2021 Maralyn Heimlich Scholarship

Scholarship Hero Photo

This scholarship is given in memory of Maralyn S. Heimlich, who served students at The University of Texas at Austin for more than twenty years. For the last eleven years of her service, she directed the orientation program for new students and was responsible for the training and teaching of the student staff and Orientation Advisors (OAs). Maralyn was a teacher, mentor, and friend to the OA staff who served as a professional role model by demonstrating respect and care in the way she performed her job duties and lived her life. It is these attributes and values we seek to honor and recognize in scholarship recipients.

These students have all served as Orientation Advisors, where they went through a semester of training and successfully welcomed students to the University. They also submitted applications about their experience in Orientation and were chosen through a committee of professionals who work closely with orientation. 

We are excited to celebrate them today!

2021 Maralyn Heimlich Scholarship Award Recipients


2021 Maralyn Heimlich Scholarship Recipients

Student with puppy

Justin Gonzales

Orientation Advisor for Summer 2020

Favorite Orientation Advisor Memory: Although it is hard to specify a single moment out of the millions that I enjoyed throughout Orientation, one that cemented itself on a pedestal was the process of creating the Campus Safety Show and working with my committee. While the presence of the pandemic denied us the tradition of performing this key Orientation element in person, I still loved the virtual end result from my Campus Safety committee was able to foster.

Advice for Future Orientation Advisors: I hope that you never forgot to enjoy yourselves during this grand chapter in your lives. Your time as an OA is an entertaining experience that hardly ever fails to be fun for you.

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Kevin Hoang

Orientation Advisor for Summer 2019

Favorite Orientation Advisor Memory: My favorite memory from orientation was definitely advising. I advised for the Math, Physics, and Astronomy students, and every week brought a relatively small cohort, so my advising partner Megan and I got to know each of them pretty well. Between talking about flags and degree requirements, we'd talk about our hometowns and pets, our favorite places to eat on Guad (definitely Cava), and everything in between.

Advice for Future Orientation Advisors: Keep up with your orientees! Being an OA never really ends -I've definitely gotten GroupMe messages during every registration period after my OA summer asking for advice on classes or professors. UT is a big school, and having someone you can come to and rely on for guidance is something special that orientation gives to a lot of people.

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Isaac James

Orientation Advisor for Summers 2019

Favorite Orientation Advisor Memory: My favorite memory of orientation is more than just a single moment ‚ a collection of memories that I continue to think about every time I walk down Speedway. Those memories are of myself and my fellow OAs jumping up and down on Speedway to welcome new students to campus for the first time. The combination of nerves, iced coffee, and raw excitement made me thrilled to participate in such an integral part of these students‚ UT experience, and I‚ treasure those memories for the rest of my life.

Advice for Future Orientation Advisors: My advice for future OAs is to live in the moment!" I didn’t know it at the time, and it was easy to get burnt out and tired, but my OA summer has been hands-down the best summer of my entire life. The friendships I formed, the lessons I learned, and the memories I experienced have been the number one highlight of my college experience.

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Indya McKnight

Orientation Advisor for Summer 2020

Favorite Orientation Advisor Memory: Some of my favorite moments from Orientation were when I was able to interact with orientees in a more personal fashion, whether it be at "Lunch with my OA" or a one-on-one late-night advising session, it was a wonderful feeling to connect with so many individuals, even when it was being done virtually.

Advice for Future Orientation Advisors: To be the best version of yourself, you have to practice self-care first!

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Lawrence Robinson

Orientation Advisor for Summer 2019

Favorite Orientation Advisor Memory: As a new student myself, leaving UT orientation was my favorite memory because, after those three days, I became a bonafide Longhorn.

Advice for Future Orientation Advisors: There is no such thing as being early as an OA. You are either on time or late, especially when this program is centered around the new student's experience.

Student posing in front of tower

Annie You

Orientation Advisor for Summer 2020

Favorite Orientation Advisor Memory: One of my favorite memories during orientation would have to be this 12+ hour zoom call that I had with my orientees and other OAs. It started off with them just asking general questions about post orientation things and as time went by, we just kept talking while more and more people began to join the call. Eventually, what started as a 30-minute check-in turned into a 12+ hour zoom call filled with us sharing our life things, watching mukbangs and sad movie clips, to somehow playing a bunch of online board games.

Advice for Future Orientation Advisors: Have fun and be yourself! The best way to encourage engagement and get others to feel comfortable during orientation starts from you! If you are comfortable enough to be yourself wholeheartedly in the most genuine way, that energy will naturally be reciprocated and felt by the people around you.