Weston Wright, a 2016 graduate who is currently in the MD/MBA dual degree program at IUPUI, also found he was able to gain connections with peers and have resources through staff by being in the Bepko Scholar program.
“After touring IUPUI, I was very impressed with the science faculty on my tour and the IUPUI Honors College. They shared their passion for undergraduate education and distinct desire to help students be successful,” Wright said. “At IUPUI, there is a large pre-medical population allowing students to be surrounded by a network of peers with like interests.”
With 348 Bepko Scholars since 2010, the impact of the student community and passionate staff can be seen when considering that 338 of the 348 students have stayed at IUPUI.
Outside of peer and faculty connections, Wright found that the exclusive study areas provided, travel abroad opportunities, and course experiences all helped play a role in his pursuit of education.
“I recall taking honors courses in chemistry and biology where I worked on projects with classmates I currently see and interact within the workforce today! It has been great to have a network of students both in the Bepko program and IUPUI Honors College,” Wright said.
Both Wright and Lawson recommend that students apply to be a Bepko Scholar. Lawson found that the connections made within the program can help students succeed now and in the future. Wright said that the program has “the pillars of dedication, integrity, leadership, and a commitment to service."
Wright said that IUPUI Honors College events, such as playing games, hosting a BBQ with a bounce house, carving pumpkins, and finals study breaks events also gave students support. Other support, such as the dean’s support and Honors College advisor support, helped students be successful and obtain their education.
Lawson also highlighted that her favorite aspect of being a Bepko Scholar was the community.
“Immediately upon arriving at IUPUI, and for the duration of my time thereafter, I had others to volunteer with, attend campus events with, and explore Indianapolis with,” Lawson said. “Being a part of the Bepko program helped make our campus feel smaller and more like home.”
The IUPUI Honors College and the Bepko Scholars program “focus on a holistic approach to education,” which Wright has carried with him since being a Bepko Scholar. He found that this approach, along with the research, volunteer, and experiential learning, allows students to be active in the community and in the classroom.
“. . . the Bepko program encourages critical thinking, curiosity, and imagination—a powerful triad for making positive change in the world,” Wright said.