Josh Yancey, a 2012 graduate of the Somerset Community College (SCC) Physical Therapist Assistant (PTA) program and current SCC Student Government Association President, has been named the recipient of two national scholarships.
Yancey, a native of Science Hill, earned more than $6,500 in scholarship funds through the two awards, the Coca-Cola Community College Academic Team Gold Scholar program and the Guistwhite Scholarship program, both of which are administered by the Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society.
Twenty Phi Theta Kappa members were selected as 2013 Guistwhite Scholarship recipients and will be recognized and invited to a special reception during Phi Theta Kappa’s Annual Convention in San Jose, California, April 4-6. Each year $100,000 in scholarship funds are awarded, with each Guistwhite Scholar receiving a $5,000 scholarship for baccalaureate studies and a commemorative medallion.
Guistwhite Scholars are chosen based on academic achievement, leadership accomplishment, and engagement in Phi Theta Kappa programs. The 20 recipients for 2013 were selected by a panel of independent judges from more than 1,800 applicants to receive this scholarship, the second highest offered by Phi Theta Kappa.
The Guistwhite Scholar Program is named in honor of the late Dr. Jack Guistwhite and his widow, Margaret Guistwhite. Dr. Guistwhite established the first designated transfer scholarship for Phi Theta Kappa members at Florida Atlantic University in 1975. The Guistwhite Scholarships were established by Phi Theta Kappa in 1992.
“Dr. Jack Guistwhite planted a seed in 1975 that resulted in more than 750 colleges and universities designating transfer scholarships for thousands of Phi Theta Kappa members,” said Phi Theta Kappa’s Executive Director Dr. Rod A. Risley. “It is fitting that we continue to honor our students who excel in scholarship and leadership in Phi Theta Kappa as Guistwhite Scholars in memory of Jack and in honor of his wife Margaret. Through their generosity and those who support scholarships through the Phi Theta Kappa Foundation, these students will receive funds to help them complete their degrees.”
The 2013 Guistwhite Scholars are: Jessica Abfalter, Northwestern Michigan College, Michigan; Yannel Celestrin, Miami Dade College, Florida; Miranda Davis, Dyersburg State Community College, Tennessee; Katherine Dunklee, Howard Community College, Maryland; Erica Gianakon, Hutchinson Community College, Kansas; Mayra Gutierrez, Central Arizona College, Arizona; Olga Homonchuk, Normandale Community College, Minnesota; Phillippe Ly, Orange Coast College, California; Taren Nance, Wor-Wic Community College, Maryland; Angelina Nance, Clark State Community College, Ohio; Devin Oakes, Mesa Community College, Arizona; Deanna Pack, Jefferson State Community College, Alabama; Kristen Regehr, Hutchinson Community College, Kansas; Christine Sim, Delgado Community College, Louisiana; Awais Spall, Mt. San Antonio College, California; Kim Stingo, Palm Beach State College, Florida; Jacqueline Watkins, Kirkwood Community College, Missouri; Tracy Weimer, Lane Community College, Oregon; Joshua Yancey, Somerset Community College, Kentucky; and Ashley Young, Hillsborough Community College, Florida
The Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation sponsors the Coca-Cola Community College Academic Team program by recognizing 50 Gold, 50 Silver and 50 Bronze Scholars, and providing nearly $200,000 in scholarships annually. Each Gold Scholar receives a $1,500 scholarship and a special medallion.
Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society administers the Coca-Cola Community College Academic Team Program and recognizes Coca-Cola Community College scholars during All-State Community College Academic Team Recognition ceremonies held in 38 states. Student scholars also receive recognition locally during ceremonies held on campus and internationally for those who are able to attend Phi Theta Kappa’s Annual Convention.
Community college presidents or their designated nominators may submit no more than two nominations per campus for this award. An independent panel of judges considers outstanding academic rigor, grade point average, academic and leadership awards, and engagement in college and community service in the selection process.
“We thank the Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation for their vote of confidence in community college students by investing in their futures,” said Dr. Rod Risley, Executive Director of Phi Theta Kappa. “Their support is especially welcome during this challenging economic climate, as more and more community college students need additional resources to help them complete their degrees.”
“The Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation has a long history of providing financial assistance to outstanding students at community colleges,” said J. Mark Davis, President of the Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation. “We are proud to partner with Phi Theta Kappa and make it possible for deserving students to achieve their educational goals.”
Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society, headquartered in Jackson, is the largest honor society in American higher education with more than 1,280 chapters on two-year and community college campuses in all 50 of the United States, Canada, Germany, Peru, the Republic of Palau, the Republic of the Marshall Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia, the British Virgin Islands, the United Arab Emirates and U.S. territorial possessions. More than 2.5 million students have been inducted since its founding in 1918, with approximately 135,000 students inducted annually.