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University of Iowa News Release

May 23, 2006

College Of Liberal Arts & Sciences Recognizes Top Two Graduates

The University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts and Sciences has awarded its annual Ernest R. Johnson Memorial Prizes to the graduating seniors with the highest and second-highest academic standing in the college.

The prize was established in 1935 by Anna H. Johnson as a memorial to her son. Students eligible for consideration were those earning "highest distinction" during the graduation periods of August 2005, December 2005 and May 2006. To graduate with highest distinction students must be in the top 2 percent of the graduating class, which usually requires a 4.0 grade-point average.

Evonne Smith of Miles earned the E.R. Johnson Prize for the graduating senior with the highest academic standing. She graduated with honors and highest distinction from the UI College of Liberal Arts and Sciences on Saturday, May 13. She earned a degree in psychology and was one of only 45 of the college's more than 1,700 graduates to graduate with highest distinction. Smith is a 2002 graduate of East Central High School and the daughter of Dianna Foster of Maquoketa and Lanny Smith of Sabula.

Steve Purtle of Des Moines earned the E.R. Johnson Prize for the graduating senior with the second highest academic standing. He graduated with highest distinction from the UI College of Liberal Arts and Sciences on Saturday, May 13. He earned a degree in chemistry and was one of only 45 of the college's more than 1,700 graduates to graduate with highest distinction. Purtle is a 2002 graduate of Dowling Catholic High School and the son of Mary and Mark Purtle of 3800 Thornton Ave. in Des Moines.

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Services, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 371, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500.

CONTACTS: Media: Mary Geraghty Kenyon, 319-384-0011, mary-kenyon@uiowa.edu or Lesly Huffman, 319-384-0077, lesly-huffman@uiowa.edu