All-USA Community College Academic Team Receives $50,000 in Scholarships

Jackson, MS – Twenty two-year college students have been named to the 23rd annual All-USA Community College Academic Team, honored for their outstanding intellectual achievement and leadership. Each team member will receive a $2,500 scholarship, furnished by Follett Higher Education Group, the leading provider of college and university bookstore services.

The program is widely recognized as the most prestigious academic honor for students attending community college. Nominees are hand-selected by colleges for showing intellectual rigor and for demonstrating academic, leadership and civic growth. The program also recognizes students who extend their community college education to better themselves, their schools and their surrounding communities.

“As college costs continue to climb, community college becomes a vital channel to access the baccalaureate degree,” said Phi Theta Kappa’s Executive Director Dr. Rod Risley. “Programs like these promote college completion by providing opportunities and raising awareness of the need.”

The 2013 All-USA Community College Academic Team is sponsored by Follett Higher Education Group and presented by USA TODAY, Phi Theta Kappa and the American Association of Community Colleges. Follett’s contribution of $125,000 demonstrates its ongoing mission to drive student success through access to affordable course materials.

Follett currently serves students at more than 980 bookstores across the country and has partnered with more community colleges than any other bookstore operator in the country. The company implements programs to help drive down the costs of education, including its successful textbook rental program, Rent-A-Text. In the last three years, Rent-A-Text, along with the company’s used and digital options, has saved students more than $1 billion compared to the price of new textbooks.

“Through my own experience at the Community College of Allegheny County, I know community colleges provide students high quality, affordable education,” said Tom Christopher, President of Follett Higher Education Group. “Follett is focused on driving student success, which is why we are so pleased to recognize and support these outstanding students.”

Student winners were introduced at the Phi Theta Kappa Awards of Excellence Brunch held during the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC) Convention on April 23 in San Francisco. In addition to scholarship funds, each ALL-USA Community College Academic Team member was presented with a special medallion. College presidents also received recognition for their leadership. ALL-USA Community College Academic Team members were also featured in a full-page advertisement in USA TODAY newspaper.

The 20 members of the 2013 All-USA Community College Academic Team are:

Kris Adhikari


Las Positas College

Career Goal: Non-Profit/Law/Public Service

Jonathan Bach

New York

LaGuardia Community College

Career Goal: Clinical Psychologist, Researcher, and Professor

Wendi Michelle Cole

New Mexico

Southwestern Indian Polytechnic Institute

Career Goal: Electrical Engineer

Katherine Dunklee


Howard Community College

Career Goal: Certified Public Accountant

Louis Fobb


Minneapolis Community and Technical College

Career Goal: Civil Rights Attorney

Beau Grothendick


Glendale Community College

Career Goal: Molecular Virologist

Nadeen Ibrahim


Morgan Community College

Career Goal: Physician

Belinda Griffin Jones

New York

SUNY Jefferson Community College

Career Goal: Childcare Inspector

Phoua Kong


Saint Paul College

Career Goal: Attorney

Phillippe Ly


Orange Coast College

Career Goal: Neurosurgery/Biopsychology Research

Anthony F. Mangual

New York

SUNY Suffolk County Community College

Career Goal: Accountant/Lawyer

John Christopher Walters Marshall


Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College

Career Goal: Certified Public Accountant

Stacy McElvaney


Red Rocks Community College

Career Goal: Equine Assisted Psychotherapist

Angelina Nance


Clark State Community College

Career Goal: Teach Social Work/Cultural Diversity

Ebony A. Nava


Bluegrass Community and Technical College

Career Goal: Attorney

Antonio Parker


St. Louis Community College

Career Goal: U.S. Marshal, Motivational Speaker, Security Company Owner

Victoria Soewarna


Lorain County Community College

Career Goal: Anesthesiologist

Kaylee Toole


Chipola College

Career Goal: Licensed Pharmacist

Jonathan Webster


Bucks County Community College

Career Goal: Marketing

Ashley Young


Hillsborough Community College

Career Goal: Environmental Economics

The team of 20 was selected by a panel of judges from more than 1,800 students nominated by more than 800 community colleges. Judges considered grades, leadership, activities and, most importantly, how students extend their intellectual talents beyond the classroom. The 2013 All-USA Community College Academic Team final judges were:

Julian Allen, The University of Southern Mississippi

Kate Cooper, Marine Corps Scholarship Foundation

Kirk Glaze, Coca-Cola Refreshments

Christopher Hennessey, The League for Innovation

Casey Maliszewski, former Phi Theta Kappa International Officer

Laurie Quarles, American Association of Community Colleges

Nancy Sanchez-Warren, Kaplan Educational Foundation

Lauren Snyder, Marymount University

Maryann Thomas, Jack Kent Cooke Foundation

Phi Theta Kappa also awards additional scholarships through the Coca-Cola Community College Academic Team Program and the New Century Scholars Program, sponsored by the Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation and The Coca-Cola Foundation. These include scholarships totaling nearly $300,000 for 200 other outstanding community college students.

About Follett

Since 1873, Follett has served as the trusted partner in education for students and educators at all levels of learning. Today Follett delivers print and digital learning materials, retail services, library resources and school management systems on more than 980 college campuses and across 65,000 elementary and high schools. Headquartered in River Grove, Illinois, Follett is a $2.7 billion privately-held company.


USA TODAY is a multi-platform news and information media company. Founded in 1982, USA TODAY’s mission is to serve as a forum for better understanding and unity to help make the USA truly one nation. Through its unique visual storytelling, USA TODAY delivers high-quality and engaging content across print, digital, social and video platforms. An innovator of news and information, USA TODAY reflects the pulse of the nation and serves as the host of the American conversation – today, tomorrow and for decades to follow. USA TODAY, the nation’s number one newspaper in print circulation with an average of more than 1.7 million daily, and, an award-winning news website launched in 1995, reach a combined six million readers daily. USA TODAY is a leader in mobile applications with more than 17 million downloads on mobile devices. USA TODAY is owned by Gannett Co., Inc. (NYSE: GCI).

About the American Association of Community Colleges

Headquartered in the National Center for Higher Education in Washington, D.C., AACC is the primary advocacy organization for community colleges at the national level and works closely with directors of state offices to inform and affect state policy. The association represents nearly 1,200 two-year, associate degree-granting institutions and more than 13 million students, as well as a growing number of international members in Puerto Rico, Japan, Great Britain, Korea, and the United Arab Emirates. The colleges are the largest and fastest-growing sector of U.S. higher education, enrolling close to half (46 percent) of all U.S. undergraduates.

About Phi Theta Kappa

Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society, headquartered in Jackson, Mississippi, is the largest honor society in American higher education with 1,285 chapters on two-year and community college campuses in all 50 of the United States, Canada, Germany, the Republic of Palau, Peru, the Republic of the Marshall Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, the British Virgin Islands, the United Arab Emirates and U.S. territorial possessions. More than 2.5 million students have been inducted since its founding in 1918, with approximately 135,000 students inducted annually.

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