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r s e r t t a l e l o s h c w S e r i N a McN Program

Spring 2013

Annual Celebration of McNair Research: New Scholars Presented Research at 2013 Symposium On Monday, April 22, 2013, the McNair Scholars Program celebrated the research, scholarship and creative activity of its scholars and their faculty mentors. This year’s symposium was held in collaboration with the Science Educational Equity Program (SEE) and took place in the Hinde Auditorium inside the University Union, from 2:00 P.M to 6:00 P.M. The Scholars presented both oral and poster presentations. The Symposium provided a public forum for scholars’ to share their work and talent with the entire campus community and the general public.

Dr. Ronald E. McNair (1950-1986)

What is the McNair Scholars Program? It is a unique two-year program for low income and first generation, or underrepresented students. It provides preparation and guidance for admission and study at the doctoral level. McNair Scholars have the opportunity to conduct primary research under the guidance of faculty mentors. The program also provides students support in obtaining graduate school funding.


Preparation in research methodology

  

GRE preparation

Development of collegial relationships with faculty members who can provide strong references

Financial Assistance to visit potential graduate schools

Assistance on selecting and applying for graduate studies

Faculty mentorship Opportunities to present at McNair Symposiums

Jasmine Stewart-Oliver

Ariel Mosley

Marissa Smith

McNair Scholar Jasmine Stewart-Oliver Wins Student Research Symposium Jasmine Stewart-Oliver, a member of the McNair 2011-12 cohort, was one of two undergraduate winners in the 2013 Sacramento State Student Research Challenge. Prizes of $500 for outstanding achievement in original scholarship were awarded to each winner. In addition to Jasmine’s outstanding scholastic achievement, two other McNair Scholars, Ariel Mosley and Marisa Smith, were selected as finalists to present their research and represent Sacramento State at the California State University system-wide competition taking place at California State Polytechnic University, Pomona, on May 10-11, 2013. Page 1

The 2012-13 Cohort will be presenting their research at the 17th Annual MKN McNair Heartland Research Conference. The conference is being held at the Marriot Country Club Plaza Hotel in Kansas City, Missouri September 19th thru 22nd, 2013.In addition to presenting their research, they will be partaking in various professional development activities to include meeting graduate school recruiters from across the nation. The scholars will also have the opportunity to enjoy the local attractions and meet other fellow McNair Scholars. It promises to be a wonderful and exciting trip!


Spring 2013

“Developing Leaders Through Graduate Education” Meet the McNair Scholars (2012-13 Cohort) Elizabeth believes the McNair Scholars program is an essential component to her future success. She is conducting qualitative research on the Hispanic community that documents barriers existing in education, and explains educational achievement gaps among classes and ethnicities.

Faculty Mentor: Elvia Ramirez Liku Madoshi Organizational Communication

Elizabeth Esparza Sociology

Karina Hurtado Ethnic Studies/ Cultural Anthropology

Ashley Jackson Biochemistry

Karina’s research interests fuel her future career goals, which include pursuing a doctoral degree in Ethnomusicology. She is interested in exploring gender binaries in Mariachi performances as a cultural representation of the music of Mexico and Latin America. Her research focuses on how Mariachi music shapes the cultural and social context of communities.

Rodolfo Rodriguez Sociology

Faculty Mentor: Julie Figueroa

As a McNair scholar, Liku, aspires to help foster a better understanding of how social movements influence African-American voting behavior. Her research interests center on the relevance of the historical context in explaining current social issues, with a focus on politics and the African Diaspora. She aspires to follow a career in education.

Faculty Mentor: Ricky Green

Rodolfo believes the McNair Scholars Program helped him sharpen his analytical and critical thinking skills, and has properly prepared him for the research associated with a doctoral program. His current project examines what educational inequities for Latino Farm Workers are present in the higher educational system, and what can be done to increase graduation and retention rates among them.

Faculty Mentor: Manuel Barajas

Allie joined the McNair Scholars Program because she would like to increase the diversity among higher education faculty, by becoming a college professor. She is actively involved in several campus organizations including the multicultural sorority Zeta Sigma Chi. Her research explores the benefits and limitations present for African American women affiliated with multiAlexandra (Allie) Boyd cultural sororities.

Ashley believes that with the aid of the McNair Scholars Program she has broadened her understanding of the scientific research processes, from the beginning drafts to the final product. She aspires to become a medical researcher to teach and spread her knowledge on "wet lab" experimentation. This career goal aligns with her current research, which focuses on oshála root extract and its effect on breast cancer cells.

