ISSR PI Workshop | Deploying Undergrad Researchers

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Monday, April 24, 2023 - 12:15pm to 1:30pm
Online Event - Login credentials via email for registered participants

As educators, part of our job is training the next generation of researchers, which includes undergraduate students. Undergraduate student researchers are eager to get research experience. Our ability to recruit and mentor them through research is critical to exposing them to the research process and as a potential career field.

Our invited panelist will discuss their experience working with undergraduate students within their research. They will also discuss issues such as how to recruit undergraduate student researchers, how to compensate them, what their training should consist of, how to handle co-authorships in publications, and how to mentor and delegate work to them.

ISSR PI Workshop Series: Engaging Research Teams & Community Partnerships

This panel is the third and final event in ISSR's three-part workshop series designed to help you build strong and effective collaborations in your research projects. Check out our past conversations on February 27 to discuss engaging community research collaborations, and March 27 to learn about forming strong research teams.


Christine Crago – is an Associate Professor in the Department of Resource Economics and the Commonwealth Honors College (CHC). Her fields of research are energy and environmental economics. Her current research examines household decision making related to energy technologies, and income and racial disparities in power outage experiences and adoption of renewable energy technologies. She is a core faculty in ELEVATE, an NSF-funded PhD training program emphasizing equity in the energy transition. Dr. Crago has advised over 60 CHC Seniors in their Honors Theses as an instructor for Honors Seminar courses “Sustainability in Today’s Economy” and “Economics of the Renewable Energy Transition.” 

Brenda Bushouse - is an Associate Professor and serves as the Undergraduate Program Director at the School of Public Policy at UMass Amherst.  Her research program has two intersecting foci: The first is a lasting interest in the realm of activity that is neither market nor state. She researches the politics of nonprofit organizations in the policy process. A second lasting area of Bushouse’s research focuses on the most vulnerable in our society: children. Her research asks the simple question: Why do governments consistently under-invest in programs that benefit children?  She is an enthusiast for active, hands-on undergraduate curricula emphasizing theory/practice connections.  The Undergraduate Research Experience Program has been a valuable experience for the students and her research projects.  Successful experiences include teams coding text, cleaning transcripts, archival research, and having students conduct targeted literature reviews.  In one experience, the student was brought on as a co-author for a published paper.  They keys to success is knowing the capabilities of the student and matching them to the tasks and having weekly meetings to review their research and assign new tasks.

Moderator and panel organizer Sofiya Alhassan – is a Professor in the Kinesiology Department at UMass Amherst. She organized this series in her service as Director for Faculty Research at ISSR, and now serves as the UMass Graduate School's Associate Dean for Inclusion and Engagement.. Her research focuses on implementing physical activity for the prevention of obesity and the improvement of cognitive outcomes in underserved pediatric populations. In particular, the utilization of community family-based physical activity interventions to improve obesity-related health behaviors and cognitive health in children of color. Her research agenda also includes examining 1) physical activity policy-based intervention in preschool-age children; 2) environmental influences on various health behaviors in children of color, and 3) after-school family-based intervention to improve physiological, psychosocial, and academic performance of pre-adolescent children of color. Her research takes place in Springfield.