Meet Laurette Mcllwee, a Loyola University Maryland Scientista Officer and an Undergraduate Researcher
A: My project focuses on social perceptions, forgiveness, and romantic relationships. A lot of the literature I reviewed in preparation for my project suggested that the perceptions our friends have of us are really influential in how we behave in our romantic relationships, perhaps in the arena of forgiveness. Forgiveness is a cool piece of my project because it is an area in psychology research that is really thriving right now.
Q: What inspired you to work on this topic?
A: I originally got interested in the subject of romantic relationships when working on my project for my Research Methods class last year. Relationships in general are such a huge part of our lives, and I think it’s so amazing that we can actually scientifically study them. For this project, Dr. DiDonato, who has been mentoring me throughout this process, suggested the forgiveness aspect. After going through the existing articles on forgiveness, it seemed that a piece that was missing was social perceptions of forgiveness, which I thought would be interesting to investigate.
Q: What are your plans for this research? Will you be presenting at a poster conference? Submitting for publication? Any journals in mind?
A: I’m still in the midst of data collection for my project, but I definitely plan to present at the Loyola Undergraduate Student Research and Scholarship Colloquium. If the results are interesting, I’d love to submit the paper for publication.
Q: Are you encountering any challenges with the research process so far?
A: The hardest part so far has been coming up with a research idea. It’s difficult to look at the existing literature and see what’s missing rather than what’s been done, especially with so much information in front of you. Luckily, I had help!
Q: What do you hope to do after graduation? Do you see yourself in a primarily research-oriented career?
A: I’m in the process of applying to graduate programs in experimental psychology. My ultimate goal is to teach psychology at a university and be able to continue doing research. It’s challenging, but so rewarding!