Four Texas A&M University seniors were honored this week by LAUNCH with some of the university’s most distinguished student awards: The Class of ’80 E. King Gill Selfless Service Award, the Brown-Rudder Award and the Gates-Muller Award. The awardees were honored during a virtual ceremony Monday.
This year’s winners are:
Class of ’80 E. King Gill Selfless Service Award – Alexandra Ramos
Ramos, a biomedical engineering major from Coppell, Texas, will be graduating with University Honors and Engineering Honors and then heading to medical school as part of the Texas A&M EnMed Program.
Ramos has been a mentor, ambassador and fundraiser for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, helping to raise more than $5 million, and has traveled to Rwanda to repair medical equipment and train users, and designed and installed a hospital-wide water filter.
She is the co-founder, entrepreneurial manager and food nutrition coordinator for TAMU Urban Farms United, an organization that focuses on alleviating hunger in the Brazos Valley by using vertical tower gardens to produce fresh fruits and vegetables. The organization has donated 1,362 heads of lettuce, 568 heads of greens, and 117 pounds of fruits and vegetables to the 12th Can food pantry and other organizations. TAMU Urban Farms United is part of the Hunger Consortium housed in LAUNCH.
Brown-Rudder Award – Joshua Korb and Mark Sterling
Korb, a biomedical sciences major from Burleson, Texas, is a University Honors student, a University Scholar, and a Craig and Galen Brown Foundation Scholar.
He has served as a Maroon Coat, a member of TANSA, and as President of the Texas A&M Men’s Club Volleyball team. Korb is president and founder of the Brown Foundation Freshman Leadership Organization and has served as a mentor through five different organizations. Korb has conducted research into glioblastoma therapies at Houston Methodist Hospital in Houston and will be starting medical school this fall.
His references speak of him as “humility personified,” “a mentor with great empathy who provides a safe culture for everyone,” and “a natural leader.”
Sterling is a business honors major from Mansfield, Texas, and a Craig and Galen Brown Foundation Scholar.
He has served and participated extensively in programs in the MSC such as the Spencer Leadership Conference, MSC Hospitality, Business Associates, and Budget Review Team. Sterling served as chair of the MSC Aggie Leaders of Tomorrow and Fish Camp, and most recently as MSC President, receiving several awards for his work. Pre-COVID, he worked as an English teacher in China.
His references speak to his willingness “to address tough issues,” his ability to see “issues from multiple perspectives” and his ability “to make every individual feel welcome and loved.”
Post-graduation, Sterling has accepted a position in Teach for America.
Gates-Muller Award – Shelby Lepley
Lepley is an agricultural economics honors major and an undergraduate research scholar from College Station. She is a Buck Weirus Spirit awardee, the Outstanding Senior for the Department of Agricultural Economics, and the College of Agriculture & Life Sciences Senior Merit awardee.
She has completed ANRP internships with the United Nations in Rome and with Congressman Kevin Brady in Washington, D.C., and held numerous leadership roles in multiple MSC and college programs, including the presidency of Texas A&M 4H.
Her references attest to her “poise,” “extraordinary dedication to service,” and “leadership that was “instrumental in creating positive change.”
The Class of ’80 E. King Gill Award was established in 2019 to honor the graduating senior who most exemplifies the core value of Selfless Service during the student’s undergraduate career at Texas A&M.
The Brown Foundation-Earl Rudder Memorial Outstanding Student Award was established in 1970 as the highest honor bestowed upon a graduating senior at Texas A&M. The award honors outstanding senior students who exemplify the leadership, patriotism, fortitude, courage, humility, love of Texas A&M, and willingness to uphold the principles for which Texas A&M stands as exemplified by James Earl Rudder during his lifetime. Gen. Earl Rudder, a World War II hero, served as president of Texas A&M from 1959 until his death in 1970.
And The Robert Gates-Muller Family Outstanding Student Award was established in 2007 through a gift from the Muller family of Galveston to provide public recognition to an outstanding senior graduating from Texas A&M who has demonstrated those qualities of leadership, patriotism, courage, and service to country, school, and nation exemplified by Robert M. Gates who served as president of Texas A&M from 2002 until 2006 when he was named U.S. Secretary of Defense.