ASHE Graduate Student Travel Scholarship

The Association for the Study of Higher Education

2017 Graduate Student Travel Scholarship Recipients

O13417 Lisa Combs

Lisa Combs is a second-year master’s student in the Student Affairs in Higher Education program at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. She currently holds a Graduate Assistantship in the Office of Community Engagement and Service. Her responsibilities include advising student leaders, organizing days of service, and programming involving community change projects and public issues. She has practicum experiences in leadership programs and student activities. Her research interests include identity development of multiracial students and leadership self-efficacy. She received her Bachelor’s degree in Political Science and English from Ohio State University.


Antonio DuranAntonio Duran is a second-year doctoral student in the Higher Education and Student Affairs (HESA) program at The Ohio State University. Originally from Phoenix, Arizona, Antonio acquired his undergraduate degree at New York University and completed his master’s work at Miami University in Ohio. At Ohio State, Antonio currently serves as the Graduate Administrative Associate for HESA Student Leadership Curricular Initiatives. Antonio’s research interests include affirmative-based ways of knowing queer collegians of color, together with understanding the experiences of educators who engage in critical pedagogical strategies. Within ASHE, Antonio has been serving as the Program Committee Co-Chair for the Council of Ethnic Participation Mentor-Protégé Program. Antonio is particularly passionate about issues of equity and representation in the academy.

Screen Shot 2017-09-20 at 4.56.28 PM Margaret E. Gesing is an advanced doctoral candidate at Old Dominion University, with a research focus on student global mobility and its relationship to workforce and economic development. She has published research in top-tier peer reviewed journals and regularly presents at academic conferences. Her academic training and experience working with international students at the post-secondary level prepared her to be an effective researcher and instructor. Her research agenda examines international students, student global mobility, and workforce economic development.

Ana Karen Gomez

Ana Karen Gomez is a rising second year doctoral student under the mentorship of Dr. Sylvia Hurtado in UCLA’s Higher Education and Organizational Change program, as well as a graduate student researcher in UCLA’s Higher Education Research Institute (HERI). Ana is a McDonalds HACER, Nordstrom, Telacu, Gates Millennium, and Ronald E. McNair scholar, who began her doctoral program upon completion of her B.A. degree. As a critical race scholar, Ana’s research is informed by the reality that racism is a permanent and pervasive facet of U.S. social institutions, including colleges and universities. Her work seeks to challenge master narratives about Students of Color and their communities, with a special focus on Latinx students in STEM, Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSIs), familial capital, mental health, and campus racial climates. A firm advocate of self-care, when she’s not in Moore hall, you can find Ana chowing down lemon pepper shrimp at Boiling Crab, doing strength and conditioning training at the John Wooden Center, or back home for the weekend with her family in Bell Gardens, California.

Deseret Hailu

Meseret Hailu is a Ph.D. candidate in the Morgridge College of Education at the University of Denver. At Morgridge, she studies Higher Education. Her research interests are grounded in comparative international education, with a special emphasis on gender issues in STEM programs for women in the U.S. and Ethiopia. For 2017-2018, Meseret is based in Ethiopia as a Fulbright-Hays Doctoral Dissertation Research Abroad (DDRA) Fellow.

Headshot VKIM (1)Victoria Kim is a doctoral student in Social Sciences and Comparative Education and a research associate for the Institute of Immigration, Globalization, and Education at the University of California, Los Angeles. Her research interests include examining educational practices and programs from early childhood to postsecondary education that support bilingual, immigrant, minority, and English language learning students with a focus on Asian American and Pacific Islanders. Victoria received her Ed.M. in International Educational Development from Teachers College, Columbia University, M.A. in Education and B.A. in Psychology from the UC Davis.

NaLorNa Bedolla Lor is a PhD student in Educational Leadership and Policy Analysis with a focus on underrepresented student success in higher education. Through the lens of social psychology, her work uses mixed methods to examine culture, cognition, and action among heterogeneous student populations and the effects of cultural congruence and/or incongruence on academic persistence and retention. Na is an Interdisciplinary Training Program Fellow at the Wisconsin Center for Educational Research, an Education Graduate Research Scholar, and a Research Associate at Wisconsin Equity and Inclusion Laboratory.


