Established in 2005, the Professor John Thelin Higher Education Research Award was designed to honor Dr. Thelin and be used by graduate students pursuing higher education research at the School of Education at the College of William and Mary.
In 2012, this scholarship was awarded to Neal Holly and Jeremy Martin, doctoral students in the Education, Policy, Planning, and Leadership Program.
Jeremy received his B.S. degree from Houghton College and his Masters at Georgia State University. After seven years of coaching basketball for a small college and doing some general administrative work, Jeremy decided to pursue a career in administrative leadership and get a Ph.D. at the College of William & Mary. He writes as the recipient of the Thelin Award:
"With Neal Holly, a classmate in the EPPL-higher education program, I co-authored a paper, "Leadership in Crisis: A Historical Analysis of Two College Presidencies in Reconstruction Virginia." Our paper involved significant work in the archives at William & Mary and Washington & Lee University (then Washington College) as we analyzed the presidential decisions and subsequent impact on enrollment, finance, fundraising, and curriculum at the two institutions. We find this historical analysis from a period with diminished endowments and uncertain enrollments particularly relevant to parts of the higher education landscape today. Our paper was accepted from the largest pool of submissions to date for presentation at the Association for the Study of Higher Education conference in November 2009 in Vancouver, B.C.
The Thelin Award provided the freedom to pursue this line of research and covered some expenses during the research phase. In addition, I was selected from a national pool of nominated graduate students to participate in a pre-conference forum on public policy. I am able to travel to the conference because of this award. The ability to research and present this paper is very important to doctoral students and I am grateful for the opportunity that the Thelin Award provided.
I have served as a graduate assistant to Dr. Dot Finnegan in the School of Education, a graduate assistant in Academic Support Services for Athletics, a doctoral intern in the Office of the Provost, a doctoral intern in the Dean of Students Office working with the new student orientation program, and a research assistant on the Faculty Survey Project.
William & Mary has provided me with the opportunity to pursue my various interests in higher education at a nationally recognized institution. It is an experience that cannot be duplicated at most doctoral programs in the country. I am grateful for the support of both a William & Mary Foundation scholarship and the Thelin Award for supporting my educational pursuits. Without that support, I do not think I would be able to pursue my studies as a full-time student. I am thankful to all the individuals who have contributed the College to make my experience possible."
Jeremy P. Martin
Ph.D., Higher Education Administration Educational Policy, Planning, and Leadership Program College of William & Mary