Austin Hopkins Awarded Peoria Academy of Science Memorial Scholarship
May 27, 2022
PEORIA, Ill. – Eureka College’s Austin Hopkins has been awarded the Peoria Academy of Science Memorial Scholarship.
The Peoria Academy of Science Memorial Scholarship Fund annually awards a $1,000 scholarship to a student from the Tri-County Area who is a member of one of the Academy Sections or a physical science major at Bradley University, Eureka College or Illinois Central College.
Hopkins received the honor last month, along with last year’s award winner, Grace Nieukirk, at the Peoria Academy of Science’s first in-person award banquet since before the pandemic. He was joined at the event by EC Assistant Professor of Environmental Science Dr. Katy Everett and EC Professor of Biology Dr. Paul Small.
Hopkins, who just finished his sophomore year at Eureka, is an environmental science and business administration major. Last year, he was named a Phillips University Legacy Scholar. In addition to being an exceptional student, Hopkins is a standout linebacker/safety on the football team and a Northern Athletics Collegiate Conference All-Academic honoree.
“It is a great pleasure to be awarded this year's Peoria Academy of Science scholarship,” Hopkins said. “After meeting with members of the PAS, I was so honored to be representing such an esteemed group of individuals. This scholarship will not only help me further my academics at Eureka College, but also provide me with a great network of scientists and professionals to reach out to in the future.”
Hopkins was chosen by an Academy committee based on his scholarship, Academy participation, school and civic activities, and character references. He is the 13th Eureka College student to receive the Peoria Academy of Science Memorial Scholarship, following Nieukirk (2021), Abigail Hilton (2019), Luke Brodahl (2018), Mary McCarthy (2016), Elisabeth Grober (2014), Matt Dillard (2013), Riana Riffle (2011), Aaron Phelan (2010), Alyssa Wetteraur (2008), Travis Wilcoxen (2004), Catherine Schneider (1999) and Troy Allen Tyler (1992).
“Austin has been an amazing student leader on campus, from his involvement as a student worker with facilities, in charge of all campus recycling education and collection efforts, his participation on the football team, and his academics,” Everett said. “His hard work and dedication to success is evident, but his willingness to help lift up his peers is what sets him apart, in my view. Austin is the most deserving student for this scholarship, and I was more than proud to nominate him for the 2022 award.”
The Peoria Academy of Science Memorial Scholarship Fund was established in 1964 by Ervin and Martha Jackson as a living memorial for their son, Donald Jackson, an astronomy major at the University of Illinois, who died in an automobile accident that year. The Jacksons’ contributions in memory of their son and other contributions in memory of other Academy of Science members are invested and the dividends are used for an annual scholarship award.
Located in Eureka, Illinois, and chartered in 1855, Eureka College cultivates excellence in learning, service and leadership while providing students uniquely personalized and custom educational opportunities.
Originally founded by abolitionist members of Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), Eureka College holds the unique distinction of being the first college in Illinois and one of the first in the nation to admit men and women on an equal basis. The College, which is located on nearly 70 wooded acres in central Illinois, is the smallest of only 24 colleges and universities to ever award a bachelor’s degree to a future President of the United States.