Lindsey Mirielli’s research into bullying is just getting started — and it’s already reached policy makers in the U.S. Capitol.
Mirielli, a senior special education major from Mizzou’s College of Education, presented her research on “Cyberbullying of Students with Disabilities” on Capitol Hill in April. Mirielli was one of 60 undergraduate researchers in the nation who were selected for the highly competitive “Posters on the Hill conference,” sponsored by the Council on Undergraduate Research. She spoke with Senator Roy Blunt, education policy makers at the White House, and more.
“I got to speak to legislators and their staff and talk about my experience with undergraduate research and my findings, and why it deserves more funding,” said Mirielli. “I never really anticipated that anything like this would happen during my college experience.”
Mirielli is a member of Chad Rose’s research lab, which focuses on predictive and protective factors associated with bullying involvement among school-aged youth. The research presented suggested that middle and high school students with disabilities are more likely to experience cybervictimization than their peers without disabilities, which has direct implications on school policies and programs, as schools are beginning to introduce more technology-related activities into the classroom.
While Mirielli graduates this May, she has already joined the MU Teaching Fellows program at Battle High School, where she hopes to continue this research while earning her master’s degree.
“Lindsey is a great example of the type of students we have in the College of Education,” said Rose. “She volunteers to work on my research projects
while maintaining a full course load and active employment. She’s inspired me to be a better scholar, instructor and advocate for individuals who are traditionally marginalized.”
“With only a handful of education majors selected to present their research on a national stage, this honor is a testimony to the important research generated in the College of Education as well as the opportunities that undergraduates in our teacher education programs experience,” said Kathryn Chval, acting dean.