July 7, 1998
KALAMAZOO -- Twenty-one students successfully competed against the top graduating seniors in the class of 1998 to win prestigious Medallion Scholarships to begin their studies at Western Michigan University this fall.
The scholarships, each valued at $32,000 over four years, are the highest honor the University can bestow to an incoming freshman. Recipients were selected following a competition in which only this year's top applicants to WMU were invited to participate. The 21 Medallion winners, who have a collective grade point average of 3.99 and average American College Test score of 31, competed against more than 650 talented high school seniors from some 300 high schools in 11 states.
Each award bears the name of the scholarship donor, or the name of an individual in whose name the scholarship was established.
The recipients were selected based on their participation in the 14th annual Medallion Scholarship Competition this past winter on the campus. It included written testing and group problem solving for the students as well as information sessions for their parents.
To be invited to compete, students had to apply to WMU by Dec. 31 with at least a 3.8 grade point average in high school and an American College Test score of at least 25. This year's competition included 293 students with perfect 4.0 GPAs and 177 students who scored 30 or higher on the ACT.
The recipients, their high schools, their intended programs of study and the names of the scholarships are listed below. Click names for more information about that student.
Michael E. Ahrens of Wyoming, Mich., Rogers High School, University curriculum, Don Seelye Medallion Scholarship.
Anneliese L. Freiny of Monroe, Mich., Monroe High School, communication, Harold and Beulah McKee Endowed Medallion Scholarship.
Victoria E. Griebel of Copper City, Mich., Calumet High School, English, John Gill Medallion Scholarship.
Kristen M. Heeter of Mattawan, Mich., Mattawan High School, secondary education/English, Richard T. Burke Medallion Scholarship.
Emily A. Honey of Grand Rapids, Mich., Union High School, journalism, Tony Griffin Medallion Scholarship.
Gretchen L. Hooper of Reed City, Mich., Reed City High School, biomedical sciences, Stryker/Johnston Foundation Medallion Scholarship.
Connie L. Lee of Kalamazoo, Comstock High School, occupational therapy, Merze Tate Endowed Medallion Scholarship.
Katherine A. Liebler of Petoskey, Mich., Petoskey High School, biology, Donna Elliott Medallion Scholarship.
Jenna C. McIntosh of Royal Oak, Mich., Kimball High School, University curriculum, Mayor Dennis Archer Medallion Scholarship.
Don L. Neirink of Flint, Mich., Kearsley High School, pre-medicine, Stryker/Johnston Foundation Medallion Scholarship.
Nichelle L. Nelson of Benton Harbor, Mich., Lake Michigan Catholic High School, elementary education, William McKinley and Cornelia Robinson Education Medallion Scholarship.
Scott A. Overton of Paw Paw, Mich., Paw Paw High School, biology, Mary Thorne Medallion Scholarship.
Donald "Joseph" Pole of Big Rapids, Big Rapids High School and the Mecosta-Osceola Math/Science Technology Center, University curriculum, Richard and Pamela Carlson Medallion Scholarship.
Erik B. Roll of Blue Island, Ill., Polaris High School, computer engineering, Colonel Charles E. Bayliss Medallion Scholarship.
Steven P. Sanders of Tekonsha, Mich., Coldwater High School, pre-dentistry, David R. Tashjian Medallion Scholarship.
Laura M. Sardelli of Sterling Heights, Mich., Henry Ford II High School, biomedical sciences, Russell H. and Eloise Seibert Medallion Scholarship.
Nichole L. Smith of Mason, Mich., Mason Senior High School, biology, John Hungerford Medallion Scholarship.
Nicole A. Stark of Battle Creek, Mich., Lakeview High School, University curriculum, Roy and Beulah Kendall Endowed Medallion Scholarship.
Kathleen C. Teall of Holland, Mich., Holland High School, psychology, Leonard and Dorotha Kercher Medallion Scholarship.
Mary K. Truitt of Plainwell, Mich., Plainwell High School, University curriculum, Harold Zeigler Sr. Medallion Scholarship.
Jesse A. Williams of Canton, Mich., Plymouth Canton High School, electrical engineering, Professor Emily P. and Richard A. Hoffman Endowed Medallion Scholarship.
Media contact: Jeanne Baron, 616 387-8400, firstname.lastname@example.org
Ahrens, a resident of 1454 Iowa S.W., is the son of George E. and Kathy D. Ahrens. A member of the National Honor Society, he has been a four-year member of the student council, serving as vice president during his senior year. Ahrens also was active in his school's chapter of Students Against Drunk Driving, the Key Club and the Drama Club, serving as president of the latter two organizations. A four-year member of the marching band and wind symphony, he recently served as drum major. Ahrens has received numerous awards in essay contests and has been a member of "Who's Who Among American High School Students" for three years. Active in the community, he has assisted with church youth group activities and served as a library volunteer.
