Nine ECU students were awarded funding under the NASA National Space Grant College and Fellowship Program for 2016-2017. They include: (seated left to right) Darby Heard, Morgan Mackey, Kylee Boydstun and Melissa Penton. Standing are: (left to right) Hope Cline, Eric Loucks, Micah Godfrey and Kristian Castellanos. Not pictured is Summer Jennings.

Nine East Central University students were awarded funding under the NASA National Space Grant College and Fellowship Program for the 2016-2017 academic year.

Awards are in the form of $2,000 research stipends for the academic year. Undergraduate research gives students the necessary academic and life skills needed for graduate school, research positions or public and private sector STEM employment.

The recipients of the awards are: Kylee Boydstun, of Ada, a senior majoring in biology; Kristian Castellanos, Moreno Valley, Calif., a senior majoring in medical physics; Hope Cline, Shawnee, a junior majoring in molecular biology; Micah Godfrey, Pauls Valley, majoring in mathematics; Darby Heard, Yukon, a senior majoring in molecular biology & studio arts; Summer Jennings, Wewoka, a senior majoring in environmental health science; Eric Loucks, Oklahoma City, a senior majoring in molecular biology; Morgan Mackey, Choctaw, a senior majoring in molecular biology and Melissa Penton, Porter, a senior majoring in molecular biology.

The National Space Grant Program, mandated by Congress in 1987, consists of 52 State Consortia in the 50 states, the District of Columbia and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico.  There are 28 consortia at the ‘designated level,’ with Oklahoma one of them. All carry out programs in education, research and public service. 

The Oklahoma Space Grant Consortium includes one lead institution (The University of Oklahoma), three charter institutional affiliates (Oklahoma State University, Cameron University, Langston University), four regional institutional affiliates (ECU, Southeastern Oklahoma State University, Southern Nazarene University and Southwestern Oklahoma State University), two academic affiliates (Application Engineering Program, Center for Spatial Analysis), two industrial affiliates (Frontier Electronic Systems Corporation, Science Applications International Corporation), one city government affiliate (Norman Economic Development Coalition), and two informal science education affiliates (Stafford Air and Space Museum, STARBASE Oklahoma, Inc.) 

Dr. Mark Micozzi, professor and director of the Geography & Geotechniques Program, is the institutional representative for ECU. Examples of funding under the National Grant College and Fellowship Program are for undergraduate research and scholarships, campus and community projects, conference travel, graduate application and exam fees, visits to NASA Centers of Excellence, NASA professional development and internships and other financial assistance involving workforce development.

For more information, please contact Micozzi at 580-559-5398.  For more information about the Fellowship Program visit



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