2019 Butler Fellows to Conduct Research

May 28, 2019 | University Relations staff

DUBUQUE, Iowa – The John and Alice Butler Summer Research Fellowship empowers University of Dubuque students from all majors to study, conduct research, prepare for graduate examinations, and visit graduate schools in preparation for their post-university professional lives. This summer, seven fellows will conduct research on topics such as the integration of faith and literature, Indigenous Peoples Day, and character education in secondary English.

Fellows will commit 40 hours a week for 10 weeks this summer on their projects. They will each receive a stipend of $4,500 and an additional $500 for travel costs associated with the project.

“The John and Alice Butler Summer Research Fellowship provides unique opportunities for University of Dubuque students to diversify their educational experiences to prepare them for post-graduation success,” said Adam Hoffman, PhD, director of the John and Alice Butler Summer Fellowship.

In its second year, the John and Alice Butler Summer Fellowship is one of three scholarships funded by a recent investment of $7 million from UD Trustee John Butler (DHL’17) and his spouse, Alice (DHL’17). The John and Alice Butler Travel Scholarship are scholarships of up to $3,500 awarded to students with a financial need to undertake a rigorous and robust study/travel abroad experience. The John and Alice Butler Opportunity Scholarships are scholarships of up to $10,000, renewable for three years, awarded to students selected by the dean of student financial planning and dean of admission.

“I am grateful to Alice and John Butler for their decades-long commitment to the University and their investment in, and care for, UD students. This recent investment in direct support of student research and scholarship is testimony to their belief in our Mission and its direct impact on students,” said Jeffrey F. Bullock, president of the University.

The following students were named 2019 Butler Fellows:

Butler Fellow 2019 - Nate Bardon (225x225 px)
Nate Bardon, a senior English in secondary education and English double major from Dubuque

Project: Character Education in Secondary English

Advisor: Michele McKinlay, assistant professor of literature

Quotable: “It means a lot to me to be named a Butler Fellow, and I hope to be able to fulfill this title to the best of my abilities. I felt very proud and honored that my research proposal was accepted. I hope my project will accomplish a better understanding of how the literature students read in high school affects their development of character and whether or not classic works versus contemporary works are the better methods of conveying good character to students.”

Butler Fellow 2019 - Ethan Cain (225x225 px) 
Ethan Cain, a senior elementary education major from Polo, Illinois

Project: Mathematics Literacy: Dubuque versus Vaxjo

Advisor: Angela Brandel, EdD, professor of teacher education

Quotable: “It is a great honor to be granted this opportunity to conduct first-hand research as a part of such an elite program. I am thankful to everyone who made it possible for students like myself to do meaningful research. I hope my research can have a positive impact on the Dubuque community and the Vaxjo, Sweden, community. I hope my project can provide teachers resources that will help increase student achievement in mathematics.”

Butler Fellow 2019 - Payton Davis (225x225 px)
Payton Davis, junior English in secondary education and English double major from Dubuque

Project: Returning a Voice That Was Taken: Indigenous Peoples Day Coming October 2019

Advisor: Angela Brandel, EdD, professor of teacher education

Quotable: “It means so much to me to have been named a Butler Fellow. I have learned of all that the Butlers have done for the Dubuque community, and I am grateful for the opportunity to contribute my bit in honor of their name. My project will allow me to build a website with resources, lessons, and materials that can be used by teachers when Indigenous Peoples Day replaces Columbus Day. I hope that my project will accomplish the opening of eyes in the Dubuque area regarding the Indigenous Peoples who walked the land long before us. As a future educator, I am passionate about the children of this country learning the truth. I hope this project will help that happen at least in our community.”

Butler Fellow 2019 - Amy Manders (225x225 px)
Amy Manders, a junior communication major from Beaumont, Texas

Project: Video Games, Homer, and Ovid: What do Students Learn?

Advisor: Alan Garfield, chair and professor of digital art and design

Quotable: “Being named a Butler Fellow means a great deal to me. It’s a wonderful opportunity to get to explore new research in my field. I hope that my project will allow for a growth in the video game industry that does not focus on violence but rather an education aspect that could be expanded. Video games seem to be a modern communication tool that has not been developed to its highest potential.”

Butler Fellow 2019 - Bethany Manders (225x225 px)
Bethany Manders, a senior English major from LaMotte, Iowa

Project: Integration of Faith and Literature

Advisor: Jonathan Barz, PhD, head of the Department of Language and Literature and professor of English

Quotable: “It is a blessing to be named a Butler Fellow because it provides the opportunity to research something that I am passionate about, which is faith in Christ and literature. Through my project, I hope to understand more about biblical themes represented in literature and how to teach them.”

Butler Fellow 2019 - Emily Reisch (225x225 px) 
Emily Reisch, a senior business and communication double major from Garrison, Iowa

Project: Understanding the Benefits of International Experience as Career Preparation for University of Dubuque Students

Advisor: Michelle Grace, assistant professor of communication

Quotable: “I am honored to be chosen as a Butler Fellow. I am excited to learn what I can during this fellowship and for the opportunities that it will lead me to. Through this project, I hope to discover ways to improve our study abroad program and be able to lead other students in their traveling endeavors so that we can all grow as global citizens.”

Butler Fellow 2019 - Hailey Wills (225x225 px)
Hailey Wills, a sophomore criminal justice and philosophy double major from Galena, Illinois

Project: Who Do We Blame for the End of the World? A Study on Moral and Responsibility and the Fossil Fuel Industry

Advisor: Christine Darr, PhD, head of the Department of Philosophy, Politics, and History and assistant professor of Christian ethics

Quotable: “I am so honored to be named a Butler Fellow. I put a lot into my proposal, so I’m very excited to have to opportunity to continue my research. I am hoping my proposal will offer some clarity regarding how we think of fossil fuel companies and climate change as well as guidance for how we should move forward.”