Murray State University has awarded Maggie Smith, of Paducah, with its prestigious Presidential Fellowship scholarship. It includes full tuition, housing and meals for up to four years at the university.

Smith, 18, was also recognized as a Paducah Bank Teen of the Week in February. She is a senior at McCracken County High School, and the daughter of Kerry and Ronna Smith.

“We are extremely proud of the incoming fall 2021 class of Presidential Fellowship scholarship recipients, as this group represents the very best in academic excellence and scholastic endeavors,” said Dr. Bob Jackson, the president of Murray State, in a news release.

According to Murray State, the students who are selected for the scholarship complete an application process that includes multiple in-person interviews. The scholarship recipients are responsible for conducting “extensive research projects” and for serving as leaders in the campus community.

“Our presidential fellows are all outstanding academic achievers, but they are also selected based on their demonstrated leadership potential and involvement in their communities,” said Dr. Warren Edminster, executive director of the Honors College, in a release.

“Presidential fellows engage in undergraduate research under the guidance of a faculty mentor and frequently publish their work before leaving Murray State,” Edminster added. “Besides excelling in research, presidential fellows invariably take leadership roles in student groups, ranging from the Student Government Association to Greek organizations.”

Incoming first-year students who have a minimum composite 28 ACT score (or 1250 SAT verbal and math combined score minimum), along with a 3.7 grade-point average on a 4.0 scale, are eligible to apply for the Presidential Fellowship scholarship, according to the university.

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