2011 Forty Acres Scholarship Recipients
Congratulations to the Plan II Honors Forty Acres Scholars: José "Joey" Domínguez, Emily Gruener, Connor Healy and Linda Shi. Plan II is proud to announce that four of the ten inaugural Forty Acres Scholarships were awarded to entering Plan II Honors majors.
The Forty Acres Scholarship is UT Austin's first true full-ride merit scholarship, created by the Texas Exes Alumni Association to recruit and recognize exceptional students. The first ten Forty Acres scholarships were awarded to entering freshmen in the fall of 2011 (class of 2015). These are four-year merit scholarship which will cover the full cost of a UT Austin and Plan II Honors educational experience (tuition, room/board, books, living stipend, study abroad experience, research/internship, funding for a service/learning project, retreats, and other enrichment activities). The Forty Acres Scholarship is also designed to enrich students’ lives and nurture their development as future leaders. The opportunities included in this scholarship, combined with the abundance and depth of the resources that are already part of the Plan II and UT experience, will guarantee Forty Acres Scholars receive the greatest undergraduate experience possible.
Forty Acres Numbers: 785 applicants; 30 finalists; 10 scholars; 1500 average SAT score (out of 1600 math and critical reading scores); 4 of the 10 scholars are Plan II Honors majors.
José "Joey" DomínguezJosé "Joey" Domínguez, a Plan II Honors/English and Dean's Scholars Biochemistry major was awarded the Joe R. and Teresa Lozano Long Forty Acres Scholarship. Joey was valedictorian at Klein Oak High School in Spring, Texas. Throughout all four years at Klein, he was a member of the marching band, full orchestra and wind ensemble. During his senior year, Joey served as president of the Science National Honor Society, news editor for the Panther Press, the school paper, and was selected to the Superintendent’s Council, where he represented Klein Oak at a school board meeting to suggest ideas for policy changes. Domínguez was also involved with a multitude of organizations including the Spanish club and Spanish Honor Society, Academic Octathlon/Decathlon, Mu Alpha Theta, and various U.I.L. teams.
Emily GruenerEmily Gruener received the Mrs. Harold Myers Forty Acres Scholarship. A Plan II Honors/Government major, Emily is from Houston, TX, and attended Langham Creek High School. She was a National Merit Scholar Finalist and an AP Scholar with Distinction. Throughout her four years in high school, she was a member of Student Council, serving as president, senator, and representative. Projects she helped lead while in Student Council include the Pennies for Patients program, to encourage donating pennies to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, raising school awareness about recycling, and organizing slightly used SAT studyprep guides to be available in the classroom. Outside of school, Gruener served as an ambassador under the People to People Student Program. Her interests include the protection of civil liberties, foreign policy, and the emergence of political systems in developing countries. Emily hopes one day to become a civil rights lawyer with a heavy focus on women's rights and protecting against sex discrimination. This semester, she is working as a Longhorn Legislative Aide for student government, participating in the LEAP program for the Leadership and Ethics Committee, and having fun as a member of the Freshman Leadership Organization.
Connor HealyConnor Healy, who was awarded the Friends of Darrell K. Royal Forty Acres Scholarship. enters the University of Texas at Austin as a Plan II Honors/Electrical Engineering major. Connor was valedictorian at Parish Episcopal School in Dallas. In high school, Connor was active in theater, playing various characters in musicals and plays. He also served as captain of the speech and debate team, chairman of the Community Service Leadership Board, helped found the Quiz Bowl team, and was a member of the varsity cross country, the squash, and tennis teams. Connor was also Head Cappie in a program for students to attend theater productions at surrounding schools to write reviews for local newspapers. Connors' academic interests include film and television, politics, philosophy, and religion.
Linda Shi is a Plan II Honors and Business Honors dual-degree student who received the Ray and Denise Nixon Forty Acres Scholarship.. At Allen High School in Allen, Texas, she spent two years working for the Eagle Angle, Allen High School’s paper. Shi has served in numerous leadership positions with the paper, including managing the website, designing a new external newspaper website, writing main news stories and directing the eight-member online staff. She spent three years on Allen’s diving team and was selected by the coach as the varsity captain. She also co-founded the school’s multicultural club, HERO, which organizes service projects to aid those in need. Since 2006, Shi has worked for Allen Teen Court, serving as a pro bono attorney and judge for juvenile Class C misdemeanors.
Plan II applicants interested in applying for a Forty Acres Scholarship may find more information and the application at the Texas Exes Scholarship Foundation (http://www.texasexesscholarshipfoundation.org/scholarships/forty-acres) website. Please note that the application has a December 1 deadline.