As a part of Dr. Powell’s HNRS 260 – Psychology in the Media course, students read Van Bavel and colleagues’ (2020) article, Using social and behavioural science to support COVID-19 pandemic response, and created flyers that they thought would grab RC students’ attention to reduce the spread of COVID-19 on campus.
See what some students came up with below!
Do the Right Thing
Combatting the Pandemic
Great job to all the students who completed this project and created new graphics to share on campus!
Continue to stay safe, and remember, keep wearing a mask, wash your hands, and social distance to help stop the spread of COVID-19 and keep all of the Roanoke College community safe!
Congratulations to Dr. Nichols on his recent publishing in the Frontiers in Applied Mathematics and Statistics Journal, titled “Validation of Critical Ages in Regional Adult Brain Maturation.”
In this article, Dr. Nichols identified that there are linear and non-linear maturation rates that impact different biological mechanisms. With this, he simulated data with known maturation patterns and a single critical age characterizing a qualitative change in maturation to establish the validity of a non-parametric fitting method, the smoothing spline, combined with processing steps for determining the form of the pattern and the associated critical age. In this study, both biological data and generated data were examined through multiple models. The findings suggest that smoothing splines were shown to be a valid means of identifying a set of maturation patterns for adult ages and were shown to contain the essential information required to determine a single critical age for the patterns. Moreover, it was found that for a majority of non-linear areas, new critical ages were identified. However, Dr. Nichols suggests that further modifications to the analysis procedure could include a wider set of maturation patterns and the inclusion of multiple critical ages to help determine distinctions between brain areas in the timing of developmental or degenerative events that influence their volume.
For more information on the article, followthis linkand once again congratulations Dr. Nichols for this recent publication!
Industrial and organizational psychology, or I/O psychology, is an applied discipline within the field of psychology. Typically, I/O psychologists focus on employees in the workplace, applying psychological principals and research methods in order to improve the work environment, specifically thing such as performance, communication and safety.
With I/O psychology becoming a growing discipline, students who may be interested in a program related to I/O psychology or who may want to learn more about what such program would entail, should check out the virtual open house led by the Graduate Center and Baruch College.
Baruch College will be holding virtual open houses for fall 2021 admissions on Tuesday, September 22 from 5:00 pm-6:00 pm EST and on Thursday, October 22 from 5:00 pm – 6:00 pm EST.
During these open houses, prospective students will have the opportunity to learn more about the Ph.D. program and the application process, hear from current students, such as recent alumna Kaitlin Busse ’18, and faculty, as well as attend a question and answer session.
Advanced registration is required, and can be done here.
Please contact Dr. Charles Scherbaum (Charles.Scherbaum@baruch.cuny.edu)
with any questions on the registration or event.
Welcome class of 2024 and welcome back to our returning students! While the start of this semester may look different than other years, the professors and faculty of the psychology department are as excited as ever for the start of classes and for this semester.
We were able to catch up with some members of the psychology department to see what they are looking forward to and how they are handling this semester!
I am looking forward to having all the students back. It has been too quiet here in Life Science these last few months.
Although teaching will look a lot different coming from my home office, I am just as excited to meet RC’s new students and see our returning students, as any other year! Daisy isn’t so sure about everyone interrupting her nap times but I think she’ll get used to it. If you do see me around campus I will be rocking my RC mask!
Welcome back, everyone! In preparation for teaching remotely this semester, I’ve turned our basement bar area into my home office/recording studio for PSYC 354: The Podcast (hence the towels and other sound-absorbing barriers) and video demos for PSYC 204. It is cozy and has soft lighting and candles that smell like chocolate, which will put me in a great mood while I’m grading your assignments!
Welcome back, everyone! This is my home office. It is much fancier and more nicely decorated than Dr. O’s (towels, really?), which will make me happy as I work to create a great experience for you all in History of Psychology and Research Seminar.
This summer and the beginning of the academic year certainly hasn’t unfolded as any of us had hoped. So, although remote courses very much change the delivery of our teaching, it doesn’t change the passion we have for working with students and our excitement to share what we know about psychological science!
Temporarily working from my dining room, rather than the 5th floor of Life Science, means that every day has the potential of being “bring your pet to work day”! There’s a very real possibility one or both of the kitties will make unscheduled appearances during my classes as they leap onto my lap. Otherwise, not much else has changed. My computer is here, the books and files I need are here, I’m still responding promptly to emails, and I’m still crossing-off tasks from super long to-do lists to ensure students have a great learning experience!
We don’t go out much in my household (thank goodness for Kroger pick-up and Target delivery!); but, when we do, we wear filtered masks and goggles. They might not be the most comfortable “accessories” or the most fashionable thing I’ve ever worn, but it’s worth adding them to our outfits. These two accessories ensure that I’m protecting myself and protecting others. Habits can take some time to develop, so we keep our masks and our goggles right by the door as visual don’t-forget-me reminders!
Hello Psychology Students!
I hope that you all are doing well and looking forward to the start of the semester! This has been a tough period of time for many of us for many different reasons. Our family endured the loss of my wife’s father, Kelly, and our Goldendoodle, Oakley. We also experienced some positive, exciting times as a family – my eldest child, Kennerly, got her learner’s permit, and we hiked to see wild ponies at Grayson Highlands State Park! Most of my summer has been spent working at my make-shift home office desk since my wife, Professor Nichols, has been working from home for years and gets the better desk.
Your professors and I are very much looking forward to seeing you all again, whether in person or online! Our community is one of the personal relationships more so than physical space and it is joyful and encouraging to join together in a community where ever we are!
Dr. Findley-Van Nostrand
I’m looking forward to making the best of this semester and learning how to deal with it all together!
Welcome back! It’s been great to see campus start to come alive with the arrival of freshmen. And as weird as it will be to see everyone on tiny little boxes on my computer screen for a while, I’m really looking forward to seeing my students in one form or another. Although I was working from home most of the summer, I’m doing most of my teaching from my office on campus (pictured), just to spare my wife several unwanted lectures on Social Psychology while she is also working from home. I’ve moved into Dr. Nichols’s old office, and it clearly needs some decoration. (I’m working on that.) Hopefully I’ll see you on campus soon, and just know that I am actually smiling at you from behind the mask.
Not pictured, Dr. Allen, Dr. Cate, Dr. Haegmann, and Dr. Hilton are also all excited to start teaching and meet you all soon!
While remote, the fifth-floor of life science will continue to cheer you on this semester! Good luck to everyone and let’s have an amazing semester!
On February 27-29, four students and three psychology professors attended the Society for Personality and Social Psychology (SPSP) Conference in New Orleans, Louisiana, to present research through poster sessions and to attend presentations. The students included Hayley Mulford ’20, Naomi Painter ’22, Kaillee Philleo ’21, and Lauren Powell ’21. These students were joined by Dr. Buchholz, Dr. Carter, and Dr. Osterman.
Those in attendance have since given some insight onto what it was like presenting at the conference as well as their reactions to the conference and New Orleans, LA:
While I did not present at the conference, It was so cool to see how many different research projects were being done and how enthusiastic people were! Everyone was really professional and genuinely interested in the research. Moreover, people held such intellectual conversations. I got to talk to some people that go to grad school at FSU, which is where I am going, so I was so excited! New Orleans is one of the coolest places I have ever been to. I loved the culture, the people, the food, and the area. I would go back in a heartbeat!
Presenting at the SPSP 2020 conference was a wonderful experience in communicating our research projects and findings. I had a great time interacting with students and faculty members through discussion of projects and questions. Being able to see the wide variety of ongoing research was quite exciting, as many of the research topics correlated with ongoing issues that one often reads about or experiences each day.
One of the best parts of the New Orleans SPSP conference was being able to walk around and visit Bourbon Street, Jackson Square, and other popular sites while witnessing firsthand the fascinating and entertaining atmosphere of the great city of New Orleans.
Going into SPSP I was quite nervous, as I have never presented at a conference before. However, after attending a few presentations and talking with other poster presenters, when it came time to present on my own research, it was not nearly as nerve-racking. I loved getting to learn about the variety of research topics in the field of psychology and enjoyed getting to meet other psychologists from across the world and discuss their projects and my own. Beyond the conference, we were able to explore New Orleans and I was able to try gumbo, which has since become my newfound favorite meal. I cannot wait to return to New Orleans in the future and hope to return to SPSP one day as well.
This was my second conference but it was the first conference that I have attended that I presented my work independently! It’s not as scary as it seems, and you get to meet a lot of cool people who have the same interests as you – I had a lot of great conversations with people from all over the world! Moreover, it was fun to see what other people were there to present. It’s always interesting to see that there are so many unexplored topics within the broad category of psychology. Beyond the conference, New Orleans was so much fun and I definitely plan on going back! I am really glad we were all able to experience New Orleans for just long enough to enjoy it but not long enough to be affected by the COVID-19 outbreak that has been happening.
I always enjoy going to the Society of Personality and Social Psychology annual conference. This year it was in New Orleans, which was a lot of fun. At the conference, we have a chance to interact with some of the leading scientists in the field and to hear about cutting-edge research. It is also a great opportunity for our students to present research that they have been conducting in our research labs. This year Naomi Painter and Lauren Powell were both able to present as first authors on our research examining empathy.
I had a great time at SPSP! I wasn’t able to attend last year due to the birth of my son, so it was great to catch up with colleagues and friends from graduate school that I hadn’t seen in a while, and of course to soak up some culture in New Orleans (and several really good meals). I saw a number of really excellent talks, learned a lot, and took inspiration for a few new research projects. My favorite part, however, was getting to see one of my graduate advisors (Tom Gilovich) win the society’s prestigious Campbell Award. He’s a giant in the field, and he absolutely deserves the recognition.
SPSP was a blast as always, and I’m so proud of how well our students did with presenting their research! They represented the college and department well. Kaillee even talked to some people from NPR about her podcasting research!
