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Undergraduates Present Research at Summer Symposium

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Summer Biden School Fellows practice public speaking and present research in campuswide event

Emma Crowell stands next to the projector screen that displays the title slide of her presentation, "Supporting Local Government Officials in Professional Development."

​​

​Emma Crowell, an undergraduate public policy and political science major, presented the valuable insights she gained through coordinating the Municipal Clerks Institute​ with her supervisor IPA Policy Scientist Julia O'Hanlon.​

Summer Undergraduate Biden School Fellows showcased their research along with hundreds of their peers across campus during the Undergraduate Research and Service Scholar Celebratory Symposium, held Thursday, August 11, 2022, at the UD Interdisciplinary Science and Engineering Laboratory. The symposium is organized by UD's Undergraduate Research Program.

Summer Undergraduate Biden School Fellows​ work under the supervision of professional staff members and faculty from the Biden School's Institute for Public Administration (IPA) and Center for Community Research and Service (CCRS).

Olivia Brosnan, majoring in public policy and political science, presented on “Hot Topics in Public Policy and Administration: Issues in Infrastructure, Transportation, and Demographics." Her supervisor is IPA Policy Scientist Julia O'Hanlon. Brosnan's presentation covered two research projects on infrastructure with the Delaware Department of Transportation and senior center funding formulation with the Delaware Office of the Controller General.

Emma Crowell, majoring in public policy and political science and working as a summer fellow for the second year in a row, presented on “Supporting Local Government Officials in Professional Development." Crowell presented valuable insight from working with O'Hanlon to coordinate the Municipal Clerks Institute, a 40-hour program in which local government administrators gain professional and personal development and receive official certifications from the International Institute for Municipal Clerks.​

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Four undergraduate students stand together in front of a blank projector screen, smiling to the camera.

Jenna DeMaio, Elliot Dobson, Gianna Richason, and Olivia Brosnan pose for a photo before their presentations during the "The Effects of Public Policy" session at the Undergraduate Research and Service Scholar Celebrato​ry Symposium.

Grace Diehl, an international relations student, worked with IPA Policy Scientist Kelly Sherretz on education policy. Diehl's presentation was titled, “Enhancing Community Engagement and Student Services through the Utilization of Digital Platforms." Her research project explored digital interventions developed by IPA and the Delaware Department of Education to efficiently communicate with school counselors and offers students and families easier access to resources regarding college, apprenticeships, and career pathways.

Jenna DeMaio, majoring in public policy, economics, and political science, discussed her research for the Sussex Technical School District under the supervision of IPA Assistant Policy Specialist Haley Qaissanuee. In her presentation titled “Career and Technical Education Programs to Help Meet the Needs of the Future Labor Market," DeMaio described the analysis of Career and Technical Education programs to inform cirriculum and construction plans for the new Sussex Technical High School building.

Elliott Dobson, majoring in public policy, worked with IPA Associate Policy Scientist B.J. DeCoursey to revamp the Complete Communities Toolbox, an online resource for Delaware municipalities. In his presentation, “Implementing Resources for Complete Communities within the First State," Dobson described the website's goals for providing resources for land-use, transportation, and community design and his methods for updating the Toolbox content to be more user-friendly and accessible to community leaders of all backgrounds and understandings.

Gianna Richason, double majoring in human services and organizational and community leadership, had the unique experience of splitting her time between two separate projects with O'Hanlon in IPA and Signe Bell in CCRS. In “Public Policy and Nonprofit Management Issues and Intersections," Richason described how working at two research centers gave her the opportunity to analyze how social services and studies can better serve target population and address problems with the help of education, training, consulting, and support.

In addition to the six students who presented in person at the symposium, Jack Levine presented his research virtually. A public policy major, Levine is working as a fellow for the second summer in a row under the guidance of IPA Policy Scientist Sean O'Neill. Levine is conducted research asking, “How Do Expanding Roads and Road Work Affect the Economy?"

Jimmy McGuire, a history major, worked as a summer fellow under the supervision of CCRS Director Stephen Metraux. McGuire contributed to a paper on Prior Evictions among People Experiencing Homelessness in Delaware for a special edition of the Delaware Journal of Public Health on the relationship between health and place. The article was also covered on Delaware Public Media.

Since the Summer Undergraduate Biden School Fellows Program was established in 2011, 115 students have conducted summer research with Biden School faculty and staff.​​

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Undergraduates Present Research at Summer Symposium