Wichita State News
Photo: Lainie Rusco
2012 Harry Gore Memorial Scholarship winners Whitney Wilson, left, and Caleb Smith.

Wichita State awards $48,000 Gore scholarships

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Kansas high school students Whitney Wilson and Caleb Smith have won Wichita State University’s Harry Gore Memorial Scholarships.

Wilson is a senior at Santa Fe Trail High School in Carbondale, Kan., and Smith is a senior at Wellsville High School in Wellsville, Kan.

The scholarships, awarded annually at Wichita State, recognize leadership and academic skills and are two of the largest undergraduate scholarships in Kansas.

Wilson and Smith will receive $12,000 a year for four years to attend Wichita State, totaling $48,000 each.

Whitney Wilson

Wilson is the daughter of Gary and Brenda Wilson. She is interested in studying dental hygiene at Wichita State.

She is president of her school’s National Honor Society chapter and is vice president of the Santa Fe Trail Student Council.

Wilson has remained active in numerous roles with the Burlingame 4-H Club and Osage County 4-H Club for the past 12 years.

Wilson’s 4-H leader Mary Frances Richmond said Wilson is a great role model for other youth.

“She is one of the most responsible, mature, capable and polite young individuals that I have had the opportunity to work with,” Richmond said.

She is also a drum major for her high school band, first chair bass clarinet and first chair tenor saxophone. In addition to music, Wilson enjoys sports. She is a state qualifier in cross country and track and field.

Wilson, who said she is driven to help those less fortunate, has volunteered nearly 200 hours at the Stormont-Vail HealthCare Center in Topeka. She hopes to someday open a non-profit focusing on dental care.

Tina McIver, Wilson’s gifted facilitator, said Wilson brings a multitude of good qualities to the table.

“Whitney possesses the personality and character traits that other people desire to emulate, making her a true leader in every sense of the word,” McIver said.

Caleb Smith

Smith is the son of Jason and Kim Smith. He plans to major in aerospace engineering at WSU.

Smith is treasurer of his school’s student council, as well as a member of the National Honor Society and Scholars Bowl team.

A basketball, cross country and track and field competitor, Smith has been part of the leadership team for the Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA) all four years of high school.

Smith, whose goals include working for NASA or an aerospace company, is his school’s lead design engineer for grades 10-12 for the national Real World Design Challenge.

Pam Davis, Smith’s gifted facilitator, took note of his strong work ethic, especially during the Real World Design Challenge.

“Caleb was driven to succeed and sometimes worked at the school all alone when his team was not there,” Davis said.

Smith also is the Worship Team guitarist at church and a food ministry volunteer for Helping Hands.

Sue Wright, Smith’s FCA Huddle leader, said Smith has the character and integrity to be an asset to any group or organization.

“Caleb has shown an ability to work well with others, to be dedicated to something that he believes in, to serve others, and to be a positive influence on those he comes in contact with,” Wright said.


Smith and Wilson competed in the one of the largest Distinguished Scholarship Invitationals in history, with 359 competitors.

To be invited to compete in the invitational, students had to have a 24 or higher ACT score and a minimum 3.5 cumulative GPA.

Gore scholarships have been awarded annually since 1954 to freshmen entering WSU who display outstanding potential for leadership. Theodore and Ralph Gore established the Harry Gore Memorial Scholarship in 1952.

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Created on Thursday, January 26, 2012; Last modified on Thursday, February 02, 2012