JCJC New Century Scholars/All-State American Team Representatives Selected

Written By: Teresa.Martin
Email Address: teresa.martin@jcjc.edu
Date Submitted: 2011-10-31 13:47:43

ELLISVILLE – Six Jones County Junior College sophomores were recently nominated for Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society’s New Century Scholars/All-State American Team honors. These students were selected because they maintained a 3.5 to 4.0 GPA, have taken challenging academic courses, have completed a minimum of 36 hours, are busy serving the community and college in various ways and did well in an interview with the scholarship committee. 
Nominees were Katie Pittman, a nursing major from Bay Springs; Kristen Anderson, a music major from Purvis; Gwen Matuszewski, a public relations/journalism major from Pulaski; Jordy White, a pre-med major from Benton; Katie Byrd, a speech pathology major from Petal; and Daniel Anderson, a pre-engineering major from Beaumont. Katie Pittman and Jordy White were chosen from the six to go on to compete for state titles.
“These are six of our best and brightest students who have high GPAs, multiple academic awards and honors, and are very actively involved in their communities; it was a challenge to narrow the group down to our two nominees. They are all winners and we are extremely proud of their accomplishments. Look for these students to achieve many things in their upcoming careers,” said Dr. Laverne Ulmer, JCJC VP of Institutional Affairs and Assessment.
Pittman is the secretary of Phi Theta Kappa and the Student Government Association, coordinator for Spirit Committee, and a member of the JCJC Bobcat Brigade and Mu Alpha Theta math honor society. She was also a member of the 2010 Homecoming Court as a Freshman Maid and 2011 Student Body Maid. White’s activities and honors include being a Jones Ambassador, a PTK officer, a member of the Student Government Association, Science Club, and a Charles Pickering Honors College student. Both students have made the President’s List honor roll and have earned the Letter “J” Award, while keeping a perfect 4.0 GPA.
Both Pittman and White say they are honored by the committee’s selection. “The other nominees had some outstanding accomplishments and endeavors in the community,” said Pittman. “We both felt honored.”
Now the students will furiously work on writing about their volunteer efforts for the PTK selection committee. JCJC 2011 graduate, Karen Lott earned 1st team honors last year and Kraig Simpson was chosen as a New Century Scholar in 2010. Pittman and White shared they are a little nervous about winning honors on the state level.
“There is some pressure because we want to show that we are able to meet our administrators’ expectations,” said White. “This is also the centennial year for Jones so it feels like this should be the year we win everything and we hope we do!”
White spent two weeks last summer in Ghana, Africa with students from Delta State University teaching orphaned children science, math and English, and holding Bible school at night. “The fact we could share a father’s/mothers love was important to them; the kids need affection,” said White.
Pittman assisted in the coordination of, “The Backyard Bible Club” with Indian Springs Church in Laurel. She helped to set up tents in the downtown Laurel area, offering arts and crafts, games, Bible study, music and food for kids of all ages. “It was a big deal to me because we impacted kids that aren’t normally exposed to the Gospel,” said Pittman. “They had a great time and were receptive and very appreciative of our efforts. It was great for me to be able to mentor the kids.”
Pittman and White will be honored next spring in Jackson upon the conclusion of the competition. JCJC president, Dr. Jesse Smith expressed to the nominees, “I am proud of you. I know all of you will be a success and PTK will open many doors for you.”
The USA Today Academic Team program annually recognizes 60 outstanding two-year college students. First, Second, and Third Teams, each consisting of 20 members, are selected from the nominees. The 20 First Team members receive stipends of $2,500 each. All 60 members of the All- USA Academic Team and their colleges receive extensive national recognition through coverage in USA TODAY.

 

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