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Saylors and Fulkerson earn prestigious fellowships

Two UTC students have been awarded undergraduate fellowships by The Fund for Theological Education, a highly competitive national program that provides each student with support of up to $3,000 for the remainder of each fellow's undergraduate career.

Darris Saylors
Darris Saylors, a major in Religion, and Kelly Fulkerson, a major in English, both University Honors students, are among the rare number of competitors named from the same institution. Only 71 Undergraduate Fellowships were awarded. Besides UTC, the only other institutions with two student winners are Swarthmore College, Oberlin College, and Davidson College, according to Dr. William Harman, head of the Department of Philosophy and Religion.

Kelly Fulkerson
"National competition for the Fund for Theological Education Undergraduate Fellowships is intense,” said Harman. “Winning one of these coveted awards is a remarkable honor. Both students should feel justifiably proud. That the College of Arts and Sciences at UTC would have two students receiving the Fellowship is also quite a distinction. The only other institutions with two winners each are among the top private, elite undergraduate schools in the country. We're for sure doing something right!"

The two will attend The Summer Conference on Excellence in Ministry at Eden Theological Seminary, St. Louis, Missouri. The annual gathering brings together Undergraduate and Ministry Fellows and distinguished theologians, pastors, and ecclesial leaders for several days of thoughtful exchange, including lectures, worship, theological forums, recreational activities, and informal advisory relationships.

“I am most excited about the conference itself,” said Saylors, an Ooltewah High School graduate. “We will meet with first and second year Master’s of Divinity students, theologians and seminarians, who can explain what a theological education entails.”

Fulkerson, a graduate of Germantown High School, agrees. As she looks ahead, her long term goal is to thoroughly explore her academic options. “I am interested in studying world religions, specifically Christianity,” Fulkerson said.

Saylors and Fulkerson will have the option to reapply for a total of $5,000 of graduate school support for at least two years. Graduate school support is contingent on satisfactory completion of the first undergraduate year and upon a statement of intent to pursue graduate work.

April 29, 2005

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