Nicole Kennard receives Presidents Scholarship

The President’s Scholarship is Georgia Tech’s most prestigious merit award and is offered annually to about 50 incredible high-school seniors who have demonstrated superb leadership skills, are among the top few in their class in academic performance, and show promise of continuing such performance. One of the 2013 recipients is MSE’s Nicole Kennard, a student from Acworth, GA.

Originally considering a career in journalism, Nicole’s junior year AP chemistry teacher, Ms. Tammy Brown, steered her toward an interest in engineering.  Acting on Ms. Brown’s advice, she attended the GT Engineering Career Conference (ECC) in October 2012, and Nicole confirmed her decision. Interested in helping the environment, she narrowed her major to materials science and engineering, working with biodegradable plastics.

Nicole’s attraction to environmental issues is recognized by her leadership in establishing “The Green Team,” the first environmental club at North Paulding High School.  Noting that the school had some recycling bins, but they were not fully utilized, Nicole ensured that each classroom had recycling bins for both paper and plastic.  Exhibiting her passion for recycling, she often transported bottles and cans to the local recycling center herself. In addition to classroom recycling, “The Green Team” participates in recycling materials at community and sporting events and planting flowers and trees at local schools.  Sharing her dedication to the environment, Nicole branched out to providing environmental presentations at the local elementary school.

Over the summer Nicole attended Tech Treks: South East Summer Orientation Program for incoming GT Freshmen. She is active in several clubs on campus, including Materials Advantage, Engineers without Borders and Engineers for a Sustainable World. She has also obtained a student assistant position in the Office of Recycling at Tech.

Nicole’s long term plans include pursuing a Ph.D. and possible research and development with biodegradable plastics that decompose in compost. She hopes to one day go into business with her brother, Christopher, currently attending GT on a Faculty Merit Scholarship.