Westminster College Congratulates 2016 McNair Scholars

Apr 26, 2016

April 26, 2016 Ten Westminster and University of Utah students to attend graduate school next fall SALT LAKE CITY - Westminster is pleased to announce the following Class of 2016 McNair Scholars:
  • Abby Steven Arellanes (Westminster) will enter the Ph.D. program in sociology at North Carolina State University.
  • Brianda De Leon (U of U) will begin a master's program in the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy at the University of Utah. Her emphasis will be student affairs.
  • Elizabeth Gamarra (U of U) will begin her Master of Social Work at the University of Utah.
  • Quan Le (U of U) will earn his Master of Science in civil engineering at the University of Utah.
  • Katherine McLean (Westminster) will enter the Ph.D. program in the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Michigan. McLean was also a recipient of the 2016 National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship Program (GRFP) Fellowship, as well as a Rackham Merit Fellowship from the University of Michigan.
  • Kevin Martinez (Westminster) will enter a master's program in the Department of Education, Culture and Society at the University of Utah.
  • Lisa Molina (Westminster) will attend the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, where she will earn a master's degree in social justice education.
  • Giulia Soto (U of U) will pursue the Master of Science in education in international educational development at the University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Education.
  • Stephen Tahan (Westminster) will earn his Ph.D. in immunology at Washington University in St. Louis in the Division of Biology and Biomedical Sciences. He also received an Honorable Mention from the National Science Foundation GRFP.
  • Tashelle Wright (Westminster) will earn a Ph.D. in public health from the University of California at Merced.
Additionally, Westminster congratulates Karissa Killian (Westminster), who will work for the U.S. Forest Service after graduation. The McNair Scholars Program is a federally funded effort to increase the number of students from underrepresented groups who go on to graduate study. The ultimate goal of the McNair program is to increase faculty diversity in colleges and universities across the country. Westminster's program is the only one in the state and serves students at Westminster, the University of Utah and Salt Lake Community College. "We are so proud of the McNair Scholars' accomplishments, and delighted to see them achieve their academic goals," said Jo Hinsdale, Westminster's McNair Scholars program director. Since the inception of the Westminster College McNair Scholars Program in 2003, 78 percent (87/112) of graduates have attained an advanced degree or are currently in graduate programs. All of the 2016 graduates entering doctoral programs as full-time students received funding, including outstanding fellowships or assistantships and tuition waivers. Ten of our alumni have attained Ph.D.s. Six of these students have become tenure-track professors, which fulfils the program's mission of diversifying academia.

Media Contacts

Krista DeAngelis and Arikka Von
801.832.2682

About Westminster

Westminster is a private, independent, and comprehensive college in Salt Lake City, Utah. Students experience the liberal arts blended with professional programs in an atmosphere dedicated to civic engagement. With the goal of enabling its graduates to live vibrant, just, and successful lives, Westminster provides transformational learning experiences for both undergraduate and graduate students in a truly student-centered environment. Faculty focus on teaching, learning, and developing distinctive, innovative programs, while students thrive on Westminster’s urban Sugar House campus within minutes of the Rocky Mountains.

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