UNC Research

For the Love of Fabric

How does the visual richness of clothes contribute to who we are? After nearly 50 years of designing costumes at UNC, Bobbi Owen is retiring. Her expertise in period-piece costume design has brought countless characters and productions to life at PlayMakers Repertory Company.

A Sharper Image

UNC researchers Jianping Lu and Otto Zhou have spent the last two decades refining technology that makes X-ray machines smaller, faster, safer, and produce clearer images — research that’s changing the world of dentistry, medicine, and security.

Kimberly Burnett

Kimberly Burnett is a PhD student in the Department of English and Comparative Literature within the UNC College of Arts & Sciences. She studies the role of gospel music in African American literature and its relationship to depictions of Black womanhood.

A Cool Recovery

Before 2000, if a patient arrived at a hospital unconscious after undergoing cardiac arrest, their chances of leaving alive and with all their brain function intact was slim to none. Now, 50 percent wake up and go home thanks to a cooling therapy, brought to UNC in 2007 by emergency physician Larry Katz.

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.

Sing Wai Wong

Sing Wai Wong is a third-year periodontology resident in the UNC Adams School of Dentistry. He studies how autophagy — the process by which the body cleans out damaged cells to regenerate new, healthy cells — affects bone loss in the mouth.