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2010 Hellman Fellow

Adrienne Nishina

Documenting how diverse peer relationships impact positive social and academic outcomes (UCD)

Adrienne Nishina is an Associate Professor and Vice Chair of Human Development and Family Studies at UC Davis. She also leads the UC Davis Peer Relations Lab which researches factors influencing adolescent and emerging adult functioning and adjustment with a focus on diversity.

Her 2010 Hellman Award enabled her to conduct a smaller scale study on student experiences with diverse peers which directly informed successful applications for larger federal research grants from the National Science Foundation and the Institute of Education Sciences. Hellman Funding also supported undergraduate and graduate research assistants who now serve as the next generation of human psychology scientists. Collectively her research shows that measurable, positive well-being, social adjustment, and academic outcomes are associated with diverse peer relationships. These findings have formed the basis for nearly 30 peer-reviewed academic journal articles and book chapters.

With Hellman funding, I was able to play with some high-risk, high-reward ideas and pilot them in order to refine my study design, improve my research protocol, and show proof of concept to funding agencies.

– Adrienne Nishina

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