David Joffe recommends David Garcia-Ramos

David Joffe (djoffe@kennesaw.edu)

Dear members of the scholarship committee, My name is David Joffe and I am an Associate Professor of Physics at Kennesaw State University. I am writing this letter to recommend David Garcia-Ramos for the Georgia Engineering Foundation Scholarship. I am the instructor for the calculus-based Principles of Physics (PHYS 2211) class in which Mr. Garcia-Ramos is currently enrolled. This is a large class of over 100 predominantly engineering majors which I have taught many times at KSU, and Mr. Garcia-Ramos has consistently been at the top of the class this semester in terms of test scores, homework scores and class participation. With more than half of the class completed he is ranked 2nd overall in the class, closely behind the 1st ranked student, with a large gap to the third ranked student. Despite the fact that he is only in his first semester as a university student I would rate his mathematical ability, problem solving ability, and work ethic in the top 2% of his peer group. Based on his performance in his first semester at Kennesaw State, I believe that he is an exceptional student and I hope that you will accept this recommendation. Sincerely yours, David Joffe Associate Professor of Physics Kennesaw State University

James C. Stockton (james.stockton@cobbk12.org)

October 22, 2022 To Whom It May Concern: David Garcia-Ramos is a high-achieving student who works very hard to meet his goals. He is truly an amazing young man, whose most notable academic strengths are natural intelligence, work ethic, and determination. He works very hard to complete all assignments and is never afraid to ask questions about problems or assignments that he is struggling with. David is an amazing individual who will rise to greatness and would be a worthy recipient of your scholarship. I had the distinct pleasure of teaching David in Multivariable Calculus and Differential Equations during his senior year of high school. In my opinion, David had the perfect combination of natural intelligence, determination, and work ethic. He was never afraid to speak up and ask for clarification or further explanation of a concept, whether during class or in my tutoring sessions. My students who rely solely on brilliance of mind to obtain high grades scare me because everyone has a “brick wall” moment at some point in their education. How will these students react in that situation? David, on the other hand, had the mental capacity to understand my advanced courses but still knew when to work hard to achieve high grades. He has arrived at university with a disciplined work ethic and a very large store of mathematical knowledge and skills. The courses David took with me respectively correspond very closely to the Calculus III and Differential Equations I courses offered at most major universities. By taking these courses as a senior in high school, David took a risk for the sake of learning, rather than taking the easy way out to bolster his GPA. With an anticipated major in engineering, he needed a strong mathematics background from high school and these courses will certainly gave him that. Please keep all of this in mind as you make those tough scholarship award decisions. David is also dedicated to serving his community and takes every opportunity he can to do so. Whether he was mentoring young men in his Boy Scout troop or helping underprivileged children shop for Christmas gifts, David poured his heart and soul into his community service work during high school. I am certain that he has taken this service-minded mentality with him to college this year. In closing, I strongly recommend that David Garcia-Ramos be awarded a Georgia Engineering Foundation scholarship. Sincerely, James Clinton Stockton, Ed.D. Mathematics Teacher Kennesaw Mountain High School

Charles Daab (Charles.daab@gcpsk12.org)

To Whom it May Concern: It is my absolute pleasure to recommend Lonnie for your program next fall. I have had the pleasure of knowing and teaching this student for over a year and their presence in your program would serve you well.. While Lonnie is truly a bright and highly intelligent individual, their ability to inspire confidence in others is second to none. It is a combination of this student’s social skills and academic ability that, I feel, makes them an ideal candidate for your program. Lonnie worked extremely hard all last year to ensure his/her success in my class. AP Physics is a class that is notorious for being difficult to master and it traditionally provides students with challenge after challenge. Lonnie met every challenge with tenacity and welcomed new and increasingly difficult challenges. It was a very rare occurrence that this student would meet a new difficulty and not know how to discover a solution for themselves. Lonnie’s attitude towards new challenges and difficulties was very refreshing. He tackled AP Physics 1&2 as well as AP Research. However, academic prowess in the classroom is reasonably commonplace in today’s academic climate, but Lonnie’s abilities were not limited to just the classroom. As you are aware, the college admission process has become extremely competitive in the last decade which means that a student must differentiate themselves now more than ever when it comes to the admission process. Lonnie has done this and more. He was also an active member in many other clubs such as Beta Club, National Honor Society, and a key senior on the swim team where he qualified for state twice. It is apparent that Lonnie checks all the boxes when it comes to academics and extracurricular activities, but, once again, this is commonplace in today’s college admission landscape. What really separates this student from those across the nation is their personal and social skills. Lonnie is a natural leader who takes the time to help others around them. On several occasions this student helped me to clarify a particularly difficult concept to their classmates. Additionally, this student loved to extend the learning beyond the classroom, asking real-world questions, and further solidifying their knowledge of the material. This coupled with their impeccable math and science reasoning skills facilitated their growth as both a student and a leader. I would highly recommend Lonnie to be part of your wonderful program. If their academic/personal performance in my classroom is indicative of future success, then this student will undoubtedly be an integral component to the success of your institution long-term. Their desire for learning will almost certainly lead to amazing accomplishments down the road. If you need any additional information from me regarding the acceptance of this student, please do not hesitate to reach out. Best, Charles J. Daab IV AP Physics/STEM Educator

