Florence As It Was: A Digital Reconstruction of a Renaissance City (Prof. George Bent)

3 students are sought for a project on “Florence As It Was: A Digital Reconstruction of a Renaissance City” with Prof. George Bent that will begin on 6/15/2024 and last for 10 weeks

Project Description:

Florence As It Was combines three-dimensional models of fifteen buildings, digitized documents, photogrammetric models of 180 art works, translations of early modern descriptions, and original interpretative essays in an academic, not-for-profit, web-based platform that aims to recreate major monuments of the Tuscan city as they appeared in the year 1500. Complete with a geo-referenced database of nearly 2000 images (searchable by artist name, title, date of installation, subject, patron, and iconography), users may use a high-resolution map of the city produced in 1584 locate and see artworks in their original locations as they appeared to audiences in the fifteenth century.

Prerequisites

Students should be familiar spreadsheets and have some experience working with data. Students should also have taken at least one course in art history at W&L.

Special Comments

It would be wise to take ARTH 383 in Spring Term. But it’s not mandatory.

Project Information

Estimated Start Date: 6/15/2024

Estimated End Date: 8/23/2024

Maximum number of students sought: 3

Contact Information: Prof. George Bent (bentg@wlu.edu)

#MeToo and the Music Industry (Prof. Kate Grover)

3 students are sought for a project on “#MeToo and the Music Industry” with Prof. Kate Grover that will begin on 6/9/2024 and last for 8 weeks

Project Description:

Women musicians face tremendous obstacles in the music industry, including unequal pay, sexist media representation, and physical and emotional violence. Yet women musicians are also at the forefront of activism to make popular music safe and accessible. In this project, students will conduct research examining women musicians’ activism against gender inequality in the American popular music industry from the 1960s to the present. Specifically, we’ll focus our research on musicians’ approaches to fighting sexual harassment, intimate partner violence, unjust conservatorships, and restrictive beauty standards and fitness regimes. Over eight weeks, SRS scholars will work in collaboration with myself and each other to build a literature review contextualizing the 21st century #MeToo movement within women musicians’ historical struggles for bodily autonomy. Students will engage in a variety of interdisciplinary research methods central to Popular Music Studies, Media Studies, and Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies, including analyzing the first-person accounts in musicians’ memoirs, collecting qualitative data from documentaries, examining court cases and legal policies, and evaluating the effectiveness of musicians’ activism by surveying YouTube comments, blogs, and other forms of audience and fan criticism.

Prerequisites

Student researchers must have completed at least one course in Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. Completion of WGSS 120: Introduction to Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies preferred.

Special Comments

While I would prefer to meet weekly with students in Lexington throughout the course of the 8-week project, I am amenable to working with students that need to research virtually for either part or all of the 8-week period.

Project Information

Estimated Start Date: 6/9/2024

Estimated End Date: 8/2/2024

Maximum number of students sought: 3

Contact Information: Prof. Kate Grover (kgrover@wlu.edu)

Project 1. Immigrants’ Experience Accessing Welfare: Evidence from Brazil and Peru – Project 2. Immigrants’ Identity, Economic Contributions and Deportation Attitudes (Prof. Zoila Ponce de León)

3 students are sought for a project on “Project 1. Immigrants’ Experience Accessing Welfare: Evidence from Brazil and Peru – Project 2. Immigrants’ Identity, Economic Contributions and Deportation Attitudes” with Prof. Zoila Ponce de León that will begin on 6/10/2024 and last for 10 weeks

Project Description:

