Wake Forest student named to All-USA College Academic Team

By Cheryl Walker
February 15, 2006

Lakshmi Krishnan, a Wake Forest University senior, was one of 20 students named to USA Today's 2006 All-USA College Academic Second Team, which honors students for outstanding intellectual achievement and leadership.

Lakshmi Krishnan

The winners were announced in the Feb. 15 issue of USA Today.

First, second and third teams (each with 20 winners) were selected by a panel of judges from nearly 600 students nominated by colleges and universities nationwide. Outstanding individual scholarship or intellectual achievement, and leadership roles in activities on or off campus were the most important criteria. Students also were judged on academic performance, honors, awards, rigor of academic pursuits, and the ability to express themselves in writing.

Krishnan was among six students from North Carolina colleges and universities to be recognized.

Lakshmi, an English and German major from Sugar Land, Texas, was recognized for her research on Emily Brontë. Krishnan explored the connections between Emily Brontë's life and her novel "Wuthering Heights" during a summer research project in England funded by a Carswell grant from Wake Forest. Her paper is archived at the Brontė Parsonage Museum Library in Yorkshire, England.

In November, she was named a Rhodes Scholar and will study literature at Oxford University in the fall.

As president of Wake Forest's chapter of Amnesty International, Krishnan has focused on global AIDS and the human rights issues associated with it. She organized campus events addressing AIDS issues as well as other human rights issues including the death penalty and domestic violence. She worked as an intern with the non-profit organization Physicians for Human Rights. While there, she researched the conflict in northern Uganda and its effects on HIV/AIDS transmission. She wrote papers to support the organization's Health Action AIDS Campaign. One regarding HIV/AIDS prevention was used to educate health professionals in Kampala, Uganda.