Eckley Scholars Spend Summer Immersed in Scholarly and Creative Activity

Ryan Schonert ’16

Aug. 6, 2015 

BLOOMINGTON, Ill.— Can a composer convey an abstract concept such as Life through instrumental music? How do arts’ organizations impact a community economically? Is it possible to design a quick test to determine a dog’s self control?

The Eckley Summer Scholars and Artists spent their summers considering these and other questions. Established by President Emeritus Robert S. Eckley, his wife Nell and the Eckley Family Foundation as one aspect of a major gift, the endowment provides a $4,000 stipend for each scholar to spend the summer on campus under the direction of a faculty mentor. Established shortly before President Eckley passed away in 2012, the program is designed to develop and deepen a student’s creative and research competencies.

“When I learned I was going to receive the Eckley award, I felt so proud of my hard work to get this huge opportunity,” said recipient Steph AuBuchon ’16. “I texted Dr. (Ellen) Furlong, called my mom and ran around my sorority house telling all my friends how excited I was. I felt very grateful for the opportunity and could not wait to get started on my project.”

Below are links to stories about each of the Eckley Scholars and what they’ve discovered about their projects and themselves:


Steph AuBuchon '16 Researches Self-Control in Dogs

Eckley Award Allows David Allen Flowers '16 to be Composer-in-Residence

Michelle Riechers' Research Indicates Arts’ Local Economic Impact Exceeds $6 Million

Ryan Schonert '16 Seeks Answers to Cosmic Dust

Wenting Zhao '18 Refines Algorithm as Eckley Scholar