PRYDE Scholars' summer impact
Two PRYDE scholars, Monica Wassel and Julia Lesnick, presented their research findings at the 2017 Cornell Cooperative Extension Internship reception on October 11th on campus. This reception allowed students in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and the College of Human Ecology to showcase the results from their internships to extension educators, Cornell faculty, and their community mentors.
Students from across both colleges apply to specific projects that work with Cornell Cooperative Extension (CCE) county offices to do applied research. There are a diverse range of projects, all of which strive to tie research and outreach in a way that benefits communities across New York State. Selected interns are required to document their experiences by blogging and presenting their findings at the reception at the end of summer.
Monica Wassel, a senior nutritional science major, worked under Dr. Karl Pillemer in Human Ecology and Jennifer Tiffany, the executive director of CUCE-NYC, to integrate Cornell Tech in developing and proposing an intergenerational program that would benefit both youth and elders. Throughout the summer Monica performed an assessment of the interests and needs of Roosevelt Island, NY residents by meeting with community leaders. From her interviews, she discovered that people were extremely interested in giving back to their community by helping the environment. At the end of her internship, Monica developed multiple program options and recommendations for a successful intergenerational program that focuses on environmental sustainability.
Julia Lesnick, a senior human development major, worked under Dr. Jane Mendle in Human Ecology and June Mead, a CCE program leader, to address the need for improved trauma care training in Broome County. Julia developed a professional development workshop in trauma-informed care to combat high rates of youth trauma resulting from poverty, natural disasters, and problems related to drug abuse. Julia’s work aims to deliver better youth care and support by training providers with evidence-backed research. Julia’s program trained over 50 direct-youth program providers and helped staff enhance their understanding of trauma and provide each program with tools to promote resilience and recovery.
By Esther Kim