Student Research     Departmental Awards     Clio (History) Recipients

It is the mission of HPG that our curriculums encourage meaningful work by students.  We seek that our students' work be something more than an exercise in skill-development or a demonstration of content knowledge--it should be meaningful in a greater sense.  HPG students get the opportunity to do work that is 1) meaningful personally, to them, because they get the opportunity to select the question or problem they want to research; 2) meaningful to the discipline(s) because what they are doing pushes the limits of what is known; and 3) meaningful to the public because it is a question or issue of significance.  When students conduct meaningful research, they forward the discipline and connect to "real world" problems and issues. 

Here are just a few examples of the fascinating work being done by HPG students!

Student Research

Here are some recent undergraduate student research projects from our majors in history, political science, and interdisciplinary studies.


For details about the ongoing student research regarding the racial desegregation of campus, please click here.  Contact Dr. Erin Kempker (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) if you're interested in participating in this research effort.

 Political Science:

  • Nonpartisan Voter Guide, 2016, an election guide created by Dr. Chanley Rainey's class on Campaigns and Elections.  The guide includes details of candidates for District 3's Mississippi Supreme Court Justice and District 1’s US Representative.  

All presentations were made at annual meetings of the Mississippi Political Science Association. 

  • Pedro Acevedo, “Will Japan March Again?” – February 7-8, 2014 (at Ole Miss)

  • Clint Gannon, “Canadian Healthcare Challenges in the 21st Century” – February 7-8, 2014 (at Ole Miss)

  • Menuka Ban, “Somalia: Rising from a Failed State?” – November 2-3, 2012 (at Delta State)

  • Jasmin Fleming, “North Korea’s Direction after Kim Jong-Il” - November 2-3, 2012 (at Delta State)

  • Patricia Hernandez, “Cuba: An Example of Communist Success or Misinformation?” - November 2-3, 2012 (at Delta State)

  • Karen Lott, “Educational Equality vs. Economic Competitiveness: An Analysis of German Vocational Education” - November 2-3, 2012 (at Delta State); Won the conference’s award for best undergraduate paper

  • Jordan Kaase, “Counter-Terrorism Intelligence Gathering Strategy and effectiveness in Mississippi” – November 11-12, 2011 (at Millsaps)

  • Preston Veal, “Is China Ready for Hegemony?” - November 11-12, 2011 (at Millsaps)

  • Jacorius Liner, “Libya’s Transition: Will Qaddafi’s Ouster Bring Democracy?” - November 11-12, 2011 (at Millsaps)

  • Nikki Rister, “Morocco’s Future: Presidential Democracy or Authoritarianism?” - November 11-12, 2011 (at Millsaps)

  • Julie Foster, “Democracy in Indonesia: is It Sustainable?” -  November 11-12, 2011 (at Millsaps)

  • Bess Toyama, “The KGB’s Persistent Impact on Russian Government” – November 5-6, 2010 (at MUW)

  • Eve Certhoux, “The Persistence of the National front in French Politics: Its Impact beyond the 2002 Presidential Elections” - November 5-6, 2010 (at MUW)

  • Lesly Griffin, “A Democratic Government in Iraq?” - November 5-6, 2010 (at MUW)

  • Terresia Rush, “Women’s Rights Movements in Saudi Arabia - November 5-6, 2010 (at MUW)

  • Laura Corley, “Is Ellen Johnson Sirleaf Moving Liberia toward or away from Genuine Democracy?” - November 5-6, 2010 (at MUW)

  • Hunter Harris, “Explaining Support among African-Americans for the Democratic Party” - November 6-7, 2009 (at Millsaps)

  • Lauren Jee, “Poetry as a Form of Political Reconciliation” – November 6-7, 2009 (at Millsaps)

 Interdisciplinary Studies:

  • Tamara Rutledge, "The Poet Activist: Black & Lesbian Indetities as Creative Inspiration" - 2016
  • Lulu Luo, “Fertility Control Policy in China: History, Current Situations, and Reactions” – 2013

  • Valerie Baldwin, “Possible Health Benefits of Religious Practices” – 2013

  • Jay Armstrong: “Reclamation of the World by the Adamic Race: The Claims of Christian Identity Minister Dr. Wesley A. Swift,” 2012

  • Will Richey: “Music Video Project: Hayden Allen’s ‘Take Me,’” 2011

  • J. Alec Hawkins: “Alice A. Bailey and Her Mystic Interpretation of the Christ,” 2011

Departmental Award Winners

Listed below are the winners of departmental awards in order by year.


Political Science Student of the Year: Bryn Bailey

History Student of the Year: Rachael Damms

History Capstone Paper of the Year: Rachael Damms

Social Sciences Student of the Year: Michelle Cheney

Medieval and Renaissance Studies Student of the Year: Elizabeth Varvel

International Studies: Ashley Morgan

Geography Student of the Year: Sherwin Prescott

Interdisciplinary Studies Student of the Year: Tamara Rutledge


Political Science Student of the Year: Briana Warner

Public Administration Certificate Program Student of the Year: TaRoya Hollis

History Student of the Year: Jessica Thornhill

History Capstone Paper of the Year: Sarah Whitt

History Major with a Public History Emphasis: Charles Griffith

Future Teacher of the Year for HPG: Christopher Rice

Social Sciences Student of the Year: Charles Gartman

Medieval and Renaissance Studies Student of the Year: George Stoner

American Studies Student of the Year: Ashley G. Smith

Geography Student of the Year: LaTasha Windham

Clio Recipients

Over the years, some history majors at MUW have especially distinguished themselves among their peers in their coursework. The History faculty honor such students with the Clio Award, named for the muse of History. Their achievement is commemorated in a case on the second floor of Painter Hall. It is a long tradition of distinction. The history faculty look forward to adding new names to the program's own long, blue line.  

2016: Rachael Damms

2015: Jessica Thornhill

2014: Ashley Cardenas

2013: Whitney Russell

2012: Anna Barnett

Previous CLIO Award Winners include:

Nicki Giacomo
Yvonne Jones
Sandra Spangler
Elna Robinson
Cheryl Yvonne Zepponi
Rose Marie Hassemer
Susan Jane Rayner
Sharon Lee Price
Geralda Aubry
Hazel Stickney
Patricia Norris
Amy Pendergast
Suzy Hamiter
Kelly Hoover
Katherine Lorraine Baker
Laura Amundson
Tamara Duncan
Mary Jo Madison
Susan Kathryn Fraysur
Brynn Parker
Alice Estill
Audra M. Oden
Claudia Smith
Jennifer Burney
Adrienne Christian
Terri Ciss
Leigh Ann Watson
Jill Bellarmino
Gary Christopher
Cindy Adams
Sarah Beeler
Joshua Terry
Tim Clevenger & Shelley McNees (joint awardees)
Liz Sayle
Jessica Ashcraft
Jeannie Easley