ORAU has awarded five William G. Pollard Scholarships of $2,500 each toward undergraduate studies for the 2017-2018 academic year. The recipients of this year’s scholarships are Natalie Campbell, Rachel Edmonds, Connor Holmberg, James Timothy Maze, and Caroline Thomas.
Each year, ORAU awards these scholarships to employees’ children who display exceptional achievements in their high school or undergraduate studies, a press release said. Applicants must submit official transcripts from all high schools and colleges attended, three references (at least two of which must be from teachers), and a 500-word essay describing the student’s professional and personal interests.
Below are additional details on each of this year’s winners:
Natalie Campbell (see photo above), daughter of Bryan and Kimberley Campbell of Knoxville, Tennessee, graduated from Bearden High School in 2017 with a 3.74 GPA. She will attend the University of Tennessee in the fall. She lettered in track and cross country for four years, and she was a member of student government and Key Club. Campbell served as a peer tutor for special needs students. Her honors include memberships in the National Honor Society and National Art Honor Society, the Bulldawg Spirit Award for cross country, homecoming queen, and Top Dawg, a faculty-voted award for the student who best exemplifies excellence in academics, character, and school spirit. As a member of Cedar Springs Presbyterian Church, Campbell has taken mission trips to Washington, D.C., and Bomet, Kenya. Campbell served in the VolunTeen Program at East Tennessee Children’s Hospital and as a counselor at Children’s Rehab Camp for special needs children. Her love for special needs children has led her to pursue a major in special education at UT.
Rachel Edmonds, daughter of Don and Tracy Hanson and Larry and Charity Edmonds, of Kingston, Tennessee, graduated from Roane County High School with a 3.7 GPA and 15 credit hours of college classes. She also graduated with high honors, state honors, and state distinction. She will attend Roane State Community College in the fall for a pre-health science transfer degree. Edmonds was involved in many clubs and was in the Roane County High School Marching Band, concert band, and wind ensemble, playing flute and piccolo. She was also the flute section leader. She completed more than 160 community service hours while she was in high school. She loves to travel and learn about new languages and cultures.
Connor Holmberg, son of Thomas and Angela Holmberg of Knoxville, Tennessee, is a recent graduate of Powell High School. He was a member of the Powell Panther Marching Band and the band leadership team while also working part time. In the fall, Holmberg will enroll in the University of Tennessee, where he plans to pursue dual master’s degrees in business and computer science. This summer, he is working as an intern for the City of Knoxville in the finance and treasury department. Connor enjoys wake surfing, hiking, and snowboarding.
James Timothy Maze, son of Chester and Lori Maze of Knoxville, Tennessee, is a rising sophomore with a 3.98 GPA at Virginia Tech. He is studying water resources policy and management, and he aspires to develop public policy that ensures the availability and quality of clean water. In April, Maze and his team finished as finalists in the New York University Policy Case Competition. During his first year at Virginia Tech, Maze became a member of Phi Gamma Delta fraternity, where he worked to raise money for the V Foundation for Cancer Research. Maze played lacrosse throughout his high school career, serving as team captain for two years. He funneled his passion for lacrosse into service when he started a lacrosse program at the Middlebrook Boys and Girls Club in Knoxville.
Caroline Thomas, daughter of Elyse Thomas of Cincinnati, Ohio, is a rising junior in biomedical engineering at The Ohio State University. She holds a 3.62 GPA and has been on the Dean’s List each semester. Thomas received the Pollard Scholarship during her freshman year. She is actively involved in the Society of Women Engineers, the Biological Sciences Scholars, and the Club Triathlon Team. This summer, Thomas is conducting research at Oak Ridge National Laboratory as an intern, working on a project to create a computer simulation for modeling cancer growth. Caroline hopes to work in the medical device design industry.
The William G. Pollard Scholarship Awards are presented in honor of ORAU’s founder in recognition of his dedication to science and education. A University of Tennessee physics professor, Pollard founded the Oak Ridge Institute of Nuclear Studies—which later became ORAU—to link the valuable scientific resources developed in Oak Ridge as part of the Manhattan Project with regional universities, the press release said.
This press release was submitted by Pam Bonee.