Katherine Kim
September 27, 2018

The Merrill Presidential Scholars Program honors the University of Maryland’s most successful seniors and their designated University faculty and K-12 teachers for their mentorship. As a University community, we honor the Merrill Scholars and their mentors in a special ceremony and bring teachers and faculty together in a workshop that leads to stronger collaboration between the University and K-12 schools. The legacy of academic excellence, teaching, and mentoring continues as scholarships are awarded in the K-12 teacher’s name to a new first year student from that teacher’s high school or school district. The Merrill Presidential Scholars Program builds a community of scholars, faculty members, and K-12 teachers who recognize and celebrate the importance of teaching and mentoring the next generation.

Katherine Kim, Kinesiology senior, has been named a Merrill Scholar

She has named the following mentors as influential in her success:

Teacher Mentor: Lee Hirsch, Thomas S. Wootton High School, Rockville, MD
Faculty Mentor: Dr. Seppo Iso-Ahola, Kinesiology

Dr. Lee Hirsch, my high school physics teacher, taught me to not be afraid to make mistakes, and he encouraged me to share my insights with others. In his honors physics class, he helped me understand the value of learning for enjoyment rather than for grades. With his mentorship, I gained confidence in myself to persevere through the hardships I encountered during my transition from high school to college. Here at the University of Maryland, I had the privilege of taking a class with Dr. Seppo Iso-Ahola, whose knowledge surrounding research, psychology, and exercise science has inspired me to continue my education after completing my undergraduate degree. Dr. Iso-Ahola encourages all of his students to succeed, and like him I hope to become a professor and strong mentor to undergraduate students.

The three will be honored at the Merrill Presidential Scholars Luncheon on Friday, November 9, 2018.

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Seppo E. Iso-Ahola