Duane Bonifer  |   Published March 05, 2022

Joining ‘A Great Research Program’

Being named an Admiral’s Scholar and Doc Kieft Scholar will open a world of research in science to Carina Engst.

MONMOUTH, Ill. – Normal Community High School senior Carina Engst was getting ready at home for track and field practice when her mother, Michelle, handed her the phone for what turned out to be a very important call.

Monmouth Assistant Director of Admission Brock McNinch was on the other end of the call, telling Engst that she had been named one of two Admiral’s Scholars in Monmouth’s Class of 2026.

CARINA ENGST: ?Monmouth has a great research program for students, especially in the chemistry an... CARINA ENGST: “Monmouth has a great research program for students, especially in the chemistry and biology departments. I'm really, really happy that I will have the opportunity to do research at Monmouth.”“I was so excited,” said Engst, of Bloomington, Illinois. “I was quite shocked, but I was also really excited because Monmouth really stood out to me as one of my favorite schools.”

Admiral’s Scholars receive a full-tuition scholarship worth more than $160,000 over four years at the national liberal arts college, and get a $5,000 academic enrichment fund. Engst was also named a Doc Kieft Scholar by the College’s chemistry department. Those scholars participate in an exclusive and fully funded summer research program named in honor of the late Monmouth chemistry professor Richard “Doc” Kieft.

A member of the National Honor Society since her sophomore year, Engst has been involved with numerous community service projects. She’s been a member of her school’s Spanish club and track and field team, and she has been a competitive gymnast. Her events in track have been the triple jump and the 4x400 relay, which won the 2021 Class 3A girls state title.

Engst plans to major in biochemistry in preparation for dental school. She said she was “just amazed by how kind everyone was” when she visited Monmouth.

“All the faculty were so kind when I met with them and really showed that they had a strong passion for Monmouth College,” she said. “They also showed that they are interested in each student, listening to them and their story and trying to help them figure out how Monmouth can help them succeed.”

Engst said she was also impressed with the College’s Center for Science and Business, which includes a cadaver lab.

“It is amazing that students actually get to work with it because I’ve never had the opportunity before,” she said.

The College’s numerous research opportunities offered to students also appealed to Engst.

“Monmouth has a great research program for students, especially in the chemistry and biology departments,” she said. “I’m really, really happy that I will have the opportunity to do research at Monmouth.”

Monmouth’s Admiral’s Scholarship honors the late Vice Adm. James B. Stockdale, a member of Monmouth’s Class of 1946, and his late wife, Sybil. A Medal of Honor recipient for his service in the Vietnam War, Stockdale was later president of both the Naval War College and The Citadel, and he was a longtime fellow of the Hoover Institution.

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