Congratulations to all those who attended the conference and for having successful presentations!
Over the next few days, we will be highlighting the Psychology Department graduating seniors! This post will highlight 4 seniors: Ryen Beach, Sophia Bacon, Athey Crump, and Emily Deeds!
My plans after graduation are to take a gap semester and then attend nursing. I want to be an emergency department nurse and become a flight nurse.
This summer I have been accepted to participate in a clinical internship at Southeast Psych based in Charlotte, NC. In the fall, I plan to both nanny part-time and work at Easterseals UCP where I will be providing ABA therapy to children on the spectrum. I also plan to apply to various graduate school programs in clinical psychology for the 2021 academic year.
My favorite memory is when I was walking down the hall one day and heard each class make a joke and laugh, one after the other. It made me smile and be so happy to be amongst so many good spirited people.
After graduation, I plan to spend some time with my family while I’m home. Then I plan to attend graduate school nearby so I can be a little bit closer to home.
My favorite memory was passing out in Dr. Powell’s Developmental Psychology class watching the video on fertilization.
After graduation, I plan to move down south and pursue a career in Human Resources.
Congratulations to you all on the success you have achieved while at Roanoke College and we look forward to seeing all that you do in the future!
Over the next few days, we will be highlighting the Psychology Department graduating seniors! This post will highlight 4 seniors: Casey Gough, Carter Smith, Emily Townley, and Ji’Asia Anderson!
My favorite part of the psychology department is that we are a family. I remember studying with psych students I didn’t even know in the library, studying while goofing off with all my friends, and taking naps on the psych lounge couch together.
After graduation, I will be attending Appalachian State University in the Fall (2020) for a three-year dual degree MA & EDs school psychology program.
I love the community of the psychology department. Being apart of it was like having our own little family on the fifth floor that would occasionally go to the brewery together, pie each other in the face, and, oh yeah, take classes.
After graduation, I will be serving in the Peace Corps as an English teacher and teacher trainer in Indonesia!
Though it was daunting at the time, I greatly enjoyed defending my Honors in the Major/Distinction Project for psychology. It was the culmination of 3 semesters of independent work and I was excited to share my results.
After graduation, my plans are to attend a Master’s program for psychology, with a focus on clinical psychology. As of writing this, I have gotten into four so we’ll see where I end up!
Carly and I were able to present our poster of the research we were helping Dr. Carter with all semester at the APS Conference in Washington. Sadly, we got a slot on the last day, so we only got to present to Carly’s mother and the group that had a poster next to us. Even though we didn’t have a lot of people to present to, we had a lot of fun seeing the different research that others had been conducting and talked to some really nice people.
After graduation, I plan to find a job as a counselor or a social worker, so I can use everything that I have learned at Roanoke to help other people. Hopefully, one day in the future, I will be able to work in the prison system as a counselor.
Congratulations to you all on the success you have achieved while at Roanoke College and we look forward to seeing all that you do in the future!
Congratulations to Dr. Powell who was recently awarded the Dean’s Exemplary Teaching Award! Each year, Roanoke College selects one recipient that they feel best showcases the aspects of this award.
According to Roanoke College, “pursuing excellence in teaching, professional life, and service to the College are all aspects of faculty life at Roanoke College, and each spring the Dean acknowledges outstanding faculty members through awards given in these different areas.”
This past year, Dr. Osterman, another member of the Psychology Department, was honored with this award!
Congratulations to Dr. Powell for this honor and to both of these professors for this amazing achievement!
Congratulations to Casey Jo Gough ’20 for the successful defense of her Honors in the Major Project! Her Project was titled “Adverse Peer Experiences on Social Media: Adjustment of Emerging Adults and Moderation by Social Support”. Her project advisor, Dr. Danielle Findley-Van Nostrand was joined by committee members, Dr. Darcey Powell and Dr. Johanna Sweet, to oversee her defense.
Project Abstract: Although data suggests adverse peer experiences persist past adolescence, studies beyond this cohort are limited (Kochenderfer & Ladd, 1996). Peer rejection and bullying research have recently expanded to examine online experiences (Landoll et al., 2013), but there is an inadequate understanding of adverse peer experiences via social networking sites. The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between adverse peer experiences online and the adjustment factors of stress and loneliness among emerging adults. In child and adolescent cohorts, social support has buffered the maladjustment impacts of bullying (Hong & Espelage, 2012). We hypothesize this trend will continue into emerging adulthood; specifically, people who are high in social support will feel less loneliness and less stress from adverse online experiences than those who are low in social support. Results indicated significantly more stress among females, but also more overall support. Further, college students received more belonging support than non-college students. Stress and loneliness were positively related to adverse peer experiences and negatively related to support. Social support did not moderate this relationship as expected. There was a significant interaction between high appraisal support and loneliness. Further analysis is recommended on the subscales of support concerning cohorts and adjustment variables.
Congratulations again to Casey Jo Gough on a successful defense and we look forward to seeing all you accomplish in the future!
Over the next few days, we will be highlighting the Psychology Department graduating seniors! This post will highlight 5 seniors: Emily Jones, Lauren Furlow, Kinsey Overfelt, Hayley Mulford, and Dionne-Louise Liberia!
After graduation, I plan on working with children for a few years before I go to pursue a career in guidance counseling.
One of my favorite memories from being in the Psychology Department was watching Dr. Buchholz cover Dr. Osterman’s office with googly eyes for April Fools. I definitely had nothing to do with the prank.
After graduation, I am starting a PsyD program at Marshall University in August 2020.
After graduation, I will be continuing my education at Virginia Tech by pursuing a Master’s Degree in Counselor Education.
My favorite memory from being the Psychology Department was getting the chance to attend the SPSP Conference in New Orleans 2020!
After graduating I will be attending Florida State University to get my Master’s in Applied Behavior Analysis! This will allow me to become a Board Certified Behavior Analyst!
After graduation, I plan on finding a full-time job as a Graphic Designer, dealing with digital marketing.
Congratulations to you all on the success you have achieved while at Roanoke College and we look forward to seeing all that you do in the future!
At the end of each year, the Roanoke College Psychology Department decorates a bulletin board and holds a reception to celebrate the accomplishments of the graduating senior class. Unfortunately due to the current circumstances, these events are unable to take place this year. Nonetheless, the graduating seniors of 2020 deserve to be recognized! For that reason, over the course of the next few days, we will be sharing the senior class and their plans after graduating from Roanoke College.
To the seniors, congratulations on all you have accomplished at Roanoke College. The Psychology department is so proud of each of you and we will continue to cheer you on from the fifth floor of Life Science no matter where you end up!
Congratulations to Sophie Bacon ’20 for the successful defense of her Honors in the Major Project! Her Project was titled “Peer Group Motives and Authenticity: Associations with Self-Presentational Strategies on Social Media “. Her project advisor, Dr. Danielle Findley-Van Nostrand was joined by committee members, Dr. Lindsey Osterman and Dr. Kristen Schorpp, to oversee her defense.
This research was the culmination of over a year of work, and the next steps are to work towards presenting the findings at a conference and submitting for publication in a peer-reviewed journal.
Project Abstract: Research has shown that social networking platforms provide a space for identity development, specifically through engaging in different types of self-presentation. However, research on the relationship between social networking sites (SNS) and identity development is limited and has not been tied directly to peer relationship mechanisms. In this study, I aimed to integrate recent research on self-processes on social media and recent theoretical advances in the role of social media in peer relationships during emerging adulthood. This study looked at social motives including the need for popularity, and the need for belonging, authenticity, and presentation of the real, ideal, and false self. Correlational analyses indicated that authenticity was positively related to real self-presentation and negatively to false self-presentation. The need for popularity was negatively related to real self-presentation and positively to false self-presentation, whereas the need for belonging was unrelated to real-self presentation but was positively associated with false and ideal self-presentation. Regression analyses controlling for each predictor indicated that authenticity was a positive predictor of real self-presentation and a negative predictor of false self-presentation. The need for popularity negatively predicted real self-presentation and positively predicted false self-presentation. The need for belonging and ideal self-presentation were positively associated.
Congratulations again to Sophie Bacon on a successful defense and we look forward to seeing all you accomplish in the future!
Congratulations to Riker Lawrence ’20 for the successful defense of her Honors in the Major Project! Her Project was titled “Couples’ Leisure Activity and Expectations for Parenthood”. Her supervisor, Dr. Darcey N. Powell was joined by committee members, Dr. Osterman and Dr. Sweet, to oversee her defense.
Abstract: This study aimed to explore how cohabitating individuals’ engagement in leisure activity with their partner is associated with their expectations for parenthood. Specifically, the study examined how individuals’ engagement in and their satisfaction with leisure activities with their partner is associated with their expectations for parenting; specifically, their co-parenting relationship, gatekeeping behaviors, and division of caregiving labor. Using Prolific Academic, participants (N=247) completed an online survey. Correlations were found between participants’ engagement and satisfaction of these leisure activities and their expectations for co-parenting relationship, gatekeeping behaviors, and division of caregiving labor, regardless of their intention to parent and other demographic characteristics. Furthermore, satisfaction of leisure activities was more consistently associated with the parenting expectations than the frequency of engagement in leisure activities. These findings can serve as useful information for marital and family therapists as they work with couples considering adding a baby to their family unit or during the transition to parenthood.
Riker Lawrence received funding for this project through the Roanoke College Research Fellows program and through a portion of Dr. Powell’s Faculty Scholar funds.
Congratulations again to Riker Lawrence on a successful defense and we look forward to seeing all you accomplish in the future!
Congratulations to Rachel Harmon ’20 for the successful defense of her Honors in the Major and Honors Distinction Project! Her Project was titled “Cross-Cultural Comparison of Caregiver Concerns and Resources for Children with Disabilities”. Her supervisor, Dr. Darcey N. Powell was joined by committee members, Dr. Osterman, Dr. Chad Morris, and Jesse Griffin, to oversee her defense.
