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Institute for Policy and Social Research Doctoral Research Fellows


Darlingtina Kenechi Atakere

Psychology and Gerontology

Atakere's research utilizes interdisciplinary methods to examine social determinants of health and health outcomes among older minority adults. A secondary interest of hers is the examination of the association of conceptions of relationality to the experience of care and obligation. At the core of her research is the application of a decolonial approach to the theories and practices of psychological science.


Matt Comi


Matt studies social relationships in agriculture, food, and environmental systems. His recent work uses qualitative approaches to better understand the social worlds of genetically-engineered hybrid seed sales in conventional agriculture in the US Midwest. Matt is also conducting preliminary work on commercial beer foodways with a particular focus on yeast cultivation and hops-growing in global beer production networks.


Mariah Crystal

Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies

Mariah's research examines women's roles during war and conflict in Sub-Saharan Africa and how gender was strategically deployed as a tactic of war. Her work analyzes women’s oral histories to better understand the experiences of women during war, the legacy of their experiences, and lingering challenges.


Nicole Humphrey

School of Public Affairs & Administration

Nicole's research focuses on local government and social equity. Her current research focuses on exploring how social equity is conceptualized and operationalized by government officials, and the impact this has on the communities they serve.


Gregory Leung


Greg's research is focused on health economics, the economics of drugs and risky behaviors. He is particularly interested in how policies on medical and recreational drugs impact public health and the economy.


Nicolas Natchoo

Curriculum & Teaching, School of Education

Nicholas's research investigates the bearing which the introduction of Creole languages in the national curricula of multilingual and multiethnic islands can have on the way we approach curriculum theories. Using a postcolonial lens, that draws from critical pedagogies and cultural historiography, his research contributes to the work done in the field of curriculum studies for thinking about the educational systems of non-Western developing nations as democratic and inclusive spaces, where the recognition of long-considered minor forms of knowledges and experiences serves as a basis for transformative pedagogical practices.


Cassandra Osei

School of Public Affairs & Administration

Cassandra’s research examines the social, political, and policy factors that shape the maternal mortality disparity in the U.S. Alongside wanting to develop an intervention, she is interested in integrating Public Administration (PA) theory, Critical Race Theory (CRT), and the Social Determinants of Health (SDH) frameworks to better understand the complex factors influencing the Black/white maternal mortality. disparity.


Courtney Wilt

Special Education, School of Education

Courtney's research focuses on how multiply-marginalized students with disabilities experience and counter interacting oppressions, such as racism and ableism, particularly during the transition to adult life. She is concerned with building frameworks and practices that disrupt inequities for adolescents, and their families, by employing humanizing and decolonizing research methods.


Click here to view past IPSR Doctoral Research Fellows.

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