Marixza Torres was accepted for University of Notre Dame’s Graduate School Summer Research Opportunities Program. This competitive and prestigious program offers participants GRE prep workshops, graduate school application support, and assistance with grant and fellowship applications to NSF, NIH, and more. This ten week program culminates in a symposium attended by 200 peer researchers, which is a great chance to network with undergraduates, graduates, and faculty in high level research areas. Congratulations Marixza!
McNair Scholars, Ereisa Morales and Angelica Macias, presented their posters at the 2019 Globalization, Diversity, and Education Conference (GDE2019) in Airway Heights with Dr. Christina Torres Garcia. GDE2019, according to Paula Groves Price, brings “together over 150 scholars from 35 Institutions and Organizations to share research, dialogue, and strategize deeper ways of working together for greater justice in schools and communities.” It’s a great event to network with professionals from all over about the effectiveness of activism in the context of education. Ereisa Morales presented her poster titled, “Si Se Puede? An In-Depth Examination of Rural Washington Latinx Students Experiences in Higher Education.” Angelica Macias also presented her poster “Housing Discrimination in the Tri-Cities Latinx Community.”
Josiah Van Egdom was accepted into McNair in 2016. Initially, his focus was on accounting and economics. That changed with McNair. He had a conversation with Dr. Christina Torres Garcia, program director, which challenged his future. While accounting was fine, Josiah wanted to study political science. With the encouragement of that conversation, and with the help of his mentor, Dr. Marin Meraz Garcia, he switched to political science. Since then, his hard work and dedication in research was verified by numerous acceptances to conferences around the country. Those include: Pacific Northwest Political Science Association Conference, PNW PhD Prep Conference, and National Conferences on Undergraduate Research. Josiah has had the opportunity to meet and talk with faculty, community leaders and peers in a wide range of environments.
The primary focus of Josiah’s research is on the Guatemalan Civil War (1960-1966) in relation to how women’s roles were integral to both sides of the conflict. There is research about this conflict, and Josiah read dozens of articles pertaining to a variety of factors, but he found a gap that his research searches to fill. In particular, how were either side perceived and how were women involved with peace talks. His research relies on peer reviewed records and scholarly sources to help culminate a conclusion. As of now, Josiah is working on finishing up this project and looking into the future with graduate school. This research has allowed him the experience to perform academic and meaningful endeavors that impact the community, both local and global.
There’s a lot of great news for Josiah. Over the summer, he and Angie married with friends and family in attendance in beautiful Moses Lake. He’s approaching graduation. Graduate school application sent, letters of recommendation asked and granted. His and Angie’s future look bright.
Often, you’ll find Josiah in the McNair office with other scholars working on applications, grants, scholarships and classwork. He is always there to help with knowledge and wit. It never seems to end. But he seems to have found a place where he can focus on the task at hand, whatever that might be in the moment.
Sheikh Omar Jobeis currently finishing his PhD in Endocrinology and Reproductive Physiology and MBA in Marketing Research dual degree at the University of Wisconsin Madison. He received a Bachelor of Science degree from Eastern Washington University with a major in Biology as McNair Scholar. Shortly after graduation, Omar worked for Medtronic Inc., one of the world’s largest cardiovascular medical device manufacturing companies. At Medtronic, he worked as a senior animal research technician with responsibilities including developing study operational procedures and maintaining departmental safety policies, SOPs and guidelines. Working for Medtronic allowed Omar to learn about combining scientific research experience with the businesses of large pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies to better serve the needs of health care consumers and patients. This exposure led him to graduate school at the University of Wisconsin-Madison where he is currently finishing his PhD in Endocrinology and Reproductive Physiology and an MBA in Marketing Research. For his excellence in academic achievement and research, Omar has received various merit-based awards including Pfizer SGI President’s Best New Investigator from Society for Gynecologic Investigation and USDA-NIFA-NRI awards from Society for the Study of Reproduction. As a graduate student, his work has led to various presentations at national/international conferences as well as publications in high impact peer-reviewed journals.
In his own words: “Most students understand that college will be different – and harder – than high school, but many minorities including myself do not realize exactly what those differences and challenges will be. More importantly, there are few academic programs that have attempted to counteract the various visible and invisible barriers minorities encounter upon entry to college such as the TRIO McNair Program. The Eastern Washington University McNair Scholar Program provided tools and an outlet for grappling with the competitive demands of academics and economics, the needs of family and the search for meaningful relationships. Moreover, the program provided a blueprint and resources to enter graduate school and various tools for retention. Apart from helping me learn about the rigors of life and academia, preparing for the GREs and building presentation skills, the McNair program gave us the opportunity to travel to conferences and meetings for professional development. It is because of them that we always remember that as TRIO McNair scholars we are here to contribute to the value of the world and adhere to a deep sense of purpose and ultimately increase the number of minority and underrepresented populations in graduate programs.”