Marymount alumna awarded $8,500 Phi Kappa Phi Fellowship

Marymount alumna awarded $8,500 Phi Kappa Phi Fellowship


MaryEllen Haas, a Marymount University alumna from the Class of 2020, has received an $8,500 fellowship from the Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi, the nation’s oldest and most selective collegiate honor society for all academic disciplines. 

The organization’s Fellowship Program gives $1.3 million annually to select Honor Society members, easing the financial hardship of graduate study and opening doors for recipients to conduct research, participate in prominent conferences and pursue other academic endeavors. Haas, a native of Clear Brook, Va., was inducted into Marymount’s chapter of Phi Kappa Phi in 2019 during her junior year and has maintained her chapter membership ever since.

Haas with her classmates in front of Marymount's Administration Building“MaryEllen is a very deserving student who personifies the characteristics of a Marymount education, and her winning a Phi Kappa Phi Fellowship reflects her remarkable achievements,” said Dr. Sarah Fischer, Assistant Professor of Criminal Justice and President of Marymount’s Phi Kappa Phi chapter.

Haas graduated from Marymount with a bachelor’s degree in Biochemistry, which she earned over the course of just three years thanks to dual enrollment credits obtained during high school. After commencement, Haas worked as a research assistant for two years at the George Washington University, where she studied cellular and molecular interactions of skin injuries, inflammation and repairs.

“I first met MaryEllen in the fall of 2017 when she was a student in my Honors freshmen seminar on food ethics. She has exemplified what it means to be a Marymount Honors student,” reflected Dr. Stacy Lopresti-Goodman, Director of Marymount’s Honors Program, Psychology professor and Phi Kappa Phi member. “She always challenged herself academically while pursuing her intellectual interests.”

Haas, who specifically received the Walter & Adelheid Hohenstein Fellowship, is one of only 62 recipients nationwide to receive a Phi Kappa Phi Fellowship this year — a group that navigated a crowded field of applicants and met highly demanding application criteria. These awards are one of the Honor Society’s most visible and financially well-supported endeavors, and align with Phi Kappa Phi’s mission of recognizing and advancing excellence in all fields of higher education and society. 

“I was overcome with gratitude,” Haas recalled upon receiving the Fellowship. “I am grateful to receive this honor, to be a member of such a community that uplifts its members’ academic dreams and especially to my mentors, the Marymount University faculty and Phi Kappa Phi chapter officers, who have endlessly supported me throughout my academic journey.”

Haas with fellow students on a study abroad trip

With the support of her Fellowship, Haas is pursuing doctoral study in molecular and translational physiology at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center, where she strives to grow as a scientific investigator and communicator. From there, she hopes to strengthen her training in investigative research, leadership and mentorship as a research associate or post-doctoral fellow. Haas aspires to continue performing rigorous, high-impact research, unraveling the molecular causes of inflammatory dysregulation and paving the way for disease-alleviating therapeutics through investigation and collaboration.

“I aspire to follow in the footsteps of my mentors by seeking a faculty role,” Haas said. “I want to invest in future scientists, health professionals and conservationists, just as the incredible Marymount faculty did for me.”

Click here to view the complete list of 2023 Phi Kappa Phi Fellows and to learn more about the fellowships.