New London, IA

Based on the excellence of their research, Nicholas Borcherding and Cale Staley have received the L.B. Sims Outstanding Master’s Thesis Award by the Graduate College. The L. B. Sims Outstanding Master’s Thesis Award is awarded annually to recognize the excellent scholarship and research that is carried out by University of Iowa graduate students pursuing Master’s degrees.

Each winner of the L. B. Sims Award receives a $500 honorarium and a certificate from the Graduate College.

Cale Staley, New London
Cale Staley, a native of New London who received his master’s degree in religious studies in 2015, won the award in the humanities category for his thesis “The Melkisedeq Memoirs: The Social Memory of Melkisedeq through the Second Temple Period,” a study that tracks the literary tradition of the biblical character Melchizedek through Jewish and Christian interpretative circles.

Nicholas Borcherding, Davenport
Nicholas Borcherding, a native of Davenport who earned his master’s degree in pathology in 2014, won the award in the biological and life sciences category for his thesis “Noncanonical Wnt signaling in breast cancer initiation and progression,” a study that focuses on molecular signaling mechanisms in the initiation and progression of breast cancer.

Nicholas was also selected as a Midwestern Association of Graduate Schools (MAGS) Distinguished Thesis Award winner for 2016.

“It’s an unexpected honor to receive the MAGS award,” Borcherding says. “I want to thank Weizhou Zhang, my mentor, and Tom Waldschmidt, my program director, for their excellent guidance. The award is as much a reflection of their excellent mentorship as my work.”