Texas A&M Commerce Professor Sarah Lynette Rodriguez Ph.D. has received a National Science
Foundation grant to study graduate students during the COVID-19 Pandemic.
Rodriguez, a 2004, Eustace High School graduate is at work on a project is called, “RAPID: Graduate
Student Experiences During the COVID-19 Pandemic.”
Her mother, Donna Goodell of Eustace is not surprised by Sarah's accomplishments.
"She's doing very well in the world," Goodell said. "I think this is just the beginning for her."
Four institutions will take part in the study gauging the student's perceptions of institutional support
and the impact of that support on their educational and career decisions. The study will closely monitor
the way race, class, gender and other socio-demographic factors influence the experiences of graduate
students in STEM disciplines.
STEM is an educational program developed to prepare primary and secondary students for college and
graduate study in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.
After Eustace High School, Rodriguez attended Trinity Valley Community College, then received her
Ph.D. in Educational Administration with a concentration in Higher Education Leadership from The
University of Texas at Austin.
Rodriguez holds a Master’s of Education in College Student Personnel from the University of
Tennessee, Knoxville, as well as a Bachelor’s degree in English and Spanish with honors from Texas
According to an Athens Review story, Rodriguez has consistently been ranked among the top 10% of
students at her respective universities and has presented at conferences at the national, regional, and
local levels and authored journal articles, book chapters, policy briefs, and other publications on Latina/
o student success. While at UT, Sarah was named a Community College Leadership Program
Endowment Honors Scholar and a Diversity Mentoring Fellow as well as received the Dr. Bill Lasher
Doctoral Student Excellence Award and the Division of Diversity and Community Engagement Rose
Martinez Student Excellence Award.
At a national level, Rodriguez has been named a Gates Millennium Scholar from the Bill and Melinda
Gates Foundation, an American Educational Research Association Emerging Scholar, an American
Association of Hispanics in Higher Education Fellow, and also serves as an Affiliate Faculty Member
for the Minority Male Community College Collaborative and Project MALE