Montana Joyce Wins 2019 Undergraduate Research Award

Dean of University Libraries and Professor Martin Halbert and Associate Dean for Public Services and Associate Professor Kathryn Crowe presented the 2019 University Libraries Undergraduate Research Award to Montana Joyce, a double major in history and biology, on May 2 at UNC Greensboro's Student Honors Convocation.

The award focuses on the ability of a student to locate, select and synthesize information from library resources for the creation of an original research project or paper. The student receives a $500 cash prize.

Joyce's winning paper, “Sailing the Seas of Slavery: An Analysis of Instructions to British and American Slave Ship Captains in the 1700s," used primary resources from Emory University. Specifically, instructions to slave ship captains collected in Documents Illustrative of the History of the Slave Trade to America, as well as content from the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade Database were two sources she used in her project.

“Montana's nuanced paper was based on diligent research and creative interpretation of a variety of sources that she doggedly tracked down and analyzed," said Dr. Linda Rupert, associate professor and Joyce's faculty sponsor. "She adroitly used these to frame her own original analysis of the primary documents."

Rupert was similarly impressed by Montana's use of Jackson Library’s resources. In her application, Joyce discussed her research process and credited Lynda Kellam, data services and government information librarian and associate professor, on her instruction and research techniques. Through Kellam's direction, Joyce learned how to limit the number of resources she used and focus primarily on those directly related to her topic.

Joyce's award-winning paper has been added to UNCG’s institutional repository, NC DOCKS.