School of Molecular Biosciences

Scholarships & Financial Aid


Several scholarships are available annually to undergraduates who have certified in the School of Molecular Biosciences.

Melva Jean Kinch Breffeilh Memorial Scholarship

Melva’s family created this scholarship in her memory. As a young student, “Mel” (1921-1996) graduated from WSU in 1944 and became a medical technologist. She wanted to do something different; therefore she chose the field of science in which to pursue her degree. Her laboratory experiences in Saudi Arabia during WW II and Venezuela helped her to fulfill this dream. 

  • Certified major in microbiology
  • Female
  • Demonstrated academic achievement

Scholarship Recipients: Gianne Souza (2010), Abigail Moody (2011), Elizabeth Laws (2012), Sharayah Wahl (2013), Alexandra Bartkoski (2014), Kara Beseler (2015)

Alice L. Diers Bacteriology Enrichment Fund

Alice (1911-2000) received her BS in 1931 from WSU in Bacteriology. Growing up on a Palouse wheat farm, Alice’s mother was determined to send her to college. Alice’s independent spirit served her well as she worked in pathological labs across the Northwest, including Alaska; where she met her husband William. Alice established this fund in 1983 to foster the quality of education and research within the microbiology degree program. 

  • Certified major in microbiology

Scholarship Recipients: Ryan Schindler (2010), Timothy Gay (2010), Elizabeth Laws (2011), Melody Fulton (2011), Nicole Clark (2013), Mary Vallejo (2013), Miles Linde (2014)

Alice Lloyd Diers and William E. Diers Microbiology Student Endowment

This scholarship was created by Bill Retelle in 2001, as a memorial to his dear friends, Alice (1911-2000) and William Diers (1910-1969). Bill and William were fishing buddies and lifelong friends. After William’s death in 1969, Bill continued to care for his friend Alice until her death in 2000. 

  • Deserving students in microbiology (certified majors)
  • Preference to those students with financial need

Scholarship Recipients: Kimberly Ellis (2010), Marie Smith (2010), Katherine Rempe (2010), Xin Wei (2010)

Elizabeth R. Hall Endowment Scholarship

Elizabeth’s many friends, colleagues, and former students established this fund in 1972 as a memorial to her.  Dr. Hall (1914-2001), a member of the WSU faculty from 1944 to 1976, was a researcher and instructor in bacteriology and public health for 32 years. She was a noted teacher and received the Carski Foundation Distinguished Teaching Award from the American Society of Microbiology in 1976.

Give to the Elizabeth R. Hall Endowment Scholarship 

  • Certified major in microbiology
  • Potential for a successful career in a medical aspect of microbiology

Scholarship Recipients: Adriana Lippy (2010), Andrea Bonner (2010), Lon Kwan Lam (2010), Bhim Thapa (2011), Kyle Nelson (2011), Marie Smith (2011), Van Nguyen (2011), Abigail Moody (2012), Bhim Thapa (2012), Cristal Reyna (2012), Marie Smith (2012), Sam McInally (2013), Anjelica Ludwig (2013), Alicia Ocasio (2013), Kari Mitchell (2014), Homa Shaarbaf (2014), Preston Dehan (2014), Nathan Cherzan (2014), Manik Malla (2014), James Bonner (2014), Scott Blaine (2014), Floricel Gonzalez (2015), Jenna Gregory (2015), Jaslyn Erickson (2015)

Herbert M. Nakata Microbiology Fund

This fund was established in 1993 by the Department of Microbiology to honor Professor Emeritus Herbert M. Nakata.  Dr. Nakata served as chair of the microbiology department for 24 years.  Under his leadership the department became academically and fiscally strong.

  • Certified major in microbiology

Scholarship Recipients: Justin Pieper (2010), Tracy Luu (2011), Marie Smith (2012), Alicia Ocasio (2013), James Bonner (2014), Homa Shaarbaf (2015)

Student Aid Fund/Alumni Fund

During the national campus unrest of the 1970s, the bacteriology department under the leadership of Dr. Herb Nakata “invited state legislators, campus administrators, and interested faculty to a series of racial workshops. These led to the development of policies against racism and the establishment of the departmental Student Aid Fund. Initially supported by faculty and graduate students and later by alumni, this first departmental fund assisted majors from financially disadvantaged backgrounds.”  From a Mini- history of the Department of Microbiology at Washington State University by H.M. Nakata, 2001.

  • Certified major in SMB
  • Academic Excellence
  • Preference to those students with financial need

Scholarship Recipients: Jessica Harris (2010), Kyla Hills (2011), Tiffany Hylkema (2012), Matthew Bremgartner (2013), Paige Blue (2014), Katie Salmon (2015), Megan Francies (2015)

Walter and Pauline Harris Award

This scholarship was created in recognition of Walter and Pauline Harris, both graduates of the Department of Bacteriology and Public Health.  Walter received a Master’s degree in 1949 and Pauline received a bachelor’s degree in 1947.  Pauline died in 2008.

