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Charles Walton, EAP Scholar, Wins SAEOPP McNair Research Award

Charles Walton, a senior majoring in history, was one of seven students from UT’s Educational Advancement Program to attend the Nineteenth Annual Southeastern Association of Educational Opportunity Program Personnel’s McNair National Research Conference. The conference, which was held in Atlanta, featured keynote addresses by Tyrone Hayes, a biological scientist at the University of California, Berkeley; Orlando Taylor, president of the Chicago School of Professional Psychology; Robert Bell, director of the SREB-AGEP Doctoral Scholars Program; and Thomas Rochan, president of Ithaca College.

Two hundred and fifty undergraduate students participating in Ronald McNair programs from thirty-one institutions were in attendance, and made oral and poster presentations in six research categories. Walton, who was one of twelve UT students involved in the Summer Research Institute, was selected as having the best presentation among social science scholars. His research, entitled “An Age of Contradiction: The Vanguard of Radical Ideology in the United States, 1967–1985,” was completed under the guidance of his mentor, Professor Cynthia Fleming in the History Department.

Walton’s research project analyzed the relationship between the Black Panther Party and the League of Revolutionary Black Workers (LRBW) in Detroit during the 1960s and 1970s. His research was gathered primarily through the writings from leaders in both organizations as well as interviews with members of the LRBW, and he argued that class contradictions between the two contributed to their inability to form a successful alliance against poverty, exploitation, and racism.

Walton states, “Winning a research award has made me realize that the most successful and meaningful research can’t be done alone. I could not have completed my research without the help from my fellow research institute colleagues and the guidance from my mentors Dr. McFadden, Dr. Fleming, and Dr. Black. The constant support from all of the EAP/TRiO faculty and staff also contributed to my success at the conference.”

Walton is scheduled to enter a PhD program in history next fall, and is busy visiting graduate schools this semester.

Congratulations to Charles Walton and the Educational Advancement Program.