Josiah Van Egdom’s Scholar Story

Josiah at the PNWPSA conference.
Josiah was accepted into McNair in 2016-2017 school year.

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.

Dr. Martin Meraz Garcia, faculty in the Chicanx Studies program, mentors Josiah’s research.

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.


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