The SPIA Undergraduate Research Colloquium took place on Friday, April 22, 2022.  This event brings together faculty and students from across SPIA to celebrate the accomplishments of our students and the faculty that facilitate their research.

Students may submit research projects completed or currently in progress, as part of course work, CURO, internships, or independent research. We invite paper and poster presentation submissions on research drawing from all academic concentrations within SPIA including American Politics, International Relations, Comparative Politics, Political Theory, Criminal Justice, and Public Administration.

More information regarding the Colloquium can be found below. Please send all questions to

Schedule of Panel Presentations & Poster Sessions

The 2022 Colloquium event will include research panels and four poster sessions. The panel sessions will concurrently run from 10:20am-3:50pm and will be scheduled during the typical class schedule.

Introductory Remarks & Keynote Presentation:

9:30am – 10:00am: 

Welcome, Dean Matthew Auer  

Keynote, Dr. Audrey Haynes

Panel Sessions:

10:20am-11:10am Panel A

Security & Political Behavior: Chokepoints, IGOs, and Voting

Chair: Dr. Leah Carmichael; Discussant: Abdullah Kabaoglu

Haley Gamis “A Chain Reaction: Evaluation of the Security Threat to Global Supply Chains posed by the Belt and Road Initiative”

Reshi Rajan “The Effects of Toothless Compulsory Voting: A Study in Karnataka, India”

Patrick Jackson “Comparative Analysis of UN and NATO Authorization for Use of Force”

10:20am-11:10am Panel B

Women’s Agency and Exploitation: Soldiers, Sex Work, and Protests

Chair: Dean Matthew Auer; Discussant: Deana Neaves

Ashni Patel “The Sexy Side of Development: Sex Industries and Global Development Projects”

Mennah Abdelwahab “Dangerous Women: Analyzing the Securitization of Female Protesters during the Egyptian Revolution”

Jena Jibreen “Thirst-Trapping in Times of Terror: An Exploratory Media Analysis of the Israeli Defense Force’s Hyper-Sexualized Military Propaganda on Social Media”

11:30am-12:20pm Panel A

Education and Development

Chair: Dr. Molly Ariotti; Discussant: Allison Vick

Olivia Slavov “The Impact of Human Rights Education on Public Perception”

Simone Orr “Mainstreaming Gender? Gender Aid and Education Outcomes in Sub-Saharan Africa”

Nicholas Byrd “Can Active Learning Approaches Improve Civic Education by Increasing Active Recall and Critical Thinking Skills Among Students?”

11:30am-12:20pm Panel B

Political Violence and Mobilization

Chair: Dr. Gulcan Saglam; Discussant: Gabriella Padilla

Sonia Kalia “The Far Right & Violence Against Women in Politics”

Julie Kettle “The Yassification of the Radical Right: The Use of Homonationalism for Gender Diversification in Radical Right Support Bases.”

Kevin Vega “Silenced Voices: The Case of Mexico’s Rural Population”

12:40pm-1:30pm Panel A

Recent Developments in American Politics

Chair: Dr. Michael Lynch; Discussant: Aaron Hitefield

Ashley Rose Moore “Vaccine Hesitancy in the Southern United States”

Aidan Rickaby “Policy Divisions on City Councils: A Descriptive Analysis”

Jeanelle Garcia “Sexual Violence and the Welfare of Women in ICE Detention Facilities”

12:40pm-1:30pm Panel B

The GLOBIS Human Rights Lab

Chair: Dr. Chad Clay; Discussant: Meredith LaVelle

Raine Cox “American Education: How the Respect and Fulfillment of Human Rights can Solve Deficiencies”

Noora Chandasir and Casey Smith “Human Rights Radio”

Mennah Abdelwahab “Shifting Perspectives: Using Human Rights Education to Inform Political Opinion”

Sarah Moore “The Human Rights Implications of the Youth Mental Health Crisis in Southwestern Kansas”

1:50pm-2:40pm Panel A

Strategic Behaviors of Terrorist Groups and States 

Chair: Dr. Justin Conrad; Discussant: Thomas Deen

Catherine Fender “Terrorist Outbidding: The Effects of Leadership Decapitation on Terrorist Group Recruitment”

Sophia Macartney “Naming and Shaming: How Does Regime Type Affect Terrorist Organization Designation?”

