This post is courtesy of Caitlyn Whitesell, Communications Intern for The Office of Community Engagement.
#BecauseofCommunity allows us to share reflections from across campus and community on individuals’ motivations for working within community. These weekly posts are usually only on our social media, but my interview with Professor Dolan needed more.
Professor Dolan of Kinesiology & Health Sciences is excited about her new research lab, Ignite. Through the lab, she hopes to ignite change providing greater health services for global communities. Influenced by a childhood of engagement and service in the Peace Corps and AmeriCorps, Professor Dolan is committed to community. Following her service experience, she recognized a need for more scientific research and data analysis for service organizations. She decided to leverage real-world data to support community partners so they can “use this information in an actionable way.”
Carrying out the lab was a result of Professor Dolan’s larger 5-year plan to connect student research and community partnership. She wants to share with her students her favorite parts of research and engagement. Working in the lab gives students “the opportunity to challenge existing assumptions, to feel intellectually stimulated, and to learn from other’s perspectives as a piece of the larger puzzle.”
The lab currently works with two existing campus-community partnerships: Student Organization for Medical Outreach and Sustainability and the East Africa Project. Learn more about how Professor Dolan is using her research for action by quantifying community need globally in the Dominican Republic and in Kenya.