Eileen Schweiss named Lincoln student laureate

    Senior and 2013 SIU Lincoln Academy student laureate Eileen Schweiss

    Senior and 2013 SIU Lincoln Academy student laureate Eileen Schweiss

    Nov. 27, 2013

    SIU Release

    By Tyler Wooten

    CARBONDALE, Ill. -- Saluki cross country and track student-athlete Eileen Schweiss was named this year's Lincoln Academy student laureate last Friday, Nov. 22.

    Schweiss, a senior distance runner for both the SIU cross country and track teams, was awarded the honor in a ceremony last Friday attended by SIU Chancellor Rita Cheng. Schweiss is a mechanical engineering student and she currently holds a 3.935 GPA. Following SIU, she aspires to go to graduate school and eventually become an aerospace engineer.

    The Lincoln Academy of Illinois annually names one distinguished senior a student laureate at each four-year institution and community college in the state of Illinois. The student laureate award program began in 1975, and honorees receive a medallion of Lincoln, a certificate and a stipend.

    "There aremany outstanding students graduating from SIU who are deserving of the honor, sowhen I found out I was chosen out of all the nominees for the award I was ecstatic," Schweiss said in a University press release last Friday. "It takes a lot of hard work to balance a difficult major along with all of my extracurricularactivities, and it means a lot to me to be recognized for my achievements."

    "Eileen is an outstanding student and very deserving of this honor," Cheng said in the University press release. "She successfully balances the demands of a very challenging degree program along with those of being a student-athlete. The fact that she excels in her studies and in competition says a great deal about her commitment and drive to succeed. Eileen is a wonderful role model for her fellow students and a great ambassador for our university."

    In competition, she was most recently part of the SIU women's Missouri Valley Cross Country Championship team that won the crown on Nov. 2 -- the first title for the women since 1992. Schweiss, a native of Festus, Mo., finished 38th at the MVC Championships with a 5K time of 18:56.6.



    "As a senior on a young cross country squad, Eileen's leadership and professionalism over the last four years has been invaluable," SIU cross country head coach Matt Sparks said. "It requires a tremendous amount of commitment to be successful in the classroom and on the course. Eileen has that dedication and is certainly deserving of this award."

    Next for Schweiss and the Salukis are the indoor and outdoor track and field seasons, beginning Dec. 7 at home with the Saluki Fast Start.