Dyer Fellowship Program
The Edgar Dyer Institute for Leadership and Public Policy brings together a group of Coastal Carolina students from all colleges and degree programs to participate in the Dyer Fellowship Program.
The Edgar Dyer Institute for Leadership and Public Policy engages students in active learning opportunities where they gain knowledge in various areas of policy research. Students connect academic theory to practice, becoming engaged civic-minded citizens.
Dyer Fellows receive a monthly stipend and their expenses paid for a spring trip to Washington, D.C. They also meet regularly with a dedicated faculty adviser to guide their research throughout the semester.
2020 Dyer Fellows
Joseph Cain is a Coastal Carolina University student from Springfield, Ky. He is majoring in intelligence and national security with a minor in Spanish. He is interested in U.S. foreign policy and intelligence matters, specifically concerning Latin America. As part of his fellowship with the Dyer Institute for Leadership and Public Policy, Cain will research the future of U.S. foreign policy in Venezuela. His research will examine and attempt to provide potential policy solutions that would be in accordance with U.S. national interests, the Venezuelan people, and surrounding countries. Upon graduation, Cain plans to apply to the Patterson School of Diplomacy and International Commerce at the University of Kentucky.
- Exploring U.S. Foreign Policy Responses to the Political Crisis in Venezuela
Tyler Gross is from the Carolina Forest area in Myrtle Beach, S.C., and majors in special education with a minor in criminology. Gross is passionate about working with students who have experienced trauma and who are receiving an education while being in a correctional facility. As part of her research as a Dyer Fellow, she will examine how literacy and creative writing can help dismantle the school-to-prison pipeline. In the future, she hopes to teach students in a correctional, or lockdown, facility and hopes to one day start a program at the Department of Juvenile Justice in South Carolina that would show students how to express themselves through creative writing and reading. Tyler plans on achieving a master’s in special education and a master’s in school counseling.
- Research Topic: Seeing how literacy and creative writing can help dismantle the school-to-prison pipeline
Isiuwa Oghagbon is a Coastal Carolina University student from Haymarket, Va. She is majoring in political science and minoring in international business while also being on the Coastal Carolina University women’s basketball team. She is interested in law and politics having to do with voting. As part of her fellowship, she will be researching gerrymandering: its history, effect on the public, and solutions for this problem. With this research, she hopes to educate voters on a key step in the voting process, how it effects each person’s vote, and to present viable options to the public. Upon graduation, she plans on attending law school with the intent of studying business law.
- Research Topic: Gerrymandering’s effects on public voting and possible solutions.
Erica Richardson is a Coastal Carolina University student from Southeast Michigan. She is a public health major with interest in social justice, poverty relief, and sexual health. As part of her fellowship with the Dyer Institute for Leadership and Public Policy, Richardson will be exploring potential causal factors of basic need insecurity among college students, specifically undergraduates here at Coastal. With this research, Richardson hopes to develop short-term and long-term solutions to basic need insecurity in order to promote academic achievement and a higher quality of life among college students. Upon graduation, Richardson plans on attending graduate school to pursue a dual master's in public health and social work.
- Research Topic: Causal factors of basic need insecurity among college students
Sophie Sumpter is a Coastal Carolina University student from Little River, S.C. She is majoring in public health with a minor in political science and is interested in the effects of climate change on vulnerable populations. As part of her fellowship with the Dyer Institute for Leadership and Public Policy, Sumpter will be exploring the effects of flooding on vulnerable populations in the Federal Emergency Management Division’s special hazard flood zones of Horry County, S.C. With this research, Sumpter hopes to increase awareness of the effects of hurricanes and extreme weather events in Horry County on the quality of life for individuals living in more vulnerable areas. Upon graduation, Sumpter plans to attend a graduate program to pursue a dual degree program allowing her to obtain a master’s degree in social work and a law degree to then pursue public health policy.
- Research Topic: The impact of flooding on the health of socially vulnerable regions of Horry County
Ozzy Whitley is a Coastal Carolina University student from Columbia, S.C. She is majoring in anthropology and geography. She is interested in environmental and ecological anthropology, which is focused on human-environment interactions. As part of her research as a Dyer Fellow, she will conduct a study about the presence and behavioral patterns of ghost crabs in the Myrtle Beach area. She hopes to understand how seemingly innocuous beach activity affects these crabs, and what can be done with South Carolina state policy as it pertains to beachgoing activities. With this study, Whitley aims to educate the public on how to better their relationship with the coastal environment and protect the flora and fauna in these popular areas.
- Sandy Macrofauna Shake-Up: Anthropological Case Study and South Carolina Beach Policy Analysis