Laura is interested in biracial and multiracial studies and identity development in children, specifically in the family context. Her research focuses on the conflict and reconciliation of multiple racial identities in children and the ways in which they choose, or are inhibited from choosing, to identify themselves. She wishes to explore how family dynamics and influences affect identity choices. Laura is also interested in the broader picture of cultural identity development, and the associated impact of choosing whether or not to identify with differing identities that may conflict as well as how these identities are reconciled when chosen. Over the long-term she hopes to better understand how to promote positive identity development in youth who might experience conflicts between multiple identities.
Education and Relevant Experience
Laura received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology from Grinnell College with an emphasis in Developmental Psychology. She has 5 years of experience working at nonprofits serving children and families on a local level around the country. At these non-profits she gained experience in home visitation for families with young children, providing evaluation support in programs designed to keep families together, instituting fidelity and quality in programs, recruiting and managing volunteer commitments in youth education, as well as writing high impact grant proposals and reports for organizations directly serving hundreds of families and their communities. Laura is passionate about providing a healthy and productive environment for children and families and fostering positive self-worth in youth through innovative research and quality interventions.
- Human Development and Family Studies Graduate Program