Organizational Communication

Faculty Mentor: Mary McCarthyHintz Page 2

Faculty Mentor: Michele FossSnowden


Spring 2013

“Developing Leaders Through Graduate Education” Meet the McNair Scholars (2012-13 Cohort) Juliana has been involved in extensive research geared toward her academic interests. Her current project aims to understand the cognitive processes and acculturation strategies of recent immigrants, children of immigrants, and minorities. Her focus lies within the areas of social, multicultural, and cognitive psychology. Juliana Matveyeva

Faculty Mentor: Gregory Kim-Ju

Rebecca Muradyan



Jazzmine Parker

Jazzmine is currently researching the positive effects of same-race mentoring for emancipated African American foster youth. She has found limited research on the positive factors that aid in the retention of African American foster youth community who are already emancipated from the system. With her current project she plans to fill some on these gaps in research.

Social Work

Faculty Mentor: Sylvester Bowie

John Ramos Family & Consumer Sciences

Rebecca’s goals include obtaining a Ph.D. in Microbiology and conducting research work in a laboratory setting. The focus of her current project is to understand the mechanism underlying symbiotic relationships between microbes and humans. Her current research observes the reproductive impact of DEHP on organisms that are found lower on the food chain and living at the point of accumulation.

Faculty Mentor: Tom Landerholm

As a McNair scholar, John is excited to be working with such an enthusiastic and dedicated cohort, and the McNair staff and advisors. John aspires to pursue a doctoral degree in Clinical Human Nutrition. He became a Dietetics major with the intention of improving the understanding and practice of nutrition in Medicine. John's research analyzes the relationships among cultural-athletic identity, the use of muscleenhancing drugs ,and weight loss mechanisms, in collegiate male Hispanic athletes.

Faculty Mentor: Maureen Smith

Rafael Torres


Jose’s current research project looks at U.S. foreign investment, particularly in Mexico, and whether such investment has contributed to immigration flows of Mexican Nationals to the United States; using a World-Systems view, the hypothesis is that as foreign investment increases, so does immigration.

Rafael has set a goal for himself to obtain a Ph.D. and feels the McNair Scholars Program will provide him with guidance and the tools necessary to achieve a graduate degree. His research project aims to discover the optimal exchange rate regime for developing and emerging economies, in order to stimulate economic growth.

Faculty Mentor: Patrick Cannon Jose Zacarias

Faculty Mentor: Kristin Van Gaasbeck


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Spring 2013

McNair Scholars Report “Strive for Academic Excellence”

Sac State McNair Scholars Club Author: Theodore Harrison III

Author: Dr. Yvette Farmer

President, McNair Scholars Club

Graduate Coordinator, Criminal Justice Department

The 2012-13 Academic year

All potential graduate students

has been a very rewarding

should strive for academic ex-

and challenging year for the

cellence. An undergraduate

McNair Scholars. One of the goals set for the 2011-

student that hopes to attend graduate school must

12 cohort, was to develop a on campus social club.

demonstrate a strong academic record as reflected

With the help of our faculty advisor, Dr. Yvette

in his or her grade point average (GPA) and noted by

Farmer, and newly elected officers, the club was

individual course grades on transcripts. A commonly

successfully certified as a campus social organiza-

accepted idea is that a student can earn an under-

tion in Fall 2012. The purpose of the club is to in-

graduate degree with “C” grades, but those “C”

crease the visibility and interaction of the McNair

grades will not get a student into graduate school.

Scholars Program with the campus community. The

Given the selective admissions process for graduate

main goal is to support current McNair Scholars in

students, there is an expectation for academic excel-

their academic endeavors, and recruit new scholars

lence in graduate courses. This makes sense since

to participate in the McNair Scholars Program. The

the students admitted to graduate programs have

club provides current scholars with networking op-

already demonstrated their ability to excel at the un-

portunities with previous scholars and graduate fac-

dergraduate level. In graduate school, strong aca-

ulty. One of the first on campus activities the club

demic performance is a survival strategy. A student

participated in was a food drive with the purpose of

that demonstrates his or her ability to acquire and

helping families during the holidays. One of the first

apply advanced knowledge will be most successful.

on campus activities the club participated in, was

The McNair Scholars program is committed to aca-

that a food drive that went on to help families during

demic excellence. We encourage students to im-

the holidays. The McNair Scholars Club’s future

prove their GPAs, develop writing skills, and work on

goals include: Constructing a recruiting booth for

their public speaking skills for scholarly presenta-

rush week; fundraising activities; and partnering

tions. The opportunity to use those skills to obtain

with EOP, to support freshman and sophomore stu-

faculty positions comes to those individuals that


have completed their degrees by achieving a record of academic excellence. Page 4

ram McNair Scholars Prog


Spring 2013

McNair Scholarship at WORK!

