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Matthew T. Kerr, a doctoral candidate in the Department of Geography, is one of only 10 recipients nationwide to be awarded the 2017 Dissertation Fellowship from the Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi. He will receive $10,000 to apply toward 12 months of dissertation writing.

The Dissertation Fellowship program allots $100,000 annually in support of the nation’s oldest and most selective collegiate honor society, Phi Kappa Phi. Membership to this prestigious society is only by invitation to the top 10 percent of seniors and graduate students along with the top 7.5 percent of juniors.

Kerr was selected for the fellowship based on a number of criteria, including how the fellowship will contribute to the completion of his dissertation, the significance of original research, and endorsement by his dissertation chair.

Kerr studies Quaternary environments and prehistoric human-environment interactions in Central America and the Caribbean. He earned his bachelor’s degree in anthropology from the University of North Carolina Wilmington, and his master’s degree in geography from UT.

Read more about the Phi Kappa Phi Dissertation Fellowship and this year’s recipients.