The University of Arkansas Honors College selected 23 freshmen to participate in the Honors College Path Program, including Southeast Arkansas students.

“The Path Program is a mentoring initiative that recruits talented high school students from underrepresented populations,” according to the release.

The goal is to help participants achieve academic success at the U of A and join the Honors College.

U of A Path Scholars include these area students:

Jarod King of Pine Bluff, Pine Bluff High School, engineering major;

Kacie Wyrick of Sheridan, Sheridan High School, landscape architecture major;

Evelyn Johnson of Lake Village, Monticello High School, engineering major;

Breanna Kilgore of El Dorado, El Dorado High School, biomedical engineering major;

Nastajae Alderson of Huttig, Strong High School, psychology major;

Christopher Haywood of Hope, Hope High School, civil engineering major;

Kaleb Manley of Texarkana, Arkansas High School, engineering major.

“We are excited to welcome this high-achieving, motivated group of students to campus and to support them in their college journey,” said Xochitl Delgado Solorzano, the director of the Path Program. “These students hail from across the state of Arkansas, as well as Oklahoma and Missouri, and represent every academic college on campus.”

Thanks to a nearly $1 million grant from the National Science Foundation, 14 incoming Path freshmen who plan to major in the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics will each receive a renewable scholarship of $4,500 ($5,500 if they join the Honors College), according to the release.

The nine students who plan to study other disciplines will also receive academic scholarships of up to $5,500, thanks to $5.5 million in endowment from the Walton Family Charitable Support Foundation and gifts of $100,000 to $250,000 from former Honors College Dean Bob McMath and his wife, Linda; Lee and Beverly Bodenhamer; and Nick and Carolyn Cole. These scholarships will be renewed based on continued engagement with the Path Program and satisfactory academic progress, according to the release.

The incoming Path Scholars are currently participating in a five-week summer bridge program on campus, during which they are learning from top Honors College faculty in a course offering discipline-specific introductions to research.