The Johnson Scholarship Program
New Voices Introducing the Class of 2015
WASHINGTON AND LEE UNIVERSITY
Lexington, Virginia 24450-2116
— the johnson scholarship program 2011 — Now in its fourth year, the Johnson Scholarship Program fully funds the education of 161 students and has broadened the applicant pool—and student body—of Washington and Lee University to include a wider variety of students than ever before. Recent incoming classes have been the most diverse and academically talented in W&L’s history. The Johnson Scholars themselves account for this in part. In addition, the program’s national visibility has put W&L on the college lists of the nation’s top students, many of whom enroll after falling in love with W&L: an astonishing 68 percent of the Class of 2015 applied for a Johnson Scholarship. Today’s students find in W&L the same fundamental virtues that have drawn students here for 262 years, summed up in the University’s motto, “non incau-
tus futuri,â€? not unmindful of the future. W&L is responsive to an ever-changing world in its programs and curriculum, all the while staying true to and infusing the student experience with its bedrock principles of integrity, leadership and civility. This year, W&L welcomes 53 Johnson Scholars and all the passions and perspectives they bring to the campus. Their voices will elevate classroom discussion, enrich community life and heighten the Universityâ€™s sense of what is possible. W&L welcomes them into the ongoing campus conversation about leadership and the well-established W&L tradition of serving others as engaged citizens in a global and diverse society. They have a lot on their minds, as you will see on the following pages.
W&L has a long history
of encouraging and recogniz-
ing leadership among its students. The oldest such program, Omicron Delta Kappa (ODK), was founded by W&L students and faculty in 1914. It was the first national college honor society to recognize extracurricular service and today has chapters on over 300 college campuses. Both the Nabors Service League, organized by students in 1999, and the Community-Academic Research Effort connect W&L volunteers with greater Lexington’s needs. The Campus Kitchen Project focuses on hunger relief in Rockbridge County using surplus
I have lived in three continents, four countries and more than nine cities in my parents’ pursuit of the American dream. I have played cricket in India, attended grammar school in Great Britain and lived in three American states. I differed from my peers in religion and ethnicity. Although being an outsider had its problems, those experiences are essential to who I am today.
Shrewsbury, Mass. Shrewsbury High School My week at Pine Ridge Indian Reservation inspired me to start the change I want to see in the world, even if it is only in a small way. My youth group and I kicked off the Soles for Souls shoe drive for the children, with the goal of collecting 300 pairs of shoes.
Sandy, Utah Juan Diego Catholic High School I try to put my focus on the future and on others, rather than on my immediate self and how my actions will affect me. I understand that a small kindness now can mean the world to someone later, and I enjoy knowing I can give that kindness. I simply hope that my existence can be of benefit to someone somewhere.
food from campus dining services and area donations. To date, this effort has distributed over 75,000 meals to the disadvantaged in Lexington. Even in the week before orientation, incoming students confront poverty’s roots in the Mid-Atlantic region through Volunteer Venture, a student-organized service-learning program. Johnson scholars
follow in the footsteps of the many
W&L graduates among the top ranks of business, jour-
Chauncey Baker Dallas, Ore. Dallas High School
nalism, medicine, public service and almost every other
Many individuals make broad claims about their moral, ethical, political and economic beliefs and yet do not act on them and are not willing to defend them. It is the individuals of the world who have conviction who provide progress on the problems that plague our societies.
field. Twenty-seven W&L alumni have served in the U.S. Senate, 67 have served in the U.S. House and 31 have served as governors. Four have served as Supreme Court justices and seven have been American Bar Association presidents. Forty-six have gone on to become college or university presidents.
Chapmansboro, Tenn. Pope John Paul II High School
My involvement with Behind the Doors has taught me how valuable and difficult it is to inform the public of an issue (human trafficking) that may not directly impact them. It has sparked my interest in human rights issues and inspired me to make a difference in the world.
Lancaster, Pa. Manheim Township High School
Charleston, S.C. Ashley Hall There is a distinction between personal honor and perceived honor. Perceived honor refers to the record of right actions taken by a person that are known by others. Personal honor refers to an omniscient account of all right actions taken by a person, where a person has done right or wrong.
