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First APSU students selected to participate in the McNair Program

Austin Peay State University officials have announced that Rhoan Campbell, Clarksville, and Sharon Campbell, Clarksville, are the first APSU students selected for the summer research institute with the McNair Program.

A federally funded TRIO program, the McNair Program is designed to prepare participants for doctoral work through participation in research and other scholarly activities. The program is named in memory of Ronald McNair, a participant in the NASA space shuttle program and the second African-American to fly in space.
Austin Peay State University officials have announced that Rhoan Campbell, Clarksville, and Sharon Campbell, Clarksville, are the first APSU students selected for the summer research institute with the McNair Program.

A federally funded TRIO program, the McNair Program is designed to prepare participants for doctoral work through participation in research and other scholarly activities. The program is named in memory of Ronald McNair, a participant in the NASA space shuttle program and the second African-American to fly in space.

Rhoan Campbell and Sharon Campbell (no relation) were selected in May to take part in the 10-week research program at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, during the past summer. Both were ready to undertake an intense research program.

A senior majoring in health care management with a minor in psychology, Rhoan Campbell reflects on his research experience. “It's a grueling and assiduous program.”

With a full day schedule from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m., it was not uncommon for students to work 12 hours or more each day. “There were many nights I only got between four and five hours of sleep,” says Rhoan Campbell.

“I called it ‘academic boot camp,'” says Sharon Campbell, a senior majoring in social work. “For 10 weeks, we worked on résumé writing, personal statements, business cards, technical writing, school applications and preparing for the GRE. It was intense.”

Each student worked on a research project in his/her field of study. To address the prevalence of childhood obesity, Rhoan Campbell conducted a comparative validation study of pedometers in children. Sharon Campbell evaluated the effectiveness of classroom instruction and teaching strategies on students' development of multicultural competence.

The research program proved to be an invaluable experience for both participants.

“The McNair Program allows students to experience graduate work without being in graduate school. I knew I would go on to earn my master's degree, but after this experience, I will pursue a doctoral degree,” says Rhoan Campbell.

“Before participating in this program, pursuing my Ph.D. was not even a possibility, but now I know it's not impossible,” says Sharon Campbell. “This experience is close to being priceless.” — Chrissy Laubach-Young