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USM STEM Majors Awarded NASA/Mississippi Space Grant Consortium Scholarships

Tue, 06/09/2020 - 12:40pm | By: Ivonne Kawas

Mississippi Space Grant ConsortiumThe University of Southern Mississippi (USM) announced the scholarship recipients and the winners of the Innovative Design in Computing Competition (IDCC) awarded through the state-wide NASA/Mississippi Space Grant Consortium (MSSGC) program, which supports students in their pursuit of science, technology, engineering, or mathematics (STEM) degrees.

“I’ve served as the Southern Miss campus coordinator for the Mississippi Space Grant Consortium since 2018. During this time, I’ve overseen the disbursement of $80,000 in Space Grant scholarships and IDCC prizes to undergraduate students majoring in STEM fields,” said Dr. David Cochran, professor of geography in the School of Biological, Environmental, and Earth Sciences. “This year, we are thrilled to award 16 Space Grant Scholarships of $1,500 each and monetary prizes of $2,000 each to the 3 members of the winning team of IDCC.”

The NASA Space Grant program is designed to encourage and motivate excellence in student performance and to raise awareness of NASA employment and research opportunities among students with NASA relevant majors in the Southern Miss College of Arts and Sciences.

The NASA/Mississippi Space Grant scholarship recipients include:

· Steven Ates, ocean engineering major from Ocean Springs, Miss.

· Douglas Bradley, geology major from Kingwood, Texas

· Kardarius Felton, biological science major from Roxie, Miss.

· Ryan Guinta, ocean engineering major from Gulfport, Miss.

· Rachel Hamilton, ocean engineering major from Biloxi, Miss.

· Nathan Hammondkunke, ocean engineering major from Long Beach, Miss.

· Joshua Hernyak, geology major from Diamondhead, Miss.

· Tamary JoNay Ingram, chemistry major from Richland, Miss.

· Seth Kumming, geology major from Sumrall, Miss.

· Jonathon Osborne, environmental biology major from Philadelphia, Miss.

· Jacob Seal, geology major from Petal, Miss.

· Andrew Smith, ocean engineering major from Madison, Miss.

· Thomas Stillman, geology major from Argyle, Texas

· Julian Vannattan, geology major from Picayune, Miss.

· Kelly Wegmann, geography major from Dallas, Texas

· Mary Woodhall, biological science major from Petal, Miss.

The IDCC provides undergraduate students in the School of Computing Sciences and Computer Engineering an experiential learning opportunity, as they put into practice what they have learned over the course of the academic year. In teams of two or more, they collaborate and design a computing project that focuses on specific applications, robotics, and other elements of computer science and engineering. As the semester culminates, they present their final project to a panel of judges.

Dr. Amer Dawoud, associate professor in the School of Computing Sciences and Computer Engineering and coordinator of the annual IDCC, said the winning students were able come up with a great plan to integrate user-controlled and interactive LED lighting for a longboard.

The IDCC winners include:

· Ashley Funkhouser, psychology and computer science major from Hattiesburg, Miss.

· Matieu Lagarde, computer engineering major from Picayune, Miss.

· Zachary Pulver, computer engineering tech major from Sumrall, Miss.

MSSGC is a statewide non-profit organization supported by NASA whose membership includes 17 institutions of higher learning across the state. Headquartered at the University of Mississippi, MSSGC is led by Dr. Nathan Murray, director, and Dr. Earnest Stephens, assistant director. MSSGC provides opportunities for Mississippians who are interested in participating in NASA’s aeronautics and space programs by supporting and enhancing STEM fields, research, and outreach programs.

For more information about MSSGC visit