U of A Honors College Selects 2015 Class of Fellows

Luis Restrepo, associate vice chancellor for diversity and community, welcomes a fellowship finalist, one of 150 who interviewed with faculty members last March.
Photo by Matt Reynolds

Luis Restrepo, associate vice chancellor for diversity and community, welcomes a fellowship finalist, one of 150 who interviewed with faculty members last March.

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — The University of Arkansas Honors College has selected 75 exceptional students to receive Honors College Fellowships. This 14th class of fellows was chosen from more than 670 applicants and includes 26 National Merit Scholars.

“Competition for the fellowships has grown every year,” said Noah Pittman, assistant dean of the Honors College. “We conducted more than 150 on-campus interviews this spring looking for students with leadership potential, intellectual curiosity, and community involvement. We found that and more in this group of fellows.”

 The Honors College Fellowships, made possible by a portion of the Walton Family Charitable Support Foundation’s $300 million gift to the university in 2002, help keep Arkansas’ best young minds in-state. Three-fourths of these fellows come from 30 different cities in Arkansas. Nearly a quarter of the 2015 class will also be first-generation college students.

The members of this distinguished class have earned a wide variety of honors during their high school years. Lexi and Tori Weeks, for example, are twin sisters from Cabot who were featured in a New York Times article for their pole-vaulting prowess. Lexi currently holds the girls high school all-time record. She was also one of five fellows to be named on the Arkansas Times All-Stars Team, along with Emily Gentles, Samuel Johnson, Sophia Ly and Alex O’Brien.

The Honors College fellowship of $70,000 largely covers tuition, books, room and board, and registration over four years, granting these students the freedom to pursue original research, study abroad and other academic interests. The fellowship funds can also be combined with other scholarships and grants, such as the more than $1 million in study abroad and research grants that the Honors College awards to students each year.

The fellowship application process is rigorous. Students must score at least 32 on the ACT exam and have a 3.8 grade point average to apply. This class boasts an average ACT score over 33, placing them in the 99th percentile nationwide, and a high school GPA of 4.16.

Including this latest group, a total of 1,017 students have benefited from the Honors College Fellowship program. Alumni fellows are pursuing advanced degrees at top graduate and professional programs around the country and securing jobs in competitive fields. For example, alumna Ellen Brune, of Fayetteville, helped develop a patented method to simplify the production of pharmaceutical proteins, founded Boston Mountain Biotech and was recently named a finalist for the Cartier Women’s Initiative Award.

The University of Arkansas Honors College Fellows Class of 2019, with their high school and hometown:

