as well as the Dartmouth Sustainability Office and Bright Line Watch. Wu also participated in the Rockefeller Center for Public Policy’s Global Leadership and Management and Leadership Development programs.

Jason Zavras
Dover, Mass.
Quantitative Social Science and Biochemistry double major; Phi Beta Kappa

Zavras, who says his academic interests “lie at the intersection of health, technological innovation, and economic policy,” plans to work with a gene therapy research group at the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard University while applying to graduate programs.

He received a Stamps Scholarship to study the impact of economic recessions on population health outcomes, and was also a James O. Freedman Presidential Scholar. His honors thesis in quantitative social science focused on the social determinants of health.

He worked as an analyst at ClearView Healthcare Partners, as machine learning project leader at the Dartmouth Health EDIT Group, and as a technician in the Dartmouth Health ophthalmology clinic. He was also vice president of Psi Upsilon fraternity, a Class of 2022 senator, a member of Dartmouth Emergency Services, and a participant in the Dartmouth Cancer Scholars Program.

The salutatorians of the Class of 2022 also assembled for a group photo on Saturday. From left are Ian Stiehl, Andrew White, Twisha Bhardwaj, Sophia Miller, Zachary LaPorte, and Matthew Gannon. Not pictured is Connor Morris. (Photo by Eli Burakian ’00)


Twisha Bhardwaj
Hershey, Pa.
Neuroscience major; Government minor; Phi Beta Kappa

At Dartmouth, Bhardwaj has been able to explore her academic interests at the intersection of medicine, ethics, and law. She co-founded and served as president of Dartmouth Generations, an organization connecting undergraduates with older adults in the Upper Valley.

As a James O. Freedman Presidential Scholar, Bhardwaj pursued research with Visiting Associate Professor Robert Santulli in the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences. She designed an independent project examining attitudes toward dementia patient participation in nontherapeutic research. Her findings contributed to the Dartmouth Dementia Directive, an advance care document that helps individuals indicate their care preferences should they develop dementia.

Further, she completed research internships at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine and the Penn Memory Center and received the Eichler Fellowship for Health Care Leaders through the Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy and Clinical Practice.

Bhardwaj has also served as a student leader for Dartmouth Health’s Aging Resource Center, a volunteer for the Patient Support Corps, a co-coordinator and executive committee member for the Nathan Smith Society, a study group leader for neuroscience and biology coursework, and a youth mentor through the Dartmouth Center for Social Impact.

After graduation, Bhardwaj plans to work as a research assistant within the Harvard Aging Brain Study at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston while applying to medical school.

Matthew Gannon
Bethesda, Md.
Film and Media Studies major modified with Sociology; English minor; Phi Beta Kappa

A documentary filmmaker whose work—shown at a dozen film festivals—seeks to destigmatize people experiencing homelessness and incarceration, Gannon has received a Marshall Scholarship to pursue master’s degrees in sociology and film directing at the University of Manchester and the University of Edinburgh, respectively.

“My multimedia advocacy has focused on repealing unjust prison policies, reforming police practices, and ending the criminalization of homelessness,” he says.

He has interned with the American Civil Liberties Union of Maryland and Street Sense Media and was named a John Robert Lewis Scholar by the Washington-based Faith and Politics Institute.

At Dartmouth he was a sociology research assistant and served as a teaching assistant in three film and media studies courses. He also received funding from the Leslie Center for the Humanities, the Ethics Institute, and Dartmouth Partners in Community Service. He earned nine citations for excellence in his coursework and received the Maurice H. Rapf Award in film studies and the Andrew G. Truxal Memorial Award in sociology.

Among his other Dartmouth activities, he was vice president of the Dartmouth Cords a cappella group, a member of the Dog Day Players improv group, and a volunteer for DOC first-year trips.

Zachary LaPorte
Baltimore, Md.
Mathematics major; Phi Beta Kappa

An aspiring physician, LaPorte is co-director of the Pre-Health Peer Mentor Corps and has enjoyed shadowing clinicians at Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center and conducting clinical research, including with an organ transplant group and with a sports medicine group at Massachusetts General Hospital.

