Student Features

Roommates, Friends, and Dedman College Scholars: Meet Greg and Giorgio


Greg Guggenmos and Giorgio Ioannou, first year Dedman College Scholars and roommates, have quickly become a big part of campus life, joining several different clubs and student organizations. Though the two are pursuing very different interests academically, both are bringing a similar desire to make the most of their years at SMU, making it a better place and learning all that they can from the experience.

Hailing from Lewisville, Texas, about 30 minutes north of Dallas, Ioannou, a biology and spanish major with a mathematics minor, initially began his college search with a wide reach, looking into a mix of public and private universities, looking closely on what they have to offer to their undergraduates. When researching SMU, Ioannou was drawn to the focus on undergraduate education, which was only strengthened by his numerous conversations with faculty and SMU alumni.

“SMU promised so much for its undergraduates and made me feel wanted. After every SMU event such as the Dedman College Spotlight, after talking to countless professors before applying, and after receiving the generous scholarships, I felt wanted not only because SMU knew it had a lot to offer me, but also because SMU knew I had a lot to offer it,” Ioannou explained.

“Furthermore SMU is known as being top-tier private institution not only in the state of Texas, but also in the nation. Throughout my high school career I also worked closely with an SMU alum who helped me prepare for the SAT. Through him I was able to get a different perspective of SMU—a perspective that only a student could provide. This mentor of mine was definitely influential in my decision,” Ioannou elaborated.

For Guggenmos, a Plano native and an economics, public policy, and political science major with a minor in computer science, the decision to attend SMU was also very much influenced by faculty and also by Dallas itself. He explained, “SMU offered a phenomenal education mixed and the opportunity to interact with faculty in nearly every class. Dallas sitting just south of campus is enough great resource for students, particularly those interested in business and policy.”

Both are excited to continue to take their interests in the classroom to outside projects and collaborate with fellow Dedman College Scholars and students on campus. Ioannou explained, “It is very clear that this group of students represents the pinnacle of ambition and drive here at SMU. Many of these Scholars are tackling large-scale projects through Richter Fellowships, Engaged Learning, and SMU Abroad. They have definitely taken learning outside of the classroom setting and have tailored it to their interests. These students have taught me that it is okay to dream big and to be ambitious because only then will you have taken full advantage of all the programs and faculty that SMU has to offer.”

The social connection to other Dedman College Scholars has also been helpful as both settle into campus and adjust to college life. “Having other DC scholars to study and relax with has made the transition so much easier than it would have otherwise been. We all have very unique backgrounds, but all share common priorities and interests, which makes friendships so much stronger,” Guggenmos elaborated.