The University of Massachusetts Amherst
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Scholar Feature: Shannon Roberts (FRS '18-'19) studies the impact of socioeconomic status on teenage driving patterns

Dr. Shannon Roberts “simply loved driving” as a teenager, but when her younger brother began to drive, she realized that the information teenagers are receiving in their Driver’s Education courses was inadequate. “Driver’s Education teaches you the basic skills you need to operate a car. It doesn’t teach you the higher order skills you need to avoid a crash,” Roberts said. When she later learned that low SES teenagers face double the crash risk of middle and high SES teenagers she became interested in understanding the causes of these socioeconomic differences in teen driving behaviors, so she could develop effective interventions.

Student Feature: Melanna Cox Reflects on Her Experience in First Cohort of Student Grant Writing Program

What factors might keep girls from being as physically active as boys? Melanna Cox, a PhD student in the Kinesiology Department in the School of Public Health and Health Sciences, is hoping to understand the role that “benevolent sexism” plays in the physical activity levels of adolescent girls. “Benevolent sexism is the romanticized concept that women and girls need to be protected by men because they are fragile and complimentary to men,” says Cox. Too often, girls are not encouraged by coaches or parents to push themselves or persevere when learning a new sport in comparison to boys, an approach that hinders their progress and results in girls being much less physically active than boys. 


Mark Pachucki (FRS '18-'19) Awarded UMass Amherst SBS Outstanding Teacher Award

Mark Pachucki, assistant professor of Sociology and current Family Research Scholar, has been awarded this year's UMass Amherst College of Social and Behavioral Sciences (SBS) Outstanding Teacher Award. This award "celebrated exceptional teaching, mentoring, and curriculum development efforts, and their impact on students."

Sarah Fefer ('18-'19) Receives 2019 Child Intervention, Prevention, and Services Fellowship

Sarah Fefer (FRS ’18-’19) has been selected for the 2019 Child Intervention, Prevention, and Services (CHIPS) fellowship. CHIPS is a “dynamic interdisciplinary training consortium, created to bolster mental health research in the areas of intervention, prevention, and the provision of services for children and adolescents.”

Adam Grabell (FRS '19-'20) Awarded $15,000 Seed Grant from the Institute for Applied Life Sciences for Research on Preschooler Tantrums

Adam Grabell, Assistant Professor, Psychological and Brain Science, College of Natural Sciences was recently awarded a seed grant of $15,000, with an additional $10,000 in facilities costs, from the Institute for Applied Life Sciences’ (IALS) Center for Personalized Health Monitoring to support a study of preschool children’s tantrums. Grabell will work with Jeremy Gummeson, information and computer sciences.

Lisa Wexler (FRS '07-'08) to Speak at Public Health Dean's Symposium on Suicide Prevention

Lisa Wexler, Associate Professor of Health Promotion and Policy will speak at the upcoming Dean's Symposium, "A Conversation in the Community: A Public Health Approach to Suicide Prevention" scheduled for Thursday, April 4 in the Old Chapel. Dr. Eric Caine, director of the Injury Control Research Center for Suicide Prevention at the University of Rochester Medical Center has been invited to deliver the keynote address.

CRF Announces 2019 Graduate Student Grant Writing Program Cohort

In 2018, CRF developed a pilot program to facilitate and support graduate students in the development of successful graduate fellowship applications.  This pilot program is a 9-month program designed specifically for NSF and NIH pre-doctoral fellowship proposals. Six selected graduate scholars will receive mentoring and support from CRF faculty, staff and peers throughout the grant development process, including: development, refinement and communication of research ideas, approach, and methodology. 


CRF Co-Sponsored event: Feinberg Family Distinguished Lecture Series

The UMass Amherst History Department's Feinberg Family Distinguished Lecture Series and the UMass Alliance for Community Transformation Present: "PLUG IN!: Building Other Worlds Where We Are"


This year’s Feinberg Family Distinguished Lecture Series, "Another World Is Possible: Revolutionary Visions, Past and Present", hosted visionary scholars and organizers from across the U.S. and world, exploring how social movements have thought about – and worked towards – building other possible worlds. Hosted by the UMass Alliance for Community Transformation, this capstone event is a participatory forum to “plug in” and contribute to collective visions right here in western Massachusetts.