Floyds Knob, Ind. Highlands Latin School
I feel that dance needs to be a part of everyone’s life experience. Movement provides another form of expression, through which the human condition is revealed.
Canton, Mass. Canton High School
New Orleans, La. Isidore Newman School
I started a uniform drive for a school in a poor neighborhood in Montgomery. It started out small until others caught wind of the idea and donated clothing and books. But the school’s principal wasn’t concerned about uniforms. Her students needed socks, the cheapest of clothing.
After high school, I spent a year in Morocco. My immersion into a new culture made me more aware of my own culture and of the messages, both good and bad, it sends to the North African and Muslim world. As a result, I learned to culturally compromise and to remain open to learning and sharing.
Louisville, Ky. Episcopal High School
A sense of trust doesn’t just magically happen. It is cultivated. The tradition of honor is one of the things that most appeals to me about W&L. The University expects its students to set and meet their own high personal standards. I believe that when a community expects its members to act with dignity and responsibility, its members will rise to the occasion.
Austin, Texas Saint Andrews Episcopal School In order to exhibit the ideal of courage, one must commit a single act. In contrast, in order to exhibit the ideal of active citizenship, one must commit to a lifetime of acts.
I attended the Clinton Global Initiative as teen correspondent for the United Nations Foundation’s Girl Up campaign, dedicated to using the resources and energy of American girls to raise awareness and funds for girls in developing countries. I acquired a deeper appreciation of being born in the U.S.—I don’t face child marriage, I don’t have to sacrifice my education to support my family, I have the ability to speak for myself.
Anne Bailey Dickens Montgomery, Ala. Lamp Magnet High School
Jeffrey Shay Johnson Professor of Entrepreneurship and Leadership
Without courage, we cannot step out into the world and be who we are. We cannot express our unique desires, beliefs and principles. We cannot explore the world and experiment with life in a way that will shape us as individuals. Without courage there can be no progress, for there will be no risk, no change and no bravery.
The gift that established the Johnson Program for Leadership and Integrity also established two endowed professorships at Washington and Lee: one in the Williams School of Commerce, Economics, and Politics focusing on entrepreneurship and leadership, and another in the College of Arts and Sciences exploring how individuals and ideas shape the course of history.
Amanda Dixon Raleigh, N.C. Saint David’s School
Professor Shay led a Spring Term class to the British Virgin
I’m part of the small world of arrangers of music rolls, the kind used to operate carousel organs. I arrange music both new and old for these instruments and am immensely proud to work using the same techniques, and even the same machines, that the master arrangers of the last century used.
Islands and the Leeward Islands that focused on developing both leadership and cross-cultural management skills. And his Business Plan Competition showcased students’ approaches to solving real-world business issues. “Although my courses focus mainly on entrepreneurship,” he says, “I emphasize the role leadership, integrity, ethics and honor play in successfully launching a new business venture.”
Timothy J. Fisher
Potomac, Md. Saint Johns College High School I created a local drive called Students for Students that provides low-income families with school supplies. I see the struggles of the world, and one day I want to end them. But for now, I’ve made it my goal to change the communities I can.
When I climbed Mount Fuji, I learned that I am capable of things I had not thought possible. I learned that I should take risks because each obstacle brings another opportunity to find something new within myself. I learned that treacherous hikes in mountains are not my thing—and that is OK.
Stone Mountain, Ga. Chamblee High School
Mequon, Wis. Homestead High School People say they think of me every time they recycle. As the founder of the Environmental Club at my high school, I am not always sure of the right way to encourage recycling, but I have no doubt that it needs to be done.
Cort Hammond Ravensdale, Wash. Tahoma High School
I volunteered at Unity Shoppe, assisting people—many of them homeless—with food and clothing. Many of those people are willing to work to get their lives back on track. They just needed a helping hand in order to achieve it.
Ellen Gleason Santa Barbara, Calif. San Marcos High School
Nicolaas A. Rupke When I volunteered at a free medical clinic, I was shocked to see the large number of people who desperately needed our services. I know it is idealistic to think that by volunteering and becoming a doctor, I can change the state of health care in the U.S. But I am looking forward to the time when I can provide free services to people in need.
