With majors in global commerce and French, Oliver Gignoux is one of only eight students chosen as a President’s Medalist, Denison’s highest award for students, for the Class of 2023.

Gignoux, who also minored in economics, says, “I remember being uncertain about what I wanted to study, what I was going to do after graduation, or even what my next day would look like. Denison allows individuals to pursue anything that they desire, and it is so easy to get involved. I learned to balance commitments like never before — taking a full course load, participating in both an on and off-campus job, serving on numerous board committees, playing a sport, and much more.”

Referring to a conversation with President Weinberg, Gignoux says, “We discussed numerous topics ranging from my experience taking a Denison Edge accounting course, what work I was doing at my internship in Columbus, my semester abroad in France, and many more. He challenged me to think of ways to improve my experience.”

“With every professor or faculty member I mentioned, he seemed to know them well - beyond simply recognizing the name and department. I even got to pick his brain about his three nephews, who all play in the National Hockey League.”

“People say Denison is a special place, and I never doubted that, yet I still surprised myself to the extent that it has impacted my worldview and the relationships I value most.”

Gignoux’s citation reads, in part:

“…As one of two juniors inducted into Phi Beta Kappa, your academics have been stellar, and your gift of drawing others into what one of your nominators called your “world of discovery” is apparent.

“…You have extended your energy to the Denison Edge, acting as a student consultant to the Edge’s Advisory Board. And you have been a force in campus dialogue. Contributing to the 2021 “21 Days of Racial Equity” program, you challenged both students and faculty to interrogate racial capitalism, pushing for justice and equity to be extended to all participants in our global economy.

“…As a student who has exemplified the power of a liberal arts education in your academic and off-campus experiences, you bring into the mix your athletic engagement. As a two-year captain of the Denison ice hockey team, you have been a part of a journey from being 0-20 in 2019 (which we’re told is quite bad), to a #4 ranking going into the AAC Division II Elite Playoffs.

“…Your coach states you have been an integral part of building our hockey program and have been an ideal first contact for new recruits, while your long-time teammates call you the GOAT.

April 24, 2023