EMU psychology major Jacklyn Staffeld receives NSF Graduate Research Fellowship program award

Jacklyn Staffeld stands in front of her research presentation poster.

YPSILANTI — Senior Honors student Jacklyn Staffeld has been awarded a 2023 National Science Foundation (NSF) Graduate Research Fellowship, which is valued at approximately $147,000 over three years. She will use the fellowship to pursue a Ph.D. in behavioral neuroscience at Baylor University.

In addition to being a member of the Honors College, Staffeld is a first-generation student in the McNair Scholars Program. Her work has been published in the McNair Research Journal and she has presented it in multiple venues.

“Research is a beautiful thing that gives us so much knowledge and so many opportunities to improve the lives of people. I love research and I know that I want to continue pursuing research for the rest of my life. However, as a young and aspiring scientist, I recognize that there is a long path ahead of me before I can make it to my destination. Graduate school is a huge battle in itself and finding funding to support yourself during it can be challenging. For this reason, I applied to the NSF GRFP in the hope of receiving support in my graduate journey,” said Staffeld.

According to Staffeld, her mentors, Dr. Ann Eisenberg, Dean of the Honors College, and Dr. Jonathan Morrow from the University of Michigan, played a significant role in helping her win the scholarship.“Writing a grant by myself was hard, but it was a great skill to learn and I was proud of how my essays turned out. I was absolutely over the moon when I heard back from NSF,” said Staffeld.

When asked how the fellowship will affect her future, Staffeld responded, “I couldn't believe that, out of the thousands of applications they received, I made it into that top 15%. This opportunity is beyond what words can describe. The GRFP allows me to focus on my research without concern for funding, it will set me apart from others when I apply for a postdoc, and it makes me proud of my abilities as a scientist. This fellowship has laid the path for my future, and I am so excited to start.”

Dr. Karen Saules, co-mentor for Staffeld's Senior Honors Project, commented on her accomplishments. “Jacklyn’s energy level and efficiency are quite impressive. She meets many competing educational, service, and employment demands while maintaining a professional and mature demeanor and never complaining about feeling overwhelmed or unduly burdened. She is passionate about her scientific endeavors, and she is curious and enthusiastic about new ideas. I am excited to see how her career develops over the coming years. I am sure she will make important contributions to science and continue to make EMU proud!”

For more information about the NSF GRFP Program, visit https://www.nsfgrfp.org/contact/about-grfp/.

About Eastern Michigan University
Founded in 1849, Eastern is the second oldest public university in Michigan. It currently serves more than 14,000 students pursuing undergraduate, graduate, specialist, doctoral and certificate degrees in the arts, sciences and professions. In all, more than 300 majors, minors and concentrations are delivered through the University's Colleges of Arts and Sciences; Business; Education; Engineering and Technology; Health and Human Services; and its graduate school. National publications regularly recognize EMU for its excellence, diversity, and commitment to applied education. Visit the University’s rankings and points of pride websites to learn more. For more information about Eastern Michigan University, visit the University's website. To stay up to date on University news, activities and announcements, visit EMU Today.

April 19, 2023

Written by:
Brooke Whittaker

Media Contact:
Melissa Thrasher