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Developing Scholars

Frequently Asked Questions









Who should apply?
  • A freshman, sophomore, or transfer student from a group that has been historically underrepresented in higher education
  • A freshman or sophomore who is a first-generation college student
  • A community college transfer student from an underrepresented group
  • A selected student must have a strong work ethic and commitment to academic success
Why should I choose this program?

DSP provides you with insight into your field of study in a way few entering students experience. It will give you an early peek at the rewards and frustrations of research in your field. You will have the chance to meet other students and faculty in your discipline. Gaining skills, knowledge, and practical experience will enhance your understanding of what happens in the classroom. We hope that DSP will open more windows of understanding and doors of opportunity as you head for graduate or professional schools or into a placement in your profession.

What does research really mean?

The field of research encompasses a broad expanse of interests. Past research projects range from anatomy to art, from biology to business, entomology to education, and everything in between. Research means investigative exploration and a chance to be part of cutting-edge discovery.

How long can I be in the program?

Students are admitted into this program as early as their freshman year and can remain for up to three years.

What if I want to stay in the program after my three years?

Some students may be employed as peer assistants after completing DSP. By your fourth year, it is likely you will be busy with internships, interviews, and graduation. While you should be ready to move on, we hope you will keep in touch, seek guidance, and share news about your progress with us even after your time in DSP.

What if I choose not to continue with the program?

This program is an opportunity which lays a very strong foundation for your educational career at K-State and beyond. You get to work with the faculty in any field of your interest.

Our DSP students have acknowledged that this experience has been very inspiring and enlightening, helping them move in the direction of their future goals. However, if you are having doubts, make an appointment to meet with Ms. Cortez, and she will listen and help you weigh the options so that you make the best choice for you.

Do I have to take seminar, and does it count toward graduation?

Yes, to both. DSP seminar is a 1-credit hour course that meets once a week each semester of your first year. You enroll in the credits just like any other course, and it counts as elective credit toward graduation.

How much of a time commitment is required?

It is expected that you will put forth an average of six to ten hours of serious research per week. This may include meetings with your mentor, literature searches, conducting experiments, studying and analyzing results, writing about your findings, and other appropriate activities.


Alumni Spotlight

Building the Future

Clemente Jaquez-Herrera

Clemente Jaquez-Herrera (Garden City, KS), graduated 2008: Clemente was a first-generation college student who came to K-State to study architecture.  Five years later, he left with a Master’s degree in Architecture, almost every award the University could bestow upon him (Anderson Award, Hero Award, Garmon Award for Social Justice, Commerce Bank Award for Enhancing Multiculturalism, and an Outstanding Graduating Senior Award, to name a few).  Clemente now works as a designer for RTKL Architects in Dallas, Texas.  His work has ranged from hospitals in Texas to China to Chile.  In spring 2013 Clemente won the  Kagan Fellowship (1 of 3 Globally),  a research and development fellowship aimed at elevating and exploring the design process at RTKL.  Clemente  will present his research and findings later in the year at the annual Design Conference which will take place in England.  Clemente is also the youngest member of the K-State College of Architecture Advisory Board.


The Fight for Justice and a Better World

Michelle Foster

Michelle Foster(Leavenworth, KS): Michelle, an Edgerley-Franklin Urban Leadership Scholar, received a Student Life Outstanding Graduating Senior Award in her final semester at K-State.  While at K-State, Michelle was very active in campus leadership including United Programming Council and Mortar Board Senior Honor Society.  She participated in two alternative service spring breaks to the Chicago urban center, and she traveled to China.  Her research was on Latinas/os and the current immigration debate, and she was a CASA (court-appointed special advocate) volunteer.  She also won a Garmon Award for Social Justice.  Michelle is continuing her studies at Washburn School of Law.


Developing Scholar’s “Slothful” Graduate

Jorge Mendoza

Jorge Mendoza (Garden City, KS), graduated 2010:  Jorge, a Biology major at K-State, won the prestigious University Distinguished Undergraduate Student in Research Award for his work on the parental care of the migratory upland sandpiper on the Konza Prairieand other researchon the ecology of birds on the Konza.  While at K-State, Jorge was offered an internship in the Department of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology at Harvard University. He also presented his research at the Study of Evolution, the Society of Systematic Biologists, and the American Society of Naturalists at the University of Idaho.  Jorge participated in SEEDS (Strategies for Ecology Education, Diversity and Sustainability) conferences in Virginia and Puerto Rico and was one of 40 students nationwide selected for the Berkeley Edge Conference.

After graduation, Jorge attended a year-long PREP Program at the University of Rochester (NY) before entering the graduate program in Wildlife Ecology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.  Jorge’s research on two- and three-toed sloths takes him to Costa Rica several times a year.