As a math major, he found himself most interested in theoretical mathematics, especially combinatorics, which he says “helped me think about problems in new and interesting ways.”

He has taught fifth-grade math with the Center for Talented Youth and is a volunteer emergency medical technician for a Baltimore-area fire department.

Among his Dartmouth activities, he served as risk manager for his fraternity, Phi Delta Alpha, and as a peer tutor and learning fellow for math, chemistry, and biology classes. He was a ski instructor, a member of the climbing team that won the 2019 bouldering and speed regional championships, and enjoyed playing intramural sports, including as a hockey goalie.

After graduation, LaPorte will conduct sports orthopedics clinical research at Massachusetts General Hospital while applying to medical school.

Sophia Miller
Grantham, N.H.
Chemistry major; Phi Beta Kappa

A chemistry major with interests in Middle Eastern studies and women’s, gender, and sexuality studies, Miller has accepted a Fulbright Scholarship to live in Jordan next year, where she will study Arabic and pursue an independent project to help expand access to hands-on chemistry education for female refugees.

After completing a language study abroad program in Morocco in 2019, Miller received funding from the Dickey Center to pursue a research internship in Amman, Jordan, where she helped develop a survey of the lived experience of gender.

She worked as a research assistant in the Associate Professor of Chemistry Katherine Mirica’s lab as a James O. Freedman Presidential Scholar, and completed work toward her senior honors thesis, “Towards Arrays of Metal-Organic Frameworks for the Detection of Ovarian Cancer from Exhaled Air,” in that same lab.

Among her other Dartmouth activities, Miller is co-president of the Sexual Assault Peer Alliance, a teaching assistant and learning fellow for chemistry, and a member of Movement Against Violence.

Connor Morris
Dayton, Ohio
Biology major modified with Chemistry; Phi Beta Kappa

With plans to pursue a career in medicine, Morris was a battery science intern at Xerion Advanced Battery, a research intern at the Wright State Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, and a telehealth intern at Premier Health.

He earned six citations for academic excellence in his economics, chemistry, and biological sciences classes.

Among his Dartmouth activities, he played on the rugby club team and played keyboard and sang lead vocals for the band The Dandelions.

Next year he will attend the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine.

Ian Stiehl
Seattle, Wash.
Astronomy; Phi Beta Kappa

Stiehl, who received a Goldwater Scholarship in 2021, is fascinated by astrobiology and space biology—the study of what life might look like beyond Earth and how terrestrial lifeforms adapt to space, respectively.

As a Stamps Scholar, he interned at a neurology lab at Harvard Medical School’s Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, where he studied the effects of different levels of gravity on muscle atrophy. As a James O. Freedman Presidential Scholar, he worked as a research assistant for Appleton Professor of Natural Philosophy Marcelo Gleiser. He served as an undergraduate teaching assistant for cell biology.

He interned at Allegro Pediatrics in Redmond, Wash., where he assisted with tasks that kept the clinic running, such as hearing and vision screens for young children.

An outdoor enthusiast, he has led canoe trips in the Everglades and on the Green River with the Ledyard Canoe Club, served as social chair of the triathlon team, and was a safety lead for DOC first-year trips. Other Dartmouth activities include performing in the theater department’s production of Into the Woods, dancing with Sheba-lite, and serving as a tutor for the Native American Program in various STEM subjects.

He plans to spend next year in Tanzania as a Princeton in Africa Fellow, teaching basic computer science with the Tanzania Education Corporation.

Andrew White
Huntington Beach, Calif.
Mathematics and Economics double major; Phi Beta Kappa

White credits his academic achievements to the mentorship of Associate Professor of Government Jeffrey Friedman, Remsen 1943 Professor of Quantitative Social Science Michael Herron, Professor of Economics Meir Kohn, Visiting Associate Professor of Writing Jennifer Sargent, and Joel Z. and Susan Hyatt Professor of Economics Christopher Snyder.

He will attend Cornell Law School next year.


See all awards. (PDF)

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