CEAS Welcomes a Superlative Freshman Class

By: Lauren Koch

UC’s  College of Engineering and Applied Science welcomes an impressive freshman class. The 2011 incoming class is notable not only in size, up 18.5% from last year, but one that is academically talented as well.

The College of Engineering and Applied Science awaits its largest and arguably most prepared freshman class this fall. A key academic credential of this high caliber group is that 25% of incoming CEAS students received a 30 or above on the ACT.  To give you an idea of what this means, out of 1.6 million students who took the ACT last year, only the top 5% scored a 30 or above. Even more impressive, two of these students earned a perfect score. Less than four out of every 10,000 students who took the test received a perfect score of 36.

Carolyn Coutre

Carolyn Coutre, National Merit Scholar

Overall, enrollment for CEAS has increased 18.5% from last year and the number of National Merit Scholars entering the college doubled. This fall, CEAS adds 17 National Merit Scholars into the aerospace, mechanical, biomedical, chemical, electrical, civil, computer and freshman engineering programs.

The National Merit Scholarship competition recognizes high school students who show outstanding academic promise. Each year 1.5 million students compete to become a National Merit Scholar. In this highly competitive process, less than 1 out of every 100 students that applies become a National Merit Scholar. It is not unusual for these extraordinary students to be valedictorians, have perfect SAT scores, and 4.0+ GPAs.

In addition to doubling its number of National Merit Scholars, CEAS adds a long list of Cincinnatus scholars to their lineup. The brightest and most promising freshmen throughout all disciplines are offered a Cincinnatus scholarship. This year 25% of Cincinnatus awardees were offered admission to CEAS.

“The steadily increasing numbers of National Merit Scholars and other top students enrolling in the College of Engineering and Applied Science is the highest testimonial to the quality of our programs, faculty and research achievements,” states CEAS Dean Carlo Montemagno. “All of us at the college are committed to continually raising our standard of excellence so that our students and graduates are always rated among the ‘Best of the Best’.”

Scott Fink

Scott Fink, National Merit Scholar

Carolyn Coutre, Scott Fink, and Daniel Hetchcox are just three of the outstanding students who are a part of the incoming UC CEAS class this fall. They are three of the 17 National Merit Scholar entering CEAS. As a National Merit Scholar entering the University of Cincinnati, they are awarded the Cincinnatus Excellence Scholarship and are automatically invited into the UC Honors Program. 

Carolyn Coutre is a solid addition to UC’s aerospace engineering program.  A graduate from Grand Haven High School in Grand Haven Michigan, Carolyn credits one of her influences as her seven years, since the sixth grade, with her school’s Science Olympiad team.  She says, “This program really forced me to challenge myself. I feel like the numerous individual and team medals I received are a great example of what I can accomplish when I work hard.” When looking at colleges, Carolyn was looking for a large school that made scheduling around work experience a priority. UC and its co-op program was a perfect fit. She says, “I think that co-oping will give me a great taste of what a job will be like, and will influence my decision to either enter directly into the working world, or to continue on to grad school.” Carolyn’s dream job is to work for NASA.

Daniel Hethcox

Daniel Hethcox, National Merit Scholar

Scott Fink’s interest in math and science made UC’s electrical engineering program an ideal fit. Scott’s graduated valedictorian of his class from Highland High School in Wadsworth, Ohio. In addition to attending the University of Cincinnati, Scott lists receiving a perfect score on his ACT as one of his accomplishments.

Scott will enter into the electrical engineering program at UC as an ACCEND and UC Honors student. When looking forward to his future at UC Scott says, “I hope to receive my master's degree while building relationships through co-op.” Scott hopes to work on the design of prosthetics in the future, but is open-minded about other paths that might present themselves along the way.

UC’s freshman engineering program was a clear choice for Daniel Hethcox. “When I was first looking at colleges, I was interested in larger institutions with strong engineering programs as well as many other options,” states Daniel. “Cincinnati stuck out because of its strong reputation and incredible co-op program.” The specially designed freshman engineering program at UC will allow Daniel to try out the many different specialties offered within Engineering.  

During his years at Dublin Coffman High School in Dublin, Ohio, Daniel kept himself busy.  He balanced being a member of his school band for all four years with earning his Eagle Scout Award. As a student and newly accepted UC band member, Daniel says he hopes to, “become part of the community, maintain the academic success I am accustomed to, and find a few ways to leave my mark with the school.”

Over the past several years, the college has embraced a larger and better qualified entering class each fall.  It is going to be exciting to follow the 2011 class during their years at UC and beyond. The futures are bright for these exceptional freshmen whether they plan to stay at UC to continue their studies, continue their careers in industry, or go on to found their own companies.

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