Shelby McCrackin Named McKnight Doctoral Fellow

March 8, 2024

Read more about Shelby McCrackin

By: Jenny Ralph
In February, LSI Graduate Research Assistant Shelby McCrackin was one of 24 Florida State University doctoral students who were celebrated for receiving the McKnight Doctoral or Dissertation Fellowship at the 38th Annual McKnight Fellows Meeting and Research & Writing Conference in Tampa.

At the conference, several FSU McKnight Fellows served as presenters, moderators and panel discussants. Seven recently graduated FSU McKnight Fellows were honored by receiving ceremonial jackets, a McKnight Fellows tradition.

FSU education doctoral student Camille Lewis received the Russell V. Ewald Award for Academic Excellence and Outstanding Service to the Community. Additionally, FSU Associate Professor Bryan Quaife received the William R. Jones Most Valuable Mentor Award for the mentorship he provided to graduate student Jhamieka Greenwood, a McKnight Doctoral Fellow in computational science.

The McKnight Doctoral and Dissertation Fellowships, made possible by the Florida Education Fund, aim to combat the underrepresentation of African American and Hispanic faculty at colleges and universities in Florida and throughout the country.

“This year’s cohort reflects the longstanding commitment of the Florida Education Fund and Florida State University to diversify higher education by recruiting and developing scholars pursuing Ph.D. degrees who have been traditionally underrepresented in academia,” said Adrienne Stephenson, associate dean of The Graduate School and Director of the Office of Graduate Fellowships and Awards. “Diversity in lived experiences and perspective, knowledge and expertise are critical in shaping the future of higher education.”

The Doctoral Fellowship provides $17,000 per year in tuition, fees and stipends for up to five years. The Dissertation Fellowship Program provides up to one year of support to individuals working to complete dissertations with a stipend of up to $12,000.

This is Florida State University’s largest cohort of McKnight Doctoral Fellows to date, with 19 new doctoral students receiving funding.

“The continued success of the McKnight Fellowship Program here at FSU relies heavily on the efforts and support of the amazing faculty who mentor our fellows,” Stephenson said. “Their efforts to promote teaching, research and learning do not go unnoticed.”

Since its inception in 1984, the McKnight Doctoral Fellowship Program has graduated 1023 doctoral degrees from nine participating universities in Florida. FSU students have been awarded 322 of the coveted fellowships to date, with 51 fellows currently matriculating.

To learn more about ways for graduate students to fund their academic interests, visit FSU’s Office of Graduate Fellowships and Awards at

For more information about the McKnight Doctoral and Dissertation Fellowship programs, visit