Fourteen graduate students were honored for their outstanding research during the final Graduate Council meeting of the academic year April 30.The College of Graduate Studies’ annual endowed awards went to three outstanding students. Dr. Patricia Komuniecki, dean of the college who chaired the Graduate Council Fellowships and Scholarships Committee that selected the recipients, presented the awards to:
• Nneka Mbah, second-year doctoral student in the Department of Biochemistry and Cancer Biology, who received the Robert R. Buell Memorial Achievement Award ($1,000) for her research on new drugs to attack cancerous brain cells.
• Hasmik Chakaryan, third-year doctoral student in the Department of School Psychology, Legal Specialties and Counselor Education, who received the Helen M. Fields Memorial Achievement Award ($1,000) for her scholarship in the area of social justice.
• Ateka Akbar Contractor, third-year doctoral student in the Department of Psychology, who was awarded the Robert N. Whiteford Memorial Scholarship ($400) for her research on post-traumatic stress disorder.
For the first time, the Graduate Student Association gave 10 Graduate Research Awards to 11 students (two sharing an award) to support their research projects. The awards provide financial support up to $2,000 per student for research costs not covered by other resources. Several of the award winners were present to be recognized at the final Graduate Council meeting.
Graduate Student Association President Joshua Waldman initiated the establishment of the Graduate Research Awards as part of the group’s efforts to promote student professional development. The recipients were selected through a competitive review process by the Graduate Student Affairs Committee comprised of members of the association and faculty representatives, and chaired by Dr. Susan Pocotte, associate dean for academic affairs in the College of Graduate Studies.
“The award was open to graduate students to support their master’s or doctoral research,” Pocotte said. “Graduate students from all colleges with graduate programs were invited to apply, and the 40 applicants represented diverse programs across several colleges.”
“I am really grateful to the Graduate Student Association, and I am thankful for my adviser, Dr. Jason Rose [assistant professor of psychology], who helped me design my project and supported me in applying for the grant,” said Erin Vogel, psychology student and Graduate Student Research Award recipient.
Announcements regarding the application process for next year’s awards will begin fall semester. Information will be posted on the College of Graduate Studies website at utoledo.edu/graduate.