5 earn All-AZ Academic

MESA, Ariz. – Five of Central Arizona College’s outstanding students have been selected to the Phi Theta Kappa International Honor Society All-Arizona Academic Team.

Lyndee Goetz was chosen First Team, Jennifer Aguirre and Matthew Bertsch were selected as Second Team members, and Heather Marrow and Jessica Forrester- Bowman were elected to the Third Team.

The awards were announced on Thursday afternoon, February 21, at the All-Arizona Academic Team Recognition Ceremony hosted by Mesa Community College in Mesa, Ariz.

Phi Theta Kappa, USA Today, community college presidents, and community college state associations co-sponsor All-State Academic Team recognition programs in 35 states. Students nominated to the All-USA Academic Team are automatically named to the All-State Academic Team. Ranking on the All-State team is determined by the student's score in the national competition.

All-Arizona Academic Team members receive special recognition, including medallions, certificates and scholarships. First Team members receive $1,000 check, while Second Team members are presented with a $750 and Third Team members are granted $500.

They are also eligible for full tuition scholarships to Arizona State University, Northern Arizona University or the University of Arizona.

Additionally, students from the All-Arizona Academic Team who choose to attend Texas A&M-Commerce are eligible for up to $10,000 in scholarships spread over four semesters. Students who are not Texas residents will be eligible to pay in-state tuition charges.

Lyndee Goetz - 1st Team (Superstition Mountain Campus)

 Goetz, who attends Central’s Superstition Mountain Campus, landed on the First Team and is now eligible for the All-USA Academic Team that will be published in USA Today on April 7.

The 21-year-old student earned a perfect 4.00 grade point average and is working toward an associate of arts degree. She will be transferring to Arizona State University to complete her four-year degree following graduation from Central Arizona College this May. She will graduate from Central Arizona College having completed all 18 credit hours of advanced study.

Goetz was chosen as a Distinguished Chapter Member in 2006 and the Distinguished President of Alpha Theta Delta Chapter of Phi Theta Kappa in 2007 – a Central Arizona College District honor. She recently was inducted into the Arizona Region’s Hall of Honor.

A passion for helping her community, Goetz’s goal is to make the world a better place.

“I believe the most beautiful thing in the world is unity,” she said, stating her philosophy. “That is why I am inspired by philanthropy and its effect on society. It brings people together in an altruistic fashion. Because of this scholarship, I can continue to pursue an education tailored to benefiting the world in which we live.”

Goetz’s volunteerism has included time spent with the Victims of Criminal Acts Department in Apache Junction, Ariz.; Arizona Rebuilding Together and the Rock-n-Roll Paint-a-Thon. She worked at the Lost Dutchman Days Parade to help raise money for Central Arizona College’s Working in New Directions (W.I.N.D.) program.

Leadership positions have come naturally for Goetz who has served as the Phi Theta Kappa Alpha Theta Delta President and public relations officer, as well as the Phi Theta Kappa Arizona Region Southern District Vice President.

Goetz will attend Arizona State University’s College of Public Programs beginning in the fall of 2008. She will pursue a major in non-profit leadership and management.

She is one of just 20 students from across the nation chosen as a 2008 Guistwhite Scholar. She will receive a $5,000 scholarship that comes with the honor.

Additionally, Goetz has been chosen as a presenter at this April’s Western Region Honors Council Conference in Flagstaff, Ariz.

Jennifer Aguirre - 2nd Team (Aravaipa Campus)
 Aguirre earned Second Team honors after compiling an outstanding 3.94 GPA while attending Central’s Aravaipa Campus.

The native of San Manuel, Ariz., will graduate from Central Arizona College with an associate of science degree before transferring to the University of Arizona.

“It is an honor to have been selected for the All-Arizona Academic Team,” Aguirre said. “Since funding plays a major factor in my ability to continue my education, I am grateful to those who make this scholarship possible and I will continue to do my personal best to succeed.”

Her success includes multiple Phi Theta Kappa community service projects, including raising funds for a play pump used to bring fresh ground water to the surface for a community in rural Africa.

She also had raised funds for the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life program, served as a tutor, and has volunteered at the 2007 Rotary Track Meet and with the Tri-Community Democratic Club.

The Phi Theta Kappa member has earned a Phi Theta Kappa Certificate of Recognition, been listed in Who’s Who Among Junior Colleges, and received Central Arizona College’s Outstanding Science Award at Aravaipa. She has made the Dean’s List and is the recipient of the Non-Traditional Student Scholarship.

A native of Casa Grande and graduate of Casa Grande Union High School, Bertsch joined Aguirre on the second team.

The associate of arts in liberal studies major has been accepted to pharmacy school at the University of Arizona. He currently boasts a 3.91 grade point average and will graduate this spring from Central’s Signal Peak Campus.

Matt Bertsch - 2nd Team (Signal Peak Campus)

 One of Central Arizona College’s most versatile students, Bertsch has served as the president of Phi Theta Kappa and is a member of the Central Arizona College Jazz Ensemble.

His academic curriculum includes taking classes through the Honors Program, while his volunteerism features participation in Relay for Life. He has received a Central Arizona College Academic Scholarship, the Outstanding Honors Student Award, and the Outstanding Biological Science Student Award.

“Being selected for the 2008 All-Arizona Academic team means more to me than anyone will ever know,” Bertsch stated. “Not only does it mean that I will have a financial cushion for my future endeavors, it also means that I have been recognized for my academic achievements.”

Heather Marrow - 3rd Team (Signal Peak Campus)

 Marrow, also a graduate of Casa Grande Union High School, earned Third Team accolades and will join Bertsch at the University of Arizona next fall. She will graduate this May with an associate of science in pre-pharmacy before heading to Tucson.

“This scholarship means more to me than a way to pay for my tuition,” Marrow, who was number one in her high school class, explained. “I think of receiving this scholarship as a victory for both my family and me. To be able to bring home such an honor and see their smile is worth more than the actual prize."

Marrow is no stranger to scholarships. She has previously received the Central Arizona College Academic Scholarship, the Honors Program Scholarship, and the Casa Grande Regional Medical Auxiliary Scholarship.

Armed with a 3.57 GPA, Marrow has also served as the Phi Theta Kappa secretary and has volunteered in raising money for the Relay for Life program.

Jessica Bowman-Forrester - 3rd Team (Superstition Mountain Campus)

 Based at Central’s Superstition Mountain Campus, Bowman-Forrester joins Marrow on the Third Team. She will head to Arizona State University in the fall after graduating from Central Arizona College this May with an associate of science degree.

The native of Burpengary, Queensland, Australia and current resident of Apache Junction, Ariz. owns a 3.38 GPA that complements her many honors and activities.

She is a member and former officer of the Phi Theta Kappa: Alpha Theta Delta Chapter, has served as a member of the CAC Student Government Association, tutors biology and chemistry, and has been a volunteer with Concerts in the Park in Apache Junction.

Bowman-Forrester will graduate from Central Arizona College this May having completed all 18 credit hours of advanced study.

“The Honors Program at Central Arizona College was an inspiring and wonderfully challenging experience; the integral foundation vital in direction for my long-term academic and career goals,” Bowman-Forrester said. “I now look forward to an exciting career in research in the neurobiology field, made possible only by the exceptional education and opportunities Central Arizona College has provided.”

Bowman-Forrester has been selected as a presenter at the Western Region Honors Council Conference for the second year in a row. She was also a presenter at the Central Arizona College Academic Symposium in 2007.

Bowman-Forrester has been presented with the Faculty Scholarship, for her excellence in biology, and the Student Government Association Award and Scholarship.


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