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UT Welcomes 2022 Cohort of Academy for Global Scholars

by Jason Moody

The Academy for Global Scholars (AGS), a program for first-year, first-generation students, provides a unique opportunity for global engagement and individual growth. AGS welcomes its third-ever class this semester and is excited to introduce you to each student.

Sixteen scholars join AGS and will engage as a cohort in consistent meetings this fall which will include guest faculty and researcher lectures, service activities, general education courses and finally a study abroad experience in Costa Rica in May of 2023. In the fall semester of 2023, scholars will participate in Discovery Day, a campus-wide event where undergraduate researchers present recent projects to their peers.

The Center for Global Engagement partners with the Office of Undergraduate Admissions, the Academic Success Center, the Division of Diversity and Engagement, the Smith International Center for International Sustainable Agriculture and other select university offices in delivering the AGS program. The university provides financial support for students who are invited to participate in the program.

If you have questions about the AGS program, please contact Adam Willcox, Research Associate Professor, or Sara Mulville, Program Administrator, at the Smith International Center for International Sustainable Agriculture. They can be reached at

AGS is excited to introduce the 2022 cohort of the Academy for Global Scholars below.

Academy for Global Scholars 2022 Cohort

Eliza Bettis

I am from Gatlinburg, Tennessee, only 45 minutes away from campus. I love doing anything that has to do with the outdoors like hiking, fishing, and camping. I play tennis, soccer, and basketball. I am very open to trying new things and new activities and participating in the Academy of Global Scholars will give me that opportunity. I am beyond excited for this new chapter of my life!

Major: Biological sciences

Arrionna Cheatham

During high school I was involved in the National Honors Society. I also love volunteering. I have been a dancer since eighth grade. I love listening to music and watching TV during my free time. I am a huge family person. I wanted to be involved in AGS for the cultural experience and friendships I will gain!

Major: Sociology with a concentration in criminology

Chase Crouch

I’m from Memphis, Tennessee. I am a very outgoing person and absolutely love physical activities. I am very dedicated, polite, and get along with people.

Major: Supply chain management


Kyla Eaton

I’m from Las Vegas, Nevada and plan to major in pre-veterinary sciences. I’m in the Chancellor’s Honors Program and a member of the Delta Gamma sorority. With a passion for serving, I dedicated my time to Best Friends Animal Society in hopes of making every animal shelter no-kill by 2025. I’ve been a dancer for the last eleven years and I love to read, spend time outside and play with my three dogs. I’m excited to travel abroad and get involved with the leadership opportunities that the University of Tennessee, Knoxville has to offer.

Major: Pre-veterinary Sciences

Catherine Hoo

I am from Bridgewater, New Jersey and my major is social work. After I complete my degree, I hope to go into military social work. I come from a military family so being able to give back to a community that gave my family so much is really important to me. I decided to join the AGS program because of its values and how different it was from other programs at the university. They really emphasize global and community acceptance which is something I loved.

Major: Social work

Sydney Ivory

I am a first-generation college student from Covington, Tennessee. I enjoy singing and traveling. While I am on a pre-med track, I’m involved in the Academy of Global Scholars and the Multicultural Mentoring Program. I’m excited for new experiences at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.

Major: Psychology

Gracie Jones

I am a political science major. After pursuing my undergraduate degree I hope to attend law school and work as an environmental lawyer.

Major: Political science


Logan Lett

I was born in Kingsport, Tennessee as the first of two children, including myself and my younger brother. I’ve always loved video games and developed an interest in international study by taking AP Spanish in high school. I joined AGS to obtain a once in a lifetime experience in Costa Rica and also to have an easier time breaking out of my shell.

Major: Computer science

Madison Meek

I am from Dunlap, Tennessee but attended an all-girl school in Chattanooga, Tennessee. I have a brother who also attends the University of Tennessee, Knoxville and is currently a sophomore.

Major: Biology


Kayden Newman

I’m from Nashville, Tennessee. A fun fact about me is that I’ve done competitive cheerleading for seven years.

Major: Architecture



Peter Pham

I am a first-generation Vietnamese student and have never left the United States, but I wish to explore the experiences and perceptions of all humans. I am somewhat fluent in Vietnamese and hope to learn other languages with help from Latin classes. I have participated in Scholar’s Bowl and volunteered in the VA for an entire summer. My current hobbies include playing the piano for twelve years, cello for five years, practicing drawing whenever I have time, listening to lo-fi music and playing story-based and exploration strategy games.

Major: Psychology

Alexa Powers

I am from Murfreesboro, Tennessee. I am a Forensic Anthropology major. I am also in the Pride of the Southland Marching Band and a member of the Army ROTC program here on Rocky Top. Outside of school I love spending time with family and friends. I look forward to meeting new people and having a great first year. Go Vols!

Major: Forensic anthropology

Yanet Ramirez Perez

I am from Memphis, Tennessee and  plan to major in Nursing and minor in Global Development.

I served as Founder and President of the Health Occupations Students of America (HOSA) chapter at my high school, and held leadership roles in the LatinX Affinity Club and Volunteer Club, which helped me attain over 150 hours of community service. I play soccer and tennis and helped the varsity soccer team reach the state championship.

I intern at a local clinic as a Spanish translator and I work as a babysitter. I am also a Community Health Ambassador with Health In All Spaces, an organization that focuses on creating COVID-19 responses through health literacy campaigns, where I helped hold a LatinX Community Health Event that educated and vaccinated the LatinX community in Memphis.

Major: Nursing

Sophia Roark

I am a first-year student from Knoxville, Tennessee currently on the exploratory track. I enjoy reading, traveling, and going to as many concerts as possible. I was the Vice President of National Honors Society and the President of my DECA chapter in my high school. I look forward to exploring different cultures and learning more about different parts of the world.

Major: Undecided

Vance Sisson

I am a first-year student from Clarksville, Tennessee and my major is chemical engineering. I want to become a successful engineer and I’m focused on a future in research and development. In my downtime, I like to spend time trying new foods and drinks. I also enjoy making music, playing video games, and learning new things about history and culture.

Major: Chemical engineering

DeLiyah Stephenson

I am originally from Kentucky but have always had the dream to attend the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. I’m interested in chemistry and plan to work in a research lab specifically focusing in neuroscience. I love to volunteer and work with children so I hope when I’m in Costa Rica we get to work with the young children there!

Major: Chemistry


Jason Moody (865-974-5752,