Welcome New McNair Scholars!

Ten new students have joined the McNair Scholars Program at Northern Michigan University.


Alex Steinline is a junior Ecology major originally from Perrysburg, Ohio.  He writes “Winter and all the excitement that comes along with the season, especially the snow, brought me to the U.P.  I love being outside.  Hiking and photography are my two passions during all seasons, but especially in the winter.”  As far as his academic and career interests go, Alex writes that “I am interested in aquatic ecology and conservation and learning how humans have impacted the vital water resources that are essential to our survival.  All aquatic organisms are cool, but I especially like fish!  I believe it is important for people to realize that we only have one planet to live on and it is time to start taking care of it better.”  With regard to his future plans, Alex writes, “In the long run, the jury is still out on what I really want to do.  I do know that I want to work in a place where I can help protect our precious water resources.”



Sara Sutherland is a sophomore majoring in Biology and Physiology.  “My overall goal is to go to medical school and become a physician.  I would love to come back to the Upper Peninsula of Michigan after medical school and practice medicine in either Marquette or Munising.”

Processed with VSCOcam with f1 preset


Autumn Palmer is a sophomore Psychology/Behavior Analysis major.  She has a passion for working with kids and hopes to do so once she graduates.  Autumn keeps very busy as a member of the Student Psychological Association, Women for Women, Marquette Choral Society, Elementary Education Math Club, PrimeTime Productions and as the Secretary for Hall Government and President of House Government.  In her spare time Autumn likes to read, listen to music, hang out with friends and binge watch shows on Netflix.  Autumn writes that she can’t wait to take advantage of all the opportunities that theMcNair Scholars Program offers.



Senior Alex Schlee wants to work toward a Ph.D. to become a C.A.A.B. (certified applied animal behaviorist).  Alex writes, “I would like to operate an animal behavior clinic in association with an animal shelter, or own and operate both.  Ultimately, I hope to use these operations as a basis for gathering support to change how the public views pet ownership and the relationship they have with their pets.”

10383101_10154204815630035_5454694978709803355_n  Alex is on the far right, pictured with his two best friends.


Kathleen (Nim) Reinhardt is a junior majoring in Nursing with a Native American Studies minor.  Nim plans to get her Ph.D. in the next ten years and pursue a career in emergency medicine and tribal health, and pursue research in the tribal health and administration area.  She writes, “I’ve always had a passion for helping others and plan to travel and help people from many different tribes while always finding ways to continue my education and get new experiences.



Senior Jackie Rodriguez is in the pre-med program with a major in Psychology and a minor in Chemistry, and her goal is to become a great pediatrician.  “Growing up, I’ve always had a love for helping people but it wasn’t until my younger brother was born that I decided the way I truly wanted to help others was through medicine.  My brother Louie had febrile seizures from around the age of one to about three years old.  I felt awful every time he experienced one but I could always count on the doctors to keep my brother safe.  Watching how they were able to calmly control the situation and help my brother was amazing; I knew becoming a doctor was what I wanted.”  Jackie writes that her plan is to spend at least two years in the U.S. as a pediatrician.  “After that I want to participate in Doctors Without Borders.  I feel that the people that need the most care are the ones that receive the least amount of help and I would like to change that!”

McNair Photo


Victor De La Cruz is a junior English major with a philosophy minor.  He is interested in modern and post-modern literature, and has a strong interest in ethics and politics.  He writes, “I am interested in subjective perspectives of consciousness and identity and the ways that these concepts have developed, by the tandem efforts of the arts and philosophy, throughout the 20th and 21st centuries.”

victor koala


Tiaira Porter, from Flat Rock, Michigan, is a junior majoring in Physiology and Chemistry.  Her goal is a duel degree of a Ph.D. in either Physiology or Pathology and a Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine.  Tiaira is currently working in the Ottem research laboratory on campus, and is interested in any medicinal or anatomy related research that would benefit society.

bunny tiairia


Josh Nickels is a sophomore Physics and Computer Science major who hails from Ortonville, Michigan.  He writes that “My present and particular area of interest is the possibility of accelerating rates of radioactive material with the aim of neutralizing toxic byproducts of nuclear fission.”

Josh Nickels


Julio Diaz, an International Studies major from Elmwood Park, Illinois, would like to pursue an MD/Ph.D.  He plans to pursue a focus on Epidemiology in the field of health disparities.   Julio writes, “My epidemiological research focus will be that of health inequalities in different ethnic and social groups.”

Julio Diaz picture



Welcome to all these new McNair recruits.  We look forward to working with this new cohort of hard-working scholars!