P1: Connecting the central themes of my research agenda: healthcare and immigration, one of my newest research projects will undertake the study of immigrants’ experiences accessing welfare services and benefits, specifically healthcare and social assistance. In several Latin American countries, all immigrants, regardless of immigration status, have the right to access basic healthcare services, and most of them qualify for social assistance programs. Yet, immigrants face several hurdles in their access. My project will delve into how perceptions of welfare deservingness translate into immigrants’ experiences. In a previous study of Brazil, I found that there are more negative attitudes toward immigrants’ access to social assistance compared to healthcare. Moreover, Venezuelan immigrants were seen as less deserving in comparison to Haitians and Bolivians. Although these results highlight important differences in how immigrants are perceived as “deserving,” they miss the immigrant experience. In this new project, I seek to understand how perceptions of welfare deservingness translate into immigrants’ experiences accessing healthcare services and conditional cash transfers in Peru and Brazil. P2: This research project explores a topic that has received limited attention in existing scholarship on immigration attitudes, but that is central to the political discourse of many countries: the deportation of undocumented immigrants. We examine how immigrants’ identity and economic characteristics interact to shape deportation attitudes. In particular, we focus on immigrants’ sexual orientation and economic contributions. We investigate the topic in two countries where immigration is a key political issue and where populist right-wing politicians have been successful in recent years: the United States and Brazil. In each country, we conducted original survey experiments with samples of respondents that mirror census quotas for several key socio-demographic indicators. Preliminary analysis reveals interesting findings: 1) immigrants’ identity characteristics play a limited but significant role in shaping support for deportation once the undocumented trait is considered, with gay immigrants facing stronger calls for deportation, 2) support for deportation is significantly stronger in the U.S. than in Brazil, and 3) in both countries, while economic contributions strongly decrease support for the deportation of immigrants with various profiles, the effect seems to be stronger for gay over straight immigrants. This suggests that immigrants who are targets of stronger prejudice benefit more when they are presented with positive traits. Further analysis will examine how different subgroups of respondents express support for immigrants with different profiles.

Prerequisites

No prior coursework is necessary. Skills that would help include the following (but are not required): data collection, data analysis, revision of theoretical frameworks, experience with revision of academic work, interest in one or more of the topics and/or countries of study, and Spanish or Portuguese language skills. The students will have the opportunity to partake in political science research on two highly impactful topics: immigrants’ experience accessing welfare in Brazil and Peru, and immigration attitudes in Brazil and the U.S. Students will learn about data collection, analyzing datasets from surveys, constructing and revising graphs and tables, and reviewing relevant literature. The students will practice research techniques and scientific inquiry, gaining valuable research experience, which they may apply in future research endeavors in and out of the classroom.

Special Comments

Project Information

Estimated Start Date: 6/10/2024

Estimated End Date: 8/16/2024

Maximum number of students sought: 3

Contact Information: Prof. Zoila Ponce de León (zponcedeleon@wlu.edu)

Land Speculation, Finance, and Indigenous Dispossession in the Early U.S. (Prof. Franklin Sammons)

2 students are sought for a project on “Land Speculation, Finance, and Indigenous Dispossession in the Early U.S.” with Prof. Franklin Sammons that will begin on 6/3/2024 and last for 8 weeks

Project Description:

Students will work with Professor Sammons to help him conduct research for his book project on the Yazoo Land Sales. In collaboration with the professor, students will undertake a variety of research tasks, including: data entry from old land records; researching the biographies of land speculators; reading and taking notes on a range of primary sources, including digitized newspapers from Georgia in the 1790s and early 1800s, and digitized correspondence from officials in the US War Department. Students will gain experience in different kinds of historical research, learn more about Native American history and the political and economic history of the early US, and learn more about the variety of undertakings necessary to produce historical scholarship.

Prerequisites

Students should have some experience conducting primary source research. Other skills that could be helpful but are not required: Experience with data entry, and making charts and graphs, in Excel. Experience reading cursive Experience using ArcGIS Advanced Spanish reading comprehension (for some Spanish language documents)

Special Comments

It is ok if students perform some of this work remotely/away from campus.

Project Information

Estimated Start Date: 6/3/2024

Estimated End Date: 7/26/2024

Maximum number of students sought: 2

Contact Information: Prof. Franklin Sammons (fsammons@wlu.edu)

Soviet and Russian Propaganda (Prof. Anna Brodsky)

3 students are sought for a project on “Soviet and Russian Propaganda ” with Prof. Anna Brodsky that will begin on 6/3/2024 and last for 10 weeks

Project Description:

I plan to embark on a book-length project examining the history of Russian propaganda. The project aims to explore how both Soviet and contemporary Russian propaganda systematically targets individuals’ sense of agency and autonomy, reducing them to pawns in the overarching agenda of the ruling elite to seize and maintain power. I will argue that the contemporary ultranationalist and imperialist Russian propaganda owes a significant debt to its Soviet predecessor.

Prerequisites

Some knowledge of Russian

Special Comments

Students are required to have completed at least one course in Russian literature or history by this summer.

