Recent Baylor grad earns Congressional Award gold medal from U.S. Congress
The Congressional Award gold medal is the highest honor presented to youth by the U.S. Congress — and recent Baylor grad Andy Kim (BA ’22) is one of this year’s recipients.
Developed in 1979, the Congressional Award has been granted by Congress to recognize initiative, service and achievement by young Americans. To earn the honor, Kim worked 1,600+ hours across four Congressional Award areas: voluntary public service, personal development, physical fitness, and expedition/exploration.
Kim achieved his public service goal by coordinating and supervising check-ins for COVID-19 vaccine distribution at the Conroe Regional Medical Center, counseling those reaching out to the Crisis Text Line for support, and launching his own project to help healthcare workers suffering from ear pain when wearing tight N95 masks by designing and printing 3D plastic “ear clips.” These extenders were donated for free to hospitals and private clinics, with 500+ clips being shipped to multiple states to help health care workers.
For his personal development goal, Kim published his own photographic nature book, The Nature of Yellowstone. For his physical fitness goal, he engaged in a rigorous weight-lifting program, and for his expedition/exploration goal, he planned and executed a five-day hiking, rafting and camping trek through Rocky Mountain National Park.
“I have been working on the Congressional Award for around six years,” says Kim, “slowly developing my personal goals and hobbies along the way. Spending these years in this program has definitely been a leading factor in helping me envision my future goals.”
Kim is one of only two medalists from Texas’ 8th Congressional District, and one of just 47 students from Texas to earn the distinction. A ceremony for Congressional Award gold medal recipients is typically held in Washington, D.C., where the award is presented by members of the Senate and House of Representatives. Kim’s achievement will also be recorded into the Congressional Record by the Senate majority leader.
Kim graduated from Baylor earlier this year as an Honors University Scholar major (concentration: medical humanities and anthropology), with minors in biochemistry and biology. He is now studying abroad in Changhua, Taiwan, as a Fulbright Scholar, before beginning studies next year at McGovern UT Health Medical School.
“From the entirety of my Baylor experience, I would say that I am most grateful for my friends and faculty who made my experience at Baylor something else,” Kim says. “While I am immensely thankful for all the resources and connections that Baylor has provided for my foundational professional life, it was the people that I got to know that made my everyday life special.”
Sic ’em, Andy!
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