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CSU Names Five Titans Pre-Doctoral Fellows

Two Honored as Sally Casanova Scholars

July 24, 2014

Five Cal State Fullerton graduate students are recipients of the 2014-15 California State University Pre-Doctoral Fellowship.

Rihao Gao of Los Angeles, majoring in political science, plans to pursue a doctorate in political science with a specialization in international relations/comparative politics. Her faculty mentor is Alexei V. Schevchenko, associate professor of political science.

Angela Gutierrez of Baldwin Park is pursuing a master's degree in public health. She hopes to pursue a doctorate in public health with a concentration in health behavior research and chronic health conditions. Gutierrez's faculty mentor is Lilia Espinoza, assistant professor of health science.

Both are designated as Sally Casanova Scholars, named for the program's late founder, a former member of the CSU Chancellor's Office staff. She launched the program in 1989 to ensure that traditionally underrepresented students have more access to doctoral-level degrees and to broaden the pool of talented faculty members inclined to teach at the CSU.

Each honoree will receive a $3,000 scholarship and offered opportunities to explore and prepare for doctoral programs, including a summer research internship program at a University of California campus or other doctoral-granting institution, travel to national symposiums, conferences or professional meetings, as well as other related activities. 

The other pre-doctoral scholars received honorable mention and will be awarded $1,000 to aid in the completion of their master's degrees. Recipients, their home towns and majors, as well as their faculty mentors are:

Luis Aviles Gonzalez of San Diego, Spanish
Faculty mentor is Eric A. Lief, assistant professor of modern languages and literatures

Peter Kloess of Sierra Madre, geology
Faculty mentor is James F. Parham, assistant professor of geological sciences

Rocio Prado of Anaheim, English
Faculty mentor is Gabriela Nunez, assistant professor of Chicana and Chicano studies

"The Pre-Doctoral Program provides funding and opportunities to attend national conferences and visit doctoral-granting institutions under a faculty mentor, among other activities," said Katherine Powers, director of graduate studies. "These are all experiences that might otherwise be unobtainable — a life-changing experience for many students."

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