Monica Fritchey, a student at Metropolitan Community College-Blue River, has earned a spot on the 2018 Coca-Cola Academic Team and a $1,000 scholarship.
Three Coca-Cola Academic Team members are chosen for each state, 150 in all. Fritchey, 20, is the Bronze Scholar for Missouri. She hails from Iberia, Mo., near the Lake of the Ozarks.
She will graduate from MCC in May with an associate in arts in teaching degree. She plans to transfer to Missouri State University in Springfield to earn a bachelor of science in education, secondary math. Career goal: middle school or high school math teacher.
“I hope to find a fun and challenging teaching position where I can show my desire for mathematics and create an empowering learning environment for students,” she says.
Fritchey will be a “dynamo” in the classroom, predicts Cheryl Winter, a Blue River division chair, math instructor and Phi Theta Kappa co-advisor.
“Monica is a unique young lady who brings sunshine wherever she goes,” Winter says. “Her love of mathematics shines inside and outside of the classroom. She is not just an excellent student, but she also brings her positive energy to tutoring and working as an embedded tutor in our developmental math classes.”
Fritchey, the Blue River PTK chapter’s public relations officer, is also “one of the driving forces that has made our chapter so successful,” Winter says. PTK is an international academic honor society for community college students.
At Blue River, Fritchey has contributed an estimated 400 hours to Phi Theta Kappa activities, events, fundraisers and volunteer work. She also works in the campus admissions office.
Although MCC-Blue River is far from her hometown, it has become a second home.
“After the first visit, I knew this was the community college for me,” Fritchey says. “Both the students and staff members were extremely friendly and welcoming, and the atmosphere felt safe and inviting. The clubs, organizations and volunteer work the college provided allows students to thrive both academically and personally.”
Fritchey and other members of the Coca-Cola Academic Team will be honored on stage at the PTK annual convention April 19-21 in Kansas City. She will also be presented with a bronze medallion.
Exceptional members of Phi Theta Kappa are nominated by their colleges for several state and national scholarship opportunities. The PTK-affiliated scholarships are awarded based on one extensive application submitted in the fall. This year, more than 2,000 students were nominated from more than 1,600 college campuses across the country.
Selection to the Coca-Cola Academic Team is based on academic achievement, leadership, and engagement in college and community service.
The top 20 students in the nation are named to the All-USA Academic Team, which this year includes MCC-Blue River student Joshua Gray. One-hundred students (two per state) are selected as New Century Scholars (Gray was one of those as well). After the All-USA and New Century winners are chosen, the next 150 students (three per state: gold, silver and bronze) join the Coca-Cola Academic Team.
Fritchey and Gray also claimed two of the top 10 spots on the All-Missouri Academic Team.
The Coca-Cola Academic Team program is sponsored by the Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation and administered by Phi Theta Kappa.