No Opportunity Is Too Great: I Promise Student Is a McNair Scholar and SURE candidate

Kent State Today is following a group of Golden Flashes for the 2023-2024 academic year chronicling their efforts and successes during the fall and spring semesters. The group includes students, faculty and administrators at different places on their Kent State University journeys. 

A Year in a Flash


Kent State senior Don’Marie Reid is a biology/pre-med major with some exciting new opportunities that will enable her to conduct research on food insecurity in her hometown Akron.

Reid was recently named a McNair Scholar and she was chosen as a participant in the 2024 Summer Undergraduate Research Experience (SURE) program. Reid will work directly with mentor Jennifer King, Ph.D., assistant professor in the College of Public Health.

Here is Reid speaking with Kent State Today about her research opportunity, which will enable her to study food insecurity in her hometown Akron. 




The Ronald E. McNair Post-Baccalaureate Achievement Program commonly referred to as The McNair Scholars Program prepares undergraduate students who are first-generation, from designated income or underrepresented groups in graduate schools, for doctoral study. McNair Scholars are engaged in scholarly research, mentored by faculty, and are exposed to varied academic and cultural experiences.

“A year ago, I didn't really know what McNair was,” Reid said. “It’s exciting that they picked me to be in the program. I am very excited to start research because I've been interested in trying to find opportunities and this was perfect.”

Reid has been stepping into new opportunities with enthusiasm ever since elementary school. She is a lifelong participant in the LeBron James Family Foundation I Promise program.  

As a second-year lab leader, Reid fits her work in the chemistry lab around her academics and her role as a mentor in the CommUNITY Lab, an undergraduate cohort program housed in Community Engaged Learning in University College that offers members a network of coordinated care resources at Kent State while removing financial, academic and social-emotional barriers to success.

She has also been a student assistant in the Office of the Provost since her first year.


Don'Marie Reid, left, and a friend, Ashlyn Young, stand outside of the chemistry lab.


Reid’s research will allow her to do grassroots work in her hometown around the topic of food insecurity through the SURE program. The program funds promising undergraduate researchers for eight weeks over the summer to engage in faculty-supervised research. 

“I'll start my research in the summer and then during that time, I may give out surveys to try to understand, like how the food resources are helping people and what things we can do better,” Reid said. “It will be more hands-on in the real world versus in the lab." 

POSTED: Thursday, March 7, 2024 01:33 PM
Updated: Friday, March 8, 2024 02:05 PM
April McClellan-Copeland
Photos provided by Don'Marie Reid