Abstract: The purpose of the current study was to address a gap in the literature through investigating the differences in experiences of caring for a child with a disability between a developed country, the United States, and a developing country, Mexico. Participants included caregivers of children with disabilities in the US (N = 25) and Mexico (N = 45). Self-report data were collected to measure caregivers’ demographic information, knowledge of resources, positive and negative emotional response, and stress level. Additional observational data was collected regarding the physical resources, educational resources, therapy services, government policies, caregiver reactions, child behavior, and transportation services in each location. Analyses revealed that caregivers in the US reported significantly higher levels of stress compared to caregivers in Mexico. No significant differences were found in caregivers’ knowledge of government policies; however, Mexico caregivers were significantly more satisfied with the policies that they were aware of compared to US caregivers. US caregivers were more aware of support groups/organizations for themselves or their child and were more likely to participate in known support groups. There was no difference in reports of access to educational opportunities; however, US caregivers reported significantly more inclusion opportunities compared to Mexico caregivers. No significant differences were found in caregivers’ belief that their child would one day be employed. There were significant differences in the number of observations made regarding educational resources, therapy services, government policies, and transportation services between the US and Mexico. The findings of the current study provide important information about the effect of culture on the experiences of caring for a child with a disability, which could be useful for professionals who work directly with families and for the development of future resources.
Highlights of the project: Collected research in both southwest VA and the Yucatan of Mexico. To facilitate her data collection, she completed an internship in southwest VA, as well as two internships in Mexico during the summer between her Jr and Sr years.
Rachel Harmon received funding for this project through Roanoke College Honors Program Downing Distinction Project Award and Psi Chi’s Mamie Phipps Clark Diversity Research Grant. To learn more about this award and on how Rachel collected data while in the Yucatan of Mexico refer back to this blog post, in which she was interviewed last fall!
Congratulations again to Rachel Harmon on a successful defense and we look forward to seeing all you accomplish in the future!
These last few weeks have no doubt been challenging for everyone in some way, shape, or form. With finals starting tomorrow and being away from Roanoke College, we wanted to share some well wishes and updates from some of the Psychology Department professors!
We are living through strange and trying times; however, I am heartened by the way we, the students, faculty, and staff of Roanoke College, have risen to the occasion. I am encouraged by the leadership of President Maxey, Dean Smith, and many other staff during these difficult times. I am thankful for our departmental secretary, Ellen, who continues to be the glue that holds our department together. I am proud of the faculty in our department for handling this moment with grace and compassion. Likewise, I am proud of our students for how they have reacted to these challenges. From the many kind words expressed in emails, to the understanding we receive when we can’t figure out zoom or have had some other problem adjusting to teaching online; I am thankful for the kindness and patience of our students. The way our community has come together, even if apart, reminds me of why I love Roanoke College.
For those of you who are struggling during this moment, I wish you and your families the best, and I want you to know that we are all here for you. For those of you who are graduating, congratulations and I hope to see you at the rescheduled graduation; and for the rest of you, I look forward to seeing you in the fall. Be well, stay safe, and take care of yourselves.
I miss my students! My stats jokes are wasted on my family. I don’t even get an eye roll from a good t-test pun.
I’m extremely, extremely jealous of the people who don’t have anything to do during this quarantine. My wife and I are both trying to work full time while also taking care of two children under three (i.e., requiring constant supervision). So if I’ve learned anything new, it’s just how effective an active bird feeder can be as a babysitter. (Seriously though, getting to spend a lot of time with my kids is really nice. It’s just stressful trying to do so much at once.)
I miss my students! I am super proud of everyone in my classes and in my lab, who have all worked super hard to make the most of this situation. It’s been an experience, but it’s been one we are all figuring out together.
I’ve especially appreciated the love during student meetings when my son or dog pop in for a hello! They have filled my days while my husband and I juggle our work. In fact, my favorite (non-work) thing has been going on backyard adventures and spending time on creative ways to stay entertained and engaged, like building obstacle courses.
I can’t wait to get back to in-person teaching, I miss my people! And, congratulations to the seniors!
I have been encouraged in speaking with students in my courses to hear about the diligent work you are all putting in amidst this almost overwhelming uncertainty we face on a daily basis. I applaud all of you for continuing to do your best and finding ways to make this unexpected challenge a time of growth. In addition- I also want to encourage you all to keep in mind that now is the time to practice that self-care we all talk about, yet rarely put into practice if we’re honest…We will have bad days in the coming weeks and we will have good days. Take them in stride, do your best (the definition of which might change daily…), and find whatever ways you can to keep your spirits and hopes up.
I’ve been reading a lot- which is a welcome change; watching a lot of TV (I’m rewatching Community on Netflix right now); and finding time for both quiet space alone and not so quiet time with my family. I also built a pull-up bar on the rafters in my basement with steel pipe so once this thing is all over- I may be able to do a few of those!
I was able to gather with some alumni from my lab on Zoom on Friday, 4/17, with graduates from 2011 to 2019. All but one of them are in graduate school now, the other one has a PhD and is currently in a post-doc position. The alumni present (in order of graduation) are: Madison Elliott & Paige Arrington (2011), Nikki Hurless, Lauren Kennedy-Metz, & Victoria Godwin (2014), Stephanie Shields & Lauren Ratcliffe (2017), Alex Grant (2018), Noelle Warfford (2019).
There’s a quote from Freud that has occurred to me a few times since all of this started: “One day, in retrospect, the years of struggle will strike you as the most beautiful.” I’m not sure if that’s exactly an encouraging or optimistic sentiment, exactly, but if Freud is right, it does suggest that our future selves will be overly sentimental and a little callous toward this very difficult situation we’re all going through right now, which makes them a common enemy against whom we can all fight. That’s something.
For myself, I walked 101 km in a week and learned that I have no desire to ever walk 101 km in a week ever again. Dr. B and I built a deck, with some help from Dr. B’s son James and our cats. I also took a quiz about which characters from various TV shows I am (it’s actually a very cool quiz by a psychometrician) and learned that I am Tyrion Lannister… I think because I drink and I know things?
April 19 to April 25 is APA and GSA’s careers in aging week! Psychology of aging focuses on applying knowledge and methods of psychology to understanding and helping older adults and their families to achieve well-being in later life. If you are interested in working with older adults and want to learn more then follow this link! Likewise, if this is a topic that interests you then check out Adult Development and Aging (PSYC-323), a course that is being offered this fall and likely will not be offered again until Fall 2022.
Furthermore, if you are interested overall in human development then check out the human development concentration that is offered at Roanoke College! The human development concentration exposes students to the broader life-span perspective and allows students to focus on the stages (e.g., childhood, adolescence, adulthood) and the topics most applicable to their personal or professional goals.
For more information on the human development concentration, reach out to Dr. Powell or Dr. FVN!
During this past week, students were presented with awards from the psychology department! While students are typically presented these awards at the annual academic award ceremony, due to the recent events, the ceremony was unable to be held this year. However, the psychology department went on to recognize the following students and their accomplishments.
“Congratulations to all of the students who won awards in the Psychology Department this year! These are all great honors and well-deserved. We are all proud of your accomplishments and all that you do to make our department great. ” – Dr. Buchholz
This year, the Psychology Department distributed awards to fifteen students:
Lauren Furlow – Senior Scholar – Psychology
Rachel L. Harmon – Karl W. Beck Memorial Prize
Sophia R. Bacon – Curt R. Camac Student Research Award
Riker F. Lawrence – Curt R. Camac Student Research Award
Brittney A. Rowe – The Charles E. Early Award
Morgan J. Hamilton – Outstanding Junior Psychology Major
Kira N. Hunt – Outstanding Junior Psychology Major
Abbie L. Joseph – Outstanding Junior Psychology Major
Grace E. Page – Outstanding Junior Psychology Major
Vanessa L. Pearson – Outstanding Junior Psychology Major
Kaillee M. Philleo – Outstanding Junior Psychology Major
Carly M. Schepacarter – Outstanding Junior Psychology Major
Mason L. Wheeler – Outstanding Junior Psychology Major
Rachel L. Harmon – The Jan H. Lynch Human Development Concentration Award
Sophia R. Bacon – The Jan H. Lynch Human Development Concentration Award
Emily B. Townley – The Jan H. Lynch Human Development Concentration Award
Casey J. Gough – Psi Chi Achievement Award
To learn more about the awards and honors or their descriptions follow this link!
On behalf of the Psychology Department, congratulations again to all of our students. You have all worked hard, accomplished wonderful things and we look forward to seeing what you will achieve in the future!
Alumna Claire Kirchoff ’17 recently received notification that she will be serving as a Fulbright ETA in Nepal next year! While at Roanoke College Kirchoff studied psychology and spent time working with Dr. Powell in her research lab. In this post, Kirchoff discusses with a student assistant what she has been up to since graduating from Roanoke College, how she learned about the Fulbright program and advice she has for students considering applying to Fulbright or any other research/internship opportunity.
Can you please tell me a little about yourself?
I am from Nashville, TN and moved back here after college and graduate school in Virginia. I have a dog named Kona who just turned 1 at the beginning of March, and he is being trained as a therapy dog. Currently, I am finishing up the coursework and supervision hours (well, not anymore #covid) for my School Counseling licensure, at the end of which I plan to pursue elementary school counseling positions (following the Fulbright, of course.) I have never held a job that did not involve children or youth in some capacity, and I have always been drawn to education and mental health, though I took a roundabout way to get to where I am now.
What have you been doing since graduating from Roanoke College?
