WMU News

March 18 ceremony honors top WMU seniors

March 11, 2004

KALAMAZOO--Western Michigan University's top undergraduates will be recognized Thursday, March 18, at the 24th annual Presidential Scholars Convocation at the Fetzer Center.

A total of 48 students will be honored as Presidential Scholars, WMU's highest academic award bestowed on an undergraduate. The convocation will begin with a reception at 6 p.m., followed by dinner and a program featuring WMU President Emeritus Diether H. Haenicke as keynote speaker. Haenicke will speak on this year's convocation theme, "Giving Back to the Community." Dr. Larry ten Harmsel, dean of the Lee Honors College, will preside at the convocation, while WMU President Judith I. Bailey will deliver opening remarks and present certificates to the scholars.

The Presidential Scholars Convocation is intended to celebrate the excellence of WMU students. It is sponsored by the Faculty Senate and the Office of the President. Students are nominated for the award by faculty members. They are selected on the basis of their general academic excellence, academic and/or artistic excellence in their major and intellectual and/or artistic promise. The students typically travel and study across the country and overseas and are engaged in innovative and sometimes unusual research projects.

This year's scholars include: a rugby-playing student who is the Presidential Scholar in both economics and mathematics and whose interest in graph theory led him to participate in a summer National Science Foundation program; a Presidential Scholar in electrical and computer engineering who has participated in three major federal research projects, including work on the Hubble Space Telescope; and a Presidential Scholar in business information systems who has been studying at Japan's Nihon University and is headed for a career in international e-commerce.

The by-invitation-only program is not open to the public.

Media contact: Mark Schwerin, 269 387-8400, mark.schwerin@wmich.edu

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