Krista Westervelt Is Honored with the 2021 University Libraries Undergraduate Research Award

Krista Westervelt has been awarded the University Libraries Undergraduate Research Award (ULURA). The award focuses on the ability of an undergraduate student to locate, select and synthesize information from library resources for the creation of an original research project or paper. 

Westervelt is a junior Peace and Conflict Studies major and Gerontology Program minor at UNC Greensboro. Her winning paper, “Impact of Racial Disparities in Transportation Access on Older Adults in Chatham County,” was conducted as part of the fall 2020 GRO 400X Baby Boomers course (now GRO 444 online starting in the fall 2021) and was nominated by Undergraduate Gerontology Program Coordinator and Professor Rebecca Adams in the Department of Social Work in the School of Health and Human Sciences

Throughout the paper, Westervelt integrates the voices of people she knows through her work with the Chatham County Council on Aging of North Carolina in an ethical and effective way. The Council on Aging provides transportation to and from its Senior Centers for congregate lunches, activities and grocery shopping, as well as rides to and from medical appointments for a reduced fare. 

In her nomination, Adams acknowledged Assistant Professor and First-Year Instruction/Social Sciences Librarian Rachel Olsen in the Department of Research, Outreach and Instruction, who conducted a virtual workshop for students on Gerontology resources available in Jackson Library. In the workshop, Olsen directs students to focus primarily on resources related directly to their topic area. 

Westervelt received a $500 cash prize funded by University Libraries, and her award-winning paper has been added to UNCG’s institutional repository, NC DOCKS