Current McNair Scholars (2012)
Chloe Brown is a rising senior from Beltsville, MD. She is receiving a Bachelor of Science dual degree in Psychology and Criminology along with a Statistics Minor, expecting to graduate in Fall 2012. Actively involved on-campus, Chloe holds positions of secretary in Organization for Native American Interests, Education chair for the Psychology Club and is also a member of Psi Chi, the Psychology National Honor Society. Her future plans include attaining a Ph.D. in Criminology, and working as an ethnographer focusing on conflicts within inner cities and urban life. Chloe’s interests include traveling to new places, discussing social issues, and spending time with friends.
Adam Carte is a rising junior from Hico, WV. Majoring in biochemistry and minoring in biology, Adam is a member of both the WVU Honors College and the Junior Honorary Society, Chimes. Under the guidance of Dr. Ashok Bidwai and his graduate assistants, Lucas Jozwick and Adam Majot, Adam’s research project will focus on using bioinformatics and computational biology tools to discover whether or not a specific lysine residue is conserved in protein kinase CK2 sequences among a broad range of species. Upon completion of his undergraduate career, Adam plans on pursuing a doctoral degree in biochemistry, molecular biology, or molecular medicine. In his free time, he enjoys running, playing soccer, being outdoors, and occasionally attempting to finish reading all of the books he has started.
Amanda Harker is a rising junior from Fairmont, WV. She is currently pursuing her Bachelor’s degree in Environmental and Natural Resource Economics, with minors in Communication Studies and Economics. She is a Gold and Blue student ambassador for the University, and in the following year, plans to create a student organization focused on “Sustainability.” Recently, she has been selected as an intern for the West Virginia University Office of Sustainability. Amanda plans to pursue her Ph.D. in Environmental Economics or Environmental Pubic Health. For her McNair project, Amanda plans to study behavior modification from environmental education on campus, focusing on the change in energy efficiency from the education. Amanda enjoys cooking, exercising, and the outdoors.
Tyree Harmon is from Essex county, New Jersey, majoring in Finance at West Virginia University. He is a member the WVU Finance club. Tyree’s McNair project will examine the effects of the financial crisis on student loan default rates. His personal interests include reading books about ancient Greek wars, portfolio management, and feminism. His academic goal is to obtain a Ph.D. in Finance.
Trinity Howell is a rising senior at West Virginia University from Pittsburgh, PA. She plans to graduate from the Eberly College of Arts and Sciences in May 2013 with a bachelor’s degree in Psychology and two minors in Communication Studies and Child Development and Family Studies. She is an active member in the National Society of Collegiate Scholars (NSCS). Her McNair research project will focus on parenting styles and adolescent risk behaviors. Her aspiration is to obtain a Ph.D. in Developmental Psychology, hoping to eventually work with at risk and delinquent adolescents. Trinity enjoys playing softball, spending time with friends, and being an active member at her church.
Rickie Huffman is a rising senior from Mannington, WV. She is currently pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Art History from the school of Art and Design. At WVU, she is involved with Sigma Alpha Iota, a music fraternity, as the president and an intern for WVU Arts and Entertainment. Her McNair research project is on the Robert Lepper industrial mural located in White Hall on the WVU Downtown campus. Her goals with this project are to increase awareness of this mural throughout the art world and express the value of such a revolutionary piece. She also intends to establish connections between the mural and the new WVU Art Museum. Rickie’s interests include collecting random facts, singing, reading, and she enjoys anything related to history. Her inspiration is her mother because without her she wouldn’t be where she is today.
Rachel James is a senior at West Virginia University from Crawford, WV, pursuing a degree in Civil Engineering. She is currently on track to graduate in December 2013. Actively engaged on-campus, she participates as a Learning Assistant for Physics 111, Social Coordinator for the Society of Women Engineers, a co-mentor for Honors 199 with the WVU Honors College, and a member of TRiO Student Support Services, the National Society of Collegiate Scholars, and the American Society of Civil Engineers. After obtaining her bachelor’s degree, Rachel plans to pursue a Ph.D. in Civil Engineering with an emphasis in transportation. For her McNair project, she will be studying stochastic shortest path problems in network optimization. Rachel enjoys traveling, playing music, in addition to spending time with her friends and family.
