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Six students named McNair Scholars

RELEASED: Nov. 1, 2010

EAU CLAIRE — Six students at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire have been selected for the prestigious Ronald E. McNair Postbaccalaureate Achievement Program. The McNair Program is a learning community that prepares students for careers in research.

Each year six to 12 talented UW-Eau Claire undergraduates are recognized for their academic achievements and selected by faculty nomination. McNair Scholars plan to attend graduate school to pursue doctoral degrees. As undergraduates they engage in two years of collaborative research with faculty, which generally leads to publication and scholarly presentations in their respective disciplines.

Following are UW-Eau Claire McNair Scholars from your area:

  • Chelcea Boesiger, daughter of John and Teri Boesiger of Two Rivers. In collaboration with Dr. Jill Pinkney Pastrana, associate professor of education studies, Boesiger will pursue research on the effect of educational reforms in Chile.
  • Shayna Friday, daughter of John and Denise Aplanalp of Oconto. In collaboration with Dr. Analisa De Grave, associate professor of foreign languages, Friday will pursue research on the factors influencing the delivery of effective health care in Latino populations in Wisconsin.
  • Glenn Terpstra of Bloomington, Minn. In collaboration with Wanrudee Buranakorn, assistant professor of art & design, Terpstra will pursue research on patterns in art patrons' observation and interpretation of works of art.
  • Bobby Ullsperger, son of Kathy Ullsperger of Fond du Lac, will pursue advanced mathematical research.
  • Angela Vetsch, daughter of Brian and Renee Miller of Maple Lake, Minn.; and Marvin and Brenda Vetsch of Winsted, Minn. In collaboration with John Pollitz, director of McIntyre Library, Vetsch will pursue research on the development and efficacy of collaborative ventures between university libraries and academic support programs.
  • Arrianna Zirbes, daughter of George Zirbes of Brooklyn Park, Minn. In collaboration with Dr. Sanchita Hati, assistant professor of chemistry, Zirbes will pursue research on the exploration of bacterial domains, enabling the development of antibiotics lacking side effects.

UW-Eau Claire is one of only 200 institutions nationwide to house a Ronald E. McNair Postbaccalaureate Achievement Program, an initiative of the U.S. Department of Education. Ronald Erwin McNair, the program's namesake, received a doctorate in physics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1976 and was an expert on lasers. He joined NASA in 1978 and died aboard the space shuttle Challenger along with six other astronauts when it exploded in January 1986.

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RD/DW

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