KU News Release

June 3, 2011
Contact: Jill Jess, University Relations, 785-864-8858

Graduating senior in psychology wins national Phi Kappa Phi Fellowship

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LAWRENCE — A spring 2011 psychology graduate at the University of Kansas has won a national Phi Kappa Phi Fellowship, which provides $5,000 for graduate study.

The fellowship is the second Lauren Ann Zagorski has received this year as member of Phi Kappa Phi national honor society. She became eligible for a national fellowship this spring when she received the $1,500 Blackiston Memorial Graduate Fellowship offered by KU’s chapter of Phi Kappa Phi.

Zagorski plans to pursue a doctoral degree in clinical psychology at the University of Iowa. She is the daughter of Paul and Astrid Zagorski of Pittsburg and a graduate of St. Mary’s-Colgan High School.

This is the 16th year a national Phi Kappa Phi fellowship has been awarded to a KU chapter member. KU’s chapter has received nominations or awards almost every year since 1976. Besides the national fellowship award, KU nominees have also received six awards of excellence and two honorable mentions.

The fellowships are the latest achievements for Zagorski, who was a member of the University Honors Program and participated in campus activities and received numerous awards and honors at KU.

Zagorski was named an Initiative for Maximizing Student Diversity Program Scholar, a Ronald E. McNair Post-Baccalaureate Achievement Program Scholar and a Kansas National Science Foundation EPSCoR (Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research) Scholar.

With an Undergraduate Research Award, she examined whether reflecting and writing about certain topics can help reduce the heart’s response to stress. Sarah Pressman, assistant professor of psychology, advised Zagorski’s research project.

She served as an intern for KU’s Center for Research Methods and Data Analysis, a coordinator for the Alcohol Education Sanctions Program in KU’s Student Health Services and an undergraduate research assistant in the Language Acquisition Studies Laboratory.

She also was elected to the Golden Key Honor Society and Psi Chi, the national honor society in psychology.

Beyond KU, Zagorski served in the ProWorld Belize Program and an Alternative Spring Break in New York City, where she volunteered at homeless shelters and soup kitchens.

The Blackiston fellowship is named in honor of James Blackiston, a former graduate student in linguistics and instructor in the Intensive English Center who was active in the formation of KU’s Phi Kappa Phi chapter in 1975. Blackiston died during the summer of 1975.

Phi Kappa Phi has about 300 chapters nationally, and each may select one candidate from among its local applicants to compete for society-wide awards. Phi Kappa Phi is the nation’s oldest and most selective all-discipline honor society. The society was established in 1897 to recognize academic excellence in all disciplines. Only the top 10 percent of seniors, the top 7.5 percent of last-term juniors and the top 10 percent of graduate students are invited to join.

The University of Kansas is a major comprehensive research and teaching university. University Relations is the central public relations office for KU's Lawrence campus.

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