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GWC Internship Program


2008 George Washington Carver Internship Program

The George Washington Carver Internship for 2008 has a total of fourteen interns from all over the United States. Four interns are high school, and ten undergrads from multiple colleges and universities. A group of minorities; African American, Native American, Puerto Rican, Asian, and Mexican. All Interns came to this program with confidence in doing a research study involving agriculture and life sciences.


GWC Interns




Ashley Batts

Ashely Batts' mentor is Dr. Robert Martin, and the purpose of her study is to know the professional educators understanding of agricultural awareness and literacy in Iowa as they perceive them.

Diana Casiano

Diana Casianos' mentors names are Dr. Sue Fairbanks and Ms. Irma Tapia, and her project is: A Population Estimate of a Species of Greatest Conservation Need in Iowa: The White-tailed Jackrabbit

Karra Grant



Kendra Joseph

Kennie Joseph's mentor is Dr. Aubrey Mendonca, and she is studying the natural antimicrobial activity of phosvitin, found in egg yolk.

Luis Andres Nieves

Luis Andres Nieves-Perez's mendor is Dr. Larry J. Halverson and he is working on bacterial methods for living in water limited habitats.

Marcus Begay

Marcus Begays' mentors are Dr. Candice Gardner and Benjamin Herman, and his project is to gain practical science experience.

Meneka Johnson



Lamour Peshtony

Lamour Peshtonys' mentors are Dr. Carolyn Lawrence and Benjamin Herman. His project is to create a website using HTML coding, along with a documentary.

Nathan Etsitty

Nathan Etsittys' mentors are

Nicole Streat

Nicole Streats' mentors are Barbra Woods and Jeanne Warning. Her Project is to recruit youth to circle studies for the Community Conversations on Diversity Committee.

Panthong Wangperawong



Rose Li

Rose Li's mentors are Dr. Gwyn Beattie and Dr. Chiliang Chen. Her project is Evaluation of the Role of a Potential Methyl-accepting Chemotaxis Protein (MCP) PSPT-0466 in Regulating Chemotactic Behavior in Pseudomonas Syringae pv. DC3000.

Shante Mathes

Shante Mathes mentor is Dr. Donald Beitz, and her project is Dietary regulation of oxidation stress & obesity

Stephanie Perez




GWC Staff




Mary DeBaca

Mary de Baca grew up on a diversified family farm in southern Indiana where she learned at an early age to milk cows and grow tomatoes! She was awarded a 4-H scholarship to Purdue University where she graduated with a double major in home economics and physical education. After participating in a six month exchange program to Luxembourg, she returned to her hometown high school where she taught junior and senior high school home economics and physical education and served as junior class sponsor and 4-H community leader. She completed her Master of Science degree in Family Resource Management at Iowa State University followed by working with the National Institute of Agricultural Technology in Argentina which published her research findings regarding the status of living in a rural area of the pampa. Returning to Iowa State University, she taught family financial management several years in the department of Human Development and Family Studies and headed the Farm and Family Management program in extension. From 1990-1996 she was associate director of international programs for the College of Agriculture and from 1996 to the present has been director of diversity for the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. From the late 1960s to the early 1990s, de Baca was active in the family's Angus Cow-Calf operation and was managing editor of a semi-technical beef newspaper published by her husband. Mary's children Monica, Suzanna, and Louis share her international interests and love of gardening, particularly raising dahlias. She has a passion for equity issues involving women and underrepresented groups. She welcomes the 2008 George Washington Carver interns to ISU and, toward the end of the eight weeks, to her home.

Aurelio Curbelo

Aurelio is the Interim Multicultural Liaison Officer for the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. Originally from Arecibo, Puerto Rico, Aurelio received his Bachelor's and Master's degrees from Iowa State University in Agriculture Education & Studies. He is currently working on a PhD in Higher Education. He is a former graduate student coordinator and has worked with the summer program for the past three years.

Marcus Glenn

Marcus is a graduate student in the department of Agriculture Education and Studies from Houston, TX and received his Bachelor?s degree from Prairie View A&M University. He is the graduate coordinator of the G.W. Carver Internship Program. Marcus has worked with the program for one year and is excited to see how this upcoming summer will be an improvement from last year.

Lejoy Spears

LaJoy R. Spears is a doctoral student at Iowa State University studying Agricultural Education and Curriculum and Instructional Technology. She received her BS and MS from the University of Tennessee Knoxville in Agricultural Economics and Business and Agricultural and Extension Education respectively. Ms. Spears enjoys photography, long trail walks, CNN, and NPR!!

Dustin Thunderhawk

Dustin Chad Thunder Hawk. Born and Raised in Cannon Ball, North Dakota on the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation. Graduated from Standing Rock High School and Sitting Bull College before transfering to Iowa State University and currently completing his B.S. Degree in Health and Human Performance with an emphasis in teaching K-12 Physical Education, Health Studies and Coaching. Dustin is also employed with Iowa State Dining as a supervisor, Capone's Bar as a bartender/bouncer, College of Agriculture/George Washington Carver Internship Program as a Residence Assistant and running his Monavie business. Dustin loves and holds a strong passion for sports, exercise and working with people from all walks of life and enjoys the outdoors. One near future goal is for my graduation from Iowa State Univesity to be my retirement. His words of encouragement to others are to never stop dreaming and never stop believing and don't ever quit or give up even when things don't go as expected.

Sarah Bracy

Sarah Bracy is a junior in Public Service and Administration with a minor in Advertising in the College of Agriculture at Iowa State University. She is a community Advisor for Rambo and Kilbourne in Wallace Hall and is a Web and communications specialists for CSET and the Bioeconomy Institute. Sarah Bracy was born in Reno, Nevada on December 8, 1987. She graduated from Chicago High School for Agricultural Sciences in Chicago, IL in 2006. Sarah's accomplishments: Carver scholar, Kolchowsky scholar, McNair Scholar, former George Washington Carver inter (2005). #3 in H.S. Activities: BSA Legacy Ball promotions (2007), PSA Member(2007), VEISHEA Public Relations radio broadcast coordinator(2007-2008) , H.Y.P.E. mentor (2006), Sunday school Teacher BCC (2006- present), Carver Mentor (2007)