notre dame’s first black valedictorian

April 28, 2010

Yes, summer time is rapidly approaching…which means several things– the end of winter dry skin, time to lightly consider loosing a couple of nasty winter pounds, and ah yes, graduation! The tassels, the gowns, the chance to prove to people for once and for all, yes, punks can actually finish tasks we start. But what’s more righteous and punk than being a smarty pants? That’s why Afro-punk gives a hats off to Notre Dame’s first Black valedictorian, Katie Washington.

T.O.B.E: Notre Dame’s first Black valedictorian
Fuck yea to: Katie Washington

Katie, a biological sciences major from Gary, Ind., has been named valedictorian of the 2010 University of Notre Dame graduating class and will present the valedictory address during Commencement exercises May 16, in Notre Dame stadium. In the 161 years the University of Notre Dame has been awarding degrees, never had there been an African-American as valedictorian.
Washington, who earned a 4.0 grade point average, has a minor in Catholic Social Teaching. She has conducted research on lung cancer at the Cold Spring Harbor labs and performed genetic studies in the University’s Eck Institute for Global Health on the mosquito that carries dengue and yellow fever. She is the co-author of a research paper with David Severson, professor of biological sciences.
Washington directs the Voices of Faith Gospel Choir at Notre Dame, is a mentor/tutor for the Sister-to-Sister program at South Bend’s Washington High School and serves as the student coordinator of the Center for Social Concerns’ “Lives in the Balance: Youth Violence and Society Seminar.”

Upon graduation, Washington plans to pursue a joint M.D./Ph.D program at Johns Hopkins University.

Congrats to Katy and to all the Afro-punk’s graduating May 2010.