Four Jumbos Recent Recipients of Tufts Alumni Association Senior Awards

MEDFORD – Four Tufts University student-athletes were recently recognized as recipients of the annual Tufts University Alumni Association (TUAA) Senior Awards.

Since 1955, TUAA has presented Senior Awards to six to 12 graduating members of the senior class from the School of Arts and Sciences, School of Engineering, and School of the Museum of Fine Arts for academic achievement, participation in campus and community activities, and leadership.


At a ceremony held April 6 at Gifford House, Jumbos Patricia Blumeris (track & field), Ailish Dougherty (swimming), Will Shackelford (baseball) and Hiroto Watanabe (track & field) were among the 12 recipients for 2019.

Blumeris, from Chelmsford Mass., started at Tufts wanting to be a biomedical engineer and changed to mechanical engineering her sophomore spring. Outside of class, she is heavily involved with the Tufts community. She was captain of the Women’s Club Soccer Team her junior year, president for the Society of Women Engineers during her junior and senior years, and is captain for Women’s Varsity Track and Field her senior year. Last summer, she worked at Goldman Sachs Headquarters in their Operations Division and following graduation, she will join the Consultant Development Program at Accenture in Boston.

From Philadelphia, Dougherty is a Child Study and Human Development major. Her eventual goal is to attend medical school to earn a combined MD/MPH degree, as her interests lie at the intersection of social justice and health. She is fascinated with education as a social determinant of health, and has experience with clinical research, early intervention, health literacy promotion, and sex education. She was the captain of the varsity swimming and diving team. She loves reading and creative writing, and will be teaching high school English in Nashville next year.

Born and raised on Cape Cod, Shackelford majors in Applied Mathematics and minors in Finance, while earning Dean’s List every semester. From the time he was five years old playing Little League through taking the field at Huskins Field at Tufts, baseball has been an integral part of his life. Playing the game has shaped his college experience, providing him countless opportunities, including being an active member of Team IMPACT, being elected Chair of Policy and Representation for the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee, and being named a captain of the team his senior year.

Watanabe is a graduating senior majoring in biology. From Yarmouth Port, Massachusetts, while at home you’d likely catch him running or working at the sushi bar of his parents’ restaurant, Inaho. On campus, he's involved in the Japanese Culture Club, captain of the track team, and is an intern in the Tesco neuroscience lab where he’ll be working next year. He is interested in medicine with a dream of becoming an emergency physician. He's also a big Boston sports fan who loves traveling and the culinary arts.