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Engineering majors McPherson, Dawson named PTK All-Illinois for RLC

Rend Lake College engineering majors Blake McPherson (Mt. Vernon) and Alicia Dawson (Carterville) have been selected as Phi Theta Kappa All-Illinois Academic Team members. They will represent Rend Lake College’s Rho Xi Chapter as All-USA nominees at PTK’s upcoming All-Illinois Academic Team Banquet, April 11, in Springfield.

They’ll take the trip to Springfield together. But these two aren’t strangers. Since they are both in the Engineering Science program at RLC, their class schedules are identical. All-Illinois team members will be recognized at the banquet, at which time the winners of prestigious awards are announced.

“I like being involved and this seems like an awesome opportunity to represent Rend Lake College through Phi Theta Kappa,” McPherson said. “I joined because it’s the most well-known community college honor society. When transferring to a university — just for being a member of PTK — you qualify for more scholarships.”

“I was always told [PTK] offers great scholarships for transfer students and it looks really good on your applications for the future,” added Dawson, who is also a member of the Lady Warriors volleyball team. “I didn’t think I could do it but it was a task I put in front of myself and I’m glad I have the chance to do it with Rend Lake’s help.”

After RLC, both will transfer to a university where they will continue their engineering studies.

“Civil engineering,” she said. “I want to specialize in bridges and hopefully be a lead designer. I’m pretty intent on it — since junior high.”

“Next year I’m going to Missouri University of Science and Technology in Rolla,” he said. “I’ll be majoring in mechanical or aerospace engineering. It’s always been a dream of mine to work with airplanes and anything involving aviation.”