Elizabeth Howell “Kidnapping in Terrorist Groups: Money, Power, and Recruitment”

1:50pm-2:40pm Panel B

The Congress Project

Chair: Dr. Anthony Madonna; Discussant: Alexandria Putman

Faith Price “Civil Rights Act of 1964”

Sarah Tyson “No Child Left Behind Act of 2001”

Sarah Najjar and Sarah Elhilow “National Prohibition Act of 1919”

3:00pm-3:50pm Panel A

Security and Investment: BITS, BRI, and Energy 

Chair: Dr. Joshua Massey; Discussant: Pedro Goulart

Joshua Walker “The Bit about BITs: Bilateral Investment Treaties and the Black Market.”

Ayah Abdelwahab “Building Bridges: The Political Ramifications of Chinese Belt and Road Initiative Loans”

Dan Doss “How Should Energy Security Influence Investments in Alternative Energy?”

3:00pm-3:50pm Panel B

Women in Politics: Participation and Backlash 

Chair: Dr. Cas Mudde; Discussant: Mallory Hoffman

Simi Kolodka “Lock her Up: A Gendered Analysis of Violence Against Women in Politics & Far-Right Extremist Recruitment Tactics”

Kendall Brantley “Women’s Participation in Political Parties”

Syd Cohen “Stacey VS. Stacey: Which Women are Portrayed Negatively In The Media?”

Poster Sessions:

9:20am-10:30am Poster Session 

Ashley Rose Moore “The Steel Ceiling”

Margaret Hart “Women’s Mobility Within the Senate Staff”

Gaby Gagliano “That Government is Not for Sale: A Comparative Study on Southern Political Corruption”

Evans Dodys “Athens Start Line: A Peak behind The Iron Curtain of Sentencing Disparity”

Hasti Razavi “Populism and the American Decline: How the Rise in Far-Right Politics in Congress Shapes US Foreign Policy”

10:40am-11:40am Poster Session

Robert Fox “Equality Erosion: A Feminist Analysis of Russian Women’s Rights from Soviet Times to Now”

Mariah Cady “Border Violence Targeting Refugees and Country-Specific Responses”

Olivia Bauer “Insurgencies or Gangs: An Analysis of Service Provision by Criminal Organizations”

11:50am-12:50pm Poster Session

Nazia Kazi “The Effect of News Media on South Korea’s Perception of Corruption”

Sofia Mohamed “Populism and Islamophobia: An In-depth Analysis of India”.

Faith Price “Social Spending and Its Effect on Income Distribution”

Noora Chandsir “Feminine States and Masculine Arms: How Gendered Discourse Prevents States from Nuclear Disarmament”

Hayley Hunter “How NATO Has Used Environmental Security as a Strategy of Engagement”

1:00pm-2:00pm Poster Session

Hannah Skinner “Not Just a Man’s World: The Rise of Women’s Incarceration in Latin America”

Jenah Clarkson “Being the First Comes with More Challenges: Fact or Fiction?”

Nazia Kazi “Heteronormativity vs. the LGBTQ Experience in South Korea”


Venue Information

The 2022 SPIA Undergraduate Research Colloquium will take place at the Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies on April 22nd, 2022 with a live streaming option available for audience members. If you are interested in being able to watch the panel sessions via live stream, please register prior to the event here:

Information for visitors:

The two closest parking options to the Russell Special Collections Library are the Hull Street Deck and the Tate Center Parking decks. For more information on parking for the Russell Library please see:

If you are looking for places to eat while you are in Athens:

Downtown Athens is about an 11 minute walk or a 5 minute drive away from the Library with several restaurants on Broad Street.

If you would like to stay on campus: the Tate Student Center (about a 9 minute walk) offers Starbucks, Chick-fil-A, Panda Express, Niche Pizza, and Barberitos.

