Alum’s membership in university organization called ‘highest honor’

Connor Verheyen, a 2013 graduate of Notre Dame Preparatory School and current student at the University of Miami in Florida, has been invited into the university’s Iron Arrow Honor Society, which recognizes students who “exemplify five qualities based on the Seminole Indian tradition: love of alma mater, character, leadership, scholarship and humility.” 

Established in 1926, the society is considered the “highest honor attained at the University of Miami.”

Selections for Iron Arrow typically are made from undergrad students, grad students, law-school students, med-school students, faculty, and staff. Once "tapped" for the honor, they are charged with keeping a fire going, and keeping a constant drum beat for 24 hours. They also wear colorful jackets for a week, followed by an elaborate initiation ceremony.

Verheyen majored in biomedical engineering at Miami and is pursuing a PhD in biomedical engineering. 

Last year, he was chosen to present his undergrad research on an important biomedical engineering project at the Biomedical Engineering Society (BMES) annual meeting in Tampa.

Besides biomedical engineering, Verheyen said he also has interests in business and leadership. 

“Ideally, my future career would be at the intersection of medicine, scientific research, engineering and business,” he said, which he admits is a very busy intersection.

As to how he’s managing to negotiate such a busy intersection in college so far, Verheyen gives much credit to his high school.

“Notre Dame definitely strengthened my time-management skills while cultivating an interest in many different, seemingly unrelated fields and classes,” he said. “Research takes time and dedication, so the ability to manage my limited time has helped me tremendously. Additionally, a biomedical engineer must have an interest and proficiency in multiple and disparate fields. My Notre Dame experience prepared me very well for that type of thinking.”

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About Notre Dame Preparatory School and Marist Academy

Notre Dame Preparatory School and Marist Academy is a private, Catholic, independent, coeducational day school located in Oakland County. The school's upper division enrolls students in grades nine through twelve and has been named one of the nation's best 50 Catholic high schools (Acton Institute) four times since 2005. Notre Dame's middle and lower divisions enroll students in jr. kindergarten through grade eight. All three divisions are International Baccalaureate "World Schools." The Marist Fathers and Brothers sponsor NDPMA's Catholic identity and manages its educational program. Notre Dame is accredited by the National Association of Independent Schools, the Independent Schools Association of the Central States and the North Central Association Commission on Accreditation and School Improvement. For more on Notre Dame Preparatory School and Marist Academy, visit the school's home page at