Jack Kent Cooke Scholar joins Campus

Published: November 02, 2020 | Author: Savannah Byers | Read Time: 3 minutes

Kasia Watson, SUU freshmanKasia Watson has always been a high-achiever and earned a place in the Jack Kent Cooke Youth Scholar program, and later a coveted Jack Kent Cooke College scholarship. With many doors open to attend prestigious universities across the world, Watson chose to attend Southern Utah University for its excellent programs and individualized support for each student.

Watson grew up in Ivins, Utah, about one hour away from SUU. She attended Snow Canyon High School and graduated with the class of 2020- completing the end of her senior year online. Watson plays the piano, cello, and guitar and was involved throughout high school with madrigal choir, musical theater, science olympiad, and spoken word poetry competitions.

“Being in the graduating class of 2020 was really strange,” said Watson. “One day I was going to class, hanging out with friends and planning my future, then overnight everything changed and I had to quickly learn to adapt. I was very grateful for the way my peers and my school staff reacted to the changes that were happening and that we were able to remain positive. There was so much support for the class of 2020 and I am so grateful for the time and effort people put in to make our senior year as memorable and as special as it could be.”

In the 7th grade, Watson learned about the Jack Kent Cooke Young Scholars program from her piano teacher. This exclusive, pre-college program begins in 7th grade and provides academic advising, funds for extracurricular activities, summer programs, and many other exciting opportunities for students through their senior year of high school.

After earning her place in the Youth Scholars program, Watson attended summer classes at several major universities including Brown, Johns Hopkins, and the American Leadership Academy in Greece. Watson was later invited to apply for the Jack Kent Cooke College Scholarship for high-achieving high school seniors.

This individualized scholarship pays up to $40,000 per semester for tuition, housing, fees, and other expenses. She decided to put her hard-earned scholarship toward SUU, a university in her own backyard.

Watson learned more about SUU after getting involved in the Governor’s Honors Academy the summer before her senior year. She fell in love with SUU’s campus, professors, and overall atmosphere after the week-long program.

“SUU really does do a great job of making sure every student feels like they not only have a place, but a home here on campus,” said Watson. “Coming to SUU was one of the best decisions I have ever made and, as a Presidential Ambassador, I love getting to watch prospective students fall in love with our school just like I did.”

As a freshman, Watson is already involved on campus as a Presidential Ambassador. Presidential Ambassadors give campus tours to prospective students. She currently hasn’t declared a major and is focusing on her general education courses, but she is interested in the social sciences and psychology.

“Kasia has been a great addition to the Presidential Ambassador Program here at SUU,” said Shaun Wright, presidential ambassador advisor. “During our Leadership Weekend, she stood out and earned a position on our team. From the first day of our retreat, to each time she gives a tour, Kasia spends time getting to genuinely know those around her. She has fallen in love with SUU, and it is amazing watching her share that love with others on Campus Tours or Red Riots.”

Learn more about SUU’s first-year experience.

Tags: College of Humanities and Social Sciences Student Affairs

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