Help Save the Pioneer Classes Research Award

Raised toward our $25,000 Goal
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Project ends on December 17, at 11:59 PM CST
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Help Save the Pioneer Classes Research Award

The Clinical Child Psychology Program Pioneer Classes Dissertation Research Award was established in 2007 to facilitate the completion of exceptional dissertation research in clinical child and adolescent psychology.   It was named in honor of the early classes of students in the Clinical Child Psychology Program (“the Pioneers”), who were instrumental in establishing the traditions of the program.  If you recall the Program’s time in Joseph R. Pearson Hall, green Naugahyde chairs, and the early days of getting established in the Dole Human Development Center, then this award was named for you!



Since its inception, the Pioneer Classes Award has funded important projects leading to student publications and national presentations, including

  •  A study of the needs, strengths, and challenges among multilingual refugee families resettled in Kansas City.
  • A project aimed at developing resources for school nurses to address the obesity epidemic.
  • A line of research into how children process trauma following the Joplin tornado.
  • A long-term study of the relationship between aggression and subsequent peer rejection among school children.

As noted by 2012 award recipient Erin Hambrick, “The Pioneer Classes Dissertation Award allowed me to understand how caregivers can help children process trauma. Caregivers often ask, ‘How do I talk to my child about trauma?’ By studying how child and caregiver survivors of the Joplin tornado talked about their experiences, we identified caregiver behaviors associated with child wellbeing.”


Over the years, this award has been funded from the Program’s unrestricted endowment account.  However, recent budget cuts at the state and local levels have taken their toll on our unrestricted account.  For the first time since 2007, the Program was unable to solicit applications for this award. 


We are calling on our alumni and friends to endow this award for future generations of students.  Our goal of $25,000 will allow us to use only the interest from this account to fund one student research award every year in perpetuity.


We invite you to respond to this challenge and endow this award so that students can be assured of its availability for generations. 

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Every gift helps fund extraordinary student research!



With declining state dollars for student research and travel, your gift makes a huge difference for students!



Thanks for supporting research that impacts the lives of children and families.



Your gift allows current students to show their leadership in the field.



Provides one fully funded Pioneer Award for an amazing student researcher.

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