2014-2015 ISSR Scholars Named

The Institute for Social Science Research is pleased to announce its 2014-2015 Scholars, who represent three colleges and five departments across the University of Massachusetts Amherst campus.

The scholars are:

""Assistant Professor Dania Francis (Departments of Economics and Afro-American Studies)


""Professor Naomi Gerstel (Department of Sociology)


""Associate Professor Ray La Raja (Department of Political Science)


""Assistant Professor Bernhard Leidner (Peace Psychology division of the Department of Psychology and Brain Sciences)


""Associate Professor Rebecca Ready (Department of Psychology and Brain Sciences)


""Assistant Professor Kristine Yu (Department of Linguistics)


ISSR Scholars participate in a year-long seminar that helps each of them develop a strong research grant proposal. In addition to attending in-depth sessions on grant writing and receiving valuable peer feedback on their proposals, ISSR Scholars are given unique opportunities to consult with nationally recognized experts about their proposals.

From the College of Humanities and Fine Arts, Yu will develop a proposal titled “Predicting Upcoming Sentence Structure from Word Pronunciation.” Leidner and Ready are from the College of Natural Sciences; their respective proposals are titled “Is Intergroup Violence Healthy or Unhealthy for People on the Perpetrating Side?: The Effects of Ingroup-Committed Violence on Physical and Mental Health” and “Emotion Regulation across the Adult Lifespan: Delimiting Vulnerabilities in Later Life.” The College of Social and Behavioral Science is represented by Francis, Gerstel, and La Raja, whose respective proposal titles are “Non-Cognitive Skills in Education,” “Families and the College Experience: The Role of Class, Race and Gender,” and “Exploring Reforms to Improve U.S. Democracy.”

The mission of ISSR is to promote excellence in social science research. One of our most important goals, served by the Scholars Program, is to strengthen existing social science infrastructure on campus in order to stimulate high-quality scholarship.