More than 60 students honored at Academic Awards Ceremony

April 20, 2004
Karen B. Eldridge, Director of News and Public Information

William Eric Johnson, a senior biology major at Maryville College, was presented with the distinguished LeQuire Award during the College’s Academic Awards Ceremony held April 17 in Wilson Chapel.

Johnson, the son of Bill and Brenda Johnson of Maryville, is a 2000 graduate of Maryville High School. He will graduate with a bachelor’s degree next month and has plans to enroll in medical school.

While at Maryville College, Johnson has been an active member of Tri Beta and the Fighting Scots baseball team. For two years, he has tutored peers at the College in physics.

Said Maryville College President Dr. Gerald W. Gibson when making the award presentation: “ [Johnson’s] advisor, Dr. Drew Crain, says he’s insightful – a trait that separates great biology students from average ones. Dr. Crain is also impressed by his advisee’s desire to go beyond the curriculum’s requirements and take classes just out of natural curiosity.”

The president explained that Johnson, although majoring in biology and minoring in chemistry, had taken upper-level math courses and even tutored peers in physics. And in talking about award winner’s academic performance, Gibson said he held one veteran professor’s record for highest cumulative points in an organic chemistry course in one semester.

“… Intent. Driven. Quiet. Extremely focused. Thorough. Someone who perseveres. A one-of-a-kind, fantastic student. This is how professors describe William Eric Johnson, this year’s LeQuire Award, ” Gibson concluded.

Established in 1987 by descendants and friends of Maryville physician Granville Dexter LeQuire and his wife Ellen Brickey LeQuire, the LeQuire Award includes a cash gift to help defray the expenses of applying to medical school and an engraved pewter julep cup.

Winners of the award are nominated by faculty members in the College’s humanities and science divisions.

Maryville College is ideally situated in Maryville, Tenn., between the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and Knoxville, the state's third largest city. Founded in 1819, it is the 12th oldest institution of higher learning in the South and maintains an affiliation with the Presbyterian Church (USA). Known for offering its students a rigorous and highly personal experience that includes an undergraduate research requirement, Maryville College is a nationally ranked institution of higher learning that successfully joins the liberal arts and professional preparation. Total enrollment for the fall 2016 semester is 1,198.