Jennifer Sykes, daughter of Rochelle Skyes of Rockingham, has received the Gus T. Ridgel Fellowship at the University of Missouri.
Sykes, an alumni from North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics in 2003, is currently pursuing a doctoral degree in counseling. She is pursuing a minor in autism and neurodevelopmental disorders.
Sykes is a graduate clinician at the Assessment and Consultation, a clinic that provides comprehensive, integrative psychological services to meet the educational, developmental and psychosocial needs of children, adults and families. She spends time volunteering with TreeKeepers, a group that studies proper maintenance of trees, and with Columbia Aquatic Restoration Project, a local organization that works to implement aquatic plant and shoreline management plans. She also volunteers in the Jumpstart program of AmeriCorps, an early education organization that serves preschool children in low-income neighborhoods.
The Gus T. Ridgel Fellowship is named in honor of Ridgel, the first African-American student to earn a graduate degree at MU. This fellowship assists graduate students who are members of ethnic groups that are under-represented in higher education. To be eligible, students must be enrolled in master’s or doctoral programs at MU and they must maintain academic excellence.