Three SESP Students Receive Undergraduate Research Grants

Three SESP Students Receive Undergraduate Research Grants

Billy Choo

Three School of Education and Social Policy seniors were awarded Undergraduate Research Grants or Conference Travel Grants from the Northwestern University Office of the Provost for winter quarter. The students are Billy Choo, human development and psychological services; Brenna Ledvora, social policy; and Kathryn Thomas, social policy.

Billy Choo
Billy Choo, who is majoring in human development and psychological services and psychology, is working on research with SESP associate professor Eva Lam as his faculty sponsor. His research project is entitled “The Role of Transnational Relationships and Bilingualism among Korean University Students in Their Information and Communication Technology Use and Future Plans.”

Choo’s research studies the social contexts of language development in new media environments. Working with Lam on this research, he seeks to contribute to education that draws on linguistic and cultural diversity as a resource for learning. 

Brenna Ledvora

Brenna Ledvora
A social policy student also majoring in German, Brenna Ledvora is pursuing research on “Attitudes toward the Frauenquote in Hamburg.” Her faculty sponsor is Franziska Lys of the Department of German.

“My research explores attitudes towards the Hamburg Frauenquote, a political gender quota that mandates that 40 percent of all state supervisory boards and parliamentary committees in the city of Hamburg, Germany, must be women. In addition to analyzing public opinion towards a social policy, which relates to my social policy concentration, this research also seeks to examine cultural attitudes towards gender, politics, and how they intersect,” says Ledvora.

Kathryn Thomas

Kathryn Thomas

Kathryn Thomas, who is also a SESP social policy major, received a grant to present a research poster at the Experimental Biology 2014 conference of the American Physiological Society in San Diego from April 22 to 26. “Experimental Biology is an internationally renowned conference for both scientific research and health policy forums. This is a unique opportunity to gather with thousands of scientists from all over the world, network, and discuss the implications of science, medicine and health policy in tandem,” says Thomas, who plans to earn an MD/MPH degree. “Experimental Biology is an excellent stepping stone into the realm of medical research and health policy.”

Thomas’s poster focuses on the role of the carotid bodies in mediating hyperthermia-induced hyperventilation in humans and the effectiveness of the drug dopamine in blunting chemosensitivity. “The carotid bodies are important chemoreceptors that regulate a variety of physiological processes,” she notes. Her faculty sponsor for this research is Michael Joyner.

The Undergraduate Research Grants program offers academic year grants of up to $1,000, summer grants of $3,000 and conference travel grants of up to $500 in support of independent undergraduate projects. Information about grants and deadlines is available on the Undergraduate Research website.

By Marilyn Sherman
Last Modified: 3/27/14