Graduate School Honors Student Theses, Dissertations

The 2015 award recipients were selected by quality of work, nominations.

Texas Tech University’s Graduate School announced the recipients of this year’s awards, which recognize the quality of work shown in graduate students’ theses and dissertations. This year those honored had thesis and dissertation topics in biological and life sciences and humanities and fine arts. Students are nominated by their discipline’s faculty members for the cash award donated by the Helen Jones Foundation.

The 2015 recipients:

Biological and Life Sciences

  • Master’s thesis:
  • Doctoral dissertation:
    • First place: Sanaz Shafian, Department of Plant and Soil Sciences. Nominated by Stephen Maas, professor of agricultural microclimatology, for “Estimation of soil moisture status in the Texas High Plains using remote sensing.”
    • Second place: Matthew Van Landeghem, Department of Natural Resources Management, CASNR. Nominated by Reynaldo Patiño, professor of fisheries/biological sciences, for “Environmental Factors Regulating Toxic Blooms of Golden Algae (Prymnesium Parvum) and their Effects on Fisheries Resources.” 

Humanities and Fine Arts

  • Master’s thesis:
    • First place: Tiffany Gonzalez, Department of History. Nominated by Julie Willett, associate professor, for “Chicana Politics: Maria Cardenas and La Raza Unida Party, 1935-1993.”
  • Doctoral dissertation:
    • First place: Michael Palmer, Department of English. Nominated by Dennis Covington, professor, for “Baptizing the Dead: Creative Nonfiction Essays.” 
    • Second place: Heath Wing, Department of Classical and Modern Languages and Literatures. Nominated by John Beusterien, professor of Spanish, for “States of Exception on American Frontiers: Biopolitics, Violence, and Nation in Martin Fierro, Os Sertaes and Blood Meridian.”

The first place doctoral disseration winners were nominated for the Council of Graduate Schools annual CGS/ProQuest Distinguished Dissertation Award. The competition recognizes dissertations that represent original work and make unusually significant contributions to the disciplines being recognized.

Graduate School

The Graduate School at Texas Tech University offers unlimited opportunity for advancement with more than 160 different masters and doctoral degree programs complemented by interdisciplinary programs from 50 specialized centers and institutes.

More than 5,300 graduate and professional students are currently enrolled in the Graduate School.

From toxic waste research to archaeology, from land-use programs to nationally known laser fingerprint detection studies, the Graduate School offers unlimited opportunity for aspiring scholars.


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