Project Information

Estimated Start Date: 6/3/2024

Estimated End Date: 8/9/2024

Maximum number of students sought: 3

Contact Information: Prof. Anna Brodsky (brodskya@wlu.edu)

Demand Side Management and Renewable Intermittency. (Prof. Joseph Guse)

2 students are sought for a project on “Demand Side Management and Renewable Intermittency.” with Prof. Joseph Guse that will begin on 6/3/2024 and last for 10 weeks

Project Description:

The transition from carbon-based fuels to renewable energy sources may help society avoid the worst outcomes of climate change. One of the most exciting developments in the past decade is the steep decline in the cost of producing wind and solar power. However, renewable sources (aside from hydro) are intermittent. Therefore, actually using this power to displace coal, oil and gas is challenging. Supply side management options (storage, natural gas peaker plants, new transmission lines) will undoubtedly contribute to a solution. However, such options tend to be expensive. Another approach is to incentive consumers to adjust the timing of their electricity demand in order to better match when the sun shines or when the wind blows. For this project, we consider various demand-side incentive mechanisms and work toward an estimate of the impact on the industry, on electric utility customers and on GHG emissions.

Prerequisites

No.

Special Comments

This is a new avenue of research for me, so I cannot say how much time students will spend on specific tasks. However, an ideal candidate would (1) be eager to learn about this topic area (2) be good at reading and summarizing academic articles and technical documents (3) have good organizational skills and (4) have a strong interest in data collection, cleaning and analysis.

Project Information

Estimated Start Date: 6/3/2024

Estimated End Date: 8/9/2024

Maximum number of students sought: 2

Contact Information: Prof. Joseph Guse (gusej@wlu.edu)

Creating a new documentary series on compassion in six dimensions (Prof. Stephanie Sandberg)

3 students are sought for a project on “Creating a new documentary series on compassion in six dimensions” with Prof. Stephanie Sandberg that will begin on 6/3/2024 and last for 8 weeks

Project Description:

At the heart of every thriving society lies an often-underestimated quality: compassion. The Compassion Project endeavors to shift the fundamentals of our societal paradigm, advocating for embedding compassion-based training at pivotal moments in human life. Recognizing the profound impact of early socialization, this initiative emphasizes the need to introduce compassion training at the inception of a child’s educational journey. This childhood foundation is bolstered in adolescence, as middle and high school curriculums are enriched with teachings of empathy and understanding. As individuals continue their path, being a compassionate bystander becomes essential, serving as a bulwark against violence and hate. For those who have faced the brunt of violence, retraining through compassion-driven practices offers a beacon of hope. Moreover, reimagining economics through a lens of compassion ensures our interactions in trade and commerce are grounded in ethics. Finally, as we approach our final years, the Compassion Project stresses the significance of end-of-life practices that recognize and treat individuals as holistic beings, ensuring dignity and respect in the most vulnerable times. The foundational belief of the Compassion Project is the time-honored principle of the golden rule. This universal tenet, which encourages treating others as one would wish to be treated, echoes in the scriptures and teachings of world religions. From the Torah of Judaism to the Analects of Confucianism, from the Bible in Christianity to the Qur’an in Islam, and from the sutras of Buddhism to countless other spiritual texts, the golden rule emerges as a consistent guide. Such a universally accepted belief forms a robust cornerstone for the Compassion Project, emphasizing that compassion is not merely an altruistic ideal but an inherent human value that transcends geographical, cultural, and religious boundaries. To communicate the power and hope of compassion, the Compassion Project seeks to produce a series of six evocative short documentary films. Each film is set to explore a different facet of compassion-driven practices across various spheres of our culture. The films will capture tangible examples of the transformative power of compassion in many spheres of public and private life. These films will serve as both a testament and a toolkit by showcasing real-world scenarios where compassion-based approaches have changed lives. The hope is that viewers will be inspired to incorporate these practices into their lives as they engage with these narratives. In doing so, we can collectively weave a fabric of empathy and understanding, constructing a society that values the well-being and dignity of every individual, from cradle to grave. We will work as a team to create this film series with several Virginia Filmmakers, summer research students at W&L, and AIM students. This first summer will be the research and proof of concept development phase

Prerequisites

No prerequisites, although if the students have any film skills, that would be an added benefit, but I am happy to teach you what you need.

