Bouyi, Hale, Viveros recognized as Texas Tech 2018 McNair Scholars
By: Amanda Castro-Crist
Last fall, Texas Tech University was named the recipient of a five-year, $1.1 million grant from the Ronald E. McNair Postbaccalaureate Achievement Program, one of eight educational opportunity programs within the U.S. Department of Education's Federal TRIO Programs.
The grant, named after a NASA astronaut killed in the 1986 Space Shuttle Challenger explosion, allowed the university to establish the Texas Tech McNair Scholars Program, a graduate school preparatory program for undergraduate students from historically underrepresented groups who demonstrate strong academic potential for graduate research.
This fall, the first two cohorts of 26 scholars began in the program, which is housed within the Division of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (DDEI). The program provides access to research opportunities with faculty mentors, research conference funding, graduate school application assistance and academic and professional training.
Recipients from Texas Tech's College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources
• Legrand Bouyi, a senior animal science major from Brazzaville, Republic of Congo
• Gabriella Hale, a junior plant and soil science major from Fredericksburg
• Alejandra Viveros, a senior interdisciplinary agriculture major from Buena Park, California
The scholars receive assistance in preparing for their Graduate Record Examinations, or GRE, along with fee reductions for the exam and waivers for graduate school applications. The program includes an eight-week summer research-intensive internship and stipend.
"A primary focus of our strategic plan is educating and empowering a diverse student body. This grant advances that priority by enhancing opportunities for many deserving students seeking a college degree," said Lawrence Schovanec, Texas Tech president. "We are grateful to the McNair program for their support of Texas Tech students, and for the cause of higher education in general."
Faculty mentoring is a critical aspects of the program. Mentors are asked to commit their time, share knowledge and insight and guide McNair Scholars through the process and completion of a research project.
"Quality mentoring is so important to student success and completion of graduate programs," said Mark Sheridan, dean of the Texas Tech Graduate School. "When we look at the underlying issues causing students to not complete a program, there tends to be a lack of support and effective mentoring." The McNair Program focuses on increasing the participation of underrepresented groups in the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM), he said.
CONTACT: William Brown, Dean, College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources, Texas Tech University at (806) 742-2808 or firstname.lastname@example.org
1120NM18 / Editor's Note: To learn more, visit the Texas Tech McNair Scholars Program website or email the program leaders at email@example.com
- Agricultural & Applied Economics
- Agricultural Education & Communications
- Animal & Food Sciences
- Landscape Architecture
- Natural Resources Management
- Plant & Soil Science
- Veterinary Science
Editor: Norman Martin
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