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Las Cruces and Roswell students win psychology awards

Mike Berry and Emily Meier have won George E. Briggs Outstanding Senior Awards, given by the psychology department at New Mexico State University.

ate of Gadsden High School, Berry completed his undergraduate studies at NMSU with a 3.83 grade point average. Berry was very active in the psychology department, conducting research with faculty members and serving as president of the NMSU chapter of Psi Chi, the national honors society for psychology majors.

"As a non-traditional student, this award is especially significant," Berry said. "After returning to school in 2003, after a 13-year hiatus, I had two main concerns: juggling the responsibilities of a family and schoolwork, and my abilities as a student after a long lay-off from the academic environment. This award validates my decision to return to school and gives me further confidence continuing on into my graduate studies."

Berry will attend graduate school in fall 2006 at NMSU. He said he wants to make a significant contribution to the field of psychology.

"I will utilize my time as a graduate student in preparation for a career as a university faculty member," Berry said. "I intend to expand my knowledge in all areas of psychology, focusing on cognitive psychology. My final goal is to develop my own unique teaching style that will not only educate and inform today's college students, but perhaps even inspire them to pursue their own careers in psychology."

A graduate of Goddard High School in Roswell, Meier completed her undergraduate studies with a 3.98 grade point average and was active in the psychology department as well, conducting research and working as a supplemental instruction teacher for introductory psychology classes.

"I had an amazing experience at NMSU as an undergraduate in the psychology department," Meier said. "The professors offered courses that allowed me to gain knowledge in many areas of psychology. Their passion for psychology was what encouraged me to become even more fascinated in the field."

Meier will pursue a Ph.D. in clinical psychology at the California School of Professional Psychology, part of Alliant International University in San Diego, Calif.

"I hope to focus my interests on depression and its relationship to eating disorders in women," Meier said. "I am also interested in the rate of depression in individualistic versus collectivist societies. After I finish my studies I would like to be a practicing psychologist working primarily with adults. I would like to teach at the collegiate level at some point in my career in order to continue my research, as well as share my love and passion for psychology."

The George E. Briggs Outstanding Senior Award is given every year in honor of Briggs, a former department head of the psychology department at NMSU.-30-

Austin Craig
Aug. 3, 2006