MSUToday
Published: Jan. 17, 2019

Diversity, inclusion student projects recognized with MLK Jr. award 

By: Stephanie Cepak Honors College office: (517) 355-2326 scepak@msu.eduContact(s): Bess German MSU Honors College office: (517) 355-2326 germanr@msu.edu

Three Michigan State University students whose research supports the ideals of inclusive excellence through topics of inclusion, diversity and marginalized populations have received the Martin Luther King, Jr. Advancing Inclusion through Research Award.

The award was created in 2010 to highlight the ways in which MSU students follow King’s legacy, using their critical and creative skills to understand and re-envision the world.

Student research and creative projects were considered if they were completed in 2018 and submitted by members of the MSU Honors College, James Madison College, Lyman Briggs College or the Residential College in the Arts and Humanities. 

First prize was awarded to senior Katarina Huss for research titled, “Exploring the Secondary Migration of Resettled Refugees.” Huss is an Honors College student majoring in comparative cultures and politics and social relations and policy in James Madison College.

Second prize was awarded to senior Arzelia Williams for research titled, “Black Mental Health and the Prison System.” Williams is majoring in social relations and policy in James Madison College and arts and humanities in the Residential College in the Arts and Humanities.

Third prize was awarded to senior Jonathan Walkotten for research titled, “The Expansion of PrEP and HIV-Prevention Measures.” Walkotten is an Honors College student majoring in social relations and policy in James Madison College and women’s and gender studies in the College of Arts and Letters.

Senior Alex Barshaw received an honorable mention for research titled, “Noncitizen Voting in School Board Elections.” Barshaw is an Honors College student majoring in social relations and policy in James Madison College.

“We appreciate these and all students who advance diversity and inclusion on our campus through their research and creative works,” said Cynthia Jackson-Elmoore, dean of the Honors College. “It is exciting to see the ways that they are honoring Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s legacy.” 

The students will be recognized at the Diversity Research Showcase and the All-University Excellence in Diversity Awards program, which will be held at 4 p.m. Feb. 14 in Big Ten A of the Kellogg Center.