Congrats to Brother Samuel Brinton, nominee for Truman Scholarship!

February 14, 2010

MANHATTAN — Kansas State University is nominating five students to compete for Harry S. Truman Scholarships, worth $30,000.

The nominees are Amy Sents, McPherson; Taylor Connolly, Overland Park; Kristi Mendenhall, Salina; Julie Chelewski, Rifle, Colo., and Samuel Brinton, Perry, Iowa.

As many as 65 Truman scholarships are awarded each year to students who plan to pursue graduate studies and careers in public service. Scholars are selected primarily on leadership potential and communication skills, intellectual strength and analytical ability, and likelihood of making a difference in public service. Finalists will be announced Feb. 23.

Sents is a senior in animal sciences and industry and pre-veterinary medicine with a minor in international agriculture. She is vice president and past secretary of Alpha of Clovia and has competed on K-State’s meats and horse judging teams and the meat quiz bowl team. She also has participated in the animal sciences and industry Academic Quadrathlon and is a member of University Christian Church. She will represent Kansas as an international 4-H youth exchange delegate to Germany and Switzerland from June to December. A 2007 graduate of McPherson High School, she is the daughter of Allan and Deanna Sents of McPherson.

Connolly is a junior in criminology, Spanish and pre-law. He is publicity chair and former president of the K-State Criminology Club, co-principal violist in the K-State Orchestra and member of Sigma Delta Pi honor society. He also is an active member of St. Isidore’s Catholic Church and a Catholic Charities volunteer. He has received scholarships from the Kansas State University Foundation, K-State department of modern languages and K-State orchestra. A 2007 graduate of Shawnee Mission South High School, he is the son of Matthew and Jacklyn Connolly of Overland Park.

Mendenhall is a junior in Spanish, family studies and human services and pre-law. She is a member of Chimes junior honorary and has been a member of Silver Key sophomore leadership honorary. She is vice president of Students for the Right to Life and president of Phi Eta Sigma. She also is a Court Appointed Special Advocates volunteer and a McNair Scholar. A 2007 graduate of Salina High School Central, Mendenhall is the daughter of Bryane Mendenhall and Debbie Midfelt of Salina.

Chelewski is a senior in food science and industry with a communication emphasis. At K-State, she is a member of the food science club, bakery science club, Wildcats Forever and Gamma Sigma Delta honor society. She also is actively involved with Student Mobilization campus ministry, K-State office of admissions CAT Crew, food science student-to-student recruiting and the Frontier program. She was a 2006-2007 Colorado State FFA officer and has earned the American FFA degree. She has received scholarships from the Association of Food and Drug Officials, Institute of Food Technologists, International Foodservice Editorial Council and Kellogg’s. She graduated with an associate’s degree from Colorado Mountain College in May 2008. A 2005 graduate of Rifle High School, she is the daughter of Ray and Paula Chelewski of Rifle, Colo.

Brinton is a senior in mechanical and nuclear engineering and vocal music performance with a minor in Chinese. He is president of engineering student council; Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer and More; Global Zero and men’s glee club. He also is a student senator, candidate for student body president and member of Phi Kappa Phi honor society. He has been a member of Silver Key sophomore leadership honorary and Chimes junior honorary. He has been named the outstanding freshman and outstanding sophomore of the K-State department of music and the Dow Outstanding Junior of the department of mechanical and nuclear engineering. He is a McNair Scholar and a Multicultural Engineering Program Scholar. He has received the American Society of Mechanical Engineers national scholarship and American Nuclear Society national scholarship. He also has received the $6,000 K-State honors scholarship and was a 2008 Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholar. Brinton is the son of Stephen and Peggy Jo Brinton of Perry, Iowa.

K-State ranks first in the nation among 500 state universities and seventh overall with 31 students winning Truman scholarships since the program began in 1977. In 1996, the Truman Foundation named K-State a Truman Scholar Honor Institution. K-State was among the inaugural group of 17 schools, which were chosen from the more than 450 colleges that have produced Truman scholars, to receive this title.