In reference to my last comment above, I told my advisor (Dr. Powell) that I had zero intentions of going into school counseling and that it was the last thing I wanted. Things change, clearly, and 4 years after putting my foot down, here I am about to be a licensed school counselor. Because I thought I didn’t want to go into counseling, I chose a graduate program without a licensure track, which, in hindsight, was poor planning. Immediately after college (2017-18), I attended the University of Virginia for a Master’s in Education, Educational Psychology – Applied Developmental Science (it’s a mouthful, I know.) While I was there, I took just about every opportunity I came across. I worked in a research lab studying the implementation of social-emotional curriculum interwoven with standard science curriculum, I wrote and implemented curriculum for a multi-week summer environmental science and service-learning program for high school students on a Native American Reservation in South Dakota, helped create a mental health team at a summer camp for youth with chronic health conditions (this has a nod to my undergraduate research study, “Emerging Adults’ Perceptions of Peers with Chronic Health Conditions”), I tutored ESL students at a local middle school, and I took as many courses as would fit into my schedule.
(2018-19) After graduate school (literally a week after), I started a year as an AmeriCorps service member in Nashville at a nonprofit serving a very low-income community. Moving back to Nashville was a tough choice because I loved my time in Virginia so much, but it’s home and I’m happy to be back. During my AmeriCorps term, I worked in the K-8 education department at the nonprofit, and I was placed at a middle school in the community (it was actually a charter school drawing students from all over Nashville, so it was very diverse and had a wide spectrum of academic and social-emotional needs). The K-8 education program implements after-school enrichment programs at several schools in the community, and I was basically in charge of the implementation of my school’s after-school programming. I collected and analyzed testing and progress report data, designed reading and math enrichment curriculum for differentiated levels of need, and organized outside community partners for enrichment activities (other nonprofit partners like artists, musicians, science shows/experiments, and volunteers like Vanderbilt football and soccer players, student groups, and others.)
This year (2019-20), I have been working to complete my supervision hours in school counseling at two local schools with similar levels of socioeconomic challenges, but both are very rural schools, which I was not super used to. I started at an elementary school and had the time of my life. This semester, I was at a middle school in the same community as the elementary school, and having a great experience, then my internship was cut short in early March, just like everyone else in the country/world. Since the schools closed, I went back to working at my part-time job as a preschool teacher at a private pre-k center. We actively try to keep our daily routines as normal as possible for the sake of the kids, but each day they become a little more aware of the issues, and I often hear the older kids saying things like “the sickness” or attempting to say the word coronavirus. It’s a daily battle to keep surfaces clean and kids happy, but we make do and push through.
How did you learn about Fulbright and this opportunity?
I knew about Fulbright in college when I had friends applying (my graduation year there were 6 Fulbright winners and I was friends with 4 of them). What I didn’t know then was that I, too, could apply if I wanted to. These types of opportunities weren’t really advertised to me when I was in college. I wasn’t super eligible to apply right out of college like my friends were, but my experiences and education since college has made me a better candidate for the grant.
Why did you choose Nepal?
There are a few reasons why I chose Nepal. First, I am one of the biggest culture nerds you’d ever meet. I attempt learning new languages for fun when I’m bored, I read books about other countries, cultures, and religions, and actively seek out cultural experiences in my life. When I was thinking about the Fulbright and Jenny Rosti was hounding me to pick a country, Nepal just kept creeping up on me. It stuck with me and I felt the draw to apply.
Secondly, when I was in graduate school, I tutored ESL students at a middle school in Charlottesville. Many of these students were from far-flung areas of the globe, mostly the Middle East and, surprising to me, Nepal. I had never met anyone from Nepal, nor had I thought too much about the country in my life, other than knowing about Mts. Everest and Annapurna. It was really these kids and their stories and culture that led me towards choosing Nepal as my Fulbright application. Side note: I actually wrote a paper about those kids for one of my grad courses, I interviewed them about their experiences immigrating to the US and acclimating to US culture and schooling. It was very interesting and helped me better understand how immigrant students view American schooling and what I, as a school counselor, can do to help them.
Thirdly, and this is the last big reason, is that I want to (someday, hopefully, in the next 5 years or so) go back to school for a Ph.D. in Educational Psychology with a focus/concentration in anthropology (some schools have dedicated Educational Anthropology programs, but the others have Ed Psych with cross-curricular study in which anthropology is encouraged as an option). As a course of study in my future Ph.D., I want to study how education (non-traditional and traditional ways of viewing education) blossoms even in the least Westernized corners of the world, and how folklore and storytelling are integrated into childrearing as a form of education for those without access to Westernized education. Because of this interest in education’s evolutionary roots, I figured Nepal would be a good place to start.
Can you give any advice for those interested in applying for the Fulbright, or for research/internship experiences in general?
This is a Dr. Powell-ism that has stuck with me since I was a wee duckling in her lab: trust the process. If you put your all into it and you really want it, it will happen for you, even if it doesn’t happen the way you planned. Dive in, give it your 100%, and trust that everything will shake out the way you need it to (but it might not be the way you want it to.)
Take-aways: Trust the process. Be kind to yourself. You’re capable of more than you think.
Dr. Powell was also asked to speak on this accomplishment and stated:
“I’m extremely proud of Claire – what she accomplished as a student at Roanoke and all that she has achieved since! I’m confident that her training and applied experiences have prepared her to succeed as an ETA in Nepal. I’m looking forward to seeing her posts and hearing details about her adventures as a Fulbright when she returns to the states. “
Thank you, Claire, for taking the time to answer our questions and congratulations again on receiving Fulbright! We look forward to hearing about how it goes in the future and will continue to cheer you on!
With spring break being only one week away the thought of summer may still seem distant in some mind’s, but it is quickly approaching. Summer break is a great time to explore opportunities in psychology and get experiences that go beyond the classroom. With the multitude number of research or internship opportunities available to students it can sometimes be challenging to figure out where to begin. Likewise, with summer comes graduation and the rush to find jobs begins. However,this websitehas got your back!
Whether it be a summer opportunity or a long-term job, this website is regularly updated with information on psychology opportunities. Not only does this website offer a numerous amount of resources but it is also easy to navigate. By providing filtering options such as the type of position you are looking for and what state you are looking to be in, there are options that would align with each student’s needs and interests. Moreover, this website also filters the positions on areas of psychology and includes opportunities in clinical, cognitive, cultural, developmental, educational, health, neuroscience, positive, and social psychology.
While you may not know quite yet what you want to do this summer or after graduation, this website is a great place to start searching and a great starting point to familiarize oneself with the endless opportunities that those studying psychology have! This website is updated frequently so if you don’t find a position that suits your needs or interests now, check back later!
Are you interested in getting a real world experience in Psychology? Then come to the Psychology Internship Information Session! The info session will be this Thursday, February 20, from 11:45 AM – 1:00 PM in Life Science 502.
This info session will provide you with all of the information you need about internships in psychology. Not only will deadlines, requirements, and opportunities be shared, but there will also be information shared on how to present yourself with resumes and cover letters.
If you are looking to get an experience in psychology outside of Roanoke College, complete an internship credit, or learn more about the benefits of internships then stop by this info session.
If you are interested in attending RSVP by 12 PM Wednesday, February 19, by contacting (540) 375-2462, or firstname.lastname@example.org
See Toni McLawhorn (Career Services), or Dr. Mary Camac or Dr. Danielle Findley-Van Nostrand for more information.
The Gender Race and Cultural Empowerment (G.R.A.C.E.) lab is hosting a 6-week summer program offering students the opportunity for one-on-one mentorship and research experience. The G.R.A.C.E. Lab’s emphasis is on social psychology with a focus on the experiences of Black women in STEM education.
Recruiting study participants
Data collection and analyses
Attending weekly lab meetings
Qualifications for this position:
Strong academic performance in psychology,
with a GPA requirement of 3.25 (overall and
Dependability and takes initiative
Excellent interpersonal and communication skills
Rising juniors and seniors preferred
This program will run from June 8 – July 17, 2020, and will be hosted at Spelman College. You are expected to be committed for all 6 weeks. While attending this program, a stipend, housing for 6 weeks, and a campus meal plan will be included.
They will begin selecting applicants into the program on a rolling basis until February 14, 2020.
If you are interested in applying to this program follow this link and email your cover letter, curriculum vitae, and your most
recent unofficial academic transcript to Dr. Maria Jones, Postdoctoral Research Associate, at email@example.com!
The Center for Children and Families at Florida International University announces Summer Treatment Program Counselor, Research Assistant, and Teacher/Classroom Aide positions for 2020. The Summer Treatment Program (STP) provides services to children with Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), Conduct Disorder, Oppositional-Defiant Disorder, learning problems, and related behavior problems. The program provides treatment tailored to children’s individual behavioral and learning difficulties. The Center for Children and Families is directed by William E. Pelham, Jr., Ph.D., who is a Distinguished Professor of Psychology and Psychiatry at Florida International University.
By participating in the STP, students will:
· Learn evidence-based techniques for working with children who have disruptive behavior disorders
· Gain valuable clinical and research experience to prepare for career and graduate school
· Help children to improve their social skills, sports skills, and academic skills
· Network with faculty members at the Center for Children and Families, as well as students from across the country.
Positions are available in three related programs serving children between the ages of 3-12. In each program, children and counselors are assigned to groups of four or five counselors and 10 to 15 children of similar age. Children participate in a variety of classroom-based and recreational activities. Staff members implement an extensive behavior modification treatment program during all program activities. The behavior modification program includes feedback and associated consequences for positive and negative behaviors, daily and weekly rewards for appropriate behavior, social praise and attention, appropriate commands, and age-appropriate removal from positive reinforcement. Staff members will also be responsible for recording, tracking, and entering daily records of children’s behavior and response to the treatment. Staff members will work under the supervision of experienced faculty and staff members and will receive regular feedback about their performance.
