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Graduate Student Organization

2019-2020 Officers

 

Siera Schwanz, President

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Siera is from Gothenburg, Nebraska. She received her B.S. from the University of Nebraska- Kearney in Family Studies with a minor in Early Childhood Education. Her major professor is Dr. Amy Rauer. Siera’s research focuses on various types of romantic relationship variables, such as romantic commitment, trust, passion, relationship satisfaction and relationship maintenance.

 

Amie Kahovec, Vice-President

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Amie is from Bolingbrook, IL. She received her B.S. in Family Social Services with a double major in Rehabilitation and Disability Services and a minor in Psychology from Northern Illinois University. Her major professor is Dr. Megan Haselschwerdt. Amie’s research interests, very broadly, looks at domestic violence.

Kylie Larkin, Secretary

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Kylie is from Church Hill, TN. She recently attended Carson-Newman University where she earned a B.S. in Child and Family Studies. Her research interests are broad but revolve predominantly around Early Childhood Education.

 

Kayley Davis

Kayley Davis, Treasurer

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Kayley is from Knoxville, TN. She received her B.A. in Psychology and M.S. in Child and Family Studies from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Her faculty advisor is Dr. Spencer Olmstead. Kayley’s current research focuses on young/emerging adult romantic and sexual health and well-being, with a particular emphasis on the processes and implications associated with sexually transmitted infection disclosure.

 

Shelby Clouthier, Social Chair

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Shelby is from Brentwood, TN. She received her Bachelors in Psychology with a minor in Child and Family Studies from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. She is obtaining a masters in Child and Family Studies with a minor in Statistics, as well as a certificate in International, Children, Youth, and Family. Her major professor is Dr. Heidi Stolz. Her research focus is cross-cultural child development and parenting. Specifically, her thesis investigates the relationship between parenting behaviors and parenting identities such as self-efficacy, role satisfaction, and role salience.

 

Amanda Capannola

Amanda Capannola, Graduate Student Senate Representative

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Amanda is from Tennessee. She received her B.A. in American Studies and her M.S. in Child & Family Studies from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Her major professor is Dr. Megan Haselschwerdt. Amanda’s research currently focuses on queer families and pathways to parenthood for LGBTQ+ couples.

 

Jessica McCaig, First Year Representative

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Jessica is from Waco, TX. She received her B.S. in Child and Family Studies from Baylor University. Her research broadly examines resilience and hopefulness in vulnerable populations, specifically children and adolescents living in poverty.

 

Cassie Sorrells, First Year Representative

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Cassie is Charleston, West Virginia. She received her B.A. in Multidisciplinary Studies (Anthropology, Biology, and Linguistics) from West Virginia University, and her M.A. in Education and Human Development from the University of Colorado, Denver. Cassie is interested in using qualitative research to explore the lived experiences of children and educators in early childhood classrooms, with particular attention to how societal and political forces shape these realities.


Current Initiatives

  • Create and implement professional development workshops for current Child and Family Studies students
  • Foster camaraderie and support among students and faculty by organizing celebrations and events
  • Increase funding for graduate students to attend professional conferences, to showcase current student research projects, and to provide orientation activities for new students
  • Promote current research projects to the public in multiple venues including the Child and Family Studies website
  • Advertise relevant conferences and professional opportunities to Child and Family Studies graduate students
  • Provide opportunities for student and faculty interaction
  • Represent the Child and Family Studies Department at the university-wide Graduate Student Senate and Student Health Advisory Board meetings by advocating for student needs and concerns

Outreach Efforts

Spring 2018

The Graduate Student Organization hosted a campus-wide bake sale where they raised over $100 and served over 50 students and guests.

Proceeds from the bake sale were donated to The Nesters, a wonderful program helping refugee children in Lesvos, Greece

(For more information about The Nesters, you can visit their website)


Spring 2019

The Graduate Student Organization hosted a campus-wide bake sale where they raised almost $500 by selling homemade, handcrafted, and hand-delivered baked goods. .

Proceeds from the bake sale were donated to See Beautiful, a philanthropic company with a mission to provide inspiring, ethically-sourced products to create more beautiful in the world.

 

(For more information about See Beautiful, you can visit their website)