Johnson Professor of Leadership and the History of Ideas Rupke has employed a biographical approach to historical figures in science, blending historiography and the history of ideas to show the ways in which scientific leadership is a product not only of individual genius, but also of collective ideas and institutional forces. His books include works on Wil-
Glade Spring, Va. Patrick Henry High School
liam Buckland, the 19th-century British geologist, and Richard Owen, British contemporary Since sixth grade, I have volunteered at the Special Olympics. Joining hands with other people who share the same vision of helping and accepting others creates an undeniable impact on the world, much greater than what I could accomplish by myself.
and critic of Charles Darwin and founder of the British Museum of Natural History. Rupke has also written a major book on Alexander von Humboldt, the German naturalist and explorer whose work in botanical geography laid the groundwork for the field of biogeography.
Christopher Hu Ridgewood, N.J. Ridgewood High School
I find the theory of universal grammar—that all languages follow a basic set of grammatical principles—fascinating. I’m interested in learning French, German, Arabic or any other language to see if I can get an inkling of the universal protolanguage.
My experience with The Aeneid confirms what my education is telling me: that knowledge is worth pursuing. What is the nature of love? Of honor? Of peace? I don’t know, but I’m going to find out.
Reno, Nev. Davidson Academy of Nevada
Dallas, Texas Cambridge School of Dallas My high school has an honor code, and I have realized that it is not always what you do, but the lessons you learn from practicing it or thinking about it. There is not always dishonor in a wrong decision, as long as a lesson is learned. The greatest dishonor is to do the wrong thing and never learn from your mistake.
When writing my essays I have a goal to shake the very soul of my reader, even if it’s just one sentence or even one moment that does it. I love to learn, and it thrills me to think of the opportunities that lie before me of challenging my logical mind to its limit.
Han Gil Jang
Oro Valley, Ariz. Canyon Del Oro High School
Patricia Kirkland Charleston, S.C. Ashley Hall
As I became accustomed to working with people with mental disabilities, my doubts about their abilities disappeared. Why had I thought they would be slower than me when working on an assembly line? It was a misconception on my part, and I learned that it wasn’t true.
The U.S. is full of diversity, but intolerance toward different peoples and attitudes still exist. I believe America is able to become a more tolerant nation. Someday we might achieve status as a society that embraces diversity.
Downey, Calif. Downey High School
Copley, Ohio Copley High School Most teenagers aren’t writing articles about STD myths or handing out condoms, as I have as a member of Sex, Etc. Never in my wildest dreams did I imagine that I would become a passionate sex-education advocate, reaching out to teenagers all over the world.
Cynthia (Ho Yee) Lam
I’m an absolute sucker for a splashy musical. But while I appreciate the entertainment of the 1950s, I also use it as a watchtower, a lookout point from which to observe what got us here and where we’re headed.
Westfield, N.J. Westfield High School
Santa Rosa, Calif. Maria Carrillo High School After meeting children at the Hopi reservation in Arizona and seeing the condition in which they live, I can never be satisfied while there is still poverty, chronic hunger and preventable illnesses. I understand that utopia cannot exist, but I value the lives of people enough to be willing to change what little I can.
Boca Raton, Fla. Atlantic Community High School
I became the youngest member of the Holden Beach Turtle patrol, helping educate the public about the preservation of endangered sea turtles. I also sat at the nest site watching for signs of hatchlings and then helped guide them down to the ocean.
Shannon Marwitz Midlothian, Va. Governors School
Overall, the class of 2015
includes 22 class or student body
presidents or vice presidents, 48 publication editors, 182 varsity team captains, 35 Eagle Scouts or Gold Award Recipients, 52 students with significant community service experience, and 46 who are the first in their families to attend college. The class also includes world travelers, researchers, pilots, black belts, entrepreneurs, musicians, congressional pages and debate champions.
Students are taught about their leaders, but all the scholarship in the world is worthless if they hide behind history books and do not emulate what they have learned. Leaders move and speak boldly.
In embracing my differences, instead of covering them up, I have gained the confidence to promote a positive body image among my peers so they will accept their individual differences. I orchestrated Love Your Body Week. We covered all the mirrors at school and gave each student a hand-written compliment.
