LEXINGTON, Ky. (May 24, 2018) — Rachel Farr, assistant professor of developmental psychology in the College of Arts and Sciences at the University of Kentucky, has been selected as a recipient of the 2018 William T. Grant Scholars Award.
Launched in 1982, the scholars program supports the professional development of promising researchers in the social, behavioral and health sciences. To date, the program has sponsored more than 180 talented researchers.
Scholars receive $350,000 to execute rigorous five-year research plans that stretch their skills and knowledge into new disciplines. As they commence their projects, they build mentoring relationships with experts in areas pertinent to their development.
“We are pleased to support a stellar group of new William T. Grant Scholars. They are tackling the important inequality challenges of our times, including racial disparities in school discipline, discrimination against LGBTQ youth and families, unstable work for parents in the service sector and the risks facing low-income young women on social media,” Vivian Tseng, senior vice president of the William T. Grant Foundation, said. “By supporting their research agendas and professional development, the program seeks to contribute to a new generation of scholars who can inform our nation’s efforts to reduce inequality for young people.”
Farr’s research explores practices that may reduce the harmful effects of discrimination experienced by racially and economically diverse adolescents with LGBTQ parents. She will use the $350,000 to examine how racial and LGBTQ discrimination influences adolescents’ outcomes, as well as whether the influence differs depending on socioeconomic or adoption status.
Using a mixed-methods approach that involves qualitative interviews and analyses of survey, Farr will identify whether certain parenting practices, peer relationships and community climates may buffer the negative consequences of discrimination among adolescents with multiple marginalized identities. She will deepen her expertise on adolescence, as well as expand her methods and statistical skills through mentoring relationships with Christia Brown, professor of psychology, and Sherry Rostosky, professor of counseling psychology, who will provide guidance on qualitative methods and studying discrimination, LGBTQ parents, families and adolescence.
Each year, the foundation selects a handful of new William T. Grant scholars from a highly competitive pool of applicants who are nominated by their supporting institutions. You can find more information about the scholars program online.