Mary Belton Selected as an EWU McNair Scholar and Awarded Summer Research Internship

Congratulations to new McNair Scholar Mary Belton! Mary was selected by the McNair Scholars’ selection committee on the basis of her passion for research, commitment to attaining a PhD, and overall potential for success in graduate school.

The federally-funded TRIO Ronald E. McNair Post-baccalaureate Achievement Program at EWU selects motivated and talented juniors and seniors who are first-generation and low-income college students, and/or from groups underrepresented at the doctoral level to introduce them to academic research and provide them with effective strategies for getting into and graduating from PhD programs.

Mary is a first-generation college student at Eastern Washington University majoring in English Secondary Education with a minor in English as a Second Language. Mary decided to major in Secondary English Education as she is passionate about teaching and helping others, especially children, achieve their educational goals. As a first-generation college student herself, Mary believes everyone has a chance to achieve whatever educational aspirations they want. In the future, Mary is interested in teaching English Literature at a community college/university, being a teacher at a correctional facility, or teaching English overseas.

While Mary’s career goals stem from education, Mary’s interests are rooted in her love for English Literature. Specifically, her love for this field comes from the connections literature makes between cultures, history, philosophy, religion, and other fields of study. Because of these interests, she would like to contribute to English study and its connections with the humanities.

For her 2023 Summer Research project, with mentor Dr. Christina Valeo, Mary is researching what authors such as Virginia Woolf reveal about the social operations of the patriarchy through writing. With help from Dr. Valeo, Mary will answer this question by looking closely at texts and researching what other scholars have found, all through the lens of feminist theory.

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