On Tuesday December 11th, CLI Research Fellows who had completed a one-semester project presented their findings to members of both the Trinity and Hartford communities. Ben Rudy and Evan Sternberg, Genevieve Uslander, Gracie Phillips, Annie Arnzen, and Fionnaula Darby-Hudgens spent the last several weeks assembling their results.
The posters were displayed in the Social Science Center, and each Fellow stood with their project and answered questions from community partners, students, and faculty members.
As teaching assistants for the colloquium, we took the opportunity to document the event through photos and interviews with those in attendance. Fellows spoke candidly about the process, detailing the evolution of their research. Each acknowledged the necessity of identifying a concise research question, and the importance of feedback from members of the colloquium along the way. Even the students who will not be presenting their findings until the spring expressed an enormous amount of support for the other fellows as the semester drew to a close. When Emily commented on her particular interest in Annie’s research and the significant progress made since their first meeting, it truly reflected the environment of mutual success that developed throughout the fall. Additional guidance from Alta Lash, Rachael Barlow, and Sue Denning was greatly appreciated by each Fellow. Faculty members, students, and other visitors commented on the variety of subjects and the interdisciplinary nature of this community-based research.
Furthermore, these members of the Trinity community noted how the CLI Research Colloquium serves as an important link between the academic mission of the college and the work of various partner organizations that seek to better the Hartford community. Specifically, one student described hearing about the CLI colloquium through her work in the community service office. She, among others, noted how important it is for the academic departments to demonstrate this type of support and involvement in the city around us. One of the highlights of the event was meeting up with our community partner from last year, Paul Holzer. He was here from Achieve Hartford! to view the results that Ben and Evan were presenting, and it was exciting to see the benefits of the continued relationship between his organization and the college.
Having now participated in two colloquiums, first as student researchers and now as teaching assistants, we’ve had the opportunity to reflect on the development of this program. Even in the year since we participated, the colloquium has grown to include additional workshops, a WordPress site, and increased overall visibility on campus. The CLI Research Colloquium has a promising future, and we look forward to watching it continue to grow and foster the connection between the Trinity and Hartford communities.