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May 21, 2014 | Spotlight

Vinson Fellows Give Presentations on Their Spring Semester Research Projects

Writer: Roger Nielsen

Four University of Georgia undergraduate students in the Vinson Institute Fellows Program concluded their semester-long research projects by giving presentations to Institute of Government faculty and staff at a gathering earlier this month.

The four sophomores, selected through the university's Roosevelt Institute chapter, were each paired with a faculty mentor to work on a research project related to his or her program of study. The internships give fellows the chance to explore future careers in public service, interact with government officials, and examine critical issues.

Kathleen Wilson, who is pursuing a dual degree in economics and international affairs with minors in Arabic and French, worked with International Center Director Rusty Brooks to examine ways to improve women's health in Syrian refugee camps. She is from Beaumont, Texas.

Amelia Watson, a Norcross resident, investigated the effectiveness of techniques designed to contain pandemics. Watson, whose mentor was Institute Associate Director Stacy Jones, is working on a bachelor's degree in environmental health and a master's in public health.

Atlanta resident Shaun Kleber, who is seeking degrees in international affairs and political science, worked with faculty mentor Wes Clarke, a senior public service associate. Kleber explored the long-term effectiveness of Georgia's HOPE Scholarship.

Kirstie Hostetter, who is pursuing a degree in environmental economics and management, explored methods of disseminating information about the effects of rising sea levels on coastal Georgia. Her mentor was Jason Evans, an environmental sustainability analyst in the Institute's Planning and Environmental Services program. She is from Memphis, Tennessee.

Vinson Fellows are selected for the spring semester cohort in collaboration with the university's chapter of the Roosevelt Institute and the UGA Honors Program. The Vinson Institute Fellows Program fall internship is open to all UGA undergraduates. Students interested in applying to the program can contact coordinator The Institute of Government at khoward3@uga.edu for more information.