Claim your curiosity.

Sarah Anderson

Student Spotlight | April 2018

Major: Environmental Studies and English (Creative Writing)

Describe your work in a few sentences that we can all understand: I am interested in investigating the potential impact of different species of bees on ecosystems. Alternatively, I am also interested in how bees respond to changes within their ecosystems.


Q: Who mentors your project?

A: My current mentor is Dr. Deborah Smith, but Drs. Robert Hagen and Victor Gonzalez have also mentored me.


Q: What surprised you about doing research?

A: I was surprised by how much professors and other mentors were willing to spend time working with me and helping me to understand concepts, and I was also surprised by how many opportunities to travel and meet new people that doing research gave me.


Q: What did you find most challenging about getting involved in or doing your project? What advice would you offer to students facing similar challenges?

A: The most challenging thing for me was asking a professor if I could work with them because I was afraid to get turned down or look silly for asking. I would advise anyone who wants to do research to let go of that fear and try instead to understand that there are opportunities for research all over campus, so they shouldn’t get discouraged.


Q: What do you like most about your project?

A: I like that my project seeks answers to questions that have potentially large impacts on how we and other organisms live.


Q: What advice would you give to a friend wanting to get involved in research?

A: I would advise them to try and get involved as soon as possible, and to ask lots of questions so that they can get more out of their first project.


Q: How do you spend your time when you're not working on your research?

A: Most of my time is dedicated to either research or classes, but in my spare time, I like hanging out with my friends and my bearded dragon, Kala.

Spotlight Search



Connect With Us
Research teaches critical thinking and problem solving — top skills sought by employers
KU is a member of the Council on Undergraduate Research
More than 1,200 students have received Undergraduate Research Awards since 1986
KU's first valedictorian, Flora Richardson, conducted research as an undergraduate before graduating in 1873
Use research to apply what you learned in the classroom to a real problem
Students who perform research develop strong relationships with KU faculty
Research is a hands-on way to explore career options
One of 34 U.S. public institutions in the prestigious Association of American Universities
44 nationally ranked graduate programs.
—U.S. News & World Report
Top 50 nationwide for size of library collection.
5th nationwide for service to veterans —"Best for Vets: Colleges," Military Times