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Two College of Health Sciences Students Named Top Ten Scholars

Ten outstanding Boise State University graduating seniors, including two from the College of Health Sciences, were recognized for their exceptional academic success at the annual Top Ten Scholars reception at 4:30 p.m. Friday, April 21, in the Stueckle Sky Center.

The scholars, joined by their parents and professors, gathered for a reception that recognizes the students’ academic excellence and the tremendous influence specific faculty members have had on their success. It is a unique opportunity each year to bring together many of Boise State’s best and brightest students and teachers.

Presented by the Alumni Association, the awards ceremony featured remarks from each student honoree as well as remarks from President Bob Kustra, Honors College Dean Andrew Finstuen and Lisa Gardner, executive director of the Boise State Alumni Association and Office of Alumni Relations.

Students are nominated by their academic deans and are subject to rigorous review by a selection committee. To qualify for consideration, a student must have a 3.8 or higher grade point average. Nominees are then reviewed based on academic breadth of coursework, research, creative works and publications, presentations at professional meetings or conferences, and extracurricular community and campus service.

“Student recipients should feel extremely proud knowing that they are deemed the top of their graduating class,” said Gardner. “They have had extraordinary experiences through their undergraduate studies with Boise State University and we hope that they continue to share their wisdom and energy with their colleagues and with their alma mater as they move through their life and career paths as Boise State alumni and continue to represent the university’s highest standards.”

Samantha Wicks

Samantha Wicks
Degree: Bachelor of science in health sciences, bachelor of arts in Spanish and a minor in psychology
Honored Faculty: Scott Conger, assistant professor, Department of Kinesiology

Coming to Boise State from Anchorage, Alaska, Wicks competed as a member of the Boise State swimming and diving team for four years and was a team captain for her final season. During three of those years, she represented Boise State at the NCAA championship meet. Wicks received All-Mountain West honors for each semester she participated, is a three-time Mountain West Scholar-Athlete and was named the 2016 Mountain West Swimmer of the Year. In addition, she is a three-time Scholastic All-American and was named to the 2016 Academic All-American Third Team. She finished her swimming career at the 2016 Olympic Trials. Wicks now works with the Boise State swimming team as a volunteer.

Wicks spent the fall 2016 semester studying in Costa Rica where she advanced her fluency in Spanish. The time spent living in Costa Rica has influenced her plans for the future. Wicks is currently in a program off-campus to become a certified Spanish medical interpreter so she can work with Spanish-speaking people.

Lauren Hosek

Lauren L. Hosek
Degree: Bachelor of science in biology with an emphasis in human biology and bachelor of science in pre-medical studies
Honored Faculty: Don Warner, associate professor, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry

Originally from Eagle, Hosek is an active member of the Boise State Honors College, has served as a peer mentor for the past three years and currently sits on the Honors College Advisory Board.

Hosek is the current chapter director of Strive for College, an organization she joined as a freshman that mentors high school students through their college application process. She has helped expand the program from 19 college mentors the first semester to 250 college mentors the following year and has personally mentored four high school students herself. She also has served as the CEO of the American Red Cross Club where she organized blood drives throughout the year.

Hosek began her research in a biochemistry lab, testing the effectiveness of drug candidates on Giardia and Entamoeba enzymes via UV Vis spectroscopy. After completing her organic chemistry classes and receiving the 2015 Organic Chemistry Student of the Year award, she was hired as a summer research assistant where she synthesized anticancer analogs targeting metastatic breast cancer. Since then, Hosek has spent more than 1,300 hours in the lab and will present at seven research conferences, including two national conferences. She is co-authoring a manuscript anticipated to be submitted by June 2017. 

To read about the other eight 2017 Top Ten Scholars, visit Update.