Experience in the STP may be helpful to prepare students for further study or employment in the fields of education, mental health, physical education, pediatrics, psychiatry, recreational therapy, behavior analysis, social work, counseling, and related areas. Staff members have uniformly reported the experience to be the most demanding but also the most rewarding clinical experience of their careers.
More than 100 positions are available across the three programs. Positions are available forundergraduate students, postbaccalaureate students, and graduate students. Detailed descriptions of each program, position descriptions, and application instructions are available at this link!
At the end of last semester on Thursday, December 5, students, faculty, and staff gathered in Fintel library to look at all of the amazing work the psychology department students have completed over the semester and summer. Various research posters and internship opportunities were shared and of course, the pizza was a hit among all session attendees! Check out the gallery of photos from the event below and congratulations to everyone who shared their research or internship on having a successful presentation and semester.
On November 20-23, Dr. Powell took two students to the National Council on Family Relations (NCFR) Conference in Fort Worth, Texas to present research through poster sessions and to attend presentations. These students included Rachel Harmon ’20 and Morgan Hamilton ’21.
Morgan Hamilton Worked alongside Dr. Powell and presented their poster titled “The Association Between Implicit Theories of Relationships and Emerging Adults’ Expectations for Romantic Relationships,” which was based on a subset of results from Taylor Kracht’s ’18 honors in the major study.
The students have since given some insight onto what it was like presenting at the conference as well as their reactions to the conference and Fort Worth, TX:
I attended the annual NCFR conference with Dr. Powell and my fellow lab-mate, Morgan. Although I did not present at the conference I enjoyed attending the poster sessions and symposiums that were relevant to my current and future research interests, as well as supporting Morgan and Dr. Powell during their presentation. I specifically enjoyed attending presentations on the topics of disability and immigrant youth and families. Attending this conference was beneficial for me as I am currently applying to graduate programs in Human Development and Family Studies and Clinical Psychology. While I was at the conference I was able to interact and network with professors in Human Development and Family Studies programs as well as to receive feedback on my own research. Attending NCFR also prepared me to present my own research at a conference next semester. I am very thankful that Dr. Powell and Roanoke College encourage their undergraduate students to attend conferences to gain valuable experience in their areas of interest. Overall, I really enjoyed exploring Fort Worth with Dr. Powell and Morgan. The things I enjoyed most about the city were the food and the nice weather!
The opportunity to present at NCFR was incredible. Leading up to the poster session, I was very nervous because I had never presented to a group of scholars. After the session began and I had spoken to a few people who gave high praise to our research, my nerves significantly calmed. It was so cool to hear people’s thoughts about how our research applied to their own work. Although presenting was a great experience, my favorite part of the conference was listening to other scholars talk about research they conducted on topics I want to pursue and am truly passionate about. I was able to sit in a room with thirty people who all cared about adolescent mental health and was also able to meet a few professors at graduate programs too. It was fascinating to see how Psychology is growing & gave me great ideas about potential future research I would like. Finally, Fort Worth was such an amazing city! Rachel, Dr. Powell and I spent a lot of time walking around the shops in the city and finding great food along the way. Overall, the experience was something I am super grateful to have been warranted and I’m sure it will stand out as a highlight of my academic career at Roanoke College.
Congratulations to all those who attended the conference and for having a successful presentation!
With the start of finals week being just 2 weeks away, it is time to start studying and preparing for any final projects or assignments due. Students stress levels spike during this time of year and while the idea of having a week full of deadlines and exams can seem terrifying, if you start attacking the projects and studying now, finals week can become much less stressful.
This post is to help relieve some of the stress that comes with finals! Below is an action plan on how to attack projects and start studying early, as well as how to stay on top of deadlines before they come.
Step 1: Start early!
While this may be easier said than done, especially with Thanksgiving being this Thursday, starting on projects and studying early will help to relieve most tension and stress that is felt during finals week. Here is a simple way to get started early:
1. Start off my marking down the due dates of any final projects/assignments and dates of final exams. By putting the dates into a calendar you will be able to better visualize what needs to be completed and by when.
2. Write down each day leading up the final project/assignment/exam. Next to each day write down something to accomplish. Typically putting a little bit of time into each objective/goal daily is better than spending one whole day on one item. For example, if you have a final exam that includes a study guide attack 1 portion of the study guide (such as 1 chapter) daily, or every few days depending on how much is on the exam. Likewise, if you have a final paper try to work on a paragraph or portion each day or every few days depending on how much time you have.
This may seem like a lot at first but dividing each assignment or exam studying across multiple days will be much more efficient than waiting till the day before to write a whole paper or study for an entire exam.
Step 2: Prioritize!
Make the choice on what assignments/projects/exams are most important to you and put more of a focus on those. If there is a class you are struggling in or a class that has deadlines coming up sooner than others, you would want to put in more time preparing for the items due in that class.
Step 3: Talk to the Professor or classmates!
When you start studying and preparing early it gives you optimal time to ask for clarification from the Professor or from classmates. This will help to relieve any anxiety with topics or assignments that may stump you during your studying/prepping for the end of the semester.
Step 4: Relax, Breathe, and take time for yourself
Make sure that during all of your prepping for finals week you take time for yourself. Whether it be meditating, exercising, shopping, or petting the campus cat or visiting dogs, make sure to take some much needed breaks and step away from the assignments, projects and studying. Not only will this allow you to clear your mind and come back with more ideas and a fresh head space, it is also extremely beneficial in increasing your moral and reducing the stress and anxiety that comes with finals.
This action plan may not work for everyone and is in no way exhaustive in terms of preparing for finals week. However, if you start early you will find that finals week is not as bad at it seems and you will be able to get through each exam, project, or assignment with much less stress than if you wait till the day or few days before.
While finals are fast approaching, there is more than enough time to get started and get ahead, and know that you can do it!
Good luck with your finals preparation and have a wonderful Thanksgiving break!
In an interview with a student assistant, recent graduate Noelle Warfford ’19 describes life after graduation, recalls on her favorite memories from Roanoke College, and shares about being Salutatorian for the class of 2019.
To start off, can you tell me a little about yourself?
I’m Noelle, currently a graduate student at The University of Toledo studying Clinical Psychology. I would say I am a pretty friendly, hard-working person. I live with my cat Joshua, who is adorable, and I love to sing and watch movies whenever I get free time. Just not at the same time, to be clear. 😜
Congratulations on being a Salutatorian! What was it like when you found this out?
When I found out I was Salutatorian, I was so excited that I just wanted to tell everybody I knew. I found out while I was with Dr. Nichols, who was my advisor, which made it even more exciting!
What was graduating like?
I remember graduation as being simultaneously incredibly fun and pretty stressful. There were so many events to go to that week and people to hang out with and talk to. The evening at President Maxey and Mrs. Maxey’s house was awesome, but nothing beats the feeling of hearing your name and walking across that stage!
How did it feel to finally step on the seal?
Stepping on the seal felt like one of my biggest accomplishments at Roanoke. We all spend four years avoiding it because we’re all at least a teeny bit superstitious. So when you finally get to do it, it’s such a relief! You really know you made it.
What do you miss about Roanoke College? What is your favorite thing about having graduated?
I miss so many things about Roanoke…but Commons honestly might be the thing I miss most. Especially all the kind staff, and the delicious desserts. I miss Olin Hall and of course the 5th floor of Life Science too, because I spent so much of my time in those places, usually with my closest friends. The best thing about graduating, though, is not having to worry about parking on campus anymore! And I mean, having a degree is great too. 🙂
What are you doing now after graduating?
Since I graduated I moved up to Ohio to go to UToledo. The PhD program I’m in is 5 years long, including one year of internship. As a first year student, I have a few different jobs as a graduate assistant, I have classes on psychological assessment, clinical practice, psychotherapy, and research methods. I’m also already starting research and get to sit in on a clinical practicum where advanced students discuss the clients they’re treating at the University Psychology Clinic.
What does a typical day consist of in Graduate school?
For me, a typical day in graduate school can range from a day where I only have meetings to attend throughout the day but no classes, to a full day where I have an hour-long lab at 8:15 (which I always grab a coffee on the way to campus for), a 2hr 40min class at 10:30, a brief time to grab lunch, and then another long class at 2pm. Since my classes only meet once a week, I usually have a lot of time to work on readings and assignments during the day and then have time to chill in the evening.
What has been your favorite part of graduate school so far? How about least favorite?
My favorite part of graduate school is getting to study topics I’m interested in in a lot of depth. For example, I’ve already gotten to practice administering two major cognitive tests, the WAIS-IV and the WIAT-III, on a volunteer. I’m always surrounded by students and faculty who are very passionate about what they do, so it’s an encouraging environment to be in. My least favorite part is the sheer amount of reading I have to do. I’m so thankful I got practice reading empirical articles while I was at Roanoke, because I feel like that’s all I do now!
Where do you hope this opportunity takes you in the future?
My hope is that during my time in this program, I’ll be able to make contributions to research on psychosis assessment, especially assessing thought disorder, and that I’ll be able to gain significant experience working with populations with psychotic disorders. From there, I hope I can find a job where I get to do assessments all the time and help train others to become experts in assessment as well.
Is there anything else you would like to tell us?
Hmm…I guess the only other thing I’d like to share is, look out for a chapter on psychosis that I’ll be co-authoring with my advisor in the 2nd edition of The Oxford Handbook of Personality and Psychopathology Assessment. I am psyched about getting to work with her on this project! We’re starting a lot of exciting work on assessing early symptoms of psychosis, and I’m focusing in on signs of thought disorder, like you often see in schizophrenia.
Congratulations on all of your accomplishments Noelle! We will be continuing to cheer you on from Roanoke College!
On Tuesday, November 19 from 12:00-1:00 PM Mainstream Mental Health Services will be in LS 502. They will be discussing internships (which can start this coming spring or summer) and job opportunities that their organization offers, as well as careers in mental health in general.