  • Certified major in microbiology
  • Junior or Senior standing

Scholarship Recipients: Erin Feller (2010), Elizabeth Laws (2011), Mayumi Holly (2012), Kari Mitchell (2013), Joseph Lawhead (2013), Samantha McInally (2014), James Volz (2014), Athena Lemon (2014), Jesse Nelson (2015), James Volz (2015), Nathan Cherzan (2015)

Marvel-Dare F. Nutting  and Audrey D. Dickson Biochemistry Scholarship

Marvel-Dare received her Master’s in Chemistry from Washington State College in 1930 before she was 20 years old (B.S. from Reed College).  After graduating from WSU, she went on for a Ph.D. in Biochemistry at the University of Rochester (1938).  Marvel-Dare then taught at George Washington Community College at Vallejo, California, then worked in the food research department for the US Department of Agriculture in Albany, California for about 25 years.  Her unique name, Marvel, was given to her as an infant because she overcame a serious illness.  Marvel-Dare and her sister, Audrey, created this legacy at WSU through their wills. 

  • Certified major in biochemistry
  • Preference given to female students

Scholarship Recipients: Conor Bollinger-Smith (2010), Jeffrey Davis (2010 and 2011), Fiorella Grandi (2012), Melody Fulton (2012), Rachael Gerboth (2013), Nicole Clark (2013), Daniel Mobley (2014), Gabby Kahler (2015)

L.W. Engels Emergency Student Loan Fund

Mr. Engles ( -1987) graduated from WSU in 1930, and left half of his estate to help students in Microbiology.  Loraine remembers having little money as a student at Washington State College and wanted to help future students.  The fund is available to assist students who have unexpected expenses and need a quick loan.

  • Certified major in SMB
  • Recipients are encouraged to pay the fund back as finances allow

Scholarship Recipients: 2 students (2010), 2 students (2011), 1 student (2012), 1 student (2013), 1 student (2015)

Patricia C. And Eugene Youngman Endowed Science Scholarship

Pat (Chamber) Youngman grew up near Yakima, Washington, during the Depression.  A $500 inheritance from her grandfather made the dream of a college education into reality for Pat.  Pat and Gene met at WSU and were married the same week they graduated in 1943:  Pat with a BS in Bacteriology and Public Health, and Gen with a Bachelor’s degree in Business.   Gene began a life career with General Mills in Spokane, with various transfers until they settled in Palo Alto, California.  As the family moved, Pat worked as a hospital medical technician, bacteriologist for Darigold, VA medical technician, and doctor’s assistant.  Gene died in 1976.  Pat moved to Anacortes and became instrumental in the propagation of wild plants at the WSU Mount Vernon Research and Extension Center.  Pat passed away in February 2010.

  • Certified major in SMB

Scholarship Recipients: Tiffany Hylkema (2012), Paige Blue (2013), Jennifer Campbell (2013), Christina Beckwith (2014), Nicholas Howard (2014), Erin Aguero (2014), Seth Schneider (2015), Christina Beckwith (2015)

McFadden/Yount Scholarship

Bruce McFadden and Ralph Yount established this scholarship in 2003 as a reflection of their research efforts and the development of biochemistry at Washington State University.  As former Chairs and Professors in the departments of chemistry and biochemistry, they taught hundreds of students and wanted to support them through scholarships.

  • Certified major in SMB

Scholarship Recipients: Yvette Strampe (2010), John Monda (2012), Miles Linde (2012), Nicole Clark (2012), Miles Linde (2013), Matthew McFaul (2013), Fiorella Grandi (2013), Bryce Henderson (2014), Daniel Nicoara (2014), Miles Linde (2014), Brianna Stanley (2015), Kyle Romine (2015), Denali Kagel (2015), Mitchell Go (2015)

STARS Scholarship

Using resources provided by an anonymous SMB alumnus, this fund was established in 2011 to help support the educational needs of students in the STARS program.

  • Certified major in SMB

Scholarship Recipients: Matthew Bremgartner (2012)


Financial Aid

A variety of federal, state, and University-sponsored programs are available to assist qualified students with educational costs. Financial aid counselors at WSU work with students and families in planning to meet these costs through financial aid and other financial services. Contact the:

Distinguished Scholarships

SMB Majors are eligible to pursue prestigious International and National Scholarships such as the Goldwater Scholarship, Rhodes Scholarship, and Churchill Scholarship.  Interested students are encouraged to begin planning for these highly competitive applications as early as possible in their academic career.  For more information, talk to your advisor in SMB and contact the WSU Office of Distinguished Scholarships through this link:

Distinguished Scholarships

Scholarships for the Graduate Program in SMB

Victor Burke Memorial Endowment
Marvel-Dare Nutting and Audrey D. Dickson Fellowship
Charles and Audrey Drake Fellowship in Honor of Dr. A.T. Henrici
Stephen Fodor and Janelle Benoit Graduate Fellowship
Bruce Gibbins Graduate Travel Fellowship in SMB
Michael D. Griswold Fellowship in Reproductive Biology
Charles Glenn King Fellowships and Lectureships
Louis Mallavia Memorial Endowment in Microbiology
Robert A. and Winona P. Nilan Graduate Fellowship
John C. Ross, Vera Ross and Avron J. Ross Medical Microbiology Endowment
James L. Seabrandt Memorial Graduate Fellowship

School of Molecular Biosciences, SMB, PO Box 647520, Life Sciences Building 202, Pullman, WA 99164-7520 phone: 509-335-8751, fax: 509-335-4159
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