University of Southern Indiana

Student Spotlight

Two students enrolled in the Health Services program at the University of Southern Indiana recently received university-wide recognition.

Horizontal -web -paulPaul Fletcher received the USI Adult Learner Scholarship, which is offered annually for adult learners to recognize their academic achievement and provide financial assistance as they work to complete an associate's or bachelor's degree.

Fletcher, a student majoring in Health Services with a specialization in Gerontology, has a desire for lifelong learning and ambition to contribute to the field of gerontology. During the Fall 2014 semester, he wrote a 10-page literature review for a gerontology course on the topic, “life enrichment for long-term care residents.”

His instructor, Dr. Katie Ehlman, said, “Going beyond the class requirements, Paul has agreed to continue to work on his paper in order to submit it for a student paper award sponsored by Sigma Phi Omega, national academic honor and professional society in gerontology.” Fletcher intends to present his paper at the 2016 National Association for Gerontology in Higher Education meeting.

“When I first met Paul, he worked successfully in the grocery store business and had a steady position in this capacity,” said Ehlman. “His commitment to gerontology has grown. He courageously made a jump from his grocery position to a position in long-term care where he now works directly with residents in a life enrichment department.”

Fletcher plans to apply to USI’s Occupational Therapy program upon graduating with his undergraduate degree. 


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Batool Almanea of Saudi Arabia was named the 2015 Peace Ambassador by the  USI Center for International Programs. The Peace Ambassador Award was created to recognize an outstanding international student whose actions and involvement in campus and community life have contributed to greater cross-cultural awareness and to an increased understanding of the world, its peoples and traditions.

Almanea was recognized for her academic excellence and for the impact she made on the community while serving as an intern at West River Health Campus, a continuing care retirement community. While completing her internship, her actions and words opened the doors of cultural exchange to over 250 staff members and residents at that facility.

Almanea’s supervisor said, “Words alone will never be able to describe how delightful and amazing this young woman truly is. One of the things that has impressed the most is her eagerness to learn about our country and beliefs without judgment. We all believe we have made a life-long friend in Batool.”

Almanea is pursuing a B.S. degree in Health Services with a specialization in Public Health.

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