Forensics Student Courtney Weldon Named “Class Star” for Outstanding Community Service

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Courtney Weldon. Submitted photo.

COLLEGE STATION, Texas — Congratulations to senior Forensic and Investigative Sciences major Courtney Weldon as she received the 2013 Class Star Award for service from the Texas A&M University Class Councils.

A select number of students from each class year received recognition for outstanding work in five categories : Academics, Athletics, Leadership, Service and Spirit. These students were recently recognized at a special banquet in early April.

Weldon is working in Dr. Jeff Tomberlin’s Forensic Laboratory for Investigative Entomological Sciences (FLIES) Laboratory. Her research focuses on isolating and describing the bacteria fauna associated with the salivary glands of the blow fly Lucilia sericata (Diptera: Calliphoridae). She is also working on examining the role of quorum sensing by bacteria as a mechanism regulating adult blow fly behavior.

Last year, Weldon participated in the Summer Program for Undergraduate Research program, or SPUR, an undergraduate research program that provides students experience in research in the field of forensic and investigative sciences, where she continued her current research.

She is an active volunteer at Camp for All in Burton, Texas, which hosts camps week for children and families who have physical or mental disabilities by aiding campers as they ride horses and encouraging them to have confidence to communicate with the horses.

In addition to Camp for All, Weldon has been involved in other service opportunities, such as the Courtney Grimshaw Fowler Equine Therapeutic Program at Freeman Arena and writing letters to Marines deployed in Afghanistan.

“I believe that it is our duty as citizens to give back to our country by spending our free time or even our careers doing service such as community service, military service, or public service, Weldon said. “Serving others builds character in a way that inspires other people. Service means that I am able to impact the community or support a cause in a selfless manner. I choose to be a part of something bigger.”

A nominator noted that Weldon is a great person and that she has gone above and beyond to help others in the community.

“Courtney always has shown her desire to serve others, but this passion strengthened when she became an Aggie because she embraced all the opportunities to touch others’ lives,” the nominator said in the letter.  “Courtney deserves this award because she never puts herself before others and her service has impacted countless lives in our community.”

Dr. Jeff Tomberlin, Weldon’s mentor, director and principal investigator of the FLIES Lab, was very proud of her accomplishments and her dedication and hard work.

“Courtney is an outstanding student and member of the Aggie Family! Her dedication to the community is difficult to match- but easy to admire!” Tomberlin said. “Courtney is yet another example of the quality of student in the Forensic & Investigative Sciences Program at Texas A&M University. She will serve as an example for others in the major as well as across the A&M campus.”

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