Or you can visit the Au Bon Pain in Amos Hall (about a 4 minute walk).

If you would like to book a tour of the Collections Library please see:

SPIA URC Research Proposals Application Process (CLOSED)

The SPIA URC Research Proposal application submission process has now closed. Applicants will be notified of acceptances by early March. Please send all questions to

Thank you for your interest in being a part of the SPIA Undergraduate Research Colloquium! Students may submit research projects completed or currently in progress, as part of course work, CURO, internships, or independent research. We invite paper and poster presentation submissions on research drawing from all academic concentrations within SPIA including American Politics, International Relations, Comparative Politics, Political Theory, Criminal Justice, and Public Administration.

Information for Participants & Questions

Students may apply to present their research as part of a panel or a poster session. If selected to present as part of a panel, students will prepare a 10-minute presentation of their research. Each panel will have three presenters, as well as a discussant who will discuss the three projects collectively, and a chair who will keep time. Full drafts of papers presented will need to be circulated to discussants by Monday April 11th. Participants will be contacted to facilitate the sharing of their paper with the discussants.

Students may also request for their research to be considered for one of the poster sessions. Students who are selected for one of the poster sessions will be given guidelines about how to create a poster when they receive their acceptance. There will be multiple poster sessions taking place.

Information regarding the type of session and presentation times will be sent out after acceptance decisions. Any questions that you may have regarding the event can be directed to Allison Vick, Graduate Student Assistant, at, or Dr. Maryann Gallagher, Coordinating Director, at

Contact Information

For additional details or questions, please reach out to Allison Vick, Graduate Student Assistant, at, or Dr. Maryann Gallagher, Coordinating Director, at

Past Colloquiums

2021 Gallery of Video Poster Presentations

Ayah Abdelwahab’s “Friends or Foes: An Analysis of Individuals Sanctioned Under the Global Magnitsky Act”

Mennah Abdelwahab’s “Isolated Incidents or Troubling Pattern? The Power of Human Rights Data to Strengthen Human Rights Narratives”

Annabelle Cochran’s “Cannabis and the War on Terror: A Qualitative Report on the Impacts of Legalizing Marijuana on Counter-Terrorism Strategies”

Jonathan Lauria’s “National Security Risk Management: Applying the Framework of Enterprise Risk Management to the National Security Context”

Cameron McKelvey’s “Exploring the Possibility of Korean Reunification and its Consequences”

Nusrath Naurin’s “American Immigration Policies and the Rise of Discrimination Against Minorities During the 19th and 20th Centuries”

Audrey Park’s “The Link Between Mental Health Suppression and Organized Crime Groups”

Jaylin Small’s “The Politics of the South”

Emma Traynor’s “Combating Illicit Firearms Trafficking from the U.S. to Mexico”


Isabella O’Keefe’s “A Behavioralist Approach to the Radicalization of American Politics During the Trump Era”


Sahana Parker’s “Tracking and Comparing Emerging Technology in Cognitive Neuroscience for Security Studies”

Thank you to our 2020 Undergraduate Research Colloquium participants. To watch the 2020 Undergraduate Research Colloquium presentations online, click the links below or find them on SPIA’s YouTube channel here.

Robyn Anzulis (AB ’22) – “Dangers from Below: Security Threats to Submarine Cables”

James Davidson (AB ’20) – “My Terrorist is Better than Your Terrorist: Leadership Decapitation and Outbidding”

Alexa Hernandez (AB ’22) – “Nationalism in the United States: Post 9/11”

Miriam Mokhemar (AB ’20) – “Law and Weapon Sales: Making Human Rights a Condition for Arms Sales is better American Foreign Policy in the Middle East”

Jamie Romano (AB ’22) – “Reform of the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil”

Faiz Syed (AB ’21) – “The Prevalence of PTSD of African American Women”

Tricia White (AB ’21) – “The 2003 Invasion of Iraq: Political Simulation”

Alec Zimmerman (AB ’20) – “Involuntary Celibacy: The Face of a New Sexism”