Special Comments

Because I am primarily a playwright and filmmaker in terms of my creative work and scholarship, this project directly fulfills that vocational calling. Bringing students into that work is always a goal, and in this case, students will have the opportunity to be on the ground floor of the film’s development. I am very interested in our student’s ideas in relation to compassion and how to solve our world’s problems through compassion-based training

Project Information

Estimated Start Date: 6/3/2024

Estimated End Date: 7/26/2024

Maximum number of students sought: 4

Contact Information: Prof. Stephanie Sandberg (sandbergs@wlu.edu)

Digital Approaches to W&L History (Profs. Mackenzie Brooks and Paula Kiser)

3 students are sought for a project on “Digital Approaches to W&L History” with Prof. Mackenzie Brooks that will begin on 6/3/2024 and last for 10 weeks

Project Description:

Leyburn Library seeks students interested in institutional history research opportunities for the summer of 2024. Working collaboratively, the Library and W&L students have begun building research portals and digital exhibits on major themes in the history of W&L. This work involves digging into archival material in Special Collections, processing it to make it available digitally, and interpreting the material for a public audience. This summer we will be focusing on the topics of Athletics, Environment Grounds & Buildings, Military life & Veterans (post-WWII), Latino, Latinas history & presence, Native American history & presence, and/or Scotch-Irish Founders. Students will gain experience in library and archival research skills, specifically digitization, metadata, digital exhibit creation, oral histories, digital scholarship, and public history. Students interested in careers in libraries/information science, cultural heritage, public history, museums, education, or creative fields are encouraged to apply.

Prerequisites

No prerequisites, but coursework in History or DCI or research experience in Special Collections is valuable.

Special Comments

Students will be expected to serve as mentors for AIM program. Due to the hands-on nature of working with archival material, students should plan to be in Lexington for the duration of their summer research time.

Project Information

Estimated Start Date: 6/3/2024

Estimated End Date: 8/9/2024

Maximum number of students sought: 3

Contact Information: Profs. Mackenzie Brooks (brooksm@wlu.edu) and Paula Kiser (kiserp@wlu.edu)

Bioremediation of Emerging Contaminants (Prof. Margaret Anne Hinkle)

3 students are sought for a project on “Bioremediation of Emerging Contaminants” with Prof. Margaret Anne Hinkle that will begin on 6/17/2024 and last for 10 weeks

Project Description:

Using both biomineralizing fungi as well as the resulting biominerals, we aim to continue our work on coal mine drainage remediation and apply these same principles to rare earth elements sequestration or PFAS remediation, depending on student interest and site availability.

Prerequisites

None!

Special Comments

The research will definitely involve lab work and may involve field work in Pennsylvania depending on site availability and student interest. We will be applying for funds to support a trip to the Smithsonian’s Natural History Museum in Washington, D.C. to analyze our samples with their excellent instrumentation.

Project Information

Estimated Start Date: 6/17/2024

Estimated End Date: 8/23/2024

Maximum number of students sought: 3

Contact Information: Prof. Margaret Anne Hinkle (hinklem@wlu.edu)

Linguistic Cues and Emotion Perceptions (Prof. Holly Shablack)

2 students are sought for a project on “Linguistic Cues and Emotion Perceptions” with Prof. Holly Shablack that will begin on 6/1/2024 and last for 8 weeks

Project Description:

The Language and Affective Science Lab will be recruiting for two specific projects. Project one: Prior research suggests that multilingual individuals may adjust their emotion perceptions depending on the context that they are in and language that they are speaking. This study aims to extend this literature beyond emotion perception to examine how individual experience and regulate emotions. Participants will view various visual and auditory stimuli that is meant to induce emotions and will assess individuals self-reported experience of emotions, reactions, and subsequent regulation strategies. Importantly we will manipulate the language that the study is completed in and assess whether individuals’ reactions and regulatory patterns differ based on the language that they complete the study in. Research assistants will be expected to help finalized study design, stimuli, and be involved in data cleanup and analysis. Project two: The second proposed study examines the impact of gender and emotion stereotypes on emotion perception. Prior work suggests that emotion stereotypes influence how we perceive emotions both in others and ourselves. However, much of this work is older and may not reflect current patterns of behavior amongst newer generations, nor does it assess what information is necessary for individuals to access and be influenced by these stereotypes. This project will assess whether manipulating one feature of language may lead to specific emotion perception judgments in a cross-sectional design.

Prerequisites

Familiarity or interest: – in using R for statistical analysis – psychological research and study design – Qualtrics – gaining skills in academic writing

Special Comments

Project Information

Estimated Start Date: 6/1/2024

Estimated End Date: 7/26/2024

Maximum number of students sought: 2

Contact Information: Prof. Holly Shablack (hshablack@wlu.edu)