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Luke Mitchell McCraw wins sixth Dr. Charles B. Florio Leadership Award

December 14, 2023

By: Dr. Andrew Yox, Honors Director

For NTCC Honors Students, there are three major ways in which leadership not only benefits the recipient, but the whole honors experience.  Students can lead in classroom erudition, scholarship, and in collective activities that provide services for the community and/or accolades for the larger group. Now in his second semester as an honors scholar, Luke McCrawhas won the 2023 Dr. Charles B. Florio Award, for his leadership in all three venues.

Anonymous donors have supplied most of the $200 yearly outlays for the leadership award in Honors Northeast.  The award recognizes the initiatives of Dr. Charles Florio, who served as President of NTCC for thirteen years, from 1995 to 2008.  One of the attainments of his tenure was the establishment of the college’s award-winning honors program. Dr. Florio now lives in retirement in Fort Worth.

McCraw as Stephen F Austin

In his first semester as an honors student least spring, McCraw fashioned a highly competitive project on the use of gray-scaling, as a way to lessen cell-phone addiction. His poster on this topic is one of the seven that currently hang in the classroom of honors professor, Dr. Karyn Skaar.  In this fall’s Texas history seminar class, McCraw was a standout in several respects.  “No one in the history of honors,” according to Dr. Andrew Yox, “has quite matched Luke in his weekly output of ideophany exercises relating to research.  With ideophanies, students are expected to field at least 300-words per week, addressing their own questions with specifics, citations, and conceptual formulations of their own answers.  In fifteen weeks this fall, McCraw submitted twenty-six ideophanies numbering 17,336 words of highly original, dense, fact-studded prose. The great bulk of his research concerned documents that remain offline.  This means that for fifteen straight weeks, McCraw was submitting an essay as long as the final essay submitted by a typical NTCC student after one semester in history.”

McCraw was a standout as well in the three group encounters of honors Texas history, leading his team to victory each time, role-playing various characters in Texas history.  In conceptualization, he was second in the class to Presidential Scholar, Vanessajane Bayna.

McCraw is the designated lead scholar of this year’s honors film on the Traveling Preachers of Early Texas.  Already last summer, he traveled to Southern Methodist University to begin archival research on what became his Texas history project.  “Luke is the one student who knows our film story about as well as anyone,” notes Yox.  McCraw also acted very successfully in the filming last summer as well. As a surly Stephen Austin worried about his indebtedness, he along with Skylar Hodson playing the role of Emily Austin initiate the film’s trailer scene-sequence.  The trailer can be seen here.  McCraw also helped present the trailer at the fall meeting of the Walter Prescott Webb Society at San Felipe De Austin in October.

McCraw is a member of Phi Theta Kappa, and participates avidly in the weekly Monday Bible Study at NTCC.  Even with his height, he is an excellent runner, and has been a standout as well, in physical education at NTCC. He reports that he has viewed and commented on all of Dr. Tom Seabourne’s videos, and that he is awe of the success of the NTCC professor in indoor cycling.

Luke was homeschooled by his parents, Robby and Amy McCraw of Mount Vernon.  Previous winners of the Florio Leadership Award include: Neida Perez (2022) Brian Ramirez (2021), Carolina-Alcocer Salas (2020), Jacob Lambie (2019), and Rhylie Anderson (2018).

 

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