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The University of Texas at Tyler Chapter Recognized at National Alpha Chi Convention

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April 19, 2017

Media Contact:  Hannah Buchanan
Public Affairs Specialist
Marketing and Communications
The University of Texas at Tyler
903.565.5769 or 903.539.7196 (cell)

The University of Texas at Tyler Texas Alpha Xi Chapter of Alpha Chi received a Star Chapter Award at the national college honor society's annual convention in Louisville, Kentucky.

The chapter was one of only 11 from Region II to have earned the society's designation. It is given to Alpha Chi chapters across the nation that meet standards of outstanding achievement throughout the academic year.

In addition, mechanical engineering major Caleb Nehls of Tyler submitted a design project for the Gaston & Nolle Undergraduate Scholarship. His submission earned him the "Second Alternate Award" out of 65 competitors nationwide.

At the convention biology major Karina Rojas Gomez of Murchison presented "The Impact of Fluoride on Aquatic Organisms."

Each year at the convention, the society concludes the year-long emphasis on extending scholarship beyond the walls of the classroom, lab or studio. This year's project – providing children's books for Louisville Hospital – allowed convention-goers first-hand experience in making scholarship effective for good. The University of Texas at Tyler Texas Alpha Xi Chapter collected 124 books for the project. The donated books focused on science and nature, as the campus drive was a joint project between Alpha Chi, Tri-Beta Biological Honor Society and the university's chapter of the American Chemical Society.

Senior lecturer in biology Suzanne Pundt currently serves as the Region II secretary/treasurer and member of the National Council of Alpha Chi. Dr. Sean Butler, assistant professor of chemistry, serves as assistant sponsor. Both sponsors also served as student presentation judges. Pundt also served on the national Gaston & Nolle Scholarship Committee, Honors and Awards Committee and as the chair of the Presentation Prizes Committee.

Alpha Chi Honor Society has some 300 chapters in 45 states and the District of Columbia. It is a coeducational society whose purpose is to promote academic excellence and exemplary character among college and university students and to honor those who achieve such distinction.

Alpha Chi is the only major honor society in which students and faculty have equal roles. As a general honor society, Alpha Chi admits to membership students from all academic disciplines. A member institution, which must be a regionally accredited, baccalaureate degree-granting college or university, may invite to membership no more than the top 10 percent of the junior, senior and graduate students.

For more information about The University of Texas at Tyler Alpha Chi chapter, contact Pundt, 903.566.7274 or spundt@uttyler.edu.

One of the 14 campuses of the UT System, The University of Texas at Tyler features excellence in teaching, research, artistic performance and community service. More than 80 undergraduate and graduate degrees are available at The University of Texas at Tyler, which has an enrollment of almost 10,000 high-ability students. The University of Texas at Tyler offers courses at its campuses in Tyler, Longview and Palestine as well as a location in Houston.

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