Mary Margaret Wilhite, a distinguished graduate of Alief Hastings High School, has been named the 1997-98 recipient of Sam Houston State University's prestigious Richard A. Cording Scholarship.

Wilhite was presented the scholarship by Christopher T. Baldwin, left, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, and Richard Cording, right, former dean, in whose honor the scholarship is given.

Wilhite, known as "Maggie" by friends and family, is an aspiring young thespian who plans to major in theatre this fall at SHSU. She was chosen from six scholarship finalists who demonstrated outstanding personal and academic success in high school. She is the daughter of Rhonda and Thomas Wilhite of Alief.

As a high school senior, Wilhite received the Texas State Founders Scholarship for Acting, an honor recognizing her as one of the most talented high school actresses in the state. This summer she plans to participate, on a national level, in duo interpretation theatrical competition.

The Richard A. Cording Endowed Scholarships were established in the spring of 1996 to honor the former dean of SHSU's College of Arts and Sciences. Dr. Richard Cording served as dean for 15 years before returning, in August of 1994, to a full-time teaching post as professor of philosophy. During his years at SHSU, he has touched the lives of many students.

Christopher Baldwin, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, said "Richard Cording's legacy of excellence, service, involvement and unselfishness is reflected in the students chosen as Cording scholars."

In addition to their strong academic performance, Cording scholars are chosen for making a significant difference in their schools and communities, and for gaining the respect of teachers and peers.

The scholarship winners receive $1000 for each of the four years they attend SHSU and are expected to maintain a high grade point average while completing their chosen academic programs.

The endowment is partially funded by an annual "Hoops for Scholars" fund-raising event sponsored by the college and the SHSU Ladykat basketball team. During the event, pledges are made based on the number of two- and three-point "hoops" scored by the Ladykats.

The 1997 Hoops for Scholars event raised over $22,000 for the scholarship fund.


Media Contact: Phillip Rollfing

May 20, 1997