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Haslam Scholars Program Welcomes 2014 Cohort

By Colleen Ryan

Each year in selecting a new cohort, the Haslam Scholars Program identifies, attracts, and nurtures students of extraordinary intellectual capability and personal depth who are engaged leaders, scholars, and citizens from a variety of backgrounds. The class entering in 2014 certainly lives up to these ends. They come from fourteen high schools, public and private, in twelve counties and two states with stellar academic achievement and potential —their average ACT score is 33 and average GPA is 4.19. However, the incoming Haslam Scholars have proven to be far more than a set of impressive numbers.

pond gap

The incoming cohort participated in service at the Pond Gap Community Garden during the summer.

Diversity is a major strength of the Haslam Scholars Program, and this class is no exception. “Something very notable and defining about my class of Haslam Scholars is the amount of diversity that is just us fifteen,” said incoming scholar Elle Johnson. “We have all come from cultures, locations, and education types, but this diversity only shows that brilliant minds can come from all walks of life,” Johnson continued. “There is no cookie-cutter image of what a scholar should be, and I believe that my cohort of Haslam Scholars is perfect evidence of that.”

Our scholars conducted research in high school, served in student government, played varsity sports, and led student organizations. From involvement in journalism to 4-H to breast cancer research, this year’s class of Haslam Scholars has a diverse set of interests that have translated seamlessly to their university experience. They are pursuing disciplines across the university, from economics and international relations to civil engineering and microbiology, and involving themselves in a variety of activities.

2014 Cohort Group Development

The cohort also participated in team building and leadership activities this summer at the UT Recreation Center.

The Class of 2018 has not waited to become engaged in the Volunteer community. David Marsh has joined the American Society of Mechanical Engineers design team and started the Lego Robotics Club at Pond Gap Elementary as part of his program service requirement. Josh Brown has gotten involved with the UT Religious Studies Association and serves as its vice president. He explained, “It’s given me great opportunities to be involved with pertinent issues revolving around the scholastic pursuit of religion, like the Siddiqi Lecture.”

Daniel Enciso and Jeremy McDuffie are brothers together in the Beta Upsilon Chi fraternity. Jeremy has found one of the most valuable aspects of his UT experience to be community. “The most meaningful thing for me has been making friends, largely due to my fraternity. There are a lot of quality guys and girls I’ve met through BYX as well as just by being on campus here. The community at UT so far has been pretty great.”

It has been a great privilege welcoming each of these remarkable students and leaders into the Haslam Scholars Program community:

Amany Alshibli, Farragut High School, Knoxville

Kimberly Bress, Melbourne High School, Melbourne, Florida

Joshua Brown, Gibbs High School, Corryton, Tennessee

Alex Crockett, Alvin C. York Agricultural Institution, Jamestown, Tennessee

Daniel Enciso, Franklin High School, Franklin, Tennessee

Geoffrey Hervey, White Station High School, Memphis

Tyler Hounshell, Sevier County High School, Sevierville, Tennessee

Elle Johnson, Sequatchie County High School, Dunlap, Tennessee

David Marsh, Merrol Hyde Magnet School, Hendersonville, Tennessee

Jeremy McDuffie, Houston High School, Germantown, Tennessee

Miles Ownby, Siegel High School, Murfreesboro, Tennessee

Avanti Rangnekar, Farragut High School, Knoxville

Cody Sain, Humboldt High School, Humboldt, Tennessee

Regina Tisdale, Martin Luther King Magnet School, Nashville

Gus White, Notre Dame High School, Chattanooga