I currently engage with the vulnerable groups I study to bridge the gap between research and service. For my community engagement, I was nominated and awarded The Ohio State University’s College of Arts and Sciences 2018 Graduate Student Award for Distinguished Service.
Department and University Service
I have been involved in my department in various ways throughout my time in graduate school. I have been a mentor to incoming graduate students, served on graduate student panels, and led multiple campus tours for incoming graduate students. I have served two non-consecutive years as my cohort’s department liaison, planned service activities for the department as part of the community service committee, and currently serve as the Spring Awards Committee Representative.
For the university, I currently informally advise a student organization I co-founded while an undergraduate student at Ohio State, whose goal is to ensure good retention rates for women of color as they transition from high school to college. I have spoken to underrepresented high school and college students about the college and graduate school application processes, respectively. I have been invited to talk about my research on racial inequality in the criminal justice system to first year Ohio State students and plan to continue these efforts.
Through Ohio State’s Department of Social Change Buckeye R.E.A.C.H. program, I mentor and assist incarcerated male youth at an Ohio juvenile correction facility with financial planning, developing career plans, resume writing, and various topics that prepare them for reentry and adulthood.
I have also assisted Reconstruction Inc., a non-profit organization dedicated to serving formerly incarcerated people in the Philadelphia area, with their leadership transition process. In collaboration with fellow Ohio State graduate students Lesley Schneider and Joseph Guzman, we conducted in-depth qualitative interviews with the current executive board, attended organizational meetings, and analyzed organizational documents to help ensure it continues to serve formerly incarcerated people. This organization gave our final report to the new executive board, and current leaders will continue using our work to secure grants and other funding opportunities.