JessicaOstrowMichelJessica Ostrow Michel is a doctoral candidate, research assistant, and part-time instructor in the Higher and Postsecondary Education program at Teachers College, Columbia University.  Her research interests include assessment of college environmental and sustainability education, college educational quality, and college teaching and learning.  She is currently working on her dissertation, which explores the quantity and quality of sustainability education at an institution of higher education, and whether sustainability education is related to students’ development of sustainability knowledge, attitudes, and behaviors. Throughout her doctoral career, Jessica has worked with Professor Corbin Campbell on her College Educational Research project, which aims to create comprehensive measures of educational quality across institutions that could contribute to public understanding of higher education quality.  In this study, Jessica has served as a lead research assistant, site leader for quantitative classroom observations and syllabus analysis, and as a data analyst for cleaning data and running quantitative analyses.  Jessica holds a Master of Arts and Master of Education in Higher and Postsecondary Education from Teachers college, and she has previously served as an Academic Advisor at Yeshiva University and as the Assistant Director of Institutional Studies at Teachers College.

Molly MorinMolly F. Morin is from El Monte, CA and is a fourth year Ph.D. student in the Higher Education, Student Affairs, and International Education Policy Program pursuing a concentration in Student Affairs at the University of Maryland. Molly completed her bachelor’s degree in Sociology/Liberal Studies from the University of La Verne, is an alumna of the McNair Scholars Program at Claremont Graduate University, and completed her master’s degree in Counseling and Personnel Services with an emphasis in College Student Personnel at the University of Maryland. Molly’s research interests center on the access, persistence, and success of underrepresented students in higher education particularly Latina/o and first-generation college students, the experiences of Latina administrators in higher education, and using assets-based frameworks in educational research. Molly is currently completing her dissertation focused on the career pathways and lived experiences of current/former Latina Chief Student Affairs Officers (CSAOs).

James D. Ward is a PhD candidate at USC Rossier. He earned a Bachelor’s degree in Economics and History from Cornell University. James spent five years in Washington, DC and Boston working as an education consultant for Hanover Research and ASR Analytics, a research analyst with the National Association of College and University Business Officers (NACUBO), and an institutional researcher at Harvard University. He is currently a research assistant for Dr. William Tierney in the Pullias Center for Higher Education. His research employs quantitative methods to analyze public policies in higher education pertaining to access, equity, postsecondary funding, and performance. With the support of an AERA dissertation grant, James’ research seeks to understand the relationship between fiscal dependency and colleges’ responses to performance-based funding policies.

Information about the 2017 ASHE Graduate Student Travel Scholarship to attend the ASHE Conference in Houston, TX

Each year travel scholarships are available to students whose proposal(s) to present posters, research papers, roundtables, or symposia have been accepted for the ASHE conference, based on the following selection criteria:

    • Significance of the applicant’s need for funding;
    • Significance of what the applicant will gain by attending the conference; and,
    • Thoughtfulness and creativity of applicant’s proposed contributions to ASHE in the upcoming year.

Scholarship recipients are expected to:

  • Attend the ASHE graduate student luncheon (if not scheduled to present at the same time) at the 2017 ASHE conference.
  • Write a blog entry for the ASHE Graduate Student Community on a topic of your own choosing, to be publicly available on the ASHE Grads website and social media accounts.
  • Assist with the facilitation of at least one ASHE graduate student session at the 2017 conference (e.g. taking notes, distributing and collecting handouts and surveys, sharing information through social media, and answering questions).
  • Attend a short meeting at the conference location with the ASHE graduate student representatives and other scholarship recipients.
  • Provide a short biography to be placed on the ASHE graduate student website.
  • Submit a thank you letter (within one month of the conclusion of the conference) to the ASHE Board, which may also be shared with donors to the scholarship fund.
  • If called upon, assist with other ASHE graduate student initiatives during the academic year and help implement ideas for making ASHE more supportive of graduate students’ needs.

The  2017 application period is now over. All applicants were notified about the outcomes of the process during the week of September 8, 2017.

If you have any questions regarding the 2017 ASHE Graduate Student Travel Scholarship, please feel free to contact ASHE Graduate Student Representative Valerie Crespín-Trujillo at

Last updated September 22, 2017