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Cynthia Maule-Trail (continued)

With her May 2001 master's graduation in sight, Maule-Trail is poised to make her mark on the world via her chosen field--sociology with an emphasis on domestic violence. As an undergraduate, Maule-Trail developed and helped implement an adolescent counseling program for the Murfreesboro Domestic Violence Program. For this, she was presented with her department's Joe Leatherman Award in April 1998. More recently, she completed a practicum with the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local Union 429 in Nashville, connecting workplace conditions with the potential for an increase or decrease in domestic violence.

A native of Vancouver, Wash., Maule-Trail is complimentary of her major department: "During the time that I had a very difficult semester›I was diagnosed with cancer and my husband was working away from home—the professors in Sociology were very accommodating, which makes learning considerably easier," she says.

Dr. Pat Nation, her academic advisor and assistant professor of Sociology and Anthropology, says, "Cindy is an outstanding and dedicated student. [We] are very proud of her many accomplishments."

Having proven that she is indeed a survivor of both cancer and some of life's other hard knocks, Maule-Trail knows what it means to persevere. And she knows how to help others along the way.

"I think that with every challenge we receive, whether it be a health challenge or a financial challenge or some other kind of challenge, there's always growth. And so to say 'l am have had cancer so that I can see how great it is to have good health' would not be appropriate," she says. "But at the same time, I am lucky, because I've had an opportunity to take a good look at my quality of life and see what I can do to improve it. And going to school, for me, has been a good way to improve it.