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K-State Today

February 7, 2017

Community invited to Distinguished Young Alumni presentations Feb. 28

Submitted by Tim Schrag

The K-State Student Alumni Board, a program of the K-State Alumni Association, will honor the 2017 Distinguished Young Alumni Award recipients, Dalton Henry and Jorge Mendoza, on Feb. 28.

The award, established in 2012, recognizes two Kansas State University graduates who are younger than 35 and are using the scholarship, leadership and service experience they acquired at K-State to excel in their professions and contribute to their communities.

Henry and Mendoza will return to campus Feb. 27 through March 1 to visit with student groups and university classes. The K-State community is invited to attend their keynote presentations Feb. 28 in Town Hall in the Leadership Studies Building. Mendoza's presentation will begin at 4:30 p.m. A casual reception will take place from 5-5:30 p.m. in the lobby of the building, followed by Henry's presentation at 5:30 p.m.

"This year's Distinguished Young Alumni recipients are great examples of K-Staters who learned how to be leaders through their college experiences," said Marcus Kidd, assistant director of student programs for the K-State Alumni Association and Student Alumni Board adviser. "Those experiences molded who they are today and contribute to their successes both personally and professionally. We encourage everyone to join us for the keynote presentations, which are sure to be inspiring to current students but also to alumni, faculty and staff."

Mendoza, a native of Garden City, is the STEM Exploration Program manager at Ohio State University. The program supports students interested in science, technology, engineering and mathematics, educating these students about different career paths and the ways they can use their talents to serve others. While at K-State, Mendoza was a member of the Developing Scholars Program, McNair Scholars Program, Research Experience for Undergraduates, Hispanic American Leadership Organization and Bridges to the Future, and he also served as president of the Multicultural Honor Society. He graduated from K-State in 2010 with a bachelor's degree in biology. 

"Naively, before attending Kansas State University, I thought I was only going to grow academically in a four-year institution," Mendoza said. "However, in retrospective, K-State prepared me to be successful in detrimental areas of my life such as in my academics, scientific research, professional career, my personal life and serving my community through service outreach. Through K-State, I had the opportunity to travel, meet renowned scientists in my field, conduct exhilarating internships, and gain experience presenting in research symposiums."

Henry, a native of Randolph, is the legislative director for U.S. Rep. Roger Marshall. He previously served as the director of policy at the U.S. Wheat Associates, the export market development organization for the U.S. wheat industry. While at K-State, Henry was a member of Alpha Gamma Rho fraternity, Blue Key Honor Society, College of Agriculture Ambassadors, Ag Communicators of Tomorrow and Ag Economics Club. He also served as K-State student body president during the 2009-2010 school year. He graduated from K-State in 2010 with a bachelor's degree in agricultural communications and journalism.

"K-State helped me develop my skills as a leader and policymaker," Henry said. "I had the honor of serving as student body president, and during that time I gained a better understanding of the importance of collaboration and cooperation which continues to help me to this day."

For more on the Distinguished Young Alumni program, visit K-State.com/DYA or call the K-State Alumni Association at 800-600-ALUM (2586).