DALLAS (SMU) – Avery Acker was honored with the SMU Presidential Award of Excellence, which is awarded to three graduating seniors each year. A three-year captain for the volleyball program, Acker graduated in December with a degree in accounting and minors in chemistry and biological sciences, and will begin medical school in the fall.
The setter was named CoSIDA Academic All-American of the Year, as well as American Athletic Conference Female Scholar-Athlete of the Year, earning a $4,000 postgraduate scholarship. She finished her career with a 3.941 GPA, graduating summa cum laude. Acker was also a CoSIDA Academic All-American as a junior.
On the court, Acker was named an All-American Honorable Mention award winner three times, and conference Setter of the Year twice. During her senior season, Acker led the Mustangs to a program-best 27 wins and the school’s first conference championship in 2015. SMU finished with a 27-6 mark overall and 17-3 record in conference play to earn The American’s automatic bid to the NCAA Championship. The Poth, Texas, native led the NCAA with 12.45 assists per set, while also setting an SMU and American single-season record with 1,482 assists. READ MORE
SMU is proud to be home to world changers, and it all starts with the moment a student decides to become a leader. We are proud here at Her Campus to present SMU’s Leading Ladies, taking charge and making a difference in the community.
This week, we got to know senior Jenny Torres, a human rights and public policy student who is also the interim president of the Multicultural Greek Council. Recently, she was honored with two Hilltop Excellence Awards: the Emme V. Baine Legacy and A. Kenneth Pye Outstanding Greek Leader Awards. Receiving two honors in one night is fitting for a woman who seems to do everything at once. READ MORE
DALLAS (SMU) — The SMU debate team racked up significant tournament wins this spring including the designation of top varsity debater in the U.S. — won by team member Jaden Warren on April 3 at the International Public Debate Association (IPDA) tournament in Houston.
Warren defeated 327 varsity undergraduate debaters to win the title for SMU. This is the second major national speaking championship he has won this year — a rare feat in college forensics. Two weeks ago, he was crowned top speaker in the nation at the Pi Kappa Delta National Forensics championships in Lexington, Ky.
This is the first national title in varsity level debate for SMU in more than 10 years.
“When Jaden came to me in fall 2015 and said he wanted to win a national title in debate, I was skeptical at first,” says SMU Debate and Speech Director Dr. Ben Voth. “But I said, let’s give it a try and see what happens. It is an incredible story of personal tenacity, speaking ability and perseverance.” READ MORE
Aubrey Chapman, a junior double majoring in psychology and religious studies, is looking forward to graduating in May of 2016, a year earlier than her peers. After graduation, Chapman will immediately move on in her studies and get her master’s degree in marriage and family therapy at seminary.
Even though Chapman has heard many say that college is the best four years of your life, she has no qualms about missing out on her senior year. She said she has enjoyed her time at SMU.
“Personally, graduating early is allowing me to step into seminary sooner to receive the education that is in complete alignment with what I want to do in the future,” said Chapman. “I’m excited to be in an atmosphere that will strengthen and encourage me in my specific dreams and goals.”
Chapman is one of many students graduating early. Michael Tumeo, the director of institutional research at SMU, said that of the students who started at SMU in 2009, 67 percent graduated in four years or less. That statistic includes students who graduated “on time,” a semester early, or an entire year early. More specific data on those who have graduated in three years or three and a half years was not available.
Completing college a semester early is much more common across the nation and has even become a growing trend at some universities. According to a 2014 study at Duke University, there was a 30 percent increase in students graduating a semester early since 2010. READ MORE
Hard work definitely does pay off, or at least it does for one high school student, from Lynn Haven, Florida. Mimi Mallory, a senior at Mosley High School, was offered more than $1 million in merit-based college scholarships.
“It was crazy,” Mallory, 18, told ABC News. “I just didn’t know what to think.”
As one college acceptance after another came in, they were also paired with a lot of cash. Mallory was awarded a combined total of $1,052,400 from the 11 schools where she was accepted.
The highest scholarship Mallory was offered came from Mercer University, totaling $212,000. She also received a full tuition scholarship from the University of Alabama.
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Mallory decided to accept the offer from her dream school, Southern Methodist University, in Dallas, Texas. “It’s crazy to think I can go to SMU,” she said. “I wasn’t expecting to because of how expensive it was.”
SMU awarded Mallory $166,000 in scholarship money, so she will only have to pay a few thousand dollars each year out of pocket. READ MORE
(Dallas, TX) – Over 1,000 prize-winning students from across the Dallas and Fort Worth Metroplex competed in the 2016 Beal Bank Dallas Regional Science and Engineering Fair (DRSEF) on Saturday, February 28, in Fair Park. Co-sponsored by SMU, participants — who have won their school or district science fairs — were awarded top honors for their innovations.
