Three UND McNair Scholars Presented at the 75th Annual National Plains Anthropological Conference

Presenting at the Great Plains Anthropological Conference was a great experience. I presented my paper on cultural education as a tool to cope with the discrimination Two-Spirit people face. This paper meant a lot to me because most people do not know what it means to be Two-Spirit and the cultural aspects behind that. I knew that Two-Spirit people were hidden in anthropology for a long time because of prejudice even though they have always been around in various American Indian Tribes and have great importance. After I gave my paper, I was surprised by all the feedback I received. A lot of the professionals in the room were unaware of the suicide, assault, and depression statistics that impact the Two-Spirit community. My paper also won the Mary Jane and FredSchneider Student award. I am honored that I got to represent the McNair and American Indian Studies programs.  Flint Devine


Flint, Caitlyn and I had the opportunity to present at the Plains Anthropological Conference on October 5th.  This year the national conference was hosted in Bismarck, ND.  Being from Bismarck, it was nice to have a home-court advantage.  Unfortunately, Patrice and Dr. Hans told us they could not make it, but last minute Patrice surprised us! It was an exhilarating experience and our papers were well received.  Sashay Schettler


Attending the 75th Plains Anthropological Conference this year was more than rewarding. Through this experience, I was exposed to three learning opportunities: 1) attended and presented at my first conference, 2) it allowed me to make connections with other people in my field of study, Anthropology, which will be useful in future endeavors, and 3) I was able to take my first step towards what I want to do, which is enrich the learning of others regarding the American Indian paradigms. I thoroughly valued this experience, and am grateful for the opportunity I was given, as it has now given me confidence to further attend and present at conferences, but it has also solidified the fire and passion I have towards my majors, both American Indian Studies and Anthropology.  Caitlyn Shoulder

Westminster College McNair Scholars Graduation News

DSCN0909Please join the Westminster College McNair Scholars Program in congratulating our 2015-16 graduates!

2016 Graduates Entering Graduate School in Fall 2016   (10/11 will attend graduate school this fall = 91%) 

 Abby Steven Arellanes will enter the PhD program in sociology at North Carolina State University.

Brianda De Leon (U of U) will begin the 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 MS in civil engineering at the University of Utah.

Katherine McLean will enter the PhD program in the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Michigan. Katie 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 will enter the master’s program in the Department of Education, Culture, and Society at the University of Utah.

Lisa Molina 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 MSEd in International Educational Development at the University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Education.

Stephen Tahan will earn his PhD in immunology at Washington University in St. Louis in the Division of Biology and Biomedical Sciences. Stephen also received an Honorable Mention from the National Science Foundation  GRFP.

Tashelle Wright will earn a PhD in public health from the University of California at Merced.

Additionally, we’d like to congratulate Karissa Killian; she will work for the U.S. Forest Service after graduation.

We are so proud of the McNair Scholars’ accomplishments, and delighted to see them achieve their academic goals!


Congratulations to all!

New Program Coordinator Joins Westminster McNair Scholars Program

Greetings, ASPIRE!

The Westminster College McNair Scholars Program would like to introduce you to Dr. Lara Chatman, our new program coordinator. She joined the director, Dr. Jo Hinsdale, at the beginning of October and jumped into providing services for our students.

As a product of both Upward Bound and UB Math-Science, she operates out of her knowledge, passion, and commitment to TRIO. Her primary goal is to provide holistic support to her scholars while helping to create new first-generation, low-income and underrepresented minority Ph.Ds. who will diversify professorship and research in higher education.

Dr. Chatman received her BA in political science and psychology from the University of Tennessee, a Master’s in Education from Freed Hardeman University, and a PhD in Educational Leadership from Miami University.  She speaks at conferences and events on a range of topics, including: student retention, minority student success, career decision-making, and thriving and surviving at predominately white institutions as a minority student.  She also does SAT/ACT preparatory workshops for STEM high school students.

As a researcher and scholar, Lara studies African American women and mentoring, multicultural and diversity education, minority student retention, and critical race storytelling. She has published a chapter on the 10 Great Curricula and Navigating Inhibited Spaces: Black Female Scholars’ Re-Articulation of Knowledge Production in the Academy; she also has several works in progress. Lara is known for her abrasive and sassy talks on African American students thriving in inhibited college environments and Uncourageous Talks on Diversity and Race.

Westminster McNair Scholars Attend Berkeley Research Symposium

At the beginning of August, ten students from the Westminster College McNair Scholars Program presented their summer research at the 23rd Annual McNair Scholars Symposium at the University of California at Berkeley.  They were a great success!  This symposium includes a number of components designed to enhance graduate school preparation.  Students visited Stanford University, networked with faculty and graduate students, attended a graduate school fair, heard special sessions on careers and graduate study in STEM fields, received graduate admission advice from nationally-known speaker Don Asher, and guidance from a panel of California-based graduate school admissions professionals.  The symposium concludes with a cruise on the San Francisco Bay; students danced and dined with hundreds of McNair Scholars from across the country– they especially enjoyed meeting the cohort from another ASPIRE program at the University of Northern Colorado. Each year, the Berkeley Symposium is a highlight of our services, and a fine way to conclude the intense and busy summer research program.