Kirsten Shirley (kirsteb83@yahoo.com)

Kirsten Shirley 337 NW 97th Lane Coral Springs, Florida 704-77-6399 Kirsten.Shirley@holy-cross.org September 30, 2022 To whom it may concern: I have had the pleasure of knowing Kendrick Borst Jr since his birth. Throughout the years, I have known Kendrick as his babysitter, neighbor, and friend. In the 18 years I’ve known Kendrick, he has demonstrated maturity, adaptability, creativity, and a desire to try new new things among many other. Kendrick began to dog sit for me at the age of 12. I remember after his first time, I came home to a detail list of what my dog did while they were together and how much food he had left in his bowl. Kendrick was very observant and detail oriented even as a child. As he got older, I could see qualities in him that, I believe will make him very successful in the future. While working on our neighborhood sports team, Kendrick was always willing to take a lead role for the team, but also had no issue being a helpful teammate when others took on the lead role. Kendrick is an intelligent, dedicated, and personable young man who will have a successful future. Thank you for considering Kendrick for the scholarship. Thank you, Kirsten Shirley

Beth Boersma (bboersma@communityfriendship.org)

To Whom It May Concern, I am pleased to provide a letter of reference for Kayliah Wise. I have known Kayliah for approximately four years. I am employed as the Psychosocial Rehabilitation Program Director at Community Friendship, Inc. (CFI) in Atlanta, GA. CFI is a comprehensive provider of recovery-based mental health services for adults in the metro Atlanta area. Over the years, Kayliah has volunteered her time to assist CFI with various projects (toiletries drives for our homeless outreach teams) and special events (holiday parties for clients). Each time, Kayliah has proven to be a dependable worker, a good communicator, and an enthusiastic team member. I am excited to see where Kayliah’s studies lead her and I have no hesitation in recommending her as a positive addition to your team. Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have questions or need further information. I can be reached at bboersma@communityfriendship.org. Sincerely, Beth Boersma, LCSW, CPRP Psychosocial Rehabilitation Program Director Community Friendship, Inc. 85 Renaissance Pkwy., NE Atlanta, GA 30308

Dana Kling (dana.kling@gcpsk12.org)

It is a privilege to write a recommendation for Andrew Watson to be considered for the Georgia Engineering Foundation Scholarship. I had the utmost privilege of being Andrew’s English teacher for two years. Andrew is a most excellent young person– a compassionate and passionate force for good in the making, to be sure. He is considerate without yielding his own beliefs; he works diligently, smartly, and respectfully. I’ve taught nearly 2700 students at this point; Andrew will not have to remind me of his name when I see him in the future. He’s one of the good guys – so to speak – careful, considerate – a gentleman in the making. I am most lucky to have been his teacher. Andrew’s work snuck up on me; in an extremely talented and gifted class, it’s easy to get lost in the gifted shuffle. Andrew dazzled gradually. His writing is well-wrought and so ready for the rigors of undergraduate demand. He is super keen and can articulate some remarkable syntheses on the spot. He thinks critically and deeply on his feet; it is his best feat, so to speak. (Sorry for all the puns!). Andrew’s knack for language will serve him and others well as he hopes for a future routed in magic (my word!) of chemical engineering all the while being very cognizant of the human condition. Andrew is very keen on using his communication skills to use as an engineer – hoping with every interaction to use his science for the most good. Andrew is compassionate and careful in his relationships with his peers – with all his peers. He dismisses no one. He values all viewpoints without surrendering his own. This sagacity and patience are the hallmarks of Andrew and they will be touchstones for many. He will no doubt create for himself a handsome life, a life of service and compassion. Please afford him all due consideration; he will never disappoint. Should you have any questions about this capable and compassionate young man, please contact me at 678-371-8348 or via email – Dana.Kling@gcpsk12.org – I’d be more than happy to elaborate. Respectfully, Mr. Dana L. Kling Gifted / AP English Instructor Brookwood High School

