Research

Zardas Lee

Zardas Lee is a PhD student in the Department of History within the UNC College of Arts & Sciences. They explore how people from small colonies in South and Southeast Asia pursued dreams of freedom and independence in the 1940s and ’50s while empires and superpowers dominated the world order.

The P’urhépecha Podcasts

Through community radio and podcasts, Maria Gutierrez strives to preserve her ancestral language and identity — that of an indigenous people from Michoacán, Mexico, called the P’urhépecha.

Kay Youngstrom

Kay Youngstrom is a sophomore and Chancellor’s Science Scholar double-majoring in chemistry and statistics and analytics within the UNC College of Arts & Sciences. Through an internship with Med Aditus, she uses data analysis to address which of the company’s drugs are most accessible and least susceptible to counterfeits in Sub-Saharan Africa.

Curiosity Ignited

Jessica Wolfe has been fascinated by medieval and Renaissance culture for more than 30 years. She is drawn to obscure writers and scholars who have made critical and long-lasting contributions to the literary world, but are often overlooked. Their histories and works drive her creativity and curiosity — and have inspired her to write her first-ever biography.

Spiritual Evolution

Through study of a “new” Japanese religion called Tenrikyo and centuries of Japanese history, PhD student Timothy Smith strives to understand how cultural shifts morph belief systems across generations.

Learning As We Go

Teachers are stressed. Students are struggling. Parents are shouldering more responsibilities than ever before. While the controversy surrounding when and how schools should reopen has led to policy debates and changes in family dynamics, UNC epidemiologists and education researchers find hope in the lessons from this year.

Irene Manning

Irene Manning is a PhD candidate in the Department of Chemistry within the UNC College of Arts & Sciences. She develops functional materials that capture PFAS — chemicals created in the production of goods like Teflon, stain-resistant fabrics, and food packaging — and remove them from water.

Rachel Woodul

Rachel Woodul is a PhD student in the Department of Geography within the UNC College of Arts & Sciences and a research assistant at the Carolina Population Center. She uses geographic information systems to model infectious disease spread, with a specific focus on epidemics and pandemics.

Unearthing the Planet’s History

About 2 billion years ago, the oceans were green, the land red and rocky, and only 1 percent of Earth’s atmosphere was oxygen. How did the planet become what it is today? UNC geochemist Xiao-Ming Liu collects samples of soil, rocks, and water from places like Hawaii to find the answer.