Indiana University has selected 20 freshmen and two seniors for the 29th class of Herman B Wells Scholars. Over 600 students have received Wells Scholars Program scholarships since the program’s founding in 1990.
This is the largest incoming freshman class the program has had since 2008 and is composed of equal numbers of in-state and out-of-state students. Incoming Scholars include a local Bloomington undergraduate, and students from as far away as California and Maryland. The prestigious and competitive award, created to honor the late IU Chancellor Herman B Wells, guarantees the full cost of attendance for up to four years of undergraduate study on the Bloomington campus and includes support for up to one year of overseas study.
In his speech welcoming the 20 freshmen and two newly chosen internal Wells Scholars to the Program, Dennis Groth, Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education, said “there was no more fitting tribute to the genius of Herman B Wells” than the class of incoming Scholars. He also welcomed the two newly chosen internal Scholars as the standard-bearers of Wells’ legacy, which he defined as being “intentional” about one’s educational and professional choices: “Pair a passion for science and technology with an appreciation for the arts and humanities. Consider the social implications of the innovations you strive to develop. Strengthen professional skills while you fuel creative expression.” Majors represented in the new class range from astrophysics and ballet to intelligent systems engineering and violin performance, with a new trend toward majors in international studies and law.
The Wells program emphasizes close interaction with faculty and offers special seminars, academic and career advising, and alumni networking opportunities. The program additionally provides support for a summer research, service, or creative project; opportunities for public service; and access to a wide range of extracurricular events and activities, including contact with distinguished campus visitors.
“The class of 2018 represents an excitingly diverse mix of majors, talents, and personalities,” said Wells Program Director and Provost Professor of English, Christoph Irmscher. “Our stellar track record in attracting the best and the brightest students in the nation to Indiana University continues unabated. High school seniors all over the nation know about the unparalleled value and richness of the programs Indiana University has to offer, but it is due to the recruitment efforts of our amazing faculty and current scholars that, year after year, so many students choose Indiana University over other institutions. I am deeply grateful to be given the opportunity to shepherd yet another class of Wells Scholars to graduation.”
IU and Wells Scholar alumna Dr. Emily Webber has been announced as the Wells Scholars Program Professor for spring 2019. Webber is a pediatrician and the Chief Medical Information Officer at Riley Children’s Health in Indianapolis. She will spend several weeks on campus leading a special class on medical informatics with Kay Connelly, the Associate Dean for Research in the School of Informatics, Computing, and Engineering.
During the reception welcoming new Wells Scholars to campus, Irmscher announced that the Wells program’s new freshman class will participate in the annual international experience trip next May. The group will travel to Belize with Provost Professor of Anthropology Anne Pyburn to participate in service and cultural exchange activities at Tumul K’in High School.
Purnima Bose, Chair of the Department of International Studies in the School of Global and International Studies, also announced the beginning of a new 4+1 scholarship program to support Wells Scholars as they earn a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree in international studies or international law in just five years.
The 20 new freshmen Wells Scholars and their hometowns are:
Sydney Adams, Fort Wayne, Ind.
Amna Ahmed, Elizabethtown, Ky
Rachel Aranyi, Buffalo Grove, Ill.
Erina Buchholz, Baton Rouge, La.
Charles “Charley” Connon, Studio City, Calif.
Eli Goldstein, Indianapolis
Emma Hand, Munster, Ind.
Alicia Harmon, Reynoldsburg, Ohio
Morgan Jankowski, Granger, Ind.
Kali Konstantinopoulus, Munster, Ind.
David “Alex” Lleras, Flower Mound, Tex.
Raul Moreno, Indianapolis
Jessica Morris, Brownsburg, Ind.
Caroline Santiago Turner, St. Louis
Hana Shafique, Carmel, Ind.
William “Walker” Smith, Knoxville, Tenn.
Andrew Stewart, Flower Mound, Tex.
Ava Taylor, Baltimore
Joye Tracey, Bloomington, Ind.
Joseph “Clate” Winters, Madison, Ind.
The two new senior internal Wells Scholars are:
Annaka Grismer, Frankfort, Ind.
Jada Haynes, Naperville, Ill.
Freshman Wells Scholars are nominated by their high schools or the IU Office of Admissions and selected for having demonstrated exceptional qualities of character, leadership and distinction both inside and outside the classroom. The class includes several students who are the first from their high schools to receive this prestigious award. Internal Wells Scholars are nominated by IU Bloomington faculty and selected for similar qualities.