Stephan Durham (sdurham@uga.edu)

RE: Letter of Support for Ms. Modesty Pernett for the Georgia Engineering Foundation Scholarships Dear Georgia Engineering Foundation Scholarship Review Committee, With the strongest possible support, I recommend Modesty Pernett for this year’s Georgia Engineering Foundation (GEF) Scholarship. I have only known Modesty since March 2022 when she applied for and was accepted into our prestigious first cohort of the University of Georgia College of Engineering’s First Year Scholars Program (FYSPS). Modesty is pursuing her Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering degree at UGA and is currently enrolled in my First Year Seminar: Engineering Exploration, Leadership, and Service this semester. I have been quite impressed with Modesty! It is because of her discipline and dedication to academic excellence and her genuine personality to serve her program and others that makes her the ideal candidate for your scholarship. In my opinion, she is most deserving for selection of a GEF scholarship this year. The FYSP for which Modesty was selected supports students actively pursuing an engineering degree who demonstrate a financial need and an interest in promoting underrepresented and underserved groups in engineering. I have been impressed with Modesty and how hard-working and detail-oriented she has been through our interactions this semester. I have found her to perform exceptionally well academically. My direct observation of Modesty is that she works hard to get the job done correctly and on time while also being extremely detailed and organized. Through my interactions with Modesty, I am confident that she will have tremendous success in our program. Further, she is well-liked not only by her peers but faculty and staff within our college. During our class, Modesty is often the student that asks questions during class that generates great discussions that link the in-class technical content to more practical engineering concepts. Modesty is a fantastic candidate for GEF Scholarship and I strongly recommend her to you without reservation. If you have any additional questions, please contact me by phone at 706-542-9480 or by email at sdurham@uga.edu. Sincerely, Stephan A. Durham, Ph.D., P.E., F.ASCE Assistant Dean for Student Success and Outreach Professor

Lola Williams (lwilliams@communityfriendship.org )

Kayliah Wise is an exceptional young woman who has great critical thinking skills. She is a problem solver and looks for the most logical, cost effective, and time-saving solution to an issue. Any assistance that she can receive to pursue her goals as a future engineer would be funds well spent.

MIranda Rouk (miranda.rouk@gcpsk12.org)