Charleston, W.Va. George Washington High School
Atlanta, Ga. Pace Academy As a volunteer I learned that leadership meant sacrificing dignity to understand others for who they really are. True leaders embrace challenges and exemplify patience to help the team to accomplish goals together.
I am so much more than Shannimus Prime, the name my peers have affectionately given to the person they believe me to be. I am a math geek, a loud actress, a quiet bookworm, an athlete. I am all of these things wrapped into one, and each needs to be seen.
Ann Arbor, Mich. Pioneer High School
Epping, N.H. Epping High School I volunteered on the District School Board Subcommittee for Curriculum and Assessment. It was my chance to have a voice and truly make a difference in my community as a representative of the student body.
If courage is in short supply, it’s only because we decide it is. It is a choice to be brave and a choice to do what is right. One person’s decision to act with courage paves the way for many more people to follow their example.
Brentwood, N.H. Exeter High School
Ketchikan, Alaska Ketchikan High School I volunteered with a medical group in Uganda and witnessed the devastating impact of civil war. I promised myself that I would return one day with the goal of making medical care much more accessible to the people of Uganda and the rest of the third world.
Yashna Naidu Edmond, Okla. Heritage Hall
I’m a member of a pro-life organization of politically minded teens, and we spent three days on a lobbying trip to the United Nations. I came back from the trip very much changed. My worldview and convictions were strengthened, and my opinion of people with whom I disagreed became much more grounded in reality.
Ballwin, Mo. Oak Bridge Academy Homeschool
10 I spent three weeks at the Governor’s Summer Residential Arabic Foreign Language Academy. On the final evening, we circled up, garbed in traditional Middle Eastern wear, and performed the traditional Lebanese debkah for family and friends. It was so liberating to be surrounded by students who enjoyed learning.
Johnson LECTURE SERIES Every year, the Johnson Lecture Series
brings to W&L national
and international leaders in business, politics, science, art and the humanities to discuss issues of importance. For the 2011-12 academic year, the focus will be on energy and the environment. The series has hosted prize-winning writers, experts on the economy, prominent public servants, successful entrepreneurs, actors and luminaries from other fields, including: • Clarence Thomas, associate justice, U.S. Supreme
Austin Pierce Yorktown, Va. Tabb High School
Court Our society faces not only racism, which is on the slow road to recovery, but also discrimination against the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transsexual community. The gay community is a part of my world, and I will not accept injustice toward it.
• Roger Goodell, commissioner, National Football League • Lord Robin Butler, private secretary to five British prime ministers • Richard Brookhiser, expert on George Washington, History Channel personality • Liza Mundy, award-winning journalist of the Washington Post, Michelle Obama biographer
Rachel Samuels Johns Creek, Ga. Chattahoochee High School
Courage is the most crucial ideal and the single principle that the world needs the most, for the other values are useless without the audacity to live up to them. The courage, the strength to stand by one’s beliefs and speak out against injustice, is indispensable.
Cottage Grove, Minn. Park High School At the Lorenzo De Zavala Youth Legislative Session, we discussed proposals to support and develop the Latino community of leaders. We learned how our actions as strong Latino youths with high achievement potentials would affect the future of our communities.
Houston, Texas Michael E. Debakey High School
My decision to pitch for the junior varsity softball team was one of the strangest I have ever made. I knew I would be terrified, would feel foolish, would hear jeers and boos and would be unlikely to win a single game. But I did not feel defeated. I felt fearless.
Lynchburg, Va. E.C. Glass High School
11 11 Of the 2,161 applicants for the Johnson scholarship,
selected as finalists on the basis of their potential to contribute to the intellectual and civic life of the Washington and Lee community and to the world at large. Factors weighed included academic record, writing samples, teacher references, and records of leadership, citizenship and involvement in non-academic activities. The finalists were invited to campus for interviews with faculty, student leaders and administrators; their selection was truly a group effort. Our entire community welcomes them to W&L.
Our Diversity Club created its own “It Gets Better” videos to post to the school YouTube channel, and we had a Glee Night to show specific episodes of “Glee” that related to topics on diversity. This issue is so important and we still have so far so go, but I know that I have helped move us in the right direction.
