Undergraduate Research & Scholarships

Michelle Soto-Melgar

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Have you ever wondered why governments pass risky legislation–legislation that is likely to fail and goes against an administration’s own livelihood? My research will focus on symbolic law and the practicality of day labor solicitation ordinances. In the late 2000s, day labor solicitation bans emerged as an attempt to police and drive out Latino day workers from their communities. Many of these bans were legally challenged, ruled unconstitutional, and stopped from ever going into effect. Despite the legal challenges, some administrations pursued this regulation anyway, costing them millions in legal […]

Annabelle Long

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Women’s clubs are often exclusively remembered as advocating for progressive causes—education, suffrage, conservation—but little attention has been paid to the way that some of them gave rise to nationalist, anti-communist clubs for women. My interest in this topic builds on my research on a little-known clubwoman named Marguerite Dice. Born in 1884 to a Republican Union Army veteran father and politically connected mother, she dedicated her life to progressive women’s clubs, but spent at least 30 years advocating for conservative, anti-communist causes. Her life neatly tracks with the evolution of […]

Ryan Tuozzolo

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My research hinges on a question of resonance. What, I pose, do we as readers hear echoed in the self-effacing abstraction of Argentine poet Alejandra Pizarnik’s 1962 Árbol de Diana from the Romani-influenced folk narrative of Spaniard Federico García Lorca’s mid-1920s Romancero Gitano? The urgency of this issue stems from the post-industrial crisis of subjectivity, wherein, per Marxist theory of estrangement, the mechanical gears of capitalism mediate not only financial transactions, but also inter- and intra-personal relations. In an economic system founded on conceptual predetermination, per the logic of exchange-value, […]

Miranda Jiang

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In 1918, French officials reported a population of French-Indochinese mixed-race children living in the Saint-Médard region of France. These métis were the children of Indochinese workers and French women. Alarmed at the presence of interracial couples but resigned to their inevitability, the government allowed them to marry, expressing hope that the French women would exert their “assimilatory” power on their foreign husbands and children. These were a few among many métis in the French empire: throughout the 20th century, thousands of mixed-race children from Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia passed through […]

Owen Yeung

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The importance of citing reputable sources is common knowledge for anyone communicating information, but less is known about whether audiences actually investigate the sources, an increasingly important practice due to the prevalence of misinformation on social media. This is a crucial determinant of whether misinformation can spread online that is often overlooked: even if there is a sufficient “supply” of credible sources, they will not be utilized if media consumers do not have sufficient “demand” for source-checking. Extending this economic analogy, this “demand” also decreases with the effort needed to […]

Rhammses Del Rio

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In the twenty years I have spent living in different types of dwellings, including households that support more than one family, I have noticed that these doubled-up households seem to take longer to recover from an economic crisis. Is this a pattern? This study seeks to investigate and measure if living in doubled-up households lengthens economic recovery. We will look at doubled-up households and how economic circumstances and other possible shocks might impact these types of dwellings by analyzing household income recoveries post 2008 recession, comparing traditional households with comparable […]

Elizabeth “Libby” McBride

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Recent investigations reveal that women with childhood histories of Attention-Deficit/ Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) continue to experience major impairments even after symptoms have abated. One such important outcome is increased rates of unplanned pregnancy by adulthood. Existing literature has identified academic underachievement and risky sexual behavior during early-to-mid-adolescence as mediators of the childhood ADHD-unplanned pregnancy link. However, executive functioning (EF) may be an underlying mechanism that better explains this relation and is potentially more amenable to possible health education interventions. Thus, this study aims to elucidate the relation between childhood ADHD […]

Ivan Chavez

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The status of monuments depicting white colonialism has been highly debated for years, with some historians stating that they should remain while others ask for their removal. Although these monuments have been contested since their creation, the Black Lives Matter movement has become an avenue for immediate change. In response, artists put up contemporary monuments that highlight racial injustice throughout the world. However, within the Black Lives Matter movement, both these contested statues as well as the newly placed, contemporary pieces of art are toppled or destroyed. This research project […]

Andrew Chan

While Sylvia Plath has not customarily been considered an ecopoet, many of her poems describe exchanges between the individual and the natural world. Scott Knickerbocker demonstrates how Plath’s work “expresses the wildness and vitality she craved in nature through language itself,” focusing on what he terms “sensuous poesis”, which “enact[s] through formal devices such as sound effects the speaker’s experience of the complexity, mystery, and beauty of nature.” My research continues in this vein, focusing specifically on how Plath herself related to the natural world, and the role she saw […]

Emmaline Jones

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In the realms of primatology and animal science, it is generally considered that Old World monkeys possess greater cognitive powers than lemurs. I will be investigating this assumption through the observational analysis and testing of these animals’ cognitive abilities. This will include comparing skills such as memory and problem solving between populations of these primates at the Oakland Zoo, a leader in animal welfare and conservation. Species included will be red-tailed monkeys (Cercopithecus Ascanius), crowned lemurs (Eulemur coronatus), and ring-tailed lemurs (Lemur catta). Through the presenting of different types and […]