According to their website, Mainstream Mental Health Services, INC. believes in providing goal directed training to individuals in need to achieve and maintain independence in the most appropriate and least restrictive environment. It is our mission to enable eligible older adolescents and adults to acquire life skills and develop stronger family and community relationships that will enhance their quality of life in the mainstream community.
If mental health interests you then stop by on Tuesday and check out the opportunities that Mainstream Mental Health Services has to offer!
On November 6 the psychology department welcomed newly declared majors at the New Majors Orientation event! The students that attended the event learned more about what the psychology department has to offer and officially “signed into” the department by signing the psychology major poster!
If you are a newly declared major and missed this session no worries! Another session will be held on Monday, November 25 at 4:30 PM in Life Science 502. If you will be attending then be sure to sign up on SONA .
You can email Dr. Powell (DPowell@Roanoke.edu) with any further questions!
Congrats to all who signed into the department already! We are so happy to have you as part of the psychology department!
Next Monday, November 18 at 2:00 PM St. Joseph’s University is hosting a virtual open house! This open house is a wonderful opportunity to learn more about their MS in experimental psychology program. This is a full-time program designed to provide students with a solid grounding in the scientific study of psychology. All students in their program are assigned to a mentor and conduct an empirically based research thesis under their direction.
Information on how to attend the open house can be found at this link!
For more information of their program check out this link as well as the brochure below!
Roanoke College offers an amazing opportunity to do research with the Salem VA Medical Center. If you are looking to do research and think this could be something for you then continue reading to learn more about the program!
The Salem VA Medical Center offers the chance for Roanoke College undergraduates to gain experience working in research with a seasoned Principal Investigator (PI) on current medical research. Available research projects have included topics such as “Predictors of Treatment Response Among Veterans with PTSD”, “Mental Health in Rural Veterans with and without Traumatic Brain Injury”, and “Effect of Exercise Training on Inflammation and Function in HIV Infected Veterans”.
Students participate in research, analyze data, and present their work. Internship or Independent Study course credit is available through various departments at Roanoke College based on the particular project and student major.
Students interested should meet with the Director of Undergraduate Research, Dr. Chris Lassiter, in the fall semester or early in spring semester to discuss the program. An overall GPA of 3.4 or higher is preferred. An overall GPA of 3.0 or higher will be considered. To apply, submit a cover letter (with research interests), a CV, unofficial transcript, and two letters of recommendation to the Director of Undergraduate Research by February 28 for research in the summer or the next academic year (fall and spring semester).
For more information and other documents about this program you can follow this link.
Then this is the study for you! Even if you have no experience acting, everyone is welcome to participant so long as you are comfortable being recorded while acting out different scenes.
Dr. Dane Hilton is conducting a study in which you will be acting out different scenes and then evaluating your performance. These videos will be used in future research studies. but don’t stress if you have no experience acting, you can still come and participate!
Participants will be getting a $15 gift card for participating. This study is not being run through SONA, so if you are interested in signing up or have further questions then email Dr. Dane Hilton at firstname.lastname@example.org.
In an interview with a student assistant, recent graduate Cody Dillon-Owens ’19 describes life after graduation, recalls on his favorite memories from Roanoke College, and shares about being Valedictorian for the class of 2019.
To start off, can you tell me a little about yourself?
Well, I am of course a graduate of Roanoke College and this past August I started the first year of my PhD at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte for Health Psychology with a Clinical Concentration. I was born and raised in Roanoke, VA so this is my first time permanently leaving the area. I have a love for mountains and the outdoors and enjoy playing bass and guitar in my spare time.
Congratulations on being a Valedictorian! What was it like when you found this out?
This was actually interesting; so, Ellen and a few professors, along with the registrar during my Senior check-out in the Fall, told and reminded me that I was in the running. I knew I had a 4.0, but I guess the question was: how many other people did, and could we all keep it up? When it was official, knowing I had achieved it was cool (I had certainly worked for it), but I think my main feelings centered around the privilege of addressing our graduating class. There are a lot of fiercely intelligent, insightful, caring, and hard-working people I had the honor of attending Roanoke with and, in some ways, I feel like the cards just lined up for me to keep that magic number. A lot of people had very transformative journeys through college, but just the lack of one A puts them out of the running. I wanted my speech to focus on the triumphs we achieved as people, not students.
What was graduating like?
For me, it was kind of weird to suddenly just be done. Four years of the same people, working towards the same goal, and now you’ve done it. I felt proud for doing it, happy I’d have a break from homework, but mostly curious about the future. I made a lot of great friendships, including with my professors. It was sad to have to leave and watch everyone start doing their own thing. But it was also a joyous occasion having my whole family there and seeing all the people who supported me to get me to this point.
How did it feel to finally step on the seal?
Don’t tell Maxey, but I had probably accidentally stepped on it long ago haha. It does remind me of some of the fun and quirky traditions we had at ‘Noke. I am glad I got to attend a college with some character and live out some of its traditions.
What do you miss about Roanoke College? What is your favorite thing about having graduated?
I definitely miss the people. Ellen and all the psych faculty are the bee’s knees. And having all my friends in the same place. All you can eat chicken tender and mac day is kind of noteworthy as well. My favorite thing about having graduated is that I’ve completed another milestone in life that’s gotten me closer to where I want to be. I get to take specialized courses in what I want to be doing and pursuing ideas that are uniquely mine. This is also the first time for me being totally on my own which I’ve enjoyed.
What are you doing now after graduating?
Currently, I am attending UNCC getting my PhD. Technically, the PhD is in health psychology which is a very interdisciplinary field. It looks at health as a unitary concept involving both brain and body, which are deeply interconnected. We apply psychological models, like the biopsychosocial model and the ecological model, to examine health (prevention, maintenance, outcomes) – it’s very broad. My concentration is in clinical psychology, although being APA accredited, I’m also technically getting the same required training as any accredited clinical degree. So, within that realm I’m also learning the components of assessment and treatment. I think the two fields complement one another very well.
What does a typical day consist of in Graduate school?
Haha, usually quite a bit depending on the day. Currently, I am in course overload, so I never run out of things to do. I have classes at 8am most days, and after class there will be a mixture of activities. I read many articles and chapters of textbooks for my classes basically every day. I may also have to work on writing 2-page application papers or contributing to a pre-class discussion board. I now have a couple of course papers I have somehow make time to start working on too. I also have two applied clinical courses, so I am conducting an interview or an intellectual assessment about once a week. I’m also a Research Assistant and Project Coordinator on a HRSA GPE grant so I have meetings and various tasks I carry out for that. And then I’ll be reading and generating research ideas for my own research projects as well. Of course, it’s some mixture of these each day, not all at once thankfully. It’s still quite busy though, so it’s essentially class and then work until the evening where I’ll leave myself about an hour and half or so for myself to do whatever. My cohort has also instituted tea-time on Thursdays where we’ll take a break from work, and every other week or so we’ll have a big outing like yoga at a brewery or bingo or hiking or something. It’s mostly work but not entirely ;).
What has been your favorite part of graduate school so far? How about least favorite?
The learning environment is so enriching. Getting to discuss concepts with students and professors of various backgrounds has really broadened my perspectives. I’ve learned so much in such a short time. It’s also really cool to start being trained with skills for the clinical profession. My least favorite part is 1000% the lack of time haha.
Where do you hope this opportunity takes you in the future?
That’s a good question. I’ve tried giving some more thought to it, but it may take me a few more classes and clinical experiences to know for sure. I’ve considered a professorship at a small college, or at least teaching some health psych courses. My main career path I’ve told people is working as a clinician in a healthcare center but doing a mix between practice, intervention research, and maybe program eval. Recently after working on this grant, it also popped in my mind to pursue a position as a director of integrated care and push and work for developing true integrated behavioral health care and a patient-centered approach.
Is there anything else you would like to tell us?
This app/site called Trello saved my life for that extra level of self-management I needed, especially when working with other people so check that out if you’re interested. My new email is email@example.com, if anyone has more questions or would like student-level advice about graduate school or what the transition is like or anything, feel free to contact me! And remember that self-care is important, and no goal is worth sacrificing your happiness and well-being.
Congratulations on all of your accomplishments Cody! We will be continuing to cheer you on from Roanoke College!
On October 10–12, Dr. Findley-Van Nostrand and Dr. Powell took three students to the Society for the Study of Emerging Adulthood (SSEA) Conference in Toronto, Canada to present research through poster sessions and presentations. These students included Casey Jo Gough ‘20, Sophie Bacon ‘20, and Abbey Packard ‘21.
Students presented research through two different poster presentations.Casey Jo Gough and Sophie Bacon both worked alongside Dr. Findley-Van Nostrand and presented their poster titled “Emerging Adults’ Social Goals for Peer Status: Associations with Aggressive Reactions to Provocation”.Abbey Packard worked alongside Dr. Powell and presented her poster titled “Teaching self-efficacy of emerging adults across a first-level education course with community-based learning”.
The students have since given some insight onto what it was like presenting at the conference as well as their reactions to Toronto:
Casey Jo Gough
The opportunity to not only partake in undergraduate research but to then fly out of the country to present at a professional conference was an unforgettable learning experience. This was my first experience leaving the country, and it was fun to explore the streets of Toronto and take in all the sights. Presenting at the conference gave me confidence in my research abilities as I prepare for grad school. I was able to speak to other researchers and received great advice about my career path as a future school psychologist. I think the best part of the conference experience was the opportunity to attend lectures and poster sessions of unpublished research. I was able to speak to other researchers about their studies and look at exciting unpublished data in my areas of interest. I can’t wait to see where my research will take me next!
