To honor her husband and to benefit the institution that he helped to found, Margaret McDermott made a generous gift in the spring of 2014 to provide support for exceptionally talented graduate students. This remarkable philanthropy funds the Eugene McDermott Graduate Fellows Program and the Fellowships it provides.
The goal of the Eugene McDermott Graduate Fellows Program is to provide powerfully supportive environments in which Fellows can progress with maximum efficiency through their doctoral studies while also developing their talents for leadership of research undertakings. Upon graduation, Fellows will have the outstanding research records appropriate to prestigious post-graduate appointments, and have the experience to make rapid progress towards leadership positions in universities and research organizations.
A distinguishing hallmark of the Program is that Fellows are responsible for managing many of the resources required to carry out their research. The discretionary budget that Fellows receive permits them to gain the experiences of leading their own research program, such as collaborating with senior associates, making decisions about funding allocation, and leading teams of junior colleagues. These experiences, typically only available in post-graduate careers, are designed to further prepare the Fellows for rapid career advancement.
The Fellows Program offers access to a wide variety of enrichment opportunities. Professional development beyond the classroom and laboratory engages Fellows with faculty mentors in activities that range from visiting national laboratories to organizing conferences, hosting distinguished guests, and meeting with government and business leaders. Fellows also have access to the University’s research support resources, which include training in writing and presentation, and assistance in accessing research funding.
Fellows enjoy the rich artistic and entertainment resources of Dallas and the social and intellectual engagements that the community of Fellows and faculty offers. Orientation events before the fall semester begins introduce Fellows to the University, and regular social and cultural activities occur throughout the year on campus and in the larger community.