Professor Jeff Rubin introduces iSchool senior Hailey Temple as the winner of the Katie Bennett Undergraduate Leadership Award for 2015.

By: Diane Stirling
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Home and family are essential parts of life to Hailey-Margaret Temple. The graduating senior, named the recipient of this year’s Katie Bennett Undergraduate Leadership Award, told a Convocation audience how she found both a home and a family at the School of Information Studies (iSchool) after coming to Syracuse University.

The award recognized Hailey as an outstanding senior for her overall contributions to the school. The honor is presented in memory of Katie Bennett, an alumna of the iSchool who passed away in June of 2013.

In presenting the award to Temple at Convocation, Associate Professor of Practice Jeff Rubin joked that “there’s not enough time to list all her accomplishments.” He described how Hailey’s college career has included being a dual major in the iSchool and the Newhouse School of Public Communications; minoring in Spanish; being a Remembrance Scholar; a director and manager for the student NEXIS technology lab; traveling on several iSchool immersion-class road trips; being  a peer advisor; and a senior Class Act representative. He noted that she also was able to squeeze in a semester’s study abroad in Madrid; hold several professional internships; be a social media intern, journalist, and blogger for the iSchool; a TedX Syracuse presenter; and part of the University 100 LEAD team and co-executive of its leadership group. Besides that, Rubin said, Hailey, as a “fitness nut,” has “run virtually every race in Syracuse.” He said that Hailey embodies all the characteristics of leadership that Katie exhibited: charisma, intelligence, vision, and values.

Addressing the audience of iSchool graduates, their families, and faculty and staff, Hailey described how her initial interest in technology soon became much more engaging once she began getting immersed in the activities, classes, and culture of the iSchool. Her involvement soon changed from her original goal of learning a little about technology in order to enhance her efforts to be “an accomplished storyteller,” to also include new identities as a technologist, tinkerer, and explorer.”

“We have claimed many identities as iSchoolers,” she said. “We are entrepreneurs, investigators, and innovators. We are teachers and friends. Most of all the experiences and culture at the iSchool have created the most powerful identity of all: family,” she emphasized.

Hailey said she was “humbled to accept award and be identified as leader at the iSchool,” where she has discovered that “to serve this family truly is a labor of love. I am honored and proud to call all of you my family and grateful to be among loved ones.”

Temple will begin that career soon in Philadelphia, near her hometown and her family. She is joining SAP software and services corporation’s career track program, and will be a member of SAP’s multidisciplinary Design Thinking Team as a global design thinking practitioner.

Katie Bennett graduated from the iSchool in 2010 with a B.S. in Information Management and Technology and in 2012 an M.S. in Information Management. She went to work as a technology analyst and project manager for JPMorgan Chase & Co. in Philadelphia. Upon her death, Associate Professor Rubin and the company he leads, SIDEARM Sports, made a memorial gift to the iSchool that permanently names the school’s leadership honor as The Katie Bennett Undergraduate Leadership Award.