Attending SSEA in Toronto was an incredible experience. Presenting our poster and findings was a really fulfilling experience and everyone who we talked to was so friendly and excited about our interest in research. Also, because I am still unsure of the direction that I want to go in when pursing graduated school, it was so helpful to talk to others who were recently in my shoes! I found walking and looking at all of the other posters to be really informative and eye-opening regarding the knowledge that we can learn about this newly defined stage of life. I felt very lucky that we were able to travel to such a cool place like Toronto, the city felt so walkable and had an abundance of hip-restaurants and soaring skyscrapers!
Canada was an amazing experience overall and as an undergraduate research student I gained lots of insight into graduate level research and felt confident being able to present my work to graduate and PhD students. The other presentations were extremely impressive and networking opportunities were all around which is always a bonus! Being able to go to Toronto was a wonderful experience thanks to the help of Dr. Powell! The city was beautiful and was an experience I’ll never forget.
Dr. Powell also presented one poster titled “Emerging Adults’ Bid Responses: A Pilot Study on Romantic Communication” as well as two papers, “How to break up: Individual differences in emerging adults’ normative beliefs about ghosting” and “Emerging adults’ perceptions of what it means to be “Talking””.
Congratulations to all those who attended the conference and for having successful presentations!
The Psychology Department would like to congratulate Rachel Harmon, Riker Lawrence, Emily Townley, and Brittney Rowe on their induction into Phi Beta Kappa. Continue reading to hear from the students themselves!
I am a Senior Psychology Major with a concentration in Human Development. When I received the news that I had been elected into membership of Phi Beta Kappa I was ecstatic and was reassured that all the hard work I have completed while at Roanoke College has paid off. Outside of classes I am the Head Psychology Student Assistant and I am also a Subject Tutor in the Center for Learning and Teaching on campus. I am also a member of Alpha Lambda Delta, Psi Chi, and am the Vice President of Omicron Delta Kappa. I also participate in research in the Psychology department and am a research assistant in Dr. Powell’s Developmental Self-knowledge Laboratory. My biggest accomplishment while at Roanoke College has been my independent study for my Honors Distinction Project titled, “Cross-Cultural Comparison of Caregiver Concerns and Resources for Children with Disabilities”. My original proposal was awarded the Perry and Jessica Downing Distinction Project Award by the director of the Honors Program, and this summer I was a recipient of a 2018-2019 Summer Mamie Phipps Clark Diversity Undergraduate Research Grant from Psi Chi. After graduation I plan to spend a year abroad before pursuing a PhD in Human Development and Family Studies or Clinical Psychology.
My name is Riker Lawrence and I am majoring in psychology as well as getting a concentration in human resource management. Hearing that I was accepted in Phi Beta Kappa was a big moment for me because I have been working towards that since my freshman year of college. It is an honor to be accepted and I couldn’t have done it without Dr. Powell and the rest of my lab mates in her lab. For the majority of my 3+ years at Roanoke College, I have been doing research in the psychology department. I experienced many accomplishments since starting in Dr. Powell’s lab. Although, I think my most proud one is being accepted into Phi Beta Kappa. I have shifted my focus on conducting my own study to present as my honors-in-the-major project that specifically focuses on prenatal leisure time and parent expectations. Conducting this study effectively will be my next goal to accomplish. After I graduate in spring 2020, I will be working with a recruiting team for a newer company back home in Northern Virginia.
I am a psychology major with a concentration in human development and an art history minor. I was really excited when I heard the news and immediately called my mom (who unfortunately did not pick up initially) so we could celebrate together! As for how I’ve spent my time at Roanoke, I am in the Honors Program and have been working on my Distinction Project this past summer and this semester. I’m also a manager and on-call tutor at Subject Tutoring, a campus photographer, and am the historian/in charge of public relations for Psi Chi! Being invited to Phi Beta Kappa is definitely one of my biggest accomplishments, up there with getting the Bittle Scholarship and studying abroad for a semester in Italy. I will be applying to graduate schools in the coming months and I’m hoping to be accepted into a Clinical Psychology PhD program.
Brittney Rowe is another psychology department student assistant who has also been inducted into Phi Beta Kappa and is currently studying abroad!
Congratulations again to everyone! We look forward to seeing what you accomplish in the future!
Congratulations to Dr. Osterman (Roanoke College) and recent graduate Theresa Hecmanczuk ‘19 on their recent publishing in the Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, titled “Parasocial forgiveness: The roles of parasocial closeness and offense perceptions.”
In this article Dr. Osterman and Theresa Hecmanczuk expand on research that investigates how predictors of interpersonal forgiveness, such as relationship closeness and offense severity, also predict forgiveness of a parasocial target. Using an interpersonal forgiveness measure to examine forgiveness of parasocial targets as a function of parasocial closeness and offense perceptions, they used two studies and found that pre-offense closeness was associated with greater forgiveness and current closeness, and that forgiveness significantly mediated the relationship between pre-offense and current closeness. They also found that perceptions of apology sincerity were associated with greater forgiveness and current parasocial closeness, and that a brief measure of parasocial closeness was comparable to the Parasocial Interaction Scale in its associations with forgiveness and related outcomes.
For more information on the article, follow this link and once again congratulations to Dr. Osterman and Theresa Hecmanczuk for their publishing!
With Fall Break being just 5 short days away, that means we are entering midterm week. While this week can be extremely stressful, there are many ways in which the college and organizations around campus are providing opportunities to reduce stress, as well as some ways you can reduce stress on your own. Continue reading to learn more about some of the opportunities and advice!
Outdoor Adventures is hosting a Wellness Week with the following events free to all students!
When: Monday October 7
Time: 6:30 to 8:30 PM
Where: Sutton Terrace
What: Happy Little Trees Twilight Painting – A relaxing and fun paint night that will help reduce stress regardless of your artistic abilities!
When: Wednesday October 9
Time: 12:00 to 1:00 PM
Where: Front Quad
What: Yoga on the Quad – Yoga is a great way to reduce stress, aid in muscle relaxation and improve mood!
When: Thursday October 10
Time: 12:00 to 1:00 PM
Where: Outdoor Adventure Center
What: Mindfulness Session – Laura Leonard will teach about mindfulness-based practices such as breath awareness, body scans, gentle movements, and guided reflections!
Reslife is also hosting events for wellness week:
Beyond these 5 opportunities, other organizations and the college will be putting on events this week in the Colket center and around campus, so keep your eyes peeled for other ways to reduce stress this week!
Self-stress reducing tips:
There are also many things that you can do for yourself this week to reduce the amount of stress you are feeling:
Get enough sleep – While it seems obvious and while you may feel too stressed to think you have time, sleep is crucial in healthy mind and body awareness and attention. Sleeping 6 to 8 hours a night is something that will make the world of difference in your mood this week and in the efficiency of how you get through this week.
Exercise – Exercising for just 30 minutes a day can help to reduce stress levels, heightenmood, and lead to increased endorphins. Exercising can be done in many forms such as running, walking, biking and even yoga!
Meditate – Meditation is a wonderful and simple way to reduce stress. Two weeks ago the Tibetan Monks walked students through some meditation practices and one of the easiest ways to meditate is through a breathing exercise. Set your alarm for 1 minute, 5 minutes, 20 minutes, or however long you want, and simply sit in a position that feels most comfortable to you (if before bed you can even lay down), then focus on your breathing and nothing else. While easier said than done, just a minute of making yourself present and not worried about what is to come will help reduce stress drastically!
Take time to do something you enjoy – whether it be reading a book, playing a game, or listening to music, don’t forget to take some time for yourself this week!
Midterms may be stressful, but the reward of a week–long break at the end makes them so worth it. While this list is far from exhaustive, these are a few ways to help reduce stress and heighten mood during this week. Share in the comments below your favorite way to reduce stress during midterm weeks and know that the psychology department is cheering you on till the end!
This Friday, October 4, 2019 from 11:30 am to 1:00 pm, the University of South Carolina College of Social Work will have a representative tabling in the Atrium of the Colket Center. They will be here promoting programs for Master of Social Work and PhD in Social Work.
Here is a little bit more on these programs:
A Master of Social Work
According to the Universities website, “A Master of Social Work from the University of South Carolina will provide you with the skills to work with individuals, families, groups and communities. Whether you are interested in direct client service, advocacy or policy, our program will give you the knowledge and skills necessary to be a leader in the social work profession.” To learn more about the master program check out this link!
PhD in Social Work
According to the Universities website, “Earning a Ph.D. in social work at the University of South Carolina will prepare you to provide leadership for social change by conducting transdisciplinary, community-engaged research into key issues and by educating the next generation of social workers.” To learn more about the PhD program check out this link!
If you are interested in pursuing a master’s degree or a PhD with a focus on Social Work, then stop on by and ask some questions and to learn more about the University and programs check out this link! We hope that you stop by on Friday!
“The Skillful Psychology student” guide shown above lays out skills that could be listed on a resume, CV and LinkedIn. The graphic separates skills into five categories and lays out some of the most valued skills in each category.
If you are looking to enhance the way you look to possible employers or future graduate schools then check it out!
This past semester Vanessa Pearson ’21 was selected as a recipient for the Gilman Scholarship and traveled abroad to Australia. A brief interview was done with Pearson to learn more about this opportunity and experiences:
Thank you for taking time to answer some questions! To start off, can you tell me a little about you?
I am a junior here at Roanoke. I live off campus and commute to school. I am an education and psychology major looking to get my teaching license and work in an elementary school.
Where did you study abroad? Why did you choose to study there and what was it like? Was it different from what you were expecting?
I studied abroad in Townsville, Australia which is on the northern east coast. I chose to study there because I had always wanted to travel to Australia, and it was northern, therefore it would be warmer. I also chose it because they speak English, I wanted to get inside an elementary school classroom and therefore would have needed to understand what they were saying.
What were some of your favorite moments while abroad?
I loved meeting new people from all over the world. I loved traveling all around Australia. I got to be a part of a turtle release, which is where they released a turtle back into the ocean that they had found hurt and nurtured back to life.
