I came to Ursinus looking for the thing that I could be passionate about and build a career around - something exciting, innovative, influential, challenging, and rewarding. I was fortunate enough to find research in social psychology, specifically relationship science. It is common for students to use research as a tool to understanding clinical and applied psychology. But I see it as a way to understand people in a way that they may not even understand themselves. Much of the research we conduct focuses on unconscious processes and implicit attitudes that influence interpersonal behaviors. Gaining understanding of the reasons behind people’s thoughts and actions gives you the power of perspective and the ability to look not only at individual people, but ourselves as a whole.
WHAT WAS VALUABLE ABOUT THE EXPERIENCE
Research provides me with the opportunity to think abstractly and apply knowledge to form original ideas. I then get to pursue them and uncover a truth that people did not yet know existed. Any finding in psychological research, no matter how small, has the power help others understand the nature of themselves, which is a luxury that, as humans, we must take advantage of. Our unique ability to examine ourselves is the most valuable thing about human research.
THE COOLEST PART OF THE EXPERIENCE
My adviser Dr. Brent Mattingly and lab partner Marisa Wait make research enjoyable, even when we are crunching numbers and writing up reports. It can be a lonely process: hours spent in the lab, independent work, extensive editing processes…but working with good people makes the effort feel less like work and more like a team effort. We all strive for deeper knowledge and understanding, and with that common goal, we are able to successfully navigate studies, statistics, and presentations.
WHO I MET THAT MADE A DIFFERENCE
The people that I meet who make a difference are all of the students I see in the lab each day; always working, always putting forth the effort to find the differences in us, and make a difference on campus and in our fields. The quality of research that I have seen come from my peers is enlightening, and shows how dedicated we are to adding, changing, and enhancing our academics. Our mentors help shape us. But after we leave here we will be the ones making the difference.
Indoor and Outdoor Women’s Track and Field: Pole Vault
Psi Chi Secretary and Treasurer
Ursinus College Women’s Honors Society
Vice President of Outstanding Students Organizing Spirit