The Lord Botetourt medal was established in 1772 “for the honor and encouragement of literary merit.” In contemporary times, it has been given to the graduating senior who has attained the greatest distinction in scholarship.
The 2015 recipient is Ellen Shaffrey ’15.
As a student, researcher and athlete, Shaffrey embodies the best of William & Mary, said Reveley. She impressed her professors with her insightful questions and enthusiasm for learning. A Phi Beta Kappa kinesiology (& health sciences) major and chemistry minor, Shaffrey, Reveley said, has truly challenged herself at W&M, holding a grade-point average of 3.997 – particularly impressive given the academically rigorous nature of her pre-med curriculum.
During summer sessions, Shaffrey conducted research at the University of Virginia, which resulted in publication of two peer-reviewed papers. She served as first author for one of these, and presented her data at a meeting of the Scoliosis Research Society held in Lyon, France, in 2013. That’s a rare accomplishment for any student, Reveley said. She will attend medical school at the University of Virginia next fall.
In addition, she has enjoyed tremendous success on the Tribe’s lacrosse team. A two-year team captain, she has been honored as CAA player of the week, was named to two CAA All-Academic teams and was a finalist for the prestigious Yeardley Love Award.
Still, a professor claims her greatest achievement is the fact that “she has achieved all of this while maintaining the kindest and most grounded personality I have ever had the pleasure of meeting. She is an unparalleled representative and ambassador for William & Mary.”