Penn Calendar Penn A-Z School of Arts and Sciences University of Pennsylvania

12th Annual Mitchell Center Undergraduate Research Conference

Thursday, May 2, 2019 - 9:00am to 4:30pm

Forum (Room 250), Ronald O. Perelman Center for Political Science and Economics
Map Accessibility / Lunch Provided / Free and open to the public

Read abstracts of the papers here.

Co-sponsored by The Jack Miller Center.

AS THE CULMINATION of a year of meetings to refine their research projects, the Mitchell Center undergraduate research fellows present their projects in a one-day conference, with diverse topics that include pre-trial detention reform, voter turnout, USDA nutrition guidance, the rights of Jews in antebellum Maryland, slavery in the Cherokee nation, immigration reform, schooling in Kenya’s Kakuma refugee camp, and activism in post-apartheid South Africa.


PANEL 1 - 9:15-10:30 am – Government Action and Citizen Engagement

John MATTHEWS (Political Science)
Democratic Engagement with Pre-Trial Detention Reform

Kevin MYERS (Philosophy, Politics and Economics)
Voter Turnout and Monetary Incentives

Discussant: Paulina Ochoa ESPEJO (Political Science, Haverford College)

PANEL 2 - 10:45 am-12:00 pm – Minorities in Antebellum America

Eric EISNER (History)
The Most Generous, Disinterested, and Philanthropic Motives: Religion, Race, and the Maryland Jew Bill

Melanie XU (History)
Chattel Slavery in the Cherokee Nation: A Legal History

Discussant: Bernadette PÉREZ (Cotsen Postdoctoral Fellow in Race and Ethnicity Studies in the Society of Fellows, Princeton University)

PANEL 3 - 1:30-2:45 pm – The Politics of Migration and Refuge

Amanda DAMON (Communication and Public Service)
The Immigration Debate in America: the Civil Rights Question of our Time?

KaJaiyaiu HOPKINS (Sociology)
Citizenship in the Refugee Camp: How Religion Organizes Social Life

Discussant: Roberto CARLOS (CSERI Postdoctoral Fellow)

PANEL 4 - 3:00-4:15 pm – Activism in Post-apartheid South Africa

Dillon BERGIN (Comparative Literature)
Writing, Righting, and Rioting: Student Revolt in Post-apartheid South Africa

Alexandra BRECKENRIDGE (Philosophy, Politics and Economics)
Legal Battles Against Government Failure in Democratic South Africa

Discussant: Nafisa Essop Sheik (Cornell Visiting Professor, Swarthmore College)

CLOSING REMARKS - 4:15-4:30 pm