Roger Jefferys is from Morgantown, WV. He is a rising junior majoring in forensic and investigative science and minoring in sociology. His focus is on crime scene investigation and chemistry. Under the guidance of his faculty mentor, Dr. Keith Morris, Roger’s McNair research project will focus on the correlation between striker pins and action impression marks corresponding to Mossberg 500 model shotguns. He also has previous research experience working with baysian networks and gunshot residue analysis. Upon graduation, he plans to pursue his master’s degree at West Virginia University in forensic science before continuing for his Ph.D. in criminal justice or chemistry. He enjoys riding along with various police agencies, physical fitness, and traveling.
Jasmine Koech is presently a junior pursuing dual major Bachelor’s degrees in Psychology and Latin American Studies with a minor in Spanish. At West Virginia University, Jasmine is Vice President of the newly established Spanish Club, a member on the WVU Relay for Life committee as well as a team captain, and an inductee of the international honor society in psychology (Psi Chi). After her expected graduation in May 2014, she plans to attain her Ph.D. in Social Psychology. She is very interested in seeing what roles culture can play in social behavior as well as close, personal relationships. In her spare time, she enjoys cooking, reading, bowling, and playing softball.
Jessica M. Latham
Jessica M. Latham is a senior at West Virginia University majoring in History (specializing in the Colonial Period) and minoring in English focusing on Professional Writing and Editing. She currently serves as an intern at the WVU Office of Information Technology in the Communications department where she maintains the Technology Blog. Jessica is a member of Delta Gamma and is their current Vice President of Foundation. Her research interests are in the Colonial History of Boston. For her McNair project, Jessica will be continuing her research on the Boston “Massacre,” where she will be analyzing how different historical works can affect the reader’s interpretation of the event. Upon graduation, she plans to pursue her Ph.D. in International Relations. In her free time, Jessica enjoys cooking, exercising, and blogging.
Angela Martinez is a rising senior from Twinsburg, OH. She will graduate in May 2013 from the Davis College of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Design with a B.S. in Environmental and Natural Resource Economics and a minor in Sustainable Design. She was recognized as a 2012 Outstanding Junior by the WVU Chapter of the Honor Society of Agriculture, Gamma Sigma Delta. Her research interest includes sustainable development and transportation planning. After she graduates, Angela plans to pursue graduate studies in Public Administration or Community Development. In her free time she enjoys cooking, camping and being involved with the WVU Society of Environmental Professionals and Focus The Nation.
Reeva Morton, from Ellicott City, MD, is a rising senior in the West Virginia University Honors College majoring in psychology and double minoring in international studies and child development and family studies. She plans to attend graduate school in the Fall of 2013 in a clinical child psychology program. Her research interests are learning disabilities, developmental disorders, and family-school relationships. Currently, Reeva volunteers in the Monongalia County public school system as an aid to teachers of second grade students, mentors as a Big sister in the Big Brother Big Sister program, and volunteers with Special Olympics. On campus, Reeva is a member of the Psi Chi National Honor Society and a tutor for college students from the Mountaineer Academic Program. She is also one of the founders of Voices for Change of Howard County Maryland, in which she works directly with the Board of Education in bettering the Howard County public school system. For her McNair Scholars project, she will work with Dr. Cheryl McNeil and her graduate students on a learning bias between college students and a community sample.
Milda Marie Mullins
Milda Marie Mullins is a rising senior studying Broadcast Journalism. She was born in Miami Beach, Florida, but refers to Rio, West Virginia as her hometown. Before transferring to West Virginia University (WVU), Milda attended Potomac State College of WVU where she studied Journalism and was a Co-Editor for the school paper Pasquino during the 2009-2010 academic year. At WVU, she is currently a member of the National Society of Leadership and Success and has plans to join the Radio Television Digital News Association in the fall of 2012. Upon her graduation in the spring of 2013, she plans to attend graduate school and seek a Ph.D. in her chosen field. Milda’s research interests include social media, agenda setting, and visual journalism. Her McNair research will focus on agenda-setting in the media.