Our Founding Fathers strove to create a political system in which the minority would never go unrecognized, yet today that value lies forgotten, a casualty of ideological warfare. And so, “if we err,” as Supreme Court Justice Felix Frankfurter said, “let us err on the side of tolerance.”
Circle Pines, Minn. Centennial High School
Greensboro, N.C. Greensboro Day School Dance is a significant part of my life. It has given me discipline and grace and has become a way for me to express myself in ways that words and pictures cannot. It is a source of unbelievable joy and confidence.
As Lance Armstrong said, “Pain is temporary, quitting is forever.” If on my run my legs start to hurt, I don’t start walking. I push through the pain, telling myself that it will only make me stronger.
Brightwaters, N.Y. Bay Shore High School
Simpsonville, S.C. Greenville Senior High School I volunteered for Project Chacocente in Nicaragua, helping families living near a dump move to a fertile valley, where they are taught life skills to improve their living conditions. I returned to Atlanta with a sobering world perspective. I now wanted to do something to uplift my people.
Katherine Strickland Atlanta, Ga. The Westminster Schools
I participated in a mission trip to the Dominican Republic and ended up being the unofficial Spanish translator. I found it so rewarding that when I returned, I translated (French) for a Haitian refugee who is having surgery and therapy in Asheville.
Taylor Theodossiou Asheville, N.C. Asheville High School
I attended a Women2Women conference and met speakers and professors who led discussions on women’s rights. We learned to respect each other, overcoming cultural and religious barriers. Together, with other delegates, we started a blog to boost young American girls’ self esteem.
I wanted to buy a sympathy card for my friend, but I could not find a single card that adequately conveyed my condolences. So I made my own card. The overwhelming positive feedback inspired me to create Granger Graphics L.L.C.
Erie, Pa. McDowell High School
Medina, Ohio Highland High School In light of today’s trend toward e-books and Internet access, I believe we must ensure that the great lending-library system continues in the U.S. I volunteer at my public library so it can expand access to all people. By giving my time, the library can maintain longer hours.
Great Falls, Va. Thomas Jefferson High School
I love the theater, and it is an activity I wish everyone could partake in. By playing characters that have qualities unlike my own, I have discovered more about my own personality.
Jacqueline Yarbro Suwanee, Ga. South Forsyth High School
— johnson opportunity grants—
In 2011, 17 rising juniors and seniors received Johnson Opportunity Grants to support internships and independent research projects all across the country and around the world. Here is the list, and you can see all the project profiles at go.wlu.edu/dayinthelife. Lauren Bardin
spent the summer staying with
a Russian family and teaching them English through Geo Vision’s Conversation Corps Russia program. Chloe Bellomy
further developed ABCs For
Change, a company she created to provide elementary schools with a means to raise funds, which go directly into the school’s curriculum.
▲ Steele Burrow
undertook a resource de-
velopment/artistic marketing internship this summer with the nongovernmental organization Touchwood Ecological and Social Foundation, based in Kotagiri, India. Sam Campbell
interned with the Office of
Legislative Affairs through the White House Summer Internship Program. Grace Cushman
interned with Psychological
Health Associates in Winchester, Va. The prac▲ Megan Bock
volunteered through Experien-
tial Learning Abroad to work as an intern at the public medical clinic in Valparaiso, Chile.
tice focuses on treating clients who are trying to recover from a traumatic event or need a psychological evaluation for a lawsuit.
She also accompanied clinic staff when they made house calls in the community. Blaise Buma
traveled to Zurich, Switzerland
to attend the One Young World Summit in September. The new movement is modeled on the World Economic Forum and provides a platform for 1,500 young people from around the world to express their opinions on major issues.
▲ Alex Fernandez
spent her summer in Ecuador,
studying law and the environment.
analyzed the effects of the soy
industry on the quality of water resources in the province of Cordoba, Argentina, and performed a cost-benefit analysis of the social and environmental costs associated with the planting of soy.
