Stephanie Domzalski

1. What is your specific area of research (include the name of your faculty and/or laboratory)?
I have conducted research in both political science and psychology. Under the supervision of Dr. Mark Petracca, I researched the relationship between national and ethnic identity. In the Department of Cognitive Sciences, I studied the effect of societal-based stereotypes on academic performance with Dr. Geoffrey Iverson.
2. When and how did you first get involved in research?
My research experience began during a series of honors psychology classes in my junior year. Under the supervision of some of UCI’s best professors (Dr. Mann, Dr. Dosher, Dr. Iverson and Dr. Braunstein), I worked with a small group of undergraduates to design and implement an experimental paradigm.
3. How has research enhanced you education?
Participating in undergraduate research at UCI has been immeasurably beneficial to me. Besides enhancing my own skills and confidence, I was able to work closely with amazingly talented people, both professors and other students. I felt I was in the process of making a true difference in both academic and social settings. It inspired me to apply classroom knowledge in real-world situations, which both validated and at times called into question my previously held theories and beliefs. Finally, my research experience gave me a competitive edge in the application process for graduate school.
4. What has been you favorite experience with research (include any interesting stories or specific events)?
The UROP symposium, where I was able to present my work along with my colleagues, was certainly a highlight. I felt like a true researcher, and it has inspired me to continue asking questions and seeking answers.
5. What are your future plans and how has being involved in research helped to prepare you to meet your goals?
I will be attending graduate school at Loyola Marymount University, pursuing a career as a school psychologist. Research has helped sharpen my quantitative skills, in addition to improving my ability to interact with others in a way that conveys both confidence and professionalism.
6. What advice would you give to a student interested in pursuing a faculty-mentored undergraduate research project or creative activity?
My best piece of advice is not to be afraid to approach faculty with your questions and interests regarding research. It has been my experience that the members of the UCI faculty are eager and enthusiastic to help students pursue their research goals. Secondly, I would advise interested students to take full advantage of the services provided by the UROP Office-- the staff are incredibly accommodating and supportive. Finally, and perhaps in retrospect this should be first, you have to find a topic that you really are passionate about because if there is passion and a desire to see change and progress through your work, all the other potential roadblocks to a successful research experience can be overcome.

Past Researchers of the Month

Dec. '03 Jana Remy
Nov. '03 Jacqueline Chattopadhyay
Oct. '03 Anshuman Chadha
Sep. '03 Ted K. Yanagihara
Aug. '03 Stephanie Domzalski
Jul. '03 Susan Milden
Jun. '03 Mai Nguyen
May '03 Chris Smith
Apr. '03 Erin Ramsey
Mar. '03 Michael Williams
Feb. '03 Emily Slusser
Jan. '03 Laleh Boroujerdi-Rad
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