Ohio State nav bar

Society of Undergraduate Student Apprentices

Society of Undergraduate Student Apprentices

Global Arts + Humanities’ Society of Undergraduate Apprentices is a competitive research program that provides upper-level undergraduates the opportunity to be mentored through multidisciplinary approaches to the study of an annual theme, to build an intellectual cohort around the theme, and to produce research/creative responses to inquiries impelled by these engagements. To date, the program has supported 27 undergraduate students. The theme for the 2023-24 academic year is Freedom Dreams.

The fellowship carries with it a stipend of $2,000. To be eligible, students must hold junior or senior status and have a minimum GPA of 3.0.

Introducing the 2023-24 Society of Undergraduate Apprentices
Annual Theme: Freedom Dreams


Smiling person with arms crossed in front of them sitting in front of a brick wall outdoors

Majors | Anthropology and Romance Studies

Smiling man wearing glasses and white shirt against a light background

Major | African and African American Studies
Minors | Women's, Gender and Sexuality Studies and Public Health
Project Title | Rest or Resilience?An Analysis of the Implications of Black Resilience Neoliberalism and Neoliberal Practices on Health Outcomes and Rest Opportunities within Black Communities

Person standing outdoors wearing a black tank top and green trousers

Major | Dance
Minor | Integrative Approaches to Health and Wellness
Project Title | Capturing the Cool: Exploring Dance Notation Strategies for African Diasporic Aesthetics of Dance

Smiling person with long hair wearing a black blouse and a tan blazer

Major | Human Development and Family Science (Concentration: Integrated Studies)
Project Title | Community Engagement as Crucial Support for Children of Incarcerated Parents and Their Families

Person with long dark hair wearing a green baseball cap, blue shirt and denim jacket standing in front of white backdrop

Major | Drawing and Painting
Project Title | Latine Representation as Social Change both in the Past and Present Artworld

Smiling person with short curly hair wearing a patterned shirt in front of a green backdrop

Majors | Public Management, Leadership and Policy (Specialization: Education Policy) and Sociology (Specialization: Criminology, Law and Society)
Project Title | Un/Deschooling: Legacies of Contradiction in Alternatives to Mainstream, Public Education

Previous Cohorts

Majors | Dance and Communications

Project Title | Dance Like a Man?: Investigating Masculine Aesthetics in Contemporary Dance through Archival Analysis and Embodied Practice

Majors | International Relations, Diplomacy and Public Management
Minors | History and French
Project Title | Dialogue and Beadwork as Archive of Community Peacebuilding: A Case Study in Northern Uganda 

Major | Music (Performance Track)
Project Title | History Keeping in Music and Dance Presented at Pow Wows

Major | Biochemistry
Minors | Spanish and Andean and Amazonian Studies
Project Title | The Details in the Devils: Plural Meanings in Diablada Performance and Archival Presentation

Major | Neuroscience (Molecular/Cellular)
Minor | English

Project Title | Perspectives on Hospice and Palliative Care


MICHELLE WIBBLESMAN | Associate Professor, Spanish and Portuguese
Wibbelsman specializes in the expressive culture of indigenous peoples of the Andean highlands. Her work in Andean Ecuador since 1995 has focused on symbolic and semiotic analytical approaches to indigenous performance, ritual practices and politics. She is the author of Ritual Encounters: Otavalan Modern and Mythic Community, and faculty; curator of the Andean and Amazonian Cultural Artifact Collection at Ohio State; and director of the OSU Andean Music Ensemble. She is also lead co-PI of the K’acha Willaykuna Andean and Amazonian Indigenous Arts and Humanities Collaboration.

