In the 161 years the University of Notre Dame has been awarding degrees, never had there been an African-American as valedictorian. Until this year.
Katie Washington of Gary, Indiana carries a 4.0 GPA majoring in biology and minoring in Catholic social teaching.
According to the Northwest Indiana Times, Washington plans to continue her studies at Johns Hopkins University and follow in her father’s footsteps into medicine.
Washington says she’s humbled by the honor of being named valedictorian.
More information from Notre Dame University:
Katie Washington, a biological sciences major from Gary, Ind., has been named valedictorian of the 2010 University of Notre Dame graduating class and will present the valedictory address during Commencement exercises May 16 (Sunday) in Notre Dame stadium.
Washington, who earned a 4.0 grade point average, has a minor in Catholic Social Teaching. She has conducted research on lung cancer at the Cold Spring Harbor labs and performed genetic studies in the University’s Eck Institute for Global Health on the mosquito that carries dengue and yellow fever. She is the co-author of a research paper with David Severson, professor of biological sciences.
Washington directs the Voices of Faith Gospel Choir at Notre Dame, is a mentor/tutor for the Sister-to-Sister program at South Bend’s Washington High School and serves as the student coordinator of the Center for Social Concerns’ “Lives in the Balance: Youth Violence and Society Seminar.”
Upon graduation, Washington plans to pursue a joint M.D./Ph.D program at Johns Hopkins University.