New Student Class Boasts Entrepreneurs, Athletes, Do-Gooders

August 23, 2016

Quick Facts

bullet point The incoming class contains the highest number of valedictorians and salutatorians that Winthrop has ever had.


ROCK HILL, SOUTH CAROLINA--Each year, Winthrop University welcomes an incoming class filled with up-and-coming entrepreneurs, do-gooders, outstanding athletes and family-oriented people.

The entering Class of 2020 holds the highest number of valedictorians (9) and salutatorians (10) that Winthrop has ever had, as well as the highest averages on the SATs.

Other highlights include:

*Lydia Coffey of Anderson is the oldest of nine children and has performed a solo at Carnegie Hall in New York City.

*Evan Hailes of Overland Park, Kansas, lettered in multiple sports at his high school and is a 6A State Champion in the Triple Jump, not to mention a member of the Diversity Leadership Council and the National Spanish Honors Society.

*Bianca Tedesco of Coral Springs, Florida, just won the National United States Lacrosse's Jackie Pitts Award, presented to those who truly honor the game.

*Morganne Guinther of Union, North Carolina, chaired oboe for the Union Symphony Youth Orchestra, started a health club/health fairs at her school and other schools, and graduated as valedictorian.

*Rachel McLaughlin of Camden is an 11-time high school sports letterman and overcame juvenile diabetes. She and her twin, Michaela McLaughlin, will attend Winthrop.

*Kelly Sharpe from Hopkins is Winthrop's First National Merit Scholarship winner.

*Another set of twins has its sights set on Winthrop: Heath and Braxton Byrd of Kershaw.

Other fun facts:

*Within the United States, Siana O. Yamaguchi traveled the farthest to attend Winthrop-4,655 miles from Waimnalo, Hawaii.

*Outside of the United States, Nida S. Kamal traveled 8,326 miles from Mumbai, India, to attend Winthrop.

Number of international students: 13
Most Common Boy Name: Jacob
Most Common Girl Names: Alexis and Sarah

The incoming students moved in Aug. 19 and attended Convocation on Aug. 22. Winthrop looks forward to the talents this new class will bring to campus!

For more information, contact Nicole Chisari, communications coordinator, at 803/323-2236 or

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