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Sociology Students Receive Scholarship for McNair Achievement Program

May 22, 2003

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MACON, Ga.--Mercer University College of Liberal Arts students Chiquita Jones and Dominica Purter will travel to the University of Tennessee this summer as recipients of the prestigious Ronald McNair Post Baccalaureate Achievement Program Award.

The McNair scholarship, a TRIO (Touching lives, Reaching out, Increasing knowledge, Opening doors) program funded by a grant from the U.S. Department of Education, will give Jones and Purter the opportunity to talk with scholars and researchers about possible career paths while receiving advanced academic training in statistics and graduate level research methods. Each student will receive a $2,800 stipend in addition to funds for tuition, housing, food, books and travel.

Jones, a senior majoring in psychology and sociology, anticipates the program will give her an opportunity to better prepare for her future.

"I am looking forward to networking with professors and others in the field," said Jones, a resident of Shorter, Ala. "This experience will help me learn about possible careers as I meet people and find out how they got where they are."

Purter of Columbus, Ga., also plans to use what she learns this summer and apply it to her classes this fall.

"Traveling to the University of Tennessee and being elected for the program is an honor," said Purter, a senior sociology major. "The program will allow me to learn advanced research methods that I can use next semester."

Since both Jones and Purter plan to pursue graduate studies, the workshops will provide them with the tools they need in searching for placement in master's degree programs next year.

"Dominica and Chaquita are bright, thoughtful, hardworking and altogether wonderful students to teach," said Dr. Leona Kanter, associate professor of sociology at Mercer. "It's been exciting for me and the other members of the sociology faculty to watch them develop their sociological imaginations."