Psychologists win Presidential awards for science mentoring

Marigold Linton and Julio Ramirez are honored.

Two psychologists -- Marigold Linton and Julio J. Ramirez -- are among the fifteen winners of this year’s Presidential Award for Excellence in Science, Mathematics, and Engineering Mentoring. On January 27, the winners met with President Obama in the Oval Office and then formally received their awards in a ceremony led by John P. Holdren, Director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy. The awardees also participated in a series of meetings with administration officials who work on science and education issues.

As noted on a White House website, these Presidential awards “recognize in particular mentoring efforts that have enhanced the participation of individuals who are typically underrepresented in STEM disciplines and fields, including women, minorities, and persons with disabilities.” Awardees receive $10,000 from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to further advance their mentoring efforts.

Marigold LintonSince 1998, Marigold Linton has been the director for American Indian outreach in the Office for Diversity in Science Training at the University of Kansas. She has led an initiative supported by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to support research training for students at the University of Kansas and the Haskell Indian Nations University. Linton has served on the board of directors of the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, is a founder and past president of the Society for the Advancement of Chicanos and Native Americans in Science, and serves on an NSF advisory committee concerned with equal opportunity in science and engineering. At Kansas, a scholarship in her name has been established to support undergraduates majoring in science and engineering.

Linton received her doctorate in experimental psychology from UCLA. She has previously taught at San Diego State University, University of Utah, and Arizona State University.

Julio Ramirez (red coat) with laboratory colleaguesJulio J. Ramirez has been on the faculty of the psychology department at Davidson College since 1986. His research, which has been funded by NSF, NIH, and the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, is focused on the neural mechanisms underlying recovery of memory following brain injury. He has mentored over 100 undergraduates as members of his laboratory. Ramirez was the founding president of the Faculty for Undergraduate Neuroscience (FUN), an organization aimed at enhancing undergraduate neuroscience education, and has worked with Project Kaleidoscope to organize a series of meetings that produced curriculum guidelines for undergraduate neuroscience. He currently serves as the founding director of SOMAS-URM (Support Of Mentors And their Students from UnderRepresented Minorities). 

Ramirez received his doctorate in psychology from Clark University, and did post-doctoral work at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology before moving to Davidson. 

The complete list of winners can be found on the White House press release.