Letter From The Editor

“I always knew I was destined for greatness.” - Oprah Winfrey
“You are the best Scantron takers in the state of Texas.” exclaimed Senior Vice Provost David Laude to describe the audience filled with Dean Scholars, Health Sciences Honors, and some of the brightest students within our college. Imagine, a room filled with bright students, many who have participated in top notch research or have been awarded with multiple academic accolades, and yet only a handful in the audience were truly great according to Provost Laude. In a society where the education system pays dividends for those students who excel in the yearly cycle of examinations and standardized tests, what else distinguishes us from our peers? Doing what we truly love and utilizing that passion to become the best at something is what distinguishes the great from the pretty good. This issue of The Catalyst will discuss the gems in our college that are bold, different, and truly great.
Fortunately for us, a college built upon the values of science and constant progression always strives to maximize the potential of its students. From the new strategic plan proposed by Dean Linda Hickie, the recently formed BSA degree,to the experimentation with “flipped” classrooms, our college is now putting the education into the hands of its students. Regardless of how flexible and personalized our educations may become, our growth is halted if we purely focus on academia. Take for example students, who are anomalies; even though they may be pre-med or planning on going to go to graduate school, they spend large fractions of their time in activities that never fail to amaze us. Read about CNS students participating in the inspirational Texas 4000, and propelling our school spirit by playing in the Longhorn Band.
In addition to expecting our college and our university to help us surpass “pretty good”, we must be cognizant to repay the favor to those who have or currently are making our educational career memorable. Find out how you can nominate a beloved professor for the Jean Holloway Award for Teaching Excellence. 
As Provost Laude traditionally does, ask yourself, “Good or Pretty Good?”. If hesitation arises, don’t be worried, but also don’t be content. Discover your passion, continue to improve, and make the most of your time here at the University. Regardless if you’re a freshman or a 5th year senior, cherish it.
Good luck with the next round of exams and papers! Although surviving these rounds of classes is truly where our focus lies, registering for next semester is just around the corner. Check out tips on some common classes, as well as how to do well in any class.
Until next time,
Lakshya Nagar

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