September 30, 2022 To Whom It May Concern: I am writing to you on behalf of Ruhee Merchant. I believe that Ruhee is an ideal candidate for your program. As her AP chemistry teacher, I can say that Ruhee is an excellent science student who stands out among her peers. Ruhee is willing to work hard to exceed expectations, and she works well with other people to accomplish group goals. Ruhee’s weighted high school cumulative grade point average is 4.3 ranking her 9th in a class of 747. Ruhee completed AP chemistry as only a junior; her grade first semester was a 98 without any AP inflation and a 100 for second semester. By the time she graduates, Ruhee will have completed 12 AP courses including biology, calculus, and computer science in addition to chemistry. While excelling in academics, Ruhee is involved in various organizations within the high school. She is the current president of Mu Alpha Theta and Model UN, and she is the previous president of Health Occupations Students of America. She is also the treasurer of Biology Olympiad and the online editor for the school newspaper. In a chemistry setting Ruhee had to work as an individual to understand concepts, but she also had to work in collaboration with other students to collect data or to design experiments that help to support these concepts. Due to COVID, Ruhee took AP chemistry in a concurrent setting. Four students attended class in person while the rest of the students joined in the class live through Zoom. For second semester guided-inquiry labs, each in-person student met with a few digital students in a Zoom breakout room. The digital students were required to direct the in-person student through the lab. Communication became more important than it ever has been in previous years. I remember that Ruhee was an active participant from the first lab, strengthening the group she is in with her ideas and positive attitude. From her example, other students learned how to become more involved in the labs and in the class. Ruhee is well-respected by her peers, and she was not afraid to ask questions. In fact she stayed after class almost every day to ask follow-up questions about the lesson. Her attention to detail paid off when she earned a 5 on the AP Chemistry exam. Ruhee clearly exceeds expectations. She chooses to take very advanced classes as her electives. She is not intimidated by the heavy workload that these classes add to her schedule. Ruhee cares deeply about her community. She is the founder of an organization called A New View which advocates for health equity for individuals with disabilities. Through this organization, Ruhee has hosted community events such as medical clinics and created a mentorship with the Georgia Council on Developmental Disabilities. She established and maintains a social media presence for this organization. Ruhee is also a communications manager for the National Mosaic Environmental Sustainability Team and a content manager for the Agha Khan Social Welfare Board. Ruhee has served as an intern for Lifeline Primary Care and for Warren Auld Legal Offices and as a research assistant for the Yale-UGA MVMNT Project which involves conducting cognitive tests and analyzing data through Excel. Ruhee has experience working with children as a camp counselor and working one-on-one with Afghanistan refugees in an effort to foster cultural autonomy. Finally, it is important to note that Ruhee can carry on a conversation in four languages. Ruhee is truly a great student. She knows what it takes to succeed in the classroom, and her drive inspires other students. She is an excellent candidate for your program. I believe that if she is accepted into your program, Ruhee will contribute to the program in addition to learning from it. Thank you for your consideration. Sincerely, Miranda Rouk Miranda Rouk Teacher of Advanced Placement Chemistry, Parkview High School

John Brocato (john.brocato@uga.edu)

597 D.W. Brooks Drive Athens, GA 30602 September 30, 2022 To the Georgia Engineering Foundation: I am happy to write an enthusiastic reference letter supporting Ruhee Merchant’s application for the Georgia Engineering Foundation Scholarship. I know Ruhee through her participation in the course ENGR 1920 Introduction to Engineering for Chemical, Materials, and Biomedical Engineering. Via her outstanding work in this course thus far, I can say that Ruhee is an excellent prospective recipient of your scholarship. Our Intro course endeavors to provide the broadest possible look at the field of bioengineering and many of the subfields within: biomanufacturing, biomaterials, bioenergy and sustainability, next-gen therapeutics, and so on. However, we also spend significant time on other issues just as critical, such as engineering communication; engineering ethics; teamwork, diversity, equity, and inclusion; global engineering and study abroad; co-ops and internships; and student professional societies. I mention all this to illustrate that Ruhee, while at the University of Georgia, is receiving a first-rate introduction to the broad field of bioengineering. Importantly, of course, Ruhee is doing excellent work while in my class. Each section has 60-80 students, so it’s easy for students to hide and disengage in such a setting. Ruhee, however, participates regularly, asking pertinent questions and responding to discussion prompts. She has also completed her work consistently and thoroughly (which can be rare in a large class of first-year students). The most significant assignment in my course is the Individual Professional Development Plan (IPDP), a culminating paper requiring students to plot out their college careers and beyond with an eye toward goals, self-assessment, engineering projects/research of interest, co-curricular activities, and more. Because this assignment comes later in the semester, Ruhee has not completed her IPDP yet. However, my discussions with her along with a look at her résumé tell me that she is well poised to construct a very solid IPDP and eventual career. Her exceptional high-school GPA and the plethora of AP courses she took leave no doubt that she excels academically, but it’s her wealth of work experience – as a first-year college student, she has already served as a Research Assistant at UGA, Yale, and Johns Hopkins – that I find most impressive and indicative of a person poised for success. She has also amassed numerous volunteer and service-oriented achievements, including the role of teacher to 20 2nd graders, along with a long list of awards and extracurricular activities. Finally, the fact that she can converse in five languages apart from English makes her incredibly valuable as a working engineer in an increasingly global industry. I have absolutely no doubt that any assistance we can provide for her budding career will pay guaranteed dividends to human society in the coming years. It is my pleasure to recommend Ruhee Merchant without reservation for the Georgia Engineering Foundation Scholarship. If I can help further with her application process, please let me know. Thank you, John Brocato Technical Communication Lecturer School of Chemical, Materials, and Biomedical Engineering College of Engineering University of Georgia Fellow, American Society for Engineering Education 706.542.6619 john.brocato@uga.edu

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