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Michigan State University students named national finalists for Marshall and Rhodes scholarships

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Michigan State University is proud to announce its national finalists for the prestigious Marshall Scholarship and Rhodes Scholarship. Organizers will announce the results of these competitions in the coming weeks. 

The Marshall Scholarship provides support to approximately 50 of the most outstanding undergraduates in the country to study at any university in the United Kingdom. The Rhodes Scholarship is the oldest international scholarship program, enabling approximately 100 outstanding young people from around the world to study at the University of Oxford. The American Rhodes Scholarship awards 32 scholarships.

Dorothy Zhao is a finalist for both the Marshall Scholarship and the U.S. Rhodes Scholarship.

Head and shoulders photo of Dorothy Zhao
Dorothy Zhao
Courtesy photo

She is an Honors College senior completing three Bachelor of Science degrees in just three years. The first degree is in Neuroscience in the College of Natural Science with a concentration in Cognitive and Computational Neuroscience; the second degree is in Psychology in the College of Social Science with a minor in Human Behavior and Social Services; and the third degree is in Human Biology in the College of Natural Science. Dorothy was a member of the Wielenga Scholars Program, a selective research-focused cohort program within the Honors College.

Dorothy is a research assistant in three different research laboratories. At the University of Oxford, she is research assistant to Professor Alex Green on a project that focuses on neuropsychiatric side effects following deep brain stimulation implantation in Parkinson’s patients as a continuation of her summer research internship. She is a research assistant for Professor Erin Purcell in the Regenerative Electrode Interface Laboratory at MSU on a project that examines the structural and functional plasticity at the neural electrode interface. She is also a research assistant for Professor Lisa Linnenbrink-Garcia in the College of Education on a research project that examines the development of achievement motivation in school settings.

In addition to her research agenda, Dorothy has leadership roles with eight organizations. At MSU she is founder and president of the Biomedical Engineering Society; president of the Associated Students of MSU Senior Class Council; teaching assistant for the Department of Psychology and General Chemistry; and president of the Psi Chi International Honor Society in Psychology. In the local community she is a Child
Activity Leader at Haven House, a homeless shelter in East Lansing, Michigan. In her free time Dorothy enjoys playing the violin. She attended Okemos High School in Okemos, Michigan.

head and shoulders photo of Ashley Harlock
Ashley Harlock in the Robinson Lab.
Credit:  MSU Health Care

Ashley Harlock is a finalist for the Marshall Scholarship. She is an Honors College senior completing two Bachelor of Science degrees in Lyman Briggs College. Her first degree is in Neuroscience, and her second degree is in Human Biology. As a freshman, she was awarded a Professorial Research Assistantship from the Honors College for the top 1% of freshmen applying to MSU. She has won numerous awards for her athletic and scholarly achievements including the Academic All-Big Ten Award and the MSU Athletics Scholar Athlete Award. 

Ashley is a research assistant to Professor A.J. Robison in the College of Natural Science where she researched the neurobiology of addiction. Prior to this she was a research assistant for Professor Susan Ravizza in the College of Social Science and worked on a project that focused on the neuropsychology of memory. For her freshman year she was a research assistant for Dr. Kendall Mahn’s laboratory in the College of Natural Science, where she conducted research on neutrino oscillations.

In addition to her research, Ashley holds four leadership positions at MSU and in local communities. She is team captain for MSU’s Division 1 Field Hockey team and has served as a member of the team’s leadership group for the past three years. Ashley is president of MSU’s Student Athlete Advisory Committee which provides feedback to the Athletics Director and University administration on issues related to intercollegiate athletes. She is a Learning Assistant for MSU’s Introduction to Neuroscience course for undergraduate students. Outside of MSU, Ashley is a coach for the Pinnacle Field Hockey Club in Pinckney, Michigan.

Ashley is also a guitarist and songwriter and has performed in local communities for the past eight years. In high school, she won a recording scholarship and recorded four original songs. She attended Churchill High School in Livonia, Michigan.

The Distinguished Student Awards Office (formerly National/International Fellowships and Scholarships) administered by the Honors College, is dedicated to supporting undergraduate and graduate students pursuing prestigious awards by providing information and direct support throughout the application process. 

Banner image: Main entrance of the MSU College of Natural Science Building.  Credit:  Michael D.-L. Jordan