The James R. Larson and Vicki Lord Larson Undergraduate Research Fellowships were created and endowed through the generosity of Vicki Lord Larson, UW-Eau Claire Chancellor Emerita. A scholar herself, Dr. Larson's goal is to support student researchers and their faculty mentors through these awards.
James R. Larson and Vicki Lord Larson Fellowship Winner
2020 James R. Larson and Vicki Lord Larson Fellowship Winners
This year, the James R. Larson and Vicki Lord Larson Undergraduate Research Fellowship award has been expanded. Instead of just one award there are now five awards for each of the following areas: College of Arts & Sciences: STEM, College of Arts & Sciences: non-STEM, College of Business, College of Education and Human Sciences, and College of Nursing. Below are the following winners.
College of Arts & Sciences: STEM winner is Tyler Gonzales. Their project with Dr. Paul Thomas, Physics & Astronomy, is “Numerical Simulation of Atmospheric Passage of Interplanetary Dust Particles.
College of Arts & Sciences: non-STEM winner is Allison Schwartz. Their project with Dr. Peter Hart-Brinson, Sociology, is “Generational Change and the Rise of Religious “Nones”.”
College of Education and Human Sciences winner is Abby Wieser. Their project with Dr. Katie Mueller, Communication Sciences and Disorders, is “Characteristics of Social Communication in Young Adult Offenders.”
College of Nursing winner is Lindsey Jo Boehm. Their project with Dr. Lorraine Smith, Nursing, is “Implementing an Educational Initiative on Electronic Cigarettes and Vaping”.
College of Business winner is Guannan Tao. Their project with Dr. Jidong Zhang, Accounting and Finance, is “Do Foreign firms do worse in the US? From Audit Delay evidence.” Picture N/A.
2019 James R. Larson and Vicki Lord Larson Fellowship Winners
The winner this year is Ruby Gravrok working with mentor Crystal Del Valle in Biology. Ruby studies a protein system in fruit flies, as a model for proteins involved in triggering the human immune system.
The James R. Larson and Vicki Lord Larson Fellowship goes to Jordan Egner-Schnitzler, who is doing research with Dr. Matt Jewell. Jordan explores, at the microscopic level, how bismuth-based wires used in superconductors respond to stress with the goal of designing wires less prone to damage during use.
The James R. Larson and Vicki Lord Larson Fellowship Honorable Mention goes to Samantha Meyer, who is doing research with Dr. Bart Dahl. Samantha works on the design and synthesis of molecules that can be used as switches that are controlled by the level of acidity or pH.
Each Fellowship consists of a $1,750 scholarship that will be supplemented by a student stipend and project expense funds during the year of the Fellowship. The faculty mentor will receive a $1,400 summer research stipend during the project period (if not already awarded one). These supplements to the scholarship will be awarded as a Student-Faculty Research Collaboration and/or Summer Research Experience for Undergraduates grant through the Office of Research and Sponsored Programs.
*Please note that the student stipend amount was reduced due to COVID-19*
C. Eligibility Criteria:
The recipient will be an undergraduate student with junior or senior standing at UW-Eau Claire during the award period. The recipient will have conducted outstanding collaborative research or demonstrated the potential for outstanding undergraduate research. Students from all disciplines may apply. A secondary goal of the donor is to expand the disciplinary background of those receiving research awards. Therefore, the five awards will be made to one science/math student and one non-science student in the College of Arts and Sciences, and one student in each of the other three colleges.
D. Application Process:
Working with the Faculty Mentor
Before beginning the application, the student should consult with their faculty mentor for advice in writing the proposal.
Before beginning the application, the student should notify their faculty mentor to expect two emails from "Gold for Blugolds Scholarship Network" or "email@example.com". The first email requests a letter of recommendation for the student. The second email requests the faculty mentor's CV. The student's name will appear in the subject line of the emails. The mentor uploads these confidential documents directly online; they do not print and mail their documents.
Preparing the Proposal
Faculty mentors are strongly encouraged to mentor students in proposal-writing. For students, the Center for Writing Excellence, located on the second floors of Centennial Hall and McIntyre Library, can help at any stage of the writing process, from brainstorming and outlining to organizing arguments and polishing claims.
Before you begin the application, prepare the following information:
- Research Project Title
- Expected Graduation Date
- Research Project Abstract (150 word maximum): A brief summary of the project. For more information on writing abstracts, refer to the ORSP Abstract Writing Guide.
- Faculty Mentor Letter of Recommendation: The student enters the faculty mentor's name and email address on the application. When the student saves the application or clicks Next, the system sends an email request to the faculty mentor for the letter of recommendation.
- Faculty Mentor CV: The student enters the faculty mentor's name and email address on the application. When the student saves the application or clicks Next, the system sends an email request to the faculty mentor for the faculty mentor's CV.
- Unofficial Transcript (PDF document): To download an unofficial transcript, refer to the instructions on the LTS website.
- Student Resume (Word or PDF document) : Include previous research projects and achievements.
- Statement of Financial Need (optional)
- Research Project Proposal Narrative (Word or PDF document): The narrative is a plan for the proposed collaborative research to be accomplished during the award period. It should be written for an audience of non-specialists in the area of study. The narrative should be no more than 5 pages (excluding the list of literature cited), have a minimum of 1 inch margins on all sides, be in Times New Roman, 12 point font and double spaced. It should include clear statements of the:
- Project description and its relationship to the state of knowledge in the field
- Significance of the proposed project
- Nature and extent of student involvement
- Plan for disseminating the results
- List of literature cited
Accessing the Application
Students apply for this award directly, with assistance from their faculty/staff research mentor. To start an application for the Kell Container Corporation Scholarship:
- Go to the Gold for Blugolds Scholarship Network.
- Login using your UWEC username and password.
- From the My Tasks list, select the Student Research Scholarship Application and click Start Application.
Note that the application process is the same for the James R. Larson and Vicki Lord Larson Undergraduate Research Fellowship and the Kell Container Corporation Scholarship.
E. Application Deadline:
The proposal is due to the Office of Research and Sponsored Programs by March 30, 2021.
F. Selection Procedure:
This Fellowship will be administered by the Office of Research and Sponsored Programs under the direction of the Assistant Vice Chancellor for Research. The selection committee will consist of faculty members with representation from each college represented in the applicant pool. This committee will select the recipient on a best qualified basis and in accordance with donor guidelines established by the UW-Eau Claire Foundation. Student financial status may be used as a factor in order to break a tie. The recipient will be notified prior to the end of the spring semester, and the scholarship funds will be awarded for the next academic year.
G. Reporting Requirements:
The James R. Larson and Vicki Lord Larson Undergraduate Research Fellowship recipient will provide a report by the end of the fall semester indicating progress made on the proposed research. Positive review of this report will serve as the basis for continued scholarship support during the spring semester. The recipient also will be expected to share results in the annual UW-Eau Claire Celebration of Excellence in Research and Creative Activity.
H. About the Donor:
The James R. Larson and Vicki Lord Larson Undergraduate Research Fellowship was created and funded in 2016 by Vicki Lord Larson, PhD, CCC-SLP, Chancellor Emerita, and a member of the UW-Eau Claire Foundation board. She received her bachelor's, master's, and doctorate degrees from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in Communication Sciences and Disorders. She met her husband, Jim, while they were both students at UW-Madison. Both were strong supporters of higher education and the advancement of research in a chosen discipline. Jim, who passed away in 2004, was her source of support and encouragement throughout her career.