Conner, a doctorate student in the College of Education’s Department of Counseling and Higher Education, will receive a $20,000 stipend and attend the NBCC Foundation Bridging the Gap Symposium in May in Washington, D.C.
“This award means I can carry out my dissertation without worry and that is so meaningful to me,” she said.
Conner, who is studying for her doctorate in counseling, will conduct her dissertation on the effects of child-centered play therapy on black children who are transracially adopted ─ that is adopted by non-black parents.
Natalya Lindo, associate professor and counseling program coordinator in the College of Education, and Conner’s research mentor, said she has observed firsthand her students’ hard work and dedication.
“Given the importance of developing the relationship between adoptive parent and child, this research has the potential to inform parent-child relationship research, as well as expand on research related to transracial adoption,” Lindo said.
Conner said she also hopes to use her fellowship to visit Uganda or Ghana and learn about mental health practices there.
“There are a lot of children from those countries who are internationally transracially adopted, so I want to see the cultural traditions that exist,” she said. “I have been around children who have been adopted all of my life and I want to be a positive role model for them.”