Freiny, a resident of 2911 N. Custer, is the daughter of Bernd and Linda Freiny. A member of the National Honor Society, she was treasurer and a member of the Drama Club and a member of the German Club. She has been very active in vocal groups, including women's chorus, concert choir and Generations of Sound. In 1997, Freiny performed in Europe with the Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp International Choral Ensemble. She has received first place rankings in state and district solo and ensemble festivals throughout her high school career. Active in the community, Freiny participated in a theatre mentoring prevention outreach program to promote a drug- and alcohol-free environment.
Griebel, a resident of 315 Ahmeek St., is the daughter of John E. Griebel and Barbara A. Simila. A National Merit "Commended Scholar," she was a member and president of the National Honor Society. She also served as vice president and president of her high school's student council. Named to "Who's Who Among American High School Students" for three years, she was a winner in the Miss Teen Houghton County Pageant in 1997. A four-year band member, she received numerous first division ratings in solo and ensemble festivals. She has been active in community volunteer activities, working with Habitat for Humanity and the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.
Heeter, a resident of 44236 Woodview Drive, is the daughter of James B. and Judith E. Heeter. A three-year member of the National Honor Society, she served as president of her freshman and sophomore classes at Mattawan High School. Heeter also has been active in the French Club and P.A.L.s (Peer Assistant Leaders). She was a member of the volleyball, softball and basketball teams, serving as a basketball captain for four years. She has been active in church and community volunteer activities, including Toys for Tots, the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, the Salvation Army and Pretty Lake Vacation Camp.
Honey, a resident of 366 Ball Park Blvd. N.W., is the daughter of Charles M. and Wendy S. Honey. A member of the National Honor Society, she served as editor of her school's newspaper and was active in the French Club and Students Against Drunk Driving. She has been honored as part of the Daughters of the American Revolution and was a 1997 recipient of the Grand Rapids Foundation Excellence in Education Award. She was a one-year member of the track team and a four-year member of the swimming team. Honey has been the recipient of awards from several essay and speech contests sponsored by the Optimist Club and the Veterans of Foreign Wars. Also involved in the community, she has worked with the United Way and played the violin in the Trinity Orchestra.
Hooper, a resident of 505 W. Franklin Ave., is the daughter of Phillip F. and Judith A. Hooper. A member of the National Honor Society, she served as section leader in a select high school choir and was cast in the lead female role in a high school musical. A three-year soccer player, Hooper also participated in cross country for one year. She has performed microbiology research in a laboratory setting and participated in the 1996 International Science and Engineering Fair in Washington, D.C. Also involved in the community, Hooper has implemented an AIDS Education Assembly and has participated in a 30-hour famine for World Vision.
Lee, a resident of 1308 Henson, is the daughter of Tim G. and Ann L. Lee. A member and historian of the National Honor Society, she has been honored as part of the Daughters of the American Revolution. She has participated in volleyball, track and cross country and in WMU's Precision Skating Club. In 1996, Lee was the recipient of a bronze medal in the U.S. National Precision Skating Championships. Named to "Who's Who Among American High School Students," she is a four-year member and captain of the color guard and a flutist in the concert band. Active in the community, Lee has worked with the Kalamazoo Gospel Mission and the Youth United Way.
Liebler, a resident of 1414 Woodview Court, is the daughter of Larry L. Liebler and the late Janice L. Liebler. She is the sister of Sarah Liebler, who received a WMU Medallion Scholarship in 1996. A National Merit Scholarship Competition finalist, she was a two-year semi-finalist in the Michigan Math Prize Competition and has been named to "Who's Who Among American High School Students" for three years. Liebler has been active in student council, the National Honor Society and the Spanish Club, and has served as treasurer of her freshman and junior classes. She has been a two-year member of the cross country team, four-year member of the soccer team, two-year member of the tennis team and four-year member of the ski team, serving as captain of the latter during her senior year.
McIntosh, a resident of 2405 N. Wilson, is the daughter of John and Jan McIntosh. A member of the National Honor Society, she has been a cabinet member of her school's Tutoring Knights. In 1997, McIntosh was the recipient of the local Madame Curie Award for being the outstanding female in science. She has been a four-year member of the basketball, soccer and volleyball teams, serving as co-captain of the basketball team. She is active in the community through a church youth group and the Girl Scouts.
Neirink, a resident of 5181 Merit Drive, is the son of Michael and Diana Neirink. A member and president of the National Honor Society, he has been honored as part of the Daughters of the American Revolution with a Good Citizen Award. Neirink also served as vice president of his school's student senate. He has been a four-year member and senior-year captain of the basketball, football and track teams. Also involved in the community, he has volunteered with Burton Paint for Pride and youth basketball camps.
Nelson, a resident of 1385 Park Road, is the daughter of David and Phyllis Nelson. A member of the National Honor Society, she has been active in the Science Olympiad and served as editor of her school's literary magazine. She has participated in the marching and concert bands and her school's Drama Club. She was a four-year member of the track team and a three-year member of the equestrian team. Active as a volunteer in the community, she has participated in 4-H, vacation Bible school and a soup kitchen.
