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Dean's Scholars Alumni Letter

Dean's Scholars Alumni Letter

Dear Alumni:

I am pleased to reflect on another great year for the Dean's Scholars Honors Program. We have continued many of the DS traditions that generations of Dean's Scholars have enjoyed, as well as broken new ground. Each Friday, we continue to meet with leading UT scholars to eat lunch and discuss exciting research. DSers also meet to discuss their own research at RESULTS, and also for regular DS outings, game nights, sports events, high-school tutoring, and other activities.

We kicked off the academic year with the Welcome Picnic, as a full class of 40 new Dean's Scholars joined our ranks. They were then honored again in early September, as Ann and I welcomed the Dean's Scholars to the Freshman Dinner at our home, where DSers helped prepare a meal that was enjoyed by DSers and DS-associated faculty.

In October, we had a fantastic outing to McDonald Observatory in the Davis Mountains. In addition to a tour of the research telescopes, we hiked in the Nature Conservancy's Davis Mountains Preserve, and enjoyed a hayride and cookout at the Prude Ranch. Then, perfectly clear west Texas skies gave us perfect conditions to enjoy the McDonald Star Party.

November brought our Holiday Party and Dance, as DSers ate and danced and celebrated the end of the semester. We will share our musical and artists talents (or attempts) at Musicale in late February, with a wonderful display of musical instruments and styles, and in March I'll again lead DS students on another weekend outing, this time a camping trip to Garner State Park.

On April 25, we're excited to host renowned physicist and Nobel laureate Dr. Rainer Weiss in our Distinguished Lecture Series. And in May we'll finish off the semester with another Senior Dinner, where all the graduating DSers tell us about their future plans (and give other DSers advice about what they've learned).

I hope that these events bring back happy memories of your time in Dean's Scholars. Our goal has always been to provide a happy and productive environment for students to learn how to be scientists…so that they can go out and change the world. I hope that Dean's Scholars provided that kind of environment for you, through our seminars, activities, field trips, dinners, lunches, discussions, honors thesis, honors classes, and your interactions with fellow Dean's Scholars and faculty.

Best wishes to you all,

David Hillis, Director
Dean's Scholars Honors Program

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Monday, 30 January 2023

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