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Master's student earns prestigious research award

Kevin Lou, CPASS master’s student in the sport, exercise, and performance psychology program, has received a scholarship from the Carl del Signore Foundation in the amount of $1,000. He is one of only five West Virginia University students to receive the award, which recognizes students who are engaged in research activities leading to a research-focused master’s degree.

“Being a recipient of the Carl del Signore Foundation Graduate Scholarship is an honor. I feel the research I am conducting is interesting and valuable to me and my field, and to have other foundations acknowledge that is really rewarding. I am very grateful for the opportunity to be chosen for this award,” states Lou.

Lou, from Irvine, Calif, desires to connect with as many NCAA Division I baseball players across the country as possible through his research in sport psychology. “This scholarship will allow me to further my research by giving me the opportunity to to reach a larger audience than I might have been able to before,” adds Lou.

Lou initially discovered his passion for sport psychology during his senior year of high school. He had grown up playing baseball but was interested in furthering other athlete’s sport performance. Lou realized the benefits of pairing his interests in psychology with his love of sport.

Once Lou completes his master’s in counseling and sport, exercise and performance psychology, he will work to obtain a Ph.D. in sport, exercise and performance psychology as well. Lou received a B.S. in clinical psychology and a B.A. in human development from the University of California, San Diego.

While attending UCSD, Lou had the unique opportunity to be involved with a variety of developmental psychology labs that examined children’s cognitive development longitudinally over the span of 5-10 years, sparking his interest in psychological research. Based on this experience, Lou says it is important to conduct research to explore and analyze how some of these psychological constructs can impact sport psychology.

Within the college, Lou credits Dr. Scott Barnicle, SEP program coordinator and teaching assistant professor, as one of his mentors who has helped him flourish. Barnicle also serves as his advisor and thesis committee chair. He also acknowledges Dr. Sam Zizzi, CPASS associate dean for research, for his encouragement and guidance throughout the thesis process.

Lou’s ultimate career goal is to work as an applied sport psychologist within baseball, not surprisingly since baseball has been a passion of his and his primary research focus. He would also potentially be interested in working as a faculty member and conducting future research in the field of sport psychology.

“I came into this field to become an applied sport psychologist but have found from my experiences at WVU that my future could contain some combination of all three,” states Lou.

The selection process for the Carl del Signore Foundation Graduate Scholarships is rigorous. The scholarship is merit-based and aspiring students must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.70, among other requirements.
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