by George Zamora

SOCORRO, N.M., Feb. 16, 2004 – Dayle Renee Kerr nee Parker, a graduate of Los Lunas High School who is now a senior majoring in chemical engineering at New Mexico Tech, recently was named a Macey Scholar at the state-supported research university. The honor includes a $5,000 scholarship award.

Kerr is the daughter of George and Vicki Parker of Los Lunas. She is married to Clay Kerr, an alumnus of New Mexico Tech who now works for Public Service Company of New Mexico (PNM).

Last year, Kerr also was named a New Mexico Tech Scholar for her demonstrated academic excellence, having maintained a 3.95 grade point average (GPA).

Kerr’s research experience includes an internship since May 2000 with Sandia National Laboratories, during which she has focused on trace detection of explosives using traditional systems such as high-performance liquid and gas chromatographs.

“I currently do research on handheld explosive detection devices geared toward improving our national security,” Kerr says.

Kerr is an active member of the New Mexico Tech student chapter of the Tau Beta Pi national engineering honor society, which recently was honored as one of the top three chapters in the nation.

In her spare time, Kerr enjoys riding horses (a carryover from her high school days when she was a competitive barrel racer and breakaway roper), snow and water skiing, and sewing quilts.

“Because New Mexico Tech is a small school, each student receives one-on-one time with their professors,” Kerr relates. “That is the educational aspect I like most about Tech.”

New Mexico Tech students named Macey Scholars are selected on the basis of their demonstrated academic accomplishments, both in the classroom and research laboratory, as well as their active participation in institutional service and co-curricular activities.

The Macey Scholars Program is funded by an endowment established by William B. Macey and Jean M. Macey of Albuquerque and Tucson. William Macey graduated from the New Mexico School of Mines (as New Mexico Tech was known in its early years) in 1942, and also was awarded an honorary doctorate by Tech in 1984.