The Faculty of Liberal Arts & Professional Studies (LA&PS) is celebrating the fourth annual Dean’s Award for Research Excellence (DARE) by recognizing 54 students for their research achievements.
This year’s DARE recipients produced meaningful work across all disciplines offered in LA&PS. Over the summer, each student played an integral role in coordinating projects that added valuable scholarly inquiry to the social sciences, humanities, and professional studies.
Each recipient was awarded $5,000 and paired with faculty members to explore urgent research subjects, including health care, work policies during the COVID-19 pandemic, digital data collection practices, issues impacting diaspora communities and more.
“DARE is a wonderful opportunity to nurture mentorship and collaboration between instructors and students,” says Ravi de Costa, associate dean of Research & Graduate Studies. “This year’s research projects demonstrate the range and quality of the work taking place in LA&PS. Our faculty is dedicated to supporting creative and impactful work across all of our disciplines, and the DARE competition continues to expand on these efforts.”
For the award recipients, the projects serve as key stepping stones to future endeavours – whether in their respective fields beyond the university setting or continued academic research. Through their reflections, many of this year’s winners cited the unique hands-on experience as their favourite aspect of the process.
Fourth-year political science student, Kiana Therrien-Tomas, was pleased with the practical skills she acquired.
Looking back on the time spent working with Department of Politics Professor Simone Bohn on a project titled, “Collaborating with the state: a double-edged sword? The Brazilian Women’s Movement under the Workers’ Party administrations,” Therrien-Tomas explains, “this experience has been a great addition to my learning and professional development. It is an honour to receive this award. I can now proudly state that I have taken part in all stages of the research process, and apply the knowledge gained from this experience towards the completion of my undergraduate degree and my endeavours in law school.”
Fourth-year Disaster and Emergency Management student, Tiana Putric, echoed these positive sentiments when detailing the experience working with Department of Communication & Media Studies Professor Jonathan Obar on the DARE project, “The Future of Big Data: Understanding Digital Service Data Retention Policies and Implications for Online Privacy.”
“DARE was a transformative experience that left me with several new skills and insights,” said Putric. “I gained experience collecting, analyzing, and summarizing data retention policies and contracts from global digital service providers, learned how to evaluate policies against privacy laws and normative regulatory philosophies, and contributed to the data retention body of knowledge.”
In congratulating this year’s recipients, LA&PS Dean J.J. McMurtry was delighted to see how far the award has come.
“This competition offers an excellent opportunity for students to examine, discover, critique and create with leading researchers in their fields,” he said. “Over the past four years, DARE has exemplified the truly diverse and global scope of the research being done in LA&PS. Once again, our students have exceeded expectations.”
The 2021 DARE gallery can be viewed on the LA&PS website.