Scholarship

Recent Projects


Higher Education Diversity Work and its Discontents – In 2014, student activism erupted in a series of critical incidents on university campuses around the world. For example, the #itooamharvard and #RhodesMustFall campaigns began as local campus movements at Harvard and the University of Cape Town respectively, both campaigns subsequently spread transnationally through social media. This activism draws attention to the discrepancy between institutional conceptions of inclusion, evidenced in diversity work, and student experiences of persistent exclusion.

I employ a network ethnography methodology – combining social network analysis (SNA) with qualitative methods – to examine this recent wave of student activism in relation to institutional diversity work in higher education. This project focuses on both local and transnational constructions and circulations of meaning within student activist campaigns. I posit that through circulation of social media hashtags, student activists harness digital capital, connect in a network of practice, and exercise narrative agency – productively countering the hegemonic logics of institutional diversity work. This research began in 2017 and preliminary findings were presented at the Association for American Anthropology Association Annual Meetings (2018/2019) and the Association for Higher Education annual conference (2019).


The Oregon Transfer Project – a qualitative study of first-generation Oregon community college (CC) students’ transfer knowledge and advising experience in the context of shifting state legislation. Baseline data was collected in Fall 2018 and preliminary findings are published in the forthcoming edited volume, At the Intersection: Unpacking the Experiences of First-Generation College Students Today (Stylus Publishing, Spring 2020). Data collection will continue over multiple years to determine the efficacy of changing legislation, inform policy revision, and generate knowledge regarding CC transfer among first generation students. 

Oregon State Legislature, Senate Interim Committee on Education. Expert Perspectives on Community College to University Transfer Systems. September 16, 2019 (Oregon Transfer Project at minute 20:16)

Documenting the Racial Transfer Gap – This research used a nationally representative sample of students drawn from the Beginning Post-secondary Students Longitudinal Study (BPS:12/14) to quantitatively document transfer gaps. The study examined inequities in early transfer among racial/ethnic groups and explored implications for transfer partnerships. Results are published in the late 2020 issue of New Directions for Community Colleges (NDCC): Transfer Partnerships for More Equitable Outcomes.

Transfer Partnerships: Lessons to
Improve Student Success During and
After COVID-19


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