Caitlin Quirk Awarded Talbott Honors Scholarship

Honors College senior Caitlin Quirk was awarded the Linda H. and Thomas H. Talbott Honors Scholarship for 2021. The scholarship was established by the late Dr. Linda Talbott, who was a scholarship student in the Honors Program at UMKC and wanted to support outstanding students.

“Caitlin is truly an outstanding honors student,” said Jim McKusick, dean of the Honors College. “She has demonstrated academic excellence and has helped to build a community of learning among her fellow honors students.”

Caitlin is an English major with an emphasis on American literature and cultural studies. After she earns her bachelor’s degree in December 2021, she will begin the Masters of Arts in Teaching program at UMKC in Spring 2022. Caitlin wants to teach English in high school and eventually earn a doctorate in Education Administration with the goal of becoming an elementary school principal.

At UMKC, Caitlin loves being part of Sigma Tau Delta and the Spring Interdisciplinary Symposium Committee. She also enjoys spending time with family, reading (she is currently reading Jazz by Toni Morrison), painting, exploring Kansas City, and taking care of her many plants. Some of her favorite Kansas City spots include the River Market, Blue Koi on 39th Street, and Mills Record Company in Westport. She is from Ozark, Missouri, and moved to Kansas City in 2018 to begin her undergraduate studies.

Shefaa Allan wins Talbott Honors College Scholarship

Science student Shefaa Allan has received the Talbott Honors College Scholarship for 2020-2021. The scholarship is named for distinguished alumna and civic leader Linda Hood Talbott and is presented annually to a full-time Honors College student who has achieved academic excellence.

Shefaa is a rising junior majoring in biology with minors in chemistry and philosophy who plans to attend medical school and become a pathologist. She led an Honors Discussion Group in Spring 2020, started a UMKC student organization advocating for justice through education, and represented Palestinians in Culture Night 2019 at UMKC.

“Shefaa truly deserves this honor!,” said Dr. Gayle Levy, Honors College Director. “She has been the Honors Discussion Group leader for Cell Biology (Bio 202) since January and it is clear how much she cares about the participants and the Honors College as a whole. She has worked hard to migrate the Cell Bio HDG online during this challenging period and to support the honors students in her group as they face all of these sudden changes together.”

Shefaa describes herself as “a girl of Palestinian origin born and raised in the Midwest” and admits that she has struggled to merge her ethnic identity with her identity as a U.S. citizen. She chose to attend UMKC, which has a large international student population, so that she could embrace both parts of her background. As she completes her second year at UMKC, Shefaa says that the university has exceeded her expectations.

Congratulations, Shefaa!