Sandra Levitsky has been selected to receive this year's Golden Apple Award in recognition of her engaging teaching style and passion for helping students succeed. The Golden Apple Award annually honors one professor for outstanding teaching and is Michigan's only teaching award given by students. 

Sandra Levitsky is the Faculty and Program director of SOUL: Sociology Opportunities for Undergraduate Leaders. This is a comprehensive leadership program offered through the sociology department for first-generation junior and senior Sociology majors. Participating students receive mentoring, professional development, and research experience as they work with sociology faculty and graduate students. Since its inception, BLI has been partnered with SOUL to enhance their students’ leadership development. SOUL students join as BLI Fellows, participating in the leadership lab and working with other BLI students to identify problems, innovate solutions, and improve their ideas. Several SOUL students have gone on to participate in BLI’s capstone program, attend access opportunities, and work as program assistants and peer facilitators.

As the University of Michigan embarks on a plan to diversify its student body, the unique experiences of first-generation students promise to become increasingly salient. And despite the many challenges they face as first generation undergraduates, SOUL students have proven themselves to be true leaders in BLI and across campus.

Congrats to Sandy, from the BLI community!