James Madison University

Eileen Nelson Scholarship for Senior Excellence

The Eileen Nelson Scholarship honors the contributions of emeritus faculty member Eileen Nelson, by recognizing a student who has exemplary involvement in the honors thesis program, vigor in research and service, excellence in academic achievement, and the intention to pursue graduate education in psychology. The scholarship provides financial assistance to the award winner during their senior year. This scholarship was made possible by the generous donations of the family and friends of Dr. Eileen Nelson.

You can contribute to this fund by making a donation online.

2018 Award Recipient


Cerella Chandra

Cerella Chandra
  • Completed an Honors Thesis titled: Interactions between Anxiety Subtypes, Personality Characteristics, and Emotion Regulation Skills as Predictors of Future Career Outcomes under the supervision of Dr. David Szwedo
  • Will present her thesis at the Virginia Association for Psychological Science in April, 2018
  • Completed a 150-hour Field Placement experience at Western State Hospital under the supervision of a Licensed Clinical Psychologist, Dr. Jason Stout. 
  • Was subsequently hired at Western State Hospital as a Rehab Assistant on the strength of her Field Placement work
  • Served as a tutor for the course Abnormal Psychology since Spring 2016
  • Member of the Psychology Learning Community during her first year at JMU

2017 Awards Recipient


Daroon Jalil

Daroon Jalil
  • Completing an honors thesis entitled The Role of Race and Empathy on Contagious Yawning under the supervision of Dr. Melanie Shoup-Knox.
  • Has worked in 3 research labs and presented research at five conferences, both regionally and nationally.
  • Served as teaching assistant for Biopsychology.
  • Psychology representative on the CHBS Dean’s Student Advisory Council.
  • Has been awarded the Whitlock Scholarship in the Department of Psychology, been on the President’s list (Fall 2013- Spring 2016), and is a Centennial Scholar Recipient.