Michael Powell is a 19-year-old rising junior who hails from Hagerstown, MD. Currently, he is majoring in the field of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering. Upon graduation, he plans on immediately attending graduate school and pursuing a Ph.D. For his McNair research project on Spray Cooling for heated electronic components, he is working with Dr. John Kuhlman of the WVU Department of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering. He is involved with the 2012-2013 Microgravity Research Team, mentored by Dr. Kuhlman, and plans on applying his summer research to a microgravity application, later on testing it at the NASA Johnson Space Center in Houston, TX, in the summer of 2013. He enjoys going to the Student Recreation Center and exercising whenever he has free time.
Shakira Smith is a rising senior from Morgantown, WV. She is currently pursuing her bachelor’s degree in Psychology (BS) with a minor in Adventure Sport Leadership and will graduate from the Eberly School of Arts and Sciences in May of 2013. Shakira has been a member of The National Society of Collegiate Scholars since 2010 and a member of The International Honor Society in Psychology (Psi Chi) since 2011. After graduation, she will pursue a Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology with focus on Outdoor/Adventure therapies. For her McNair research project, Shakira will complete an evaluative comparison of two programs offered at WVU aiming at reducing harmful behavior in relation to alcohol consumption on campus. Shakira hopes to eventually work with adolescents overcoming substance abuse. In her free time, she enjoys traveling, camping, and live music.
Kassey Riffle is a rising senior from Weston, WV. She is currently pursuing her Bachelor’s degree in Sociology & Anthropology with an emphasis in Anthropology and is expected to graduate in May 2013. Upon graduation, she intends to pursue a Ph.D. in Medieval Archaeology. Her McNair project will examine the influence of the Roman Occupation on Great Britain.
Sherain Thomas is a rising senior in the West Virginia University (WVU) Psychology program. Sherain is from Oak Hill, WV, and has high aspirations of becoming an Occupational Therapist and one day owning her own Rehabilitation Clinic. She plans on obtaining her Ph.D. in Public Health and continuing to uplift all communities with which she comes in contact. Sherain was a former member of the Paul Robeson and Mahalia Jackson Gospel Choir, Americorps: Energy Express, and a Health Career Opportunity mentee at WVU. In 2011, she served as a Residential Assistant (RA) and plans on continuing the position during the 2012 academic year. She spends her spare time volunteering at places such as Stepping Stones, Health South Rehabilitation, Hand and Upper Extremity Rehabilitation, Ronald McDonald House, and the American Cancer Society. Her hobbies consist of reading, singing, writing, dancing, shopping, and helping others.
Michelle Watson is a rising junior from Charleston, WV. She is currently pursuing her Bachelor of Science degree in Child Development and Family Studies with a minor in Women’s Studies. At West Virginia University, she is involved in the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People and has made the Dean’s List every semester since her sophomore year. Upon graduation from WVU, she intends to pursue a Ph.D. in Public Health to work with non-profit organizations and make a lasting impact on her community. Her research interests are in women’s health. For her McNair project, she will be researching the influences of teen pregnancy with her mentor, Dr. Janie Leary of the Department of Pediatrics. Michelle enjoys reading, listening to music, and spending time with her friends and family.
Kiersten Woods is originally from Virginia, but currently lives in Fairmont, WV. She is an English and Chinese double major and a member of the National Society of Collegiate Scholars, the Chinese club, and the English club. For her McNair research project, she is planning on researching young adult dystopian series due to their recent popularity. In her free time, Kiersten enjoys playing tennis, reading many different kinds of books, writing, and talking with friends. After obtaining her undergraduate degree, she plans on pursuing a Ph.D. in English and is considering further study in Chinese.
Past McNair Scholars2011 Scholars