Each year, SAU’s College of Science and Engineering selects one outstanding undergraduate in each department, one overall COSE outstanding undergraduate student, and one outstanding graduate student. The following are the selections for 2019-2020:
Elizabeth Baker, BS Nursing
Elizabeth Baker was chosen as the 2019-2020 COSE Outstanding Undergraduate Student. Elizabeth will complete her BSN in May 2020 and is an exceptional student within the Nursing department and SAU community. She is active in the nursing honor society, Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing, and is a Supplemental Instruction tutor, committed to helping her peers. She has served in Sigma Professional Agricultural Sorority and as a College Panhellenic Council and Appeals representative. She received the SAU Presidential Scholarship and has a FEMA Introduction to Incident Command System certification. She also has a minor in Criminal Justice and Psychology. Her future plans include becoming a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist or a Nurse Educator. Currently, Elizabeth plans to work in the Neonatal Intensive Unit or the Emergency Department in San Antonio, Texas.
Caitlin Anderson, MS Agriculture
Caitlin Anderson, who is graduating with a Master of Science in Agriculture, was selected as the Outstanding Graduate Student for the COSE. She graduated from Texas A&M University with a Bachelor of Science in Animal Science in 2008 and a Bachelor of Science in Agricultural Science in 2013. She is a high school Agricultural Science Teacher in Texas, FFA Advisor, and Stephen F. Austin State University Adjunct faculty member. She is married to Matt Anderson and the mother to daughter Sawyer Ann. She has been blessed with many mentors who have guided her passion for agricultural education. She hopes to earn a Doctor of Philosophy in Agricultural Education and Leadership and become a tenured professor.
Keely Stofer, BS Biology Pre-Health
Keely Stofer was selected as the Outstanding Student in the Department of Biology. Keely completed her biology degree in three years and is an active and enthusiastic member of the department and SAU community. She is a Cinda Hallman Women of Science Scholar Foundation recipient, a leader in the Biology and Pre-Health clubs, a Supplemental Instructor in Genetics, and was the Wind Symphony Principle Oboe Soloist. Keely is from Hot Springs Village, Arkansas, and will attend the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Dentistry this fall.
Aziztitu Murugan, BS Computer Science Gaming and Animation
Aziztitu Murugan was selected as the Outstanding Student in the Department of Math and Computer Science. He is known for his mastery in computer science theory and applications, his entrepreneurial spirit, and his positive impacts. Aziz is an inspirational role model to his peers. He was a member of the programming team that placed first in Arkansas in 2019. He developed a Mote Game Engine, Atlas, Chat App, Human Hand Simulation Software, and an interactive robotic application. He is an active member of the SAU Computer Science Club and also serves as a supplemental instructor. As a software developer, he has worked for Otrio and Tech Perfect. He developed many apps including the SAU Honors College App and a working POS App. He works through his own company for multiple clients around the world and has worked as an intern for Audible and Google. He will join Microsoft’s AI and Research Team after graduation as a full-time software engineer/data intelligence engineer.
Whitney Austin, BS Chemistry Pre-Health Professional Biochemistry
Whitney Austin was selected as the outstanding student in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry. Whitney is a graduate of Cabot High School. She is an active member of Sigma Sigma Sigma, Chemistry Club, and Honors College. She has served as Resident Assistant at Eichenberger and University Court, as well as the Student Activities Eboard. She works in the Natural Resource Research Center also. She has received the Mulerider Leadership Award, Donald Haefner Freshman of the Year Award, and the Chemistry Achievement Award in Freshman Chemistry. She has also been on the President’s and Dean’s list all four years of college. Her post-graduate plans are to attend the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences College of Pharmacy in the fall.
Elizabeth Jacobs, BS Agriculture Pre-Veterinary
Elizabeth Jacobs was selected as the outstanding student in the department of Agriculture. She came to SAU in 2016, after graduating from Liberty Eylau High School in Bowie County Texas, to major in Pre-Veterinary Medicine option of the Agriculture Science B.S. Degree program. She was awarded the prestigious Hallman Scholarship for Women in the Sciences. At SAU, she served her department as a supplemental instructor in several courses. She plans to take a year off from education after graduating to work full-time in a veterinary clinic and enter a college of Veterinary Medicine in the fall of 2021.
Lucas Blake, BS Engineering and BS Engineering-Physics: Science Option
Lucas Blake was selected as the Outstanding Student in Engineering and Physics Department. Lucas is a graduate of Ridgeway Christian High School in Pine Bluff. He has served as a supplemental instructor in the Engineering/Physics Department for three years. He completed two years in the Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU). The first summer was spent at OSU where he worked on the processing of adiabatic and non-adiabatic paper fibers. The second summer was spent at the University of Arkansas Institute for Nanoscience and Engineering. Lucas placed second in the poster presentation at the annual Arkansas IDeA Network of Biomedical Research Excellence conference in 2019. Following graduation, Lucas plans to work in industry for a few years and then pursue an advanced degree in either engineering or physics.