Overton, a resident of 33135 Frederick, is the son of Frederick and Donna Overton. A member and president of the National Honor Society, he has been dual enrolled at WMU since 1997. Overton has participated in his school's Science Olympiad team and has been highly active in theatre. He is a member of a local acting company, the Paw Paw Village Players. Also involved in the community, he has helped with the American Cancer Society's Relay for Life.
Pole, a resident of 17604 Nancy Drive, is the son of John J. and Jane A. Pole. A member of the National Honor Society, he served as president of his freshman class and as president of the student council at Big Rapids High School. Pole also has been a four-year member of the Math Club and a four-year letterman on the golf team. During his sophomore year, he presented at the Michigan Academy of Arts, Science and Letters. His community activities have ranged from peer tutoring to Catholic Youth in Action.
Roll, a resident of 12910 Highland Ave., is the son of Gregory V. and Pamela G. Roll. A National Merit semi-finalist, he has been a four-year member of Model United Nations and has been named to "Who's Who Among American High School Students." A member of the National Honor Society, Roll has served as vice president of the student council and of his senior class. He also was a member of his high school's yearbook staff and the French Club. An Illinois State Scholar, Roll has participated in soccer, volleyball and his church's youth group.
Sanders, a resident of 128 Meadow Lane, is the son of Roger and Dianne Sanders. A member of the National Honor Society, he has been active in student council, yearbook and Students Against Drunk Driving. Sanders served as vice president of his sophomore and junior classes and as treasurer of his freshman class. He has been a lobbyist for Youth in Government for two years. He has maintained membership in concert and jazz bands and contributed to the successes of school plays and musicals. He has served as a four-year member and captain of the tennis team. Sanders is extremely active in the community through the United Way, American Red Cross and Big Brothers/Big Sisters.
Sardelli, a resident of 43751 Vinters Place, is the daughter of Richard M. and Linda M. Sardelli. A member of the National Honor Society, Spanish Club, Rotary Club and Students Against Drunk Driving, she has been involved in the concert and marching bands. Sardelli is a four-year member of the basketball, softball and volleyball teams, serving as captain of all three teams. She has been involved in church and community volunteer activities, assisting with Habitat for Humanity and tutoring.
Smith, a resident of 1195 W. Howell Road, is the daughter of Irvin S. and Betty L. Smith. A member of the National Honor Society, she has been active in the French Club and the Girls Letter Club. Smith participated in soccer for three years and is a four-year member of the gymnastics team, serving as captain her senior year. In 1996, Smith was the recipient of the Optimist International Youth Appreciation Citation for upholding the dignity of youth and showing devotion to the welfare of others. She has been active in the community through 4-H and the U.S. Soccer Federation.
Stark, a resident of 7791 White Rabbit Road, is the daughter of Hans and Alicia Stark. A member of the National Honor Society, she has served as secretary of her senior class and vice president of her freshman class. Stark has been involved her school's yearbook, serving as section editor during her senior year. She has been a four-year member of the orchestra and her swim team, for which she was captain during her senior year. She has volunteered for many community projects, including AIDS prevention, the Battle Creek Balloon Championship and smoking prevention.
Teall, a resident of 200 E. 27th St., is the daughter of Gary A. and Elaine M. Teall. She is the sister of Eric Teall, who received a WMU Medallion Scholarship in 1993. A member and leadership chairperson of the National Honor Society, she has served as a senator in her school's student council. Teall also has been active in the school newspaper, forensics and Students Against Drunk Driving. She has participated in gymnastics, soccer and cross country throughout high school. She has been extremely active in community projects like blood drives, Cystic Fibrosis fund-raisers and Salvation Army drives.
Truitt, a resident of 688 Pierce Road, is the daughter of Perry and Kathy Truitt. A member and two-year secretary of the National Honor Society, she has been active in the French Club, Band Council and Students Against Drunk Driving. She also served as treasurer of the French Club for two years. She has participated in wind ensemble for three years and the composers symposium for two years, and served as section leader for the symphonic band. Truitt is a four-year member of the color guard, serving as captain during her senior year. She has been published in "Literary Soiree." Also involved in the community, she has participated in a variety of activities, ranging from the Junior League's Festival of Trees to children's Bible study.
Williams, a resident of 42976 Saxony, is the son of Dennis S. and Sara A. Williams. A member of the National Honor Society, he has been a four-year member and section leader of the wind ensemble and a three-year member and section leader of the marching band. He is a three-year national marching band finalist and three-year state marching band champion. Williams also had the lead role in his school's musical during his junior year. He has been active in church and community volunteer activities, ranging from the Plymouth Symphony to his church's bell choir.
Media contact: Jeanne Baron, 616 387-8400, email@example.com
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