Junior Elise Young Receives Phi Kappa Phi Study Abroad Grant

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Elise Young

MACON – Mercer University junior Elise Young recently was awarded a Study Abroad Grant from The Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi, the nation’s oldest and most selective collegiate honor society for all academic disciplines.

The grants are designed to support undergraduates, both members and nonmembers from campuses that have Phi Kappa Phi chapters, as they seek expanded knowledge and experience in their academic fields by studying abroad.

Young, an electrical engineering major from Lawrenceville, is one of 25 students nationwide to receive the award. She will use the $1,000 grant to study abroad at the University of Aizu in Aizuwakamatsu, Japan.

“The Phi Kappa Phi Study Abroad Grant will greatly help in making my dream to study engineering abroad a reality. I want to express my gratitude towards the Phi Kappa Phi honor society for encouraging students to further pursue their interests and expose themselves to different ways of practicing engineering,” said Young.

Young, who was an Honorable Mention selection for the Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship last spring, conducts research in the lab of Dr. Makhin Thitsa, assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering, where they have investigated the inherent presence of state dependent time delay in internet traffic congestion problems, as well as developed control strategies for optimizing the coordinated control of signalized traffic intersections.

Young plans to earn her master’s degree through the School of Engineering’s 4+1 integrated Master of Science program, obtain a Ph.D. in electrical engineering and work in a national laboratory.

She has participated in Mercer’s women’s choir, K-Pop dance team, Mercer Asia and intramural soccer and volleyball. As a student in the International Honors Track, she has been recognized on the President’s List and Dean’s List.

The selection process for the Phi Kappa Phi Study Abroad Grant Program is based on the applicant’s academic achievement, campus and community service, relation of travel to academic preparation and career goals, a personal statement, letters of recommendation, and acceptance into a study abroad program.

Established in 2001, the program has awarded more than $800,000 to undergraduate students. The grants are part of the Society’s robust portfolio of award programs, which give nearly $1 million each year to outstanding students and members through graduate and dissertation fellowships, funding for post-baccalaureate development, and grants for local, national and international literacy initiatives.

To learn more about the study abroad grants and other Phi Kappa Phi awards, visit www.phikappaphi.org/awards.

About Phi Kappa Phi

Founded in 1897, Phi Kappa Phi is the nation’s oldest and most selective collegiate honor society for all academic disciplines. Phi Kappa Phi inducts approximately 30,000 students, faculty, professional staff and alumni annually. The Society has chapters on more than 300 select colleges and universities in North America and the Philippines. Membership is by invitation only to the top 10 percent of seniors and graduate students and 7.5 percent of juniors. Faculty, professional staff and alumni who have achieved scholarly distinction also qualify. The Society’s mission is “To recognize and promote academic excellence in all fields of higher education and to engage the community of scholars in service to others.” For more information, visit www.phikappaphi.org.

About the School of Engineering

Mercer University’s School of Engineering, founded in 1985, offers innovative and academically challenging programs that provide students with a comprehensive education, featuring a solid foundation in mathematics and sciences, a core engineering curriculum, a range of courses in engineering specialties and a strong emphasis on communication technologies. The School is consistently ranked by U.S. News and World Report as one of the top three master’s-degree-level engineering schools in the Southeast. Known for its breadth of instruction in its undergraduate program and its five-year joint bachelor’s and master’s degree program, the School combines technical education with hands-on laboratory experience. Mercer engineers can look forward to joining fellow alumni in companies such as Warner Robins Air Logistics Complex, Lockheed Martin, Georgia Power, Siemens and Gulfstream Aerospace.

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Kyle Sears