The Ethnic and Gender Studies Program is accepting nominations for the Dr. Mary Headrick award.  The award will be given out at the Women’s History Month reception and award ceremony on Friday, March 29.

“We’re just happy to celebrate the work that is done on campus and in the community,” said Heidi Hamilton, director of the Ethnic and Gender Studies department.

Anyone at ESU or in the community, except students, can receive the award as long as they have contributed to the success of women. Nominations are due at 5 p.m. on Tuesday, March 5, according to the award’s page on emporia.edu.

Betsy Yanik, professor of mathematics and economics, won the award in 2001 because of her outreach programs geared toward young women. 

“It’s (the award) unique in the sense that it’s not just what you’ve done on campus, it’s how you affected women in the community,” said Yanik.

Yanik and Marvin Harrell, professor of mathematics and economics, have worked on programs to expose young women to careers in STEM for many years.

“It’s not just that they get exposed to careers, but that they see women in those careers,” Yanik said. “They can visualize themselves in that kind of work.” 

The award was not given in 2016 because only one nomination was submitted, according to Hamilton. Competition is a part of the process and allowing a nomination to win by default would not be in the spirit of the award. 

Last year’s winner was Joyce Zhou, interim chair of business administration. 

Zhou served as a mentor to a student hoping to get into a PhD program and become a professor. Zhou guided her student through the research process and helped with her final research paper for two to three semesters. 

Zhou says she wants to make sure professors support their students.

 “Especially women,” Zhou said. “Make sure we have the confidence. We can do   everything.”

The student Zhou helped made it into the PhD program she applied for.

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