education notes

Education notes: Apr. 29

April 28, 2014 


Grace Trimble of Winchester, a junior at the University of Kentucky majoring in political science and a member of the women's tennis team, has been named a 2014 Truman Scholar and will receive $30,000 to conduct graduate work in areas of public service.

Trimble, the only Truman recipient this year from Kentucky or a Kentucky college or university, is the 13th UK student to receive the honor from the Harry S. Truman Scholarship Foundation.

The Truman Scholarships are national awards given to college juniors who demonstrate outstanding leadership and are devoted to careers in public service. Recipients are required to work in public service at least three of the seven years following completion of their graduate program. Trimble was among the 59 scholars nationwide selected by the Truman Foundation from 655 candidates nominated for the annual scholarship for graduate study.

Eastern Kentucky University's @NewsEKU Twitter account cracked the Social Currency Elite Eight with a sixth-place finish, according to Insightpool, a leader in social engagement optimization. The @NewsEKU account, managed in EKU's public relations office, performed even better in the category of Twitter Public Lists, ranking second behind Virginia Commonwealth University.

Insightpool reviewed the usage of social currency of all the universities selected to participate in the 2014 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament and developed its own Sweet Sixteen. Its survey, titled "The Final Four Social Currency Index," ranked the schools based on the activity and effectiveness of their Twitter accounts during the first quarter of 2014, not on tweets, retweets and favorites related to the NCAA tournament itself.

No other Kentucky school among the 68 schools participating in the tournament cracked the Social Currency Elite Eight or top 10 of Twitter Public Lists.

■ The FIRST Robotics Competition group from Fayette County received the Team Spirit Award at the Smoky Mountain Regional, just as it did last spring, and James Birchfield of Paul Laurence Dunbar High School was tapped as a Dean's List Award finalist for 2014.

FIRST stands for "For the Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology." The Fayette County robotics team is open to all the high schools in Lexington. The team is mentored by Lexmark engineers.

In addition to Birchfield, this year's team includes fellow Dunbar students Jan Balk, Beth Anne Brumfield, Yang Chen, Nick Cooney, Sabby Dhar, Zach Estus, Yutong Gu, Bhavani Gudlavalleti, Dean Hadi, Seony Han, Madison Hopkins, Morgan Hopkins, Sarah Jeoung, Ronit Kar, Connor Krolak, Andrew Lee, Steven Liu, Theo Livas, Shankar Murthy, Nisarg Patil, Reagan Prater, Monon Rahman, Joseph Schneider, Ben Xie, Jared Young, Adil Yusif, Eric Zhang and Eric Zhou.

■ University of Kentucky junior Nick Aerni of Cincinnati has been selected to receive a scholarship and internship from Intertek, a provider of quality and safety solutions for a wide range of industries around the world. This new program launched in January and was tailored to undergraduate students pursuing studies in science, technology, engineering and math in the United States and Canada. The scholarship winners received an award of up to $10,000 paired with an internship at an Intertek office. Aerni is majoring in electrical and computer engineering with a focus on power and energy. He intends to pursue a master's degree in electrical engineering following graduation in 2016 before beginning a career in renewable energy. Aerni will be interning this fall at Intertek's Lake Forest, Calif., office.

Hyungsoo Kim, associate professor in the University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, Food and Environment, has received the Mid-Career Award from the American Council on Consumer Interests.

The award is given to an active member in the organization who has worked in the field of family finance for less than 15 years and excels at research and teaching. In the UK Department of Family Sciences, Kim focuses on research related to family financial security over a lifetime. He specifically studies how chronic health conditions later in life affect financial security and personal motivation tools geared toward middle-age individuals to increase their retirement savings to mitigate and better plan for chronic health problems later in life. Kim also teaches undergraduate and graduate students in the areas of personal and family finance.

■ Eastern Kentucky University Upward Bound student Justice Ezell, a senior at Lincoln County High School, was the only student in Kentucky to be named a 2014 Dell Scholar by the Michael & Susan Dell Foundation.

The foundation's 11th class of Dell Scholars will provide 300 students with the chance to obtain college degrees. The program offers resources and mentoring, in addition to financial assistance, to ensure underserved students have the comprehensive support needed to successfully earn a bachelor's degree. To be eligible for the program, students must be part of a college access program, such as Upward Bound.

Ezell has been an active member of EKU Upward Bound for three years and has served on its executive board and Scholar's Bowl team. She plans to attend EKU and has been accepted to the EKU Honors Program.

More information about the Dell Scholars program may be found at


■ The American Association of University Women's Bluegrass Central branch is offering Tech Savvy, a hands-on STEM workshop for middle school girls and adults who support the education of middle school girls, on May 17 at Kentucky State University in Frankfort. To register, go to; the deadline is Saturday. The program, which costs $5, will start at 8:15 a.m.; breakfast and lunch are provided. Parking is free on campus.

■ The sixth annual FCPS Summer Robotics Camp for elementary students will be June 12 and 13 at Beaumont, Leestown and Winburn middle schools. Because of limited space, children must apply for a spot, and only current fourth-graders are eligible. The camp is free. Applications are due by May 15. For an application, call James Hardin or Carla Smith at (859) 381-4241.

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