Posts tagged with Mini Grants in Blog Student Stories

Showing 1 - 4 of 4 items
Image of students studying and reading textbooks.
April 28, 2020
  • Laura Ann Rall
Our project focused on assessing the needs of rural students at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor campus. As two Master of Social Work students hailing from Bloomingdale (Laura) and Dowagiac (Ana), two rural towns in Southwest Michigan, we felt very connected to this project from the beginning. We distributed a Qualtrics survey titled “Rural Students Needs Assessment” to help us identify the challenges and needs of rural students at the U-M. The survey was also used as a reference to determine if people would be willing to participate in focus groups and share their experiences on campus as a rural student. The responses on the survey were then utilized as a guide to create the questions and themes introduced during the focus groups that we wanted to explore further. Our first goal was to identify the challenges and needs of this population and to identify some solutions to better assist these students. Once we obtained these findings, we sought to offer recommendations to the University of Michigan, certain departments within the institution who expressed interest in this group of students, such as the College of Literature, Science, and Arts, and with the CEW+, who had previously identified rural students as a nontraditional student identity at the Ann Arbor campus. The ultimate goal was to raise awareness about the challenges that rural students experience and to provide recommendations that could help address the current gaps.

photo that is representative of the sweat, tears, or the sea art project
April 20, 2020
  • Han Na Shin
Sweat, tears, or the sea is a photo-series that comments on the physical space of Asian Americans. I want to capture the tenderness, beauty, and portraits of the children of immigrants to create an identity of what it means for them to know that their family has chosen the path of “sweat, tears, or the sea” in America. I used a collection of 4 images per photo for the individual to be able to know that there is a commonality amongst each of the photos together and that we are all intertwined in the emotions and stories we carry as Asian Americans.
Logo for Women's Health, Incarcerated
April 3, 2020
  • Bhavana Sai Garapati
Although the United States only has about 5% of the world’s population, it holds about 25% of the world’s prison population. According to the Prison Policy Initiative, the U.S. currently has about 2.3 million people in a variety of confinement facilities like federal and state prisons, local jails, juvenile correctional facilities, immigration detention centers, military prisons, civil commitment centers, and even state psychiatric hospitals to name some. While women currently make up approximately 10% of the currently incarcerated population, it is important to understand that the rate at which women are being incarcerated has been twice as much as men since the 1980s. Statistics collected by the Sentencing Project show that since the 1980s the number of women who are incarcerated has increased by more than 750%.

We found that many of the current resources speaking about mass incarceration in America are centered on the experiences of men but not as much is said about the experiences of women and gender nonconforming individuals. We believe that when discussing criminal justice reform, it is absolutely necessary to include women and gender nonconforming individuals in the discussion because their experiences precarcerally, carcerally, and postcarcerally, are uniquely shaped by their gender. Referring back to the Sentencing Project, 80% of women in jails are also mothers, most of whom were the primary caretakers for their children before being incarcerated. When women are incarcerated, there are these unique issues such as reproductive health that affect them and their families in ways that men do not necessarily experience. With this in mind, we wanted to create a platform to inform the general public about the experiences of women in the criminal justice system and create a space for those directly and indirectly affected by the carceral state to talk about their lived experiences and areas of expertise. We wanted to place a general focus on health because we believe that our current criminal justice system is a growing public health concern and is often left out of the conversation when we, as a society, talk about access to healthcare, among other things. Millions of individuals are getting locked up everyday for substance abuse offenses when they should be getting better access to treatments and resources to help with addiction as well as other monetary and mental health related concerns. Thousands of incarcerated pregnant women face horrific conditions because they lack any kind of proper access to reproductive healthcare. All of this--and more--needs to be brought to the attention of the public.
The Perch Team
February 26, 2018
  • Akira Nishii
Perch’s mission is to make research more accessible to undergraduates.
UROP, the Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program, does a great job at its mission: helping underrepresented and first-generation students gain their first research experience and make the most of it. When UROP started 25 years ago, it was able to accommodate every eligible student who applied.That’s no longer true. The number of undergraduates seeking research experience has grown tremendously in the last decade. Why?

For many students, undergraduate research is their first experience working on real-world problems that may provide widespread impact and help people in the future. Through research, students gain valuable critical thinking skills, a new way of asking questions. Research is a chance for students to apply what they’ve learned in class to the real world, to venture boldly beyond the maps of the known. Research is a chance to improve people’s lives, it’s the chance to get a law of nature named after you, it’s the universe trying to understand itself. Not to mention that undergraduate research experience is now necessary rather than an added bonus when applying to graduate school, industrial R&D jobs, and numerous other career paths.