Major | History
The goal of Adamson's research is to understand how the Indigenous people affected by the Carlisle Indian Industrial School – the students and their families and communities – attempted to maintain sovereignty in their own time.
RESEARCH PROJECT | Education and Sovereignty: The Carlisle Indian Industrial School and Indigenous People's Resistance, 1879-1892

Major | Dance
Komarnitsky developed different practices for accessing physical awareness of interconnection with the ecosystems around us and recognizing relationships with ecosystems where we may not traditionally look for them. Through movement, presence and intention, we may discover new ways of being and support for our human and non-human communities.
RESEARCH PROJECT | Embodied Practices for Re-Imagining Our Relationship with Nature

Major | Earth Systems Sciences, Oceanographic and Marine Sciences
Lanker's research involved learning about the lives of Ohio farmers. To do so, they went into the homes and barns of three Ohio farmers and interviewed them about their lives, their communities and how farming is changing under their feet. The interviews were edited to create films that provide a snapshot into the lives of these Ohio farmers.
RESEARCH PROJECT | Ohio Farmers: Struggles, Communities, Experiences

Major | Political Science
Minors | Spanish and Italian

Levine's project explores the implications that the domestic and international beef production industries have on environmental issues, including greenhouse gas emissions, water contamination and deforestation.
RESEARCH PROJECT | What's the Beef with Beef?

Majors | History and Political Science
Minors | Theatre and Spanish

The United Fruit Company, now known as Chiquita Banana, has worked hard to silence the voices of the hundreds of laborers they massacred in 1928, but their stories persist nonetheless. Scherrer's project seeks to uplift these voices and understand the mechanisms that operated to suppress them.
RESEARCH PROJECT | The Banana Republic of Colombia

Majors | Moving Image Production and Sonic Arts
In the face of alarmingly declining Indigenous student population numbers, Noquisi's research documents internal attempts by students to strengthen the Native community at The Ohio State University, and their assertions of self-determination and rejection of Ohio State's imposed extinction.
RESEARCH PROJECT | Oh-vtvlvketv, To Go Further: Indigenous Communal Approaches to Counteracting Institutional Neglect

Majors | Medical Anthropology and Biology
Willis' research seeks to further explore how medical apartheid has shaped African American communities today and contributed to the environmental racism we see in Black communities throughout the United States.
RESEARCH PROJECT | Breeding Mistrust: How the Scars of Medical Apartheid Perpetuate Environmental Racism


MARGARET FLINN (French and Italian) | Flinn’s research focuses on film, art and politics as intersecting cultural discourses. Her first book, The Social Architecture of French Cinema 1929-39, (Liverpool University Press, 2014), examines the construction, representation and experience of cinematographic spaces and places in documentary and realist fiction film. She is currently completing a book on director Olivier Assayas that places Assayas’s internationally well-known “techno-thrillers” in dialogue with his domestic dramas and considers the ensemble of Assayas’s œuvre in the light of current theories of cosmopolitanism.  

Major | Political Science
Minors | Human Rights, and Civic Engagement

Elizabeth Bateman hopes to practice law as a civil rights attorney. She is particularly interested in subjects of human rights that pertain to immigration rights, environmental racism and women’s rights. Bateman hopes that the Society of Undergraduate Fellows program will allow her to engage in new, meaningful interactions with her community and fellow students while gaining a more well-rounded approach to the research development process.
RESEARCH PROJECT | Food Access Reimagined in Response to COVID-19

Major | Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies
Minors | Asian American Studies, Studio Art, and Human Rights

As a fellow, Mia Cai Cariello will address the relationship between anti-rape organizing and human rights — both interpersonally and institutionally. She hopes to be challenged with new interdisciplinary approaches and grow her network among other scholars interested in human rights. Cai Cariello is looking forward to furthering her studies in graduate school and pursuing a career that will enable her to continue to advocate with survivors.
RESEARCH PROJECT | Activism or Advocacy?

Major | Dance
Thaliyah Cools-Lartigue plans to become a professional dancer, choreographer and performer. This past spring, she studied abroad with the Ohio State Dance department in Salvador, Bahia, Brazil, where she took dance courses and performed. She labels her interest in human rights through cultural rights, immigration and migration. Half Caribbean, Cools-Lartigue hopes to gain an understanding of how dance can be utilized to communicate transitions, migration and cultural origin within Afro-Caribbean culture and also gain a closer relationship to her personal heritage.
RESEARCH PROJECT | Caribbean Dance: Identity, History and Mobility

Major | Medical Anthropology
Minor | Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies

