Carnegie Mellon University

ACS Scholars are CMU undergraduate students who combine high academic standards with extracurricular activities.

October 15, 2018

Seven Dietrich College Seniors Named Andrew Carnegie Society Scholars

By Stefanie Johndrow

The Andrew Carnegie Society (ACS) Scholars Class of 2019 has been announced, and seven seniors from the Dietrich College of Humanities and Social Sciences have been selected.
ACS Scholars are Carnegie Mellon University undergraduate students who combine high academic standards with extracurricular activities, such as volunteering, playing sports, taking on leadership roles and participating in student organizations and the arts.
The Dietrich College’s new ACS Scholars include:
Orchi Banerjee
Primary majors: Decision Science, International Relations & Politics
Minor: Arabic Studies
In the past, Banerjee has conducted research with faculty in both of her primary departments, including how personality factors and legislative constraints impact presidential decision-making and the environmental effects of cooking Thanksgiving dinner. Through the Washington Semester Program, Banerjee’s research skills were utilized during the spring and summer of 2018 in her internship with the Institute for the Study of War under the Iraq portfolio, where she investigated current developments in Iraqi security and political spheres to extrapolate key insights on trends pertinent to U.S. national security objectives. Banerjee’s studies have taken her abroad. During the summer of 2017, she spent two months studying Arabic in Morocco. Banerjee also is an academic counselor with CMU Academic Development.
Sarah Boyle
Primary major: Global Studies
Minor: French & Francophone Studies
Whether on campus or abroad, Boyle is an active member of the CMU community. This summer, she worked as a legal and paralegal support intern for the Center for Migration and International Relations in Kathmandu, Nepal. There, she worked to solve cases of Nepali migrant workers. Before taking on her internship, Boyle studied abroad in Rabat, Morocco, taking classes taught in both French and English. At CMU, Boyle has worked as an orientation leader, teaching assistant, and research assistant in the Human-Computer Interaction Institute and the Institute for Politics and Strategy. She has served as president of Facilitating Opportunities for Refugee Growth and Empowerment (FORGE) and currently is manager for the improvisation troupe No Parking Players. Boyle has also been initiated into the Phi Beta Kappa Society.
Seth Henry
Primary major: Economics
Minors: Innovation & Entrepreneurship, International Relations & Politics
Henry has three summer internships under his belt, working as a lobbyist intern for the Information Technology Industry Council in Washington, D.C.; a Congressional intern for the U.S. Senate; and, most recently, as a summer games intern with Booz Allen Hamilton. Henry stays busy during the academic year as a captain of CMU’s basketball team and as a member of the University Student Affairs Council, Student-Athlete Advisory Council, Economics Student Advisory Council, Special Olympics of Pennsylvania Committee and SPIRIT. He also is a student blogger for the Tepper School of Business and a reading and math tutor at Lincoln Elementary School. In addition, Henry is working with a company in Texas to market a malware program and encryption software to potential U.S. government clients. He intends to return to Booz Allen Hamilton next year as a cyber analyst and continue his basketball career as a semi-professional.
Maggie Mertz
Primary major: Global Studies
Additional major: Creative Writing
Minors: Film Studies, Animation & Special Effects
Mertz is a history-lover, filmmaker and storyteller, who has spent her time at CMU researching female and minority representation in the film industry, both behind the camera and in front of it. Her passion for film and cross-cultural entertainment has taken Mertz abroad to Cuba and Copenhagen and helped her found a female film group, Momoka Studios, which has produced her past three short films. As a Dietrich College Honors Fellow, Mertz started her thesis this summer, a film which addresses issues of female friendship, diversity and connection despite cultural differences. While at CMU, Mertz has been a resident assistant in Mudge House, a prose editor for the literary magazine The Oakland Review and the communications officer and president of Sigma Tau Delta, the English honor society. When not working on films, she can be found with CMU’s Ballroom Dance Club.
Valene Mezmin
Primary major: Professional Writing
Additional major: Physics
For the past two summers, Mezmin has interned at New York law offices. First, Mezmin was a press office and legislative intern with the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office, and more recently worked as a legal intern with the Queens Borough President’s Office. On campus, Mezmin is editor-in-chief of The Tartan, where she worked as the news editor for two years prior. She also is a writing tutor with CMU Academic Development and a member of Scotch ‘n’ Soda Theatre, where she paints and builds sets for various student-run shows. Mezmin has been inducted into the English honor society Sigma Tau Delta and the physics honor society Sigma Pi Sigma. During her senior year, Mezmin is working on a research paper on dark matter and dark energy.
Jack Verser
Primary major: Decision Science
Additional major: Russian Studies
Minor: Politics & Public Policy
From studying abroad in St. Petersburg, Russia, to his leadership positions on campus, Verser is an active member of the CMU community. Verser has worked as a research assistant in the Tepper School of Business and Department of Social and Decision Sciences, a data analytics and community outreach intern for the National Women’s Hockey League, a research intern for the American Foreign Policy Council and as a Council of American Ambassadors Fellow in the Office of Policy and Evaluation in the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. Outside of the classroom, Verser is a captain on CMU’s rugby team and co-president of the CMU chapter of Amnesty International.
Yu Wu
Primary major: Statistics & Machine Learning
Minors: Economics, French & Francophone Studies 

During her time at CMU, Wu has immersed herself in the campus community. As a member of FORGE, Wu has tutored junior and senior high school students whose first language was not English, working with them on school assignments, ACT and SAT preparation and college applications. In addition, Wu has been a teaching assistant and was a peer adviser with Dietrich College’s Academic Advisory Center (AAC), helping incoming students discover opportunities at CMU. Wu also worked as an intern at iCarbonX this summer, constructing a speech emotion recognition neural-net model using Python and Keras. Last summer, Wu was a data analyst intern with Secu-ring GmbH in Berlin, Germany.

Pictured above (L-R): Sarah Boyle, Valene Mezmin, Yu Wu, Orchi Banerjee, Jack Verser, Dietrich College Dean Richard Scheines, Seth Henry and Maggie Mertz.