This spring semester 29 third and fourth year students were matched with faculty members from across campus for a paid undergraduate research experience through the LEAD Scholars Academy.

These assistantships cover a wide variety of academic areas: psychology, biology, sport and exercise science, hospitality and more.

To be selected, faculty members first submitted applications to receive an assistant. Next, students applied for an undergraduate research assistantship. Then, the LEAD Scholars Academy staff matched up faculty members and students based on common needs.

The 10-hour-per-week position is paid by LEAD Scholars Academy, so students get a paid experience and faculty members get help with their research programs.

Senior psychology major Kailyn Baker spent her semester working with Germayne Graham as a researcher for the Hazing Consortium at UCF through the University of Maine. “At the beginning of the semester I held two focus groups, and collected information from students on their perception of hazing, and their experience with the new hazing module. I then took that information and translated it into an anti-hazing workshop that was presented to faculty and staff.”

The module Baker helped create will be part of the online orientation course new UCF students must take along with alcohol education and sexual consent awareness.

Junior health sciences pre-clinical major Naureen Syed is another student who completed an assistantship this semester. She has been working with Bari Ruddy, Communications Sciences and Disorders Department, researching health literacy in patients with head and neck cancer.

Syed’s favorite part about her time with Ruddy was presenting at the Undergraduate Research Showcase. “It really helped me understand my topic even more and try to enlist interest from my judges and other peers,” she said.

For more information on LSA’s Undergraduate Research Program, click here: