Pratt School Welcomes Class of 2006

The Pratt School of Engineering welcomed one of its most accomplished
classes with the start of classes Aug. 26. Two hundred and eighty-six students joined over 720 sophomores, juniors and seniors this academic year.

This year’s matriculating class also had the highest SAT scores in the
Pratt School’s 63 year history. The middle quartile SAT scores for the
entering class range from 1400 to 1530, with 92 percent of the incoming
students in the upper 10 percent of their high school class. Women make
up just under a quarter of the incoming class and black students make up
8 percent, both significantly above the national average.

"The size of the applicant pool for the Class of 2006 was an all time high,
leading to the matriculation of 286 outstanding students," said Phil Jones,
senior associate dean for education. "This class is distinguished by
being the most diverse Pratt has seen in terms of students of color.
Additionally, based on SAT scores and other metrics, this is the most
academically talented class in the history of the engineering school."

The class of 2006 is full of students who have established themselves as
future leaders of science and engineering. The new class includes Teo
Shiyi, 19, one of four recipients of Singapore’s distinguished Presidential
Scholarship. Last year, Shiyi won the gold medal at the international
biology Olympiad in Belgium, where he represented Singapore.

The class also includes two University Scholars and one Benjamin N.
Duke Scholar. The University Scholars Program, endowed through a 1998
gift from Duke Trustee Melinda French Gates and her husband Bill Gates,
is designed to stimulate an interdisciplinary, intergenerational community
of scholars. University Scholars were selected for their ability to explore
new horizons and covers the full cost of tuition. This year’s University
Scholars from the Pratt School of Engineering are Yi Li of Fort Dodge,
Iowa and Michael Wilson McGahan of Gardiner, Mont.

The Pratt School’s newest B.N. Duke Scholar is Devin Christopher Odom
of Lexington, N.C. The award is given to students from North and South Carolina who demonstrate strong academic performance, outstanding leadership
ability and community involvement and covers full tuition, as well as a
strong in-school leadership program to enhance their studies.

Odom was president of the Central Davidson National Honor Society,
assistant director for the Lexington Youth Theater, senior class president,
Davidson County DARE Role Model, and was president of the Performing
Arts Society. Odom, who is also a member of the National Honor Society,
received the Eagle Scout Award and the Woodmen of TheWorld Award.