Two junior political science majors at East Central University, Joe Trail and Conner Alford, were chosen to participate in the 2011 Research Experience for Undergraduates this summer at the University of North Texas. They were selected for 10 slots among 150 applicants nationwide. They are the first ECU students ever to be selected.
Focus of the eight-week program is on civil conflict management and the enhancement of peace. Students are trained in political science research methods and develop a project suitable for presentation at a national conference.
Trail, an Ada native, served in the U.S. Marine Corp from 2004 to 2010, including two tours of duty in Iraq. He entered ECU as a member of the Honors Program and was accepted into an Oklahoma Scholar Leadership Program (OSLEP) on Predicting Politics in 2009. He is a member of Alpha Chi and Pi Sigma Alpha national honor societies and was selected as a NASA Research Fellowship recipient.
Conner Alford is a native of McAlester and a graduate of Eastern State College. He also is a member of the ECU Honors Program and Alpha Chi and Pi Sigma Alpha national honor societies. Alford was selected as ECU’s Brad Henry Scholar and next year will spend a semester studying abroad in Wales and at the Welsh National Assembly.
“I am so proud of Joe and Conner. It is a tremendous honor to be selected for this program because the exposure to these scholars and opportunities can truly change a student’s life,” said Dr. Christine Pappas, associate professor of political science and coordinator of the Department of Political Science and Legal Studies.