Texas A&M University has presented its top three student awards — recognizing outstanding accomplishments in academics, leadership and service by graduating seniors – to Andrew Baxter of Franklin, Kallie Fuchs of Burton and Patrick Neil Rabroker of Temple.
All awards were approved by President Michael K. Young and presented at the Learning communities, Academic excellence, Undergraduate research opportunities, National fellowships, Capstones and Honors programs (LAUNCH) recognition ceremony that serves as a climax for the regular school year.
Brown Foundation-Earl Rudder Memorial Outstanding Student Awards, which include cash gifts of $5,000 each, were presented to Baxter and Fuchs. The award honors top students who exemplify the leadership and related traits of the late Gen. Earl Rudder, a World War II hero who served as president of Texas A&M from 1959 until his death in 1970.
The Robert Gates-Muller Family Outstanding Student Award, which also includes a $5,000 gift, was presented to Rabroker. The award was established through a gift from the Muller family of Galveston to provide public recognition to the outstanding seniors graduating from Texas A&M who have demonstrated those qualities of leadership, patriotism and courage exemplified by Robert M. Gates. He served as president of the university from 2002 until 2006, when he was named U.S. Secretary of Defense.
Baxter is graduating with both a Bachelor of Science degree in physics and a Bachelor of Arts degree in honors mathematics and a minor in business administration. He is noted as an accomplished intellectual and a selfless leader. One of his letter of recommendation writers wrote “there are a few instances throughout a lifetime in which people find themselves encountering an incredibly high caliber individual that truly makes them question their own sense of character and accomplishment.”
His academic achievement is demonstrated in coursework, in capstone projects such as the Undergraduate Service Scholar program, in undergraduate research through the Aggie Research Scholars and at the Budapest Semester in Mathematics. He is the first Mitchell National Fellowship finalist from Texas A&M.
Baxter served as director of Freshman Leaders in Christ and a New Student Conference mentor in addition to being a student instructor. His devotion to Aggie traditions can be seen in hosting an honored family the night of Muster. He has demonstrated his patriotism as a public policy intern in Washington, D.C.
Fuchs is graduating with a Bachelor of Science degree in nutritional sciences and a minor in applied learning in science, technology, engineer and mathematics. She is described as an “academic powerhouse” and a dedicated leader. One of her nomination letter writers describes her as fitting John Quincy Adams’ description of a leader as one who inspires “others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more.” Another letter states that she “represents leadership, embodies integrity, walks the walk of respect and is loyal.”
It was noted that Fuchs demonstrated her fortitude, courage and integrity as the election commissioner for Student Government, her dedication to Aggie values as the founder of Farmers Fight, the Agricultural Advocacy organization, and her commitment to selfless service through her work with the American Legion Auxiliary Girls State program.
Her embodiment of involvement and impact throughout the Aggie community resulted in her being honored by a Buck Weirus Spirit award in 2015. Her academic record reveals remarkable accomplishments in challenging coursework and undergraduate research which led to her earning the 2014 Texas A&M Gathright Scholar award and 2014 Class of 2016 Class Star award for academics.
Rabroker, the Gates-Muller honoree, is graduating with a double major – a Bachelor of Business Administration in accounting and business honors and a Master of Science in accounting – as part of a five-year degree program. He is a described as a “remarkable scholar” who exemplifies the character and living legacy of Dr. Robert M. Gates. He was defined by his nominators as “a leader who walks with confidence, maintains humility, exudes passion, selflessly serves others and strives to make the world around him greater.”
Another supporter wrote that he has “never encountered a student with more determination, drive and pure leadership ability.”
It was said Rabroker has proven his “serving spirit” through his involvement and leadership roles as the operations executive for Big Event, the head director for Junior E-Walk, a Business Honors Peer Leader, and a Fish Camp counselor. He has demonstrated a passion for Texas A&M and a willingness to uphold the principles for which it stands, earning him a Buck Weirus Spirit Award in 2014. Last year, his academic excellence was honored with the presentation of the prestigious Gathright Scholar Award. He is graduating with both bachelor’s and master’s degrees, as a double-major and an Honors student.
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