Kiersten Kuc Selected for MU Award for Academic Distinction

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Honor Recognizes Intellectual Curiosity and Academic Contributions

By Rebecca Dell

Columbia, Mo. (April 7, 2015) — Missouri School of Journalism sophomore Kiersten Kuc is one of 12 students selected for the University of Missouri‘s prestigious Award for Academic Distinction.

The award recognizes outstanding undergraduates for their intellectual curiosity and academic contributions to MU, as well as for motivating other students to contribute in similar ways.

Kiersten Kuc

Kiersten Kuc

Kuc conducts undergraduate research using psychophysiology and behavioral science methods to detect emotional and cognitive response to stimuli in the MediaBrain Lab. She is vice president of The Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi, vice president of academic excellence for the Theta Chapter of Kappa Kappa Gamma, a Walter Williams Scholar, an Outreach Student Recruitment Team ambassador, and an Honors College ambassador and Discovery Fellow.

Kuc, a strategic communication student, is on track to graduate a year and half early with a minor in business as well as with Honors, Multicultural and Digital Global Studies certificates. She is from Chesterfield, Missouri.

Kuc was the first MU freshman – and one of eight U.S. students – chosen for a US-UK Fulbright Commission Summer Institute to study at Cardiff, Aberystwyth and Bangor universities in the summer of 2014. She spent six weeks studying the Welsh media and its co-evolution with the rising demands of the young National Assembly for Wales.

Lynda Kraxberger, associate dean for undergraduate studies, nominated Kuc for the award.

“Kiersten has made her mark as an intellectually curious and active scholar,” Kraxberger said. “I’m proud of her accomplishments and that difference she makes in our academic community.”

Kuc and her fellow honorees will be recognized at an award ceremony on April 26.

“My research, inspired by the diverse scholars who surround me, enables me to contribute knowledge locally and internationally, and to answer questions that apply to both the MU community and an international audience,” Kuc said. “I’m grateful to have found incredible mentors in both Dr. Paul Bolls and Tim Parshall, who have continually offered guidance and pushed me to reach my academic goals.”

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