Fifty students were recognized as University Scholars for their academic excellence within their designated departments last Thursday.
The students were honored based off their knowledge and skills within their department, overall academic excellence and previous undergraduate research. After careful selection and consideration, the students were honored at the University Scholars Chapel alongside their professors and department chairman.
Ashley Raybon, a senior speech pathology major from Irving, said she is incredibly grateful to be selected for such a prestigious award during her last year at ACU.
“I was surprised, but incredibly grateful when I found out I was a University Scholar,” said Raybon. “As a first generation college student, this is a huge accomplishment.”
A big part in being nominated as a University Scholar is conducting and presenting graduate research at the undergraduate level.
Raybon conducted her undergraduate research in ‘The Effects Of Fatigue On The Cognitive Linguistic Features Of A Person With A Traumatic Brain Injury’ under the McNair Scholars program, a program engaged in helping first-generation college students achieve a graduate degree. After presenting her research at the undergraduate festival and at other top universities, Rayban will be attending the Texas Tech University in the coming fall of 2016.
Several other students conducted various research topics from communication disorders to historical court cases and the outcomes of those cases today.
Rachel Shudde, a sophomore math and political science major from Tuscola, said she conducted her research based off the Jack Pope Papers under the Pope Fellows program. Shudde said she main focus was over the evolutionary controversy here at ACU when Jack Pope, a former Chief Justice of Texas Supreme Court.
Shudde said the honor was something quite special to her after only being a student for two years.
“I feel extremely honored. It’s such a blessing to have amazing professors to work with and who have recognized the hard work I’ve put into school these last two years” said Shudde. ” Listening to everyone’s accomplishments today, it was humbling to be recognized among so many talented people.”
As graduation comes quickly to the steps of Moody Coliseum, Raybon said the honor comes to show how great her professors were to push her to be her absolute best and become of honorees.
“The faculty on this campus are so good at sharing their wisdom and unique experiences with their students,” Raybon said. “Professors are a student’s best resource. Thank you to my department for teaching me how to implement my faith into my profession.”