What were you most worried about in terms of studying abroad?
I was worried that I wouldn’t make any friends while I was abroad and that I would be lonesome and homesick.
Did anything happen that you weren’t expecting? Were there any moments that particularly struck you while abroad? Tell me about them.
I was not expecting my time there to go by so quickly. I was nervous when I was traveling that this was going to be the longest trip of my life and I was surprised when it was time to pack up and come home. I had so many amazing moments with friends that I had made there. I loved the weekends where I got to travel with my friends to different cities. It struck me by surprise at how different everybody is while also being kind of the same.
What did you learn while abroad? This is not limited to just coursework (though certainly talk about the types of courses you were able to take) but also about the culture or cultures you interacted with and, cheesy as it is, yourself as well.
I learned that the cultures in Australia are still very ingrained in how they do things throughout their day. In classes, professors start off with an acknowledgement of culture and thanking the aboriginal people for providing the land in which the school was built on. I learned that I enjoyed learning about the culture of another country and that I would like to go to other countries in the future and learn more about the culture and the way they see things now.
What do you miss the most?
I miss the people that I met there the most. I met so many amazing people who I enjoyed spending my time with. It is still sometimes hard to come to school and not see them around. I miss the environment I was surrounded by during my time there.
Tell me about your plans for the future. How will you apply what you learned while abroad to help you?
I would love to continue to travel to different places in the world. My next trip I am planning would be to go and travel around Europe. I will apply what I have learned abroad because I learned to take a step back and truly listen to the stories that are being told around you. I learned that if you look around at even the smallest things, you can find so much culture in it.
Do you have any advice for other students interested in studying abroad?
My advice would be to do it. If you are thinking about it, you should one hundred percent just do it. It is an amazing experience and while you may miss home for the first couple of days, you make friends and it does get easier. It can open your eyes to some crazy and great things.
Congratulations again to Vanessa Pearson on receiving the Gilman Scholarship and on a successful trip, and thank you for taking time to answer some questions!
On Monday, September 30 from 4:30 – 6:30 PM there will be an Internship fair held in the Colket Center. This is a wonderful opportunity to find out more about internships offered for the Spring, Summer, and Fall of next year! Internships are a great way to immerse yourself into your field and possible future jobs.
For psychology majors, an internship can be used for credit to fulfill one of three electives. If you are interested in more information regarding how to count an internship for credit check out this link!
No matter for credit or experience, internships are a great way to apply the knowledge you have already learned to a new and different setting, as well as grow a social network that can lead you to possible future careers.
So stop on by the internship fair and learn more about what the Salem and Roanoke area has to offer for students!
Take part in Mindful Mondays On Monday afternoons from 3:00-3:45 in THE WELL (Alumni 216). If you are feeling stressed and looking for a way to relax for a little, this is the place for you! Ms. Laura Leonard will be leading these weekly group sessions to offerinsight on mindfulness-based practices. If you are interested in learning more about mindfulness or are interested in finding new ways to handle stress stop on by! All are welcome and we hope to see you there!
Congratulations to Dr. Hilton (Roanoke College), Dr. Jarrett (The University of Alabama), Dr. Rondon (The University of Alabama), Josh Tutek (The University of Alabama) and Mazheruddin Mulla (The University of Alabama) for their recent publishing in theChild Psychiatry & Human Development Journal, titled “Increased Working Memory Load in a Dual‑Task Design Impairs Nonverbal Social Encoding in Children with High and Low Attention‑Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder Symptoms.”
In this article, Dr. Hilton and fellow researchers look into the relationship between working memory and nonverbal social cues. By testing children with High and Low ADHD symptoms through computerized tasks of social encoding and working memory in both single- and dual-task conditions, they revealed that both children with High ADHD and Low ADHD performed significantly worse during the dual-task condition compared to the single task conditions. They also found that children with High ADHD
had significantly lower performance than Low ADHD children on task-based social encoding and working memory.
For more information on the article, follow this link and once again congratulations Dr. Hilton and his fellow researchers for their publishing!
Congratulations toDr. Kuchynka (University of South Florida),Dr. Findley-Van Nostrand (Roanoke College), and Dr. Pollenz (University of South Florida) for their recent publishing in the CBE-Life Sciences Education Journal, titled “Evaluating Psychosocial Mechanisms Underlying STEM Persistence in Undergraduates: Scalability and Longitudinal Analysis of Three Cohorts from a Six-Day Pre–College Engagement STEM Academy Program.”
In this article, Dr. Findley-Van Nostrand and fellow researchers look into the ability to scale the size of the SA program to accommodate more students and replicate the previous findings with two additional cohorts. Through longitudinal analysis of three different cohorts, they were able to discover that the SA program increases sense of belonging and science identity, and that these attitudinal changes promote undergraduate persistence in STEM.
For more information on the article, followthis link and once again congratulations to Dr. Findley-Van Nostrand and her fellow researchers for their publishing!
This past summer Rachel Harmon was selected as a recipient of the 2018-2019 Summer Mamie Phipps Clark Diversity Undergraduate Research Grant from Psi Chi, the international psychology honorary, where she spent several weeks in Mexico working on her project titled, “Cross-Cultural Comparison of Caregiver Concerns and Resources for Children with Disabilities.”
Rachel Harmon was in the list of top 11 applications and so Dr. Powell was awarded a faculty stipend as well.
A brief interview was done with Harmon to learn more about this project and process:
Thank you for taking time to answer some questions, to start off, can you describe what the grant process was like and how you discovered it?
I began the grant application process in December of last year but ended up not submitting the grant until the May due date. I heard about the grant through Dr. Powell, who recommended applying, and advised me throughout the process. The grant required me to provide a concise version of my Literature Review and a brief Methodology section, and all the scales that I would use. I found that the grant helped me to determine the specific methodology I would use for my project and helped me to determine the specific scales that I would use.
Can you tell me more about your project?
The title of my project is “Cross-Cultural Comparison of Caregiver Concerns and Resources for Children with Disabilities”. I have collected both observational and quantitative data in both Mexico and the United States to compare the resources that are available for children with disabilities in each country and how this impacts caregiver stress levels and the emotions they feel, regarding caring for their child with a disability. I originally got the idea for my project when I traveled to Nicaragua the summer before my freshman year. While I was walking through a market in Managua, I saw a woman who was working and had her daughter who had a disability in what we would consider a baby stroller. I have worked a lot with individuals, specifically with children with disabilities and developmental delays, and I was naturally compelled to investigate the topic further.
What drew you to Mexico for this project?
I was originally supposed to return to Nicaragua for my project, but due to the current political environment, it was not ideal for travel. Jesse Griffin, who serves on the committee of my project knew of several connections that our college has with research facilities and other institutions in the Yucatán. One of the facilities was conveniently across the street from a Centro de AtenciónMúltiple, which is a government funded special education school, which was a great resource for collecting observational data and distributing surveys.
What did a normal day look like for you in Mexico as you worked on this project?
For the first month I spent in Mexico I was in Oxkutzcab, which was a small, rural town. This was where the C.A.M. school was. Each weekday I would go to the school at 7:30, and I would rotate which classroom I was in each day. The school has seven classes serving student from ages 2-28. Depending on which classroom I was in, I would either observe the class, and participate in class activities, or work one on one with students who needed more individualized attention. The school days in Mexico only last from 7:30 to 12:30, so in the afternoons I would explore or relax, and work on other research tasks.
I spent the second month in the capital of the Yucatán, Mérida. Here, I was working with an internationally run non-profit called SOLYLUNA. The organization provides special education opportunities and access to physical therapy, speech therapy, and occupational therapy for children who have a diagnosis of multiple disabilities and their caregivers. The dynamic of the organization was very different than the C.A.M. school, so it was an adjustment. The organization requires that a caregiver accompanies the child for the full day from 7:30-1:30. My job as a volunteer was to assist the parents when needed, and to observe the teachers and therapists. I also worked with the volunteer coordinator and director of the organization to create a document about potential resources to provide for caregivers, and I took pictures for them to use for promotion purposes. Since I was now in a larger city there was a lot more to explore in the afternoons, and I enjoyed travelling on the weekends.
You mentioned that you had opportunities to explore while in Mexico, what was the coolest place you visited/most favorite?
I did have a lot of time to explore while I was in Mexico, especially on the weekends. I enjoyed exploring nearby townsand venturing further to other landmarks. I think my favorite place I traveled to while in Mexico was Isla las Mujeres. This was an island off the coast of Cancún, where we were able to hear lots of live music, enjoy the beach, and go snorkeling. I met a group of other students from Millsaps College, in Mississippi while I was there, and I enjoyed traveling with them and meeting them at different places on some weekends.
If given the opportunity would you go back and work, there again?
Absolutely! While I was there, I formed a lot of connections with the kids, caregivers, teachers and therapists that I was working with and I would love to see them again (I miss them a lot)! It was hard to leave such amazing people, and such an amazing place.
Is there anything else you would like us to know?
Overall, my experiences in Mexico taught me more than I could have ever imagined. I especially learned a lot about collecting data in another culture, which is an experience I consider myself lucky to have had at this point in my academic career. Whether it is through research, or a different study abroad program, I highly recommend spending time in another country to everyone, because it allows you to learn so much about yourself and the world.
Congratulations again to Rachel Harmon and Dr. Powell and thank you for taking time to answer some questions!
Are you interested in taking a class in another part of the world? If so, come out to the Ballroom this Thursday, September 5 between 12 – 1 pm to hear about the awesome May Term Travel courses being offered this coming spring! Dr. Powell will be there sharing information on the course she is teaching, IL 377: Emerging Adults in Thailand – A Cross-Cultural Society, which counts as an elective for those in the Human Development concentration but is also a wonderful opportunity for all those interested in human development. Other faculty will be sharing about their courses that are also being offered as well!