Campus News: Lee McNair Scholars Present at New Mexico Conference

Manage PermissionsManage Permissions
Lee McNair Scholars Present at New Mexico Conference
Kendyl Wadley - 11/1/2019

Lee McNair Scholars Present at New Mexico Conference


Ten Lee University McNair Scholars, along with two Lee staff, recently attended the University of New Mexico's (UNM) Conference focused on discovering the power of networking. Students from McNair programs across the United States were able to present research, meet with recruiters from graduate programs, and experience the culture of New Mexico.


"The trip to visit the University of New Mexico and the McNair Conference was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for many of our students," said Dr. Michaelia Black, coordinator of Lee's McNair Scholars Program. "They got to experience a truly diverse conference where the focus is on providing each scholar the tools they need to successfully navigate the graduate school process, while allowing them to share in a networking community whose focus is on research."


Nine of the Lee students presented on their summer research and include Alanis Burton, "Empty of Full: A Survey of McMinn County's Food Pantries and Their Abilities to Meet Nutritional Standards;" Elijah Cox, "Ayunda en el Camino del la Muerte;" Jhenny Dorvial, "The Psychosocial Effects of Social Media;" Alex Gann, "Relationship Between Vestibular Dysfunction and Fatigue in Persons with Multiple Sclerosis;" Ashley Garner, "A Literature Review on the Benefits of Music Education;" Heather Mellis, "Hashtag Thriving: Religiosity in Congruence to Flourishing;" Brittney Perez, "Why Johnny Doesn't Write;" Moises Ponce, "Quest for the Mathematically Ideal Font Using Principal Component Analysis;" and Kylie Sommer, "Deaf Biblical Literacy and Habits."


"Our time in New Mexico was very enriching," said Sommer, a junior English major. "The conference focused on the importance of networking for grad school, and we had the opportunity to interact and network with a multitude of McNair scholars from other universities."


Keynote speakers included Dr. Finnie Coleman, UNM associate professor of American literary studies; Liz Danielle, assistant director for graduate diversity from University of Rochester; and Dr. Cheo Torres, UNM vice president of student affairs.


The workshops offered were "Making Yourself Competitive for Grad School," "How to Write an Effective Personal Statement," "Strategies for a Successful Graduate School Interview," and "Applying to Highly Competitive Graduate Programs."


According to Black, this trip also allowed Lee students to learn culturally by attending the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta and Old Town Albuquerque, where they interacted with people and participated in various events.


The Lee University McNair Scholars Program, directed by Dr. Kevin Ung, is designed to support highly motivated scholars as they strive to achieve their educational goals by providing them with academic, financial, cultural, and social support. This program cultivates an interdisciplinary community of scholars who prepare for graduate school through seminars, workshops, campus visits, research experience, and academic conferences.


For more information, visit Lee's McNair Program at or contact Ung at

Created at by
Last modified at by