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Humanities Students Excel Over Summer Break

By Karen Marsh Schaeffer


Emery Willis, English major; and Muskan Walia, Philosophy of Science major, were two of six honors students from the University of Utah selected to attend the Oxford Consortium weeklong workshop this past July on New Technology & Human Rights with professors Chris Mead and Ginger Smoak.

The College of Humanities student participants in the Summer Program for Undergraduate Research (SPUR) were Callie Avondet, history, Cindy Diaz Rey, Latin American studies, and Fernanda Guzman, writing and rhetoric Studies. Participants in the program came to the University of Utah from all over the United States and were supported with faculty mentors including College of Humanities faculty members Maile Arvin, history, Jenny Andrus, writing and rhetoric studies, and Crystal Lumpkins, communication.


Conference Presentations

Philosophy undergraduate student Pierce Kristofferson with faculty mentor Matt Haber and fellow undergraduate students Kalista Leggitt, and Zeia Woodreuff presented at the 16th annual Rocky Mountain Ethics Congress in August at the University of Colorado Boulder. Pierce and team presented a paper they have been working on titled, “The Intersection of Pediatric Autonomy, Conscientious Objection, and Civil Disobedience in Healthcare.”

Britta Bolander, philosophy and linguistics undergraduate student presented a talk, “Problematizing Machine Learning’s Cognitive Metaphor: Implications and Alternatives.” Britta was able to present her work at the 11th Values in Medicine, Science, and Technology Conference held at the University of Texas, Dallas in May 2023. Faculty members Aniello De Santo and Joyce Havstad supervised an Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program (UROP) project Britta proposed in spring 2023 and this talk was the outcome of that work. 

Samantha Barlow presented pre-data research conducted by herself, Emma Farnsworth and Sylvia Page at the Society for the Improvement of Psychological Sciences in Padova, Italy in June 2023. This research was a spinoff study from research they conducted with other students in a Linguistics Capstone class with faculty member Rachel Hayes-Harb. Sam, Emma, and Sylvia all recently earned Bachelor of Arts Degrees in linguistics from the University of Utah.


Internships and Learning Abroad

Fifty-five humanities students completed internships this summer for humanities course credit, working with companies like the Fort Douglas Museum, the Black Chamber, ABC4, the Idea Factory, the Carbon Company and Dream Catcher Program. This represents a 100 percent increase over summer 2022. The College of Humanities is committed to helping students find paid internships and funding options for necessary unpaid internships.

Ninety-three humanities students participated in learning abroad (including eight students who completed internships with Hinckley Global). Students were able to engage with local traditions and cultures in Grenoble, Sicily, Patagonia, Kiel, Oviedo, London, Columbia, Scotland, Amman, and more.

Last Updated: 10/6/23