Laura Fink is on the pre-medicine track, and as a queer person, they are particularly interested in serving the LGBTQ+ community and researching their unique experiences in healthcare. LGBTQ+ rights are evolving at a rapid pace, and the worlds of medicine and research have failed to adequately adapt. Fink hopes to be a strong voice advocating for their community in both the doctor’s office and academia by bringing these issues into the spotlight.
RESEARCH PROJECT | Transgender Healthcare: A Story of Medicine and Gender Identit

Majors | Sociology and Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies
Gabrielle Frick hopes to attend graduate school and work with nonprofits for part of their career, with a focus on prison abolition. Frick is particularly interested in human rights work related to mass incarceration, education, poverty, addiction and LGBTQ+ issues. During the Society of Undergraduate Fellows program, Frick hopes to further explore their passions to gain more insight about how research can be part of their career and collaborate with others passionate about human rights.
RESEARCH PROJECT | Experiences of Children of Incarcerated Parents

Majors | Migration Studies and Romance Language Studies
Owen Morrish crafted his migration studies major with several professors in order to build upon his experiences serving refugee organizations and deepen his understanding of migrant integration. His current research focuses on how nonprofit refugee resettlement organizations support their clients’ development of host language proficiency. With hopes of becoming a professor and migration researcher, Morrish is excited to network, learn from program faculty and peers, and further develop his own interdisciplinary research skills.
RESEARCH PROJECT | Creating Immersion: Pedagogical Practices for the Linguistic Integration of Adult Refugees in the United States

Majors | Russian and Spanish

Alejandra Schwarz aspires to study Russian at the graduate level. All aspects of human rights are important to Schwarz; however, they are very much interested in freedom of speech and how censorship of this pivotal right affects people in different areas of the world. Through the Society for Undergraduate Fellows, Schwarz hopes to not only broaden their understanding of human rights throughout time but also to push themself into researching areas that are not as popular or commonly talked about.  
RESEARCH PROJECT | Challenges and Benefits of Social Media in a Censored Nation

Majors | Political Science and Economics
Minor | Public Policy

Patrick Seroogy is interested in civil and political rights, particularly in the contexts of conflict and oppression of those rights and liberties examined from a political-economic framework. Seroogy’s academic studies and interest in human rights inform their long-term aspirations of participating in the formulation and implementation of US foreign policy and diplomacy. Seroogy hopes the Society of Undergraduate Fellows can help them develop a broader humanistic perspective on their academics.
RESEARCH PROJECT | Punishment and Restoration: Structural Outcomes of Mass Incarceration between America and Rwanda

Major | Honors Linguistics
Minors | German, French, and Speech and Hearing Sciences

Anna Taylor is an aspiring polyglot and future audiologist/ESL instructor with a passion for native language revitalization. Taylor’s hometown is Tonawanda, NY, which is also home to the Tonawanda Seneca Nation, one of just four speech communities for the critically-endangered Seneca language. In light of the intrinsic connection between Indigenous languages and cultures, Taylor hopes to gain an increased awareness and appreciation of the wealth of traditional knowledge embedded in Seneca and how it has changed over time.
RESEARCH PROJECT | The Seneca Language and Bilingual Road Signs

Majors | Spanish and Business
Minors | Portuguese, Geography, Economics

Jaret Waters has developed an interest in human rights in Latin America, having studied and worked in Chile and Brazil while at Ohio State. During this time, Waters found themself focusing on issues such as migration studies, race and labor relations, and sustainability. In the Society of Undergraduate Fellows, Waters would like to further study the gendered and racial components of domestic work in Brazil. Following graduation, Waters hope to pursue a career in advocacy or research of US foreign policy in Latin America.
RESEARCH PROJECT | The 21st Century Slave Quarters: The (de)Construction of Space in Brazil’s Domestic Work Industry


PUJA BATRA-WELLS (GAHDT) | Puja Batra-Wells has a PhD in Comparative Studies and an MA in Popular Culture. Her areas of expertise include folklore, critical theory, popular culture and food studies. She is the co-editor of a volume on the intersections between folklore and economics, The Folklorist in the Marketplace. 

AMY SHUMAN (English) | Amy Shuman is an award-winning scholar and teacher who has authored articles and books on conversational narrative, literacy, politics, food customs, feminist theory and critical theory. Her latest book, co-authored with Carol Boomer, is Political Asylum Deceptions: The Culture of Suspicion.