Graduate Diversity

McNair Scholars and Their Graduate Programs

Financial Awards The Office of Graduate Studies, through the Graduate Diversity Program, currently offers grants and scholarships for qualified undergraduate and graduate students. Please visit the website at for more information on the grants/awards listed below:

Scholar: Theodore Harrison III School: University of Oregon Program: Masters in Communication Funding: Fully Funded

Graduate Equity Fellowship (Variable Amount) Students must meet financial and academic requirements and be classified or conditionally classified in a graduate program. The fellowship is for students who have experienced economic and educational disadvantages.

Scholar: Jasmine Stewart-Oliver School: Bowling Green University Program: Masters in Sociology Funding: Fully Funded

California Pre-Doctoral Program ($3,000) The program is designed to increase the pool of potential California State University faculty by supporting the doctoral aspirations of individuals who are upper division or graduate students in the CSU system. Applicants must be economically or educationally disadvantaged, and U.S. citizens or permanent residents.

Scholar: Marisa Smith School: Ohio State University Program: Masters in Communication Funding: Fully Funded

Chancellor’s Doctoral Incentive Program (up to $30,000) The purpose of the program is to increase the number of promising doctoral students who are interested in becoming faculty members within the CSU system. Forgivable loans of up to $10,000 per year, up to a total of $30,000, are available.

Scholar: Sonja Duenas School: Columbia University Program: Masters in Public Health

Graduate Resources Online General info

Scholar: Ariel Mosley School: Yale University Program: Summer Research Internship Program Funding: Funded Research Project

GRE online Peterson’s: The Graduate School Guide U.S. News America’s Best Graduate Schools

The McNair program prepares students to find the best fit for their graduate studies and teaches them to negotiate financial packages that will pay for all or part of their tuition and expenses.

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Spring 2013

“Developing Leaders Through Graduate Education” Reflection of a McNair Scholar

VANESSA ESQUIVIDO Author: ULISES PALMENO Graduate Assistant/Tutor With the help of the Sacramento State community and the support of the McNair Scholars Program, Vanessa Esquivido was able to get serious about her studies, focus on her dreams, and reach her goals. “The McNair Scholars Program opened my eyes to a new world” she tells us; prior to joining the McNair program Vanessa had never even dreamed of becoming a Ph.D.

“Before You Can Make A Dream Come True You Must First Have One” ~Dr. Ronald E. McNair Vanessa is a former McNair Scholar, member of the 2009-2010 cohort. The training and experience provided by McNair helped prepare her for a successful application to the Ph.D. program in Native American Studies at UC Davis. She is currently in her second year of studies, having completed much of her required coursework. Her last year will be dedicated to studying for her qualifying exams.

Q. How does McNair’s research differ from that of a Ph.D. program? A. I would say, at times the research is at the same level of McNair, but at times it is a lot more difficult. The McNair Scholars Program helped me develop an understanding of how the research process in general went. The Ph.D. program is a lot more demanding, if I didn’t have McNair’s stepping stones, I would have dropped out.

10-15 books.

“I firmly believe that if it were not for McNair, I would not be in a Ph.D. program”

Q. What does it take to submit a successful graduate school application? Did you interview for this program? A. I didn’t interview, I submitted an application. My advice is to go and check out the programs, email and meet with some of the professors to stand out a little more [from the rest of the applicants].

Q. How do you balance social and academic life? A. You have to find a balance, we all have families. I make time to go and see my grandpa, my mom, and my dad, but sometimes I miss things. If I go somewhere, I make sure to bring a book. During midterms or finals, I sometimes have to say no, but it’s all about finding that balance.

~Vanessa Esquivido After completing her Ph.D., Vanessa would like to become a professor at a State college, preferably at Sacramento State in the Ethnic Studies department, and be able to give back to the larger academic community that helped her reach her goals. We had a chance, recently, to sit down with Vanessa and chat about how her experience in McNair shaped her graduate career. She offers some sound advice for current and future scholars, who want to pursue a doctoral degree.

