Following her father’s military service, Ms. Shelton grew up in a small rural town in Texas. Her fondness for animals and science was cultivated via her participation in 4-H and math and science programs. She was fortunate to encounter wonderful, enduring mentors who cultivated her professional development. She completed her undergraduate degree in animal behavior and Spanish at Southwestern University in Texas. She later continued her education at Indiana University in Bloomington, where she is currently working toward her PhD. Like many students, Ms. Shelton would never have been able to enter these degree programs without financial assistance. Creativity and guidance permitted her to garner nearly half million dollars in fellowships and scholarships, including a National Science Foundation (NSF) Graduate Research Fellowship (GRFP award) and an NSF Integrative Graduate Education and Research Traineeship (IGERT) award.