This spring, the Eastern Washington University College of Social Sciences has selected six EWU McNair Scholars for some of their highest awards. The Frances B. Huston Medallion Award is presented to only 20 graduating students each year who have a strong academic record and have demonstrated outstanding leadership qualities at Eastern and in the community. EWU McNair Scholars Angélica García-Macías (Political Science), Miriam Carlson (Psychology), and Marixza Torres (Psychology) all received this award. The Dean Jeffers W. Chertok Honored Student Award for the College of Social Sciences is presented to exceptional students who have shown a commitment to their education by demonstrating outstanding academic achievement with a minimum of a 3.75 GPA in their previous four quarters and through leadership and service to the community. The College of Social Sciences selected EWU McNair Scholars Madelyn Brown (History), Lily Ann Long (Psychology) and Abdulrazik Mohamed (International Affairs) for this award.
Not only do these awards acknowledge the hard work of each of these students, they also exemplify the power of collaboration, mentorship, and student support by EWU faculty and staff. Each year the EWU McNair Program recruits promising scholars and engages them in year round learning on research, writing, and preparation for graduate school. Each EWU McNair Scholar is paired with a faculty mentor who guides them through the research process. EWU McNair Faculty Mentors meet as often as weekly with their mentees throughout spring and summer quarters culminating in a research paper. EWU McNair Scholars then present this research at the EWU Symposium as well as at academic conferences around the nation. For example, Miriam Carlson will present her research, completed under the mentorship of Dr. Aryn Zeihnert, at the upcoming Western Psychological Association conference in October 2020. Marixza Torres has presented her EWU research, under the mentorship of McNair Director Dr. Christina Torres García, at the Western Psychological Association conference and the National Latinx Psychological Association conference. Marixza has also been mentored year round by Dr. Theresa Martin. Other mentors for this group of scholars include: Dr. Dorothy Zeisler-Vralsted (Abdu), Dr. Aryn Zeihnert (Lily Ann), Dr. Martín Meráz García (Angélica), and Lecturer SimHayKin S. Jack along with Dr. Christina Torres García (Madelyn), and there are countless other College of Social Sciences faculty and staff that support McNair students at present and in past years. In addition to these formal faculty mentorships, many professors do additional year round support for students, by having them join their research labs, TA, and just everyday care, engagement, and guidance.
McNair also provides year round support for students including tutoring, linking students to services and resources, and regular one-on-one meetings for connection, encouragement, and advice. EWU McNair makes sure students have the tool they need to navigate higher education, successfully apply to graduate school and research internships, and negotiate funding and final decisions for which graduate schools they will attend.
McNair is a federally funded program that helps low-income first generation colleges students and those else wise underrepresented in higher education to earn PhD's and increase diversity in academia. EWU's McNair program started in 1995 and, to-date, 40 EWU McNair Scholars have gone on to earn their PhD and over 100 more have attained their Masters degree. This year, twelve graduating EWU McNair Scholars have been accepted to Masters and/or PhD programs, many with full funding. Miriam has been accepted Gonzaga University's Education Specialist in School Psychology program. Lily Ann has been accepted into Point Park University's PsyD Program. Angélica has been accepted at 3 PhD programs with full funding and one Masters program. Marixza has been accepted to 2 PhD programs with full funding and one Masters program. Abdu has been accepted by 3 Masters programs and 1 PhD program with full funding. And Madelyn has been accepted by 7 Masters programs, many of which offered full funding. All are planning to attend graduate school in the fall of 2020. This would not be possible without the incredible support of faculty mentors and partnership with the other colleges at EWU. Thank you to all of our incredible faculty and staff and congratulations to our phenomenal scholars!