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Sixteen ECU students have been awarded funding under the NASA National Space Grant College and Fellowship Program for the 2008-09 academic year.

The awards are competitive and applications are reviewed by a committee on campus. Awards are in the form of scholarship and research stipends and range from $350 to $2,000 for the academic year.

James Brockman of Ada, a sophomore cartography/geography major, received a research stipend.

Scholarship awards went to Bethany Beachel of Schulter, a freshman chemistry major; Thomas Bowdler of Holdenville, a junior elementary education major; Kellie Eiland of Shawnee, a sophomore mass communication major; Jessica Ferguson of Elmore City, a junior medical physics major; Mark Gaches of Schulter, a senior biology major; Felicia Goure of Holdenville, a sophomore elementary education major and Susan Leonard of Sulphur, a senior accounting, major.

Other scholarship winners are Corey Miller of Ada, a senior sociology and cartography/geography major; Richard Neal of Ada, a senior political science major; Kayla Pattison of Holdenville, a senior mass communication major; Morgan Sennett of McAlester, a sophomore pre-engineering major; Daniel Stettler of Ada, a sophomore business administration major; Kristen Thompson of Elmore City, a junior medical physics major; Michelle Meadows of Ada, a senior nursing major; and Samantha Wright of Sulphur, a junior elementary education major.

Under the National Space Grant College and Fellowship Program, ECU undergraduates may benefit from funding for research and scholarship, campus and community projects, conference travel, visits to NASA Centers of Excellence, and financial assistance.

The awards are not discipline specific. Students must meet required criteria and submit several forms for consideration, said Dr. Mark Micozzi, associate professor of cartography and geography and NASA's institutional representative for ECU.

One of the requirements is an essay in which the reviewers look for evidence of creativity, initiative, motivation and other characteristics indicating the applicant's potential as a scholar and contributor to society.

In addition, the students discuss specific interests and how these interests and their discipline relate to NASA's overall mission. Students learn that all disciplines find space in NASA's world, Micozzi said.

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. Oklahoma is one of 28 consortia at the 'designated level.' All carry out programs in education, research and public service.

The Oklahoma Space Grant Consortium includes four charter institutional affiliates (The University of Oklahoma, Oklahoma State University, Cameron University and Langston University) and four regional institutional affiliates (East Central University, Southeastern Oklahoma State University, Southern Nazarene University and Southwestern Oklahoma State University).

There also are two academic affiliates (Application Engineering Program and the Center for Spatial Analysis), two industrial affiliates (Frontier Electronic Systems Corporation and CDF Associates Inc.), one city government affiliate (Norman Economic Development Coalition) and four informal science education affiliates (Kirkpatrick Air and Space Museum at Omniplex, STARBASE Oklahoma Inc., K20 Center and Space Explorers Inc.)

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

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