Press Release: Posted April 2017
Two Lorain County Community College students were recently named among the top community college students in the country in the All-USA Coca-Cola Community College Academic Team competition. They will each receive a scholarship and will attend a national conference.
Daniel Truitt, 21, of Vermillion, received the highest score of all community college students in Ohio and was named a 2017 New Century Scholar, one of only 50 students in the country to win the award.
Truitt is on the path to becoming a family physician. He earned a bachelor’s degree in biology from Bowling Green State University in December 2016 through LCCC’s University Partnership. He continues to take classes at LCCC in preparation to begin medical school in the fall. He carries a 4.0 grade point average in all his coursework. He was also named to the All-Ohio First Academic Team.
Truitt earned 17 college credits while in high school through LCCC’s College Credit Plus program at Firelands High School. It was the experiences he has in his LCCC courses during high school that led him to select LCCC and the University Partnership for his undergraduate degrees.
“Those courses sparked something in me that I didn’t know was there. When I found out that I could continue with LCCC and earn a bachelor’s degree in biology through LCCC’s Partnership, it was like all the pieces came together,” Truitt said.
He is active on campus with an undergraduate research group that studies toxic algae blooms in Lake Erie. He is a member of the LCCC Chapter of the American Society of Microbiology and served a semester as president of the LCCC Pre-Medical Club. He also volunteered at Mercy Regional Medical Center. He works as an LCCC tutor in chemistry, biology, and anatomy and physiology.
“All of this has been possible because I chose LCCC,” Truitt said. “There have been times when people ask me why I would come to a community college when I could have gone elsewhere, and I tell them about all the experiences that I’ve had that I wouldn’t have gotten at a large university.”
Truitt will be recognized as a New Century Scholar at the American Association of Community Colleges national conference in April in New Orleans and at the Phi Theta Kappa community college honor society conference in Nashville the same month.
Brandon Holcomb, 18, of Lorain, was named a 2017 Coca-Cold Academic Silver Team Scholar. He was also named to the All-Ohio First Academic Team.
Holcomb is a senior in Lorain County Early College High School, where he combines his love of music with his interest in scientific research. He will graduate in May with an Associate of Arts degree from LCCC. In June, he will earn his high school diploma.
Holcomb conducts genetic research as part of the LCCC Early Scientist HIV Research group with professor Harry Kestler, Ph.D. Through the group, Holcomb conducts high-level research – something he learned he enjoys.
“I joined the Early Scientists in the summer of my freshman year and discovered my passion for microbiology, particularly regarding the studies of virology, immunology and genetics,” Holcomb said.
He is also a member of the LCCC Chapter of the American Society of Microbiology and has presented his research findings at several conferences. He received the Honorable Mention award at the 59th Annual May Conference at John Carroll University. He is a member of the Phi Theta Kappa honor society.
Holcomb shares his love of music with his fellow students through Rock Lab, an after-school music program where he is an assistant instructor. He is active in the community with the Lorain County AIDS Taskforce and volunteering at local events, such as the Harvest Festival at LCCC.
Holcomb will be recognized as a national Silver Scholar at the Phi Theta Kappa community college honor society conference in Nashville in April.Holcomb plans to continue his education to eventually earn a Ph.D. in microbiology. He aspires to have a career in clinical research.