Community Based Research


2010 Community Based Undergraduate Research Grants Recipients

2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008


  • Title: “Public Health Intervention and Disease Prevention in Rural Honduras”
    Student Researchers: Claire Hennigan, 3rd year Studies in Women and Gender major, and Amy Rogers, 3rd year Religious Studies major
    Faculty Advisor: Rebecca Dillingham, Infectious Disease and International Health
    Community Partner: Global Brigades


    Claire and Amy will research public health intervention and disease prevention by conducting an epidemiological case-control study of residents in and around Los Parillos, Honduras. They hope to determine which public health measures are most effective.


  • Title: “The Challenge of Confronting HIV/AIDS in the Post-Apartheid South African Health Care System”
    Student Researcher: Christine Hercik, 3rd year Global Development Studies and French major Faculty Advisor: Rebecca Dillingham, Infectious Disease and International Health
    Community Partner:
    Child Family Health International


    Christine will travel to Durban, South Africa with Child and Family Health International to act as an assistant researcher for the director of St. Mary’s Hospital. She will examine how health professionals address HIV/AIDS patient education and retention as well as the distribution of critical life-saving medications.


  • Title: “Grassroot Voices: Community Perceptions and Evaluation of a Local NGO in Cape Town, South Africa”
    Student Researcher:
    Rachel Macauley, 3rd year Foreign Affairs major
    Faculty Advisor:
    Cynthia Hoehler-Fatton, Carter G. Woodson Institute
    Community Partner:
    Students’ Health And Welfare Centers Organisation


    Rachel will travel to Cape Town, South Africa to investigate how community ideas are incorporated into non-governmental organizations (NGOs) development projects. She will create an assessment rubric to evaluate local perceptions of the host organization’s project capacity and institutional capabilities.

  • Title: “Charlottesville Refugee Project”
    Student Researchers:
    Katherine Whelan, 3rd year GDS and Religious Studies major, Hebah Fisher, 3rd year Global Development Studies major, and Carolyn Silwa, 2nd year Undeclared major
    Faculty Advisor: Bob Swap, Environmental Sciences
    Community Partner:
    Hope Foundation


    This team of students will study communication among service providers serving refugee communities in Charlottesville. They will create a comprehensive resource packet describing available services and resources for the refugee community and disseminate it to relevant local area organizations.


  • Title: “Turtles, Tourists, Tropics: Ecotourism and Sea Turtle Conservation in Costa Rica”
    Student Researchers: Chelsea Vonu, 3rd year Spanish major, and Jay Farris, graduate student in the McIntire School of Commerce
    Faculty Advisor: David Smith, Environmental Sciences
    Community Partner: Center for Responsible Travel (CREST) and Corcovado Foundation


    Chelsea and Jay will volunteer with the Center for Responsible Travel (CREST) and the Corcovado Foundation and work with their constituents, local village residents, and ecotourists to effectively understand the role ecotourism plays in conservation efforts in Costa Rica and its effects on the turtle population and local ecosystem.


  • Title: “Lived Theology and Missions in Western Nicaragua”
    Student Researcher:
    James Hill, 3rd year Religious Studies and Spanish major
    Faculty Advisor:
    Heather Warren, Religious Studies
    Community Partner: Amigos for Christ, Adventures in Missions, and Manna Project International


    James will travel to Nicaragura to study the impact of religious beliefs on the development of some of Nicaragua’s most impoverished communities. He will compare and contrast the “lived theology” of three non-profit organizations.


  • Title: “Hosting a Global Spectacle: Evaluating the Implementation and Opportunities for Community-Based Education Reform in South Africa”
    Student Researchers: Tai Ford, 3rd year Global Development Studies major, and Andrew Yu, 3rd year Political and Social Thought and Foreign Affairs major
    Faculty Advisor:
    Carol Anne Spreen, Curry School of Education
    Community Partner:
    Public Participation in Education Network


    Tai and Andrew will seek to understand how literacy initiatives in South Africa are utilizing the international opportunity of the World Cup to mobilize public support for education. They will examine whether effective literacy reform is a matter of opportunity or a problem of public support and governmental commitment.

  • Title: “How Local Institutions are Able to Support Sustainable Development in Bluefields, Nicaragua through education”
    Student Researcher: Electra Bolotas, 3rd year Global Development Studies and Anthropology major Faculty Advisor: : Brad Brown, McIntire School of Commerce
    Community Partner:
    Foundation for the Autonomy and Development of Nicaragua's Atlantic Coast


    Electra will study how education and training is organized and delivered through a small network of schools in rural communities of Nicaragua. She will conduct interviews in English and Spanish with teachers and other representatives involved in the region’s educational process.

  • Title: “The Role of Host Among the Makushi”
    Student Researcher:
    William Hurd, 2nd year Pre-Commerce major
    Faculty Advisor:
    : George Mentore, Anthropology
    Community Partner:
    Makushi village, Guyana


    Through field work, William will study the Makushi South American rain forest people and their ecotourism business. His research will examine if ecotourism is a viable option for the village or if it’s potentially damaging to the cultural integrity of the community.