Steven Elliot, a high school student with The Home Educators Outsourcing High School was one of the top prize-winners. He presented his work titled, “Use the force Lyapunov! A novel force controller for quadcopter applications,” and won first place in Senior Division, Physical Sciences: Robotics and Intelligent Machines. He was a runner up for the grand prize in the Senior Division, Physical Sciences.
Elliot has a unique connection with SMU as he enrolled and took several math classes in Fall 2015 and Spring 2016. Steven works with Dr. Thomas Carr, Associate Professor in Department of Mathematics on problems related to the stability and control of quadcopters.
“Steven is highly motivated, independent and particularly competent,” says Dr. Carr. “I provide some mathematical guidance but for the most part I am learning from him, and that is a lot of fun.”
Steven has one research manuscript accepted for publication in the American Journal of Undergraduate Research (http://www.ajuronline.org/) titled, “Robust Nonlinear Control of BLDC Motor in Quadcopter Applications.” A second research paper is currently being submitted.
He will now go to the International Science Fair competition in Phoenix, AZ, in May, which will host students from throughout the world.
About the DRSEF:
SMU faculty members coordinate the fair, recruit judges and help select the grand prize winners. SMU also hosts a March banquet honoring the top fair winners, their parents and science teachers.
The Fair is affiliated with the International Science and Engineering Fair, the world’s largest pre-college science competition. Students in grades 6-12 at public and private schools within the boundaries of TEA Region 10, who placed in their school science fairs, are eligible to participate in the DRSEF.
Board of Directors: Prof. Simon Dalley, SMU Physics Department, Prof. Randall J. Scalise, SMU Physics Department, Prof. Fredrick I. Olness, SMU Physics Department, Prof. Nicolay V. Tsarevsky, SMU Chemistry Department, Lacey Porter, SMU Physics Department
Executive Council: President: Simon Dalley, SMU Physics Department , Vice President: Randall J. Scalise, SMU Physics Department , Vice President: Fredrick I. Olness, SMU Physics Department, Secretary: Lacey Porter, SMU Physics Department, Treasurer: Andrew Milburn, Texas Capital Bank
Rianna Airitam, Lindsey Anderson, Jeremy Arata, Alicia Arnold, Antonia Brito, Laura Buckley, Ida Bustnes, Christy Carlson, Emily Dombrowski, Hannah Duke, Kayley El-Arab, Jennifer Foster, Brooke Fothergill,Alexis Gambino, Wilson Gomez,Simina Grecu, Sami Hawwa, Estelle Hernandez, Haley High, Eugene Kim, Conner Kline, Sophie Kramer, Olivia Leonard, Austin McGinnis, Colleen McKenzie, Briana Monsalve, Alexander Munoz, Tracy Nelson, Iqra Parupia, Samantha Perry, Divya Pranav, Hena Rafiq, Anika Reza, Annika Rieger, Amy Roesler, Daniel Rostro, Tyrell Russell, Ankit Sharma, Dana Sherman, Sarah Siddiqui, Kaycee Smith, Kelsey Smith, Megan Sunderland, Kyle Swartz, Shannon Swisher, Ziyi Tang, Christianne Teague, Averi White
Hope Anderson, Madison Gafford, Anthony Jeffries, Benjamin Joseph, Uma Lad, Niccolo Lazzara, Madeline Madrazo, Kaitlyn Montan, Patricia Nance, Olivia Nguyen, Kelsey O’Leary, Manuel Rangel, Matthew Reitz, Haley Stutts, Courtney Tibbetts
Three SMU seniors participated in the Dallas Festival of Ideas’ Entrepreneurial Forum Saturday, where each pitched their Big iDeas to a crowd of Dallasites in the hopes of winning several entrepreneurial prizes.
The theme of this year’s festival was “The United City,” which aimed to “help shape the city of the future by igniting, uniting and energizing the people of Dallas through the power of ideas.” The pitch contest was in partnership with the Arts Entrepreneurship Program at the Meadows School of the Arts
Each student had three minutes to pitch and three minutes for questions. The winner was chosen using what Susan Kress, the executive director for Engaged Learning at SMU, called “the old-school clap-o-meter.”
Eddie Allegra pitched Biolum, a mobile app that uses Bluetooth technologies to scale user’s exhaled breath and determine the severity of asthma systems; Roberto Hernandez pitched Mexican Bingo, an iOS and Android app that turns the traditional Mexican Bingo game into a digital format; and Jonah Kirby pitched Fiddler, a rooftop wind turbine system that creates battery power on a digital grid. READ MORE