  • Anthony Azzun, Bolivar R-I High School, Bolivar, Missouri
  • Kate Barger, De Soto High School, De Soto, Kansas
  • Bailey Bishop, Arkansas School for Mathematics, Sciences and the Arts, Rogers
  • Blake Bradberry, Haas Hall Academy, Fayetteville
  • Olga Brazhkina, Fayetteville High School, Fayetteville
  • Emma Buckner, White Hall High School, White Hall
  • Christine Carroll, New Tech High, Coppell, Texas
  • Cameron Conroy, Cary-Grove Community High School, Cary, Illinois
  • Jordan Cottrell, Calico Rock High School, Calico Rock
  • Sophie Crafton, Rogers High School, Rogers
  • Emily Davidson, Little Rock Central, Roland
  • Olivia Degner, Blue Valley North High School, Leawood, Kansas
  • Dylan DeLay, Atlanta High School, Atlanta, Texas
  • Brock DeMark, Fayetteville High School, Fayetteville
  • Chynna Denham, Hartford High School, Hartford
  • Joseph Detmer, Blue Valley Northwest High School, Overland Park, Kansas
  • Lydia Fielder, Bentonville High School, Bentonville
  • Olivia Fredricks, Cabot High School, Cabot
  • Nimit Gandhi, Little Rock Central, Sherwood
  • Brayley Gattis, Southside High School, Fort Smith
  • Emily Gentles, Lake Hamilton High School, Pearcy
  • Jake Grawe, Prosper High School, Prosper, Texas
  • Laura Gray, Union High School, Broken Arrow, Oklahoma
  • Caitlyn Hallett, Arkansas School for Mathematics, Sciences and the Arts, Conway
  • Jackson Hedrick, Greenbrier High School, Greenbrier
  • Wyatt Heikes, Olathe North High School, Olathe, Kansas
  • Nathan Hemby, Frontenac High School, Pittsburg, Kansas
  • Sara Jepsen, Kirkwood High School, Kirkwood, Missouri
  • Andrew Jewell, Little Rock Central, Little Rock
  • Samuel Johnson, Fayetteville High School, Fayetteville
  • Myles Joyce, Christian Brothers High School, Germantown, Tennessee
  • Caraway Kardas, Arkansas School for Mathematics, Sciences and the Arts, Magnolia
  • Sameer Kulkarni, Bentonville High School, Bentonville
  • John Lampson, Rogers High School, Bethel Heights
  • Eli LaSalle, Greenwood High School, Greenwood
  • Sophia Ly, Arkansas School for Mathematics, Sciences and the Arts, Jonesboro
  • Jacob Maestri, Subiaco Academy, Fort Smith
  • Jacob Maris, Little Rock Central, Little Rock
  • Megan Martinez, Southside High School, Fort Smith
  • Allison Matthews, Bentonville High School, Bentonville
  • Kathleen McClanahan, Central Arkansas Christian School, Maumelle
  • Jace McPherson, Little Rock Central, Little Rock
  • Callie Monk, Oden High School, Pencil Bluff
  • Jacob Murray, Harrisonville Sr High School, Harrisonville, Missouri
  • Zachary Nelson, Huntsville High School, Huntsville
  • Sarah Newton, Bentonville High School, Bentonville
  • Alexander O’Brien, Har-Ber High School, Springdale
  • Andrew O’Neil, Arkansas School for Mathematics, Sciences and the Arts, Gassville
  • Hannah Oldham, Little Rock Central, Roland
  • Elizabeth Poblete, Xavier College Prep, Scottsdale, Arizona
  • Emma Presley, Little Rock Central, Little Rock
  • Morgan Prince, Lincoln High School, Canehill
  • Erich-Matthew Pulfer, Beebe High School, Beebe
  • Alexandria Rogers, Fayetteville High School, Fayetteville
  • Guadalupe Sanchez Garduno, Rogers Heritage High School, Rogers
  • Julia Scott, Briarcrest Christian High School, Arlington, Tennessee
  • Fiona Slaughter, Springdale High School, Fayetteville
  • Connor Smalling, Little Rock Central, Little Rock
  • Braelyn Smith, Rogers High School, Rogers
  • Clara Somerville, Ozark High School, Ozark
  • Spencer Soule, North Little Rock High School West, North Little Rock
  • Ian Spatz, Conway High School West, Conway
  • Olivia Stiegman, Fayetteville High School, Fayetteville
  • Timothy Stout, Har-Ber High School, Springdale
  • Matilda Sullivan, Prairie Grove High School, Prairie Grove
  • Marinna Tadros, White Hall High School, White Hall
  • Jaden Talley, Van Buren High School, Van Buren
  • Jeffrey Tonti, Arkansas Baptist High School, Little Rock
  • Manasa Veluvolu, Little Rock Central, Little Rock
  • Alexis Weeks, Cabot High School, Cabot
  • Victoria Weeks, Cabot High School, Cabot
  • Charlotte Williams, Longview Senior High School, Longview, Texas
  • Zachary Wofford, Alma High School, Alma
  • Annelise Zaring, Fossil Ridge High School, Fort Collins, Colorado
  • Edward Zhao, Little Rock Central, Little Rock

Noah Pittman, assistant dean of recruitment and retention
Honors College
479-575-3974, npittman@uark.edu

Anthony Blake, editor
Honors College
479-575-7678, ab026@uark.edu


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