▲ Rachael Petry
headed to Thailand to practice
medicine in the obstetrics department of Nakorn Ping Hospital and work in the pediatric department. David Severson ▲ Tyler Grant
volunteered with Harvard World
Teach program, a TEFL non-profit organization out of Cambridge, Mass. Hang Nguyen
spent the summer in Shanghai,
China, through CET Academic Programs, taking courses in Chinese language and economics as well as doing an internship with a Chinese company.
▲ Benjamin Oddo
spent the summer in a variety
hiked the Appalachian Trail dur-
ing the spring term and summer, while reading a variety of literature and recording his experiences in a journal. Alexandra Todd
worked with W&L Professor Ken
Van Ness, studying how engineers can take old car bumpers and other plastics from landfills and create durable lumber for construction projects.
▲ Uri Whang
worked with Benefitting All
of internships in Los Angeles, Calif., to pursue
Children in Korea (BACK), which focuses on
his intended career of writing for film and
educating North Korean children and adults by
providing skills, resources and guidance for higher education. Stephen Wilson
interned with Delta Airline’s
social media lab to develop its brands.
— the class of 2015 —
The Johnson Scholarship Program has drawn widespread attention to Washington and Lee from the world’s top student leaders. The 6,487 students who applied for admission represented 50 states, the District of Columbia, American Samoa, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands and 78 countries. In its academic record, citizenship and leadership experience, the 497-member class of 2015 is among W&L’s most accomplished—thus far. History
The ninth-oldest school in the country, Washington and Lee University recognizes and embodies the direct contributions of two of the most influential figures in American history. George Washington’s 1796 gift of James River Canal stock ensured the fledgling school’s survival; Robert E. Lee’s presidency, 1865–70, brought innovation and national recognition to the school.
Honor System—Entirely studentrun; based on the fundamental principle that students attending Washington and Lee will not lie, cheat, steal or otherwise violate community trust.
To ensure that a W&L education is available for all deserving students regardless of their financial background, all admitted students applying for financial aid by the relevant deadline (see go.wlu.edu/ datesanddownloads) will have their institutionally determined financial need fully met with grants, not loans.
Undergraduate—1,759 students from 48 states (85 percent from outside Virginia), representing citizenship in 50 countries Ratio of men to women is 50:50 Ethnic minorities: 14 percent The School of Law—400 students Faculty
Of the 187 undergraduate faculty members, 95 percent hold doctorates or terminal degrees. The student-faculty ratio is 9:1. The average class size is 16. Twentytwo percent of classes have fewer than 10 students, 90 percent have fewer than 25 students, and 97 percent have fewer than 30 students.
Office of Admissions
Curriculum—W&L is the only leading liberal arts college to have a nationally accredited journalism program or a nationally accredited business school, and it is one of the few offering an engineering program. Speaking tradition—As a matter of civility and mutual consideration, members of the W&L community say “hello” to one another— whether passing on the historic Colonnade on the way to class or meeting in the dining hall of Elrod Commons. Academic calendar—12-12-4: two 12-week terms; one four-week Spring Term to allow for focused study, research, travel or internships. Financial Aid, Scholarships
W&L will spend more than $32 million on aid in 2011-12; 53 percent of first-year students receive grant assistance from W&L.
Lexington, Virginia 24450-2116
The prestigious Johnson Scholarship Program provides awards of at least tuition, room and board for up to 44 students in each class on the basis of academic achievement and leadership potential. More information about the Johnson Scholarship Program and the other components of the Johnson Program in Leadership and Integrity is available at go.wlu.edu/johnson_scholars. Contact Us
Washington and Lee University Office of Admissions Lexington, VA 24450-2116 firstname.lastname@example.org www.wlu.edu (540) 458-8710 (540) 458-8062 fax
In compliance with Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and all other applicable non-discrimination laws, Washington and Lee University does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national or ethnic origin, sex, sexual orientation, age, disability, veteran’s status, or genetic information in its educational programs and activities, admissions, and with regard to employment. Inquiries may be directed to the Interim Provost, Robert A. Strong, Washington Hall, (540) 458-8418, who is designated by the University to coordinate compliance efforts and carry out its responsibilities under Title IX, as well as those under Section 504 and other applicable non-discrimination laws. Inquiries may also be directed to the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, U.S. Department of Education.
WASHINGTON AND LEE UNIVERSITY Lexington, Virginia