Q. How are the classes at a Ph.D. level? A. The classes are typically much smaller, [I] go to a seminar class with about 16 people. You cannot go to a seminar session unprepared. I am in a class of 3 people, if you haven’t done your reading you will definitely stand out. There is a healthy level of competition and everybody keeps each other on their toes. Each seminar I am in uses about Page 6

Q. How much more demanding is writing at a graduate level? A. McNair really helped me with my writing skills. Each doctoral seminar demands a 15-20 page paper. McNair helped me learn how to structure a paper. Furthermore, the program helped me figure out how to put a graduate paper together.

Q. What is the best piece of advice you wish you had before starting your Ph.D. program? A. Email your professors and get the reading list early so you can get a head start in reading. Try to read during the breaks so you don’t have that much reading during the [semester].


Spring 2013

“Developing Leaders Through Graduate Education” McNair News

McNair Alumni Making Waves in Education McNAIR STAFF

Master’s Programs             

Brittney-Grandy- Knox Currently Enrolled, Drexel University, Public Health Catalina Alvarez-Alvarez Completed, San Jose State University , Social Work Chia Xiong Currently Enrolled, Sacramento State, Sociology Dallas Morrison Currently Enrolled, University of Oklahoma, Organizational Communication D’Andre Walker Currently Enrolled, Arizona State University, Criminology & Criminal Justice Jackie Rodriguez Completed, Sacramento State, Behavioral Sciences James Montgomery Chow Currently Enrolled, Bangkok University International College, Global Communication Kellie (Painter) Sturgeon Currently Enrolled, Sacramento State, Social & Developmental Psychology Kimberley Folkes Currently Enrolled, Sacramento State, Bilingual-Multicultural Education LaToya Deen Currently Enrolled, Fayetteville State University, Sociology Nia Lenise Ridgle Currently Enrolled, Sacramento State, Social Work & Mental Health Teresa Zapien Galindo Completed Masters Yadira Ruby Guzman Currently Enrolled, Samuel Merritt University, Nurse Practitioner

Doctoral Programs           

Andro Rios Completed, UC San Diego, Chemistry Cheng Vang Currently Enrolled, Alliant International University, Clinical Psychology Crystal Martinez-Alire Currently Enrolled, Sacramento State, Counseling Diana Barela Currently Enrolled, T. Denny Sanford School of Social and Family Dynamics, Sociology Jason Ybarra Currently Enrolled, University of Florida, Astronomy Jessica Fifield (Gordley) Currently Enrolled, UNC Chapel Hill, Communication Studies Lok Chan Currently Enrolled, Duke University, Philosophy Martin Chamorro Completed, University of Colorado Boulder, Philosophy Maura Dykstra Currently Enrolled, UCLA, History Monique Bastidas Currently Enrolled, Penn State, Chemistry Nancy Huante Currently Enrolled, University of Utah, Education, Culture, & Society

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Spring 2013

“Developing Leaders Through Graduate Education” Upcoming Events

California Northern e h t e v a S State University, California ! e at D Sacramento Forum for Diversity Graduate and Professional in Graduate Education Saturday, October 20, 2013 School Information Day October 23, 2013 What are my educational goals? Where will I go to graduate school? Master’s degree or doctorate? How do I apply? What do I do next? Find all your answers to your questions about graduate school at the Sac State Graduate and Professional School Information Day. Receive information about  Admissions Policies and Procedures  Availability of Financial Aid  Pertinent information about graduate school Institutions that have participated in the past: Carnegie Mellon University USC University of San Francisco UCLA Academy of Art University Stanford Johns Hopkins University UC Davis McGeorge School of Law CSU Chico University of the Pacific Pepperdine University of San Diego UC Berkeley Chapman University Mills College Columbia University CSU East Bay The Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising Howard University . . . and many more.

St. Mary’s College will host the 2013 Northern California Forum for Diversity in Graduate Education. The California Forums for Diversity in Graduate Education, planned by a consortium of public and private colleges and universities from throughout California, have been designed particularly to meet the needs of advanced undergraduates and graduate students who belong to groups that are currently underrepresented in doctoral-level programs. The all-day program is designed to acquaint students from underrepresented groups with the academic and career opportunities associated with advanced study in a wide range of disciplines. This event targets students with sophomore, junior, senior, or graduate standing. Participants will have numerous opportunities to:  Meet with representatives from over 100 of the

nation’s graduate schools;  Meet with representatives from doctoral-granting

institutions;  Attend a variety of informative workshops;  Receive a complimentary lunch.

Location: Library Quad (University Union in case of rain) Contact Graduate Diversity at 916-278–3834 or for more information

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Sacramento State McNair Scholars Newsletter - Spring 2013 Edition  

Spring 2013

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