Medalists all came to the University of Washington through the Robinson Center for Young Scholars.
University of Washington freshman, sophomore, and junior medalists were recently selected for their high scholastic standing and difficulty of coursework. They all entered the university through the Robinson Center for Young Scholars, a program that helps students from 7th through 10th grades enter the university. This is the first time that the freshman, sophomore, and junior medalists all came to the UW through early entrance programs.
Eric Lei is the freshman medalist; Joanne Hsu is the sophomore medalist; and Jane Hung is the junior medalist. The president’s medalists are two graduating seniors and are announced close to commencement.
The freshman medal is awarded to the sophomore who has the highest scholastic standing for the first year of his or her coursework. The sophomore medal is awarded to the junior with the highest scholastic standing for the first two years of his or her coursework and the junior medal goes to the senior with the highest scholastic standing for the first three years of his or her coursework. Selection of the medalists is based primarily on grade point average but rigor and quality of the student’s program are additional considerations.
Eric Lei, Freshman Medalist
Majors: Computer science and economics
Hometown: Bellevue, WA
Eric Lei entered the University of Washington after 10th grade through the Robinson Center’s UW Academy. He describes receiving the freshman medal as his “first real accomplishment” as a UW undergraduate. Pushing himself in his classes and participating in research are important factors for Eric in his undergraduate experience and he is actively pursuing research opportunities that will enable him to apply classroom concepts to real-world applications. He is a member of the investment club Husky Traders, completed an economics research internship in which he analyzed teachers’ union bargaining contracts, and is a former tutor for elementary school math. This summer, Eric will intern as a programmer for Qualcomm. After graduation, Eric would like to work for a few years and then enter graduate school for either computer science or economics. He enjoys computers, math, chess, and fantasy books.
Joanne Hsu, Sophomore Medalist
Hometown: Battle Ground, WA
Additional Honors/Awards: Mary Gates Research Scholar, Caryl and Herschel Roman Research Scholar (UW Genome Sciences), NASA Summer Undergraduate Research Scholar, UW Honors Program, Awarded admittance to UW Early Entrance Program
Joanne Hsu entered the University of Washington at age 14 through the Robinson Center’s Early Entrance Program. She is an undergraduate researcher in genome sciences in the lab of Judit Villen, assistant professor of genome sciences. Joanne volunteers at Harborview Medical Center where she studies sleep apnea. She also plays violin with the UW Symphony and enjoys sports, particularly as a Robinson Center Ultimate Frisbee player and Husky football fan.
Jane Hung, Junior Medalist
Majors: Math and physics
Hometown: Seattle, WA
Additional Honors/Awards: 2011 Goldwater Scholar, Washington Research Fellowship, Mary Gates Research Scholar, NASA Space Grant
Jane Hung entered the UW at age 16, after 10th grade at Roosevelt High School. “Coming in as a freshman,” Jane writes, “I wanted to take advantage of the thing that makes the UW world renowned: research.” This goal has led Jane to research opportunities in Xiaosong Li’s computational chemistry lab. She has authored a couple of published papers and worked for a startup in San Francisco. In addition to her academic and research endeavors, Jane is the president of the Free Radicals Chemistry Club and she and her fellow officers plan and organize the Dawg Daze nitrogen ice cream events among other club activities. She played on an intramural soccer team with other math majors and is a member of the Phi Beta Kappa honor society. She plans to attend MIT for a Ph.D. in chemical engineering.
About the Robinson Center for Young Scholars
The Robinson Center for Young Scholars is a pioneer and an international leader in recognizing and serving the needs of gifted young pre-college and college students by providing academic programs and information to gifted students, particularly students entering the University of Washington after 7th, 8th, or 10th grade. The Robinson Center is housed within Undergraduate Academic Affairs.