Sophomore sociology major Harper Lee Anderson’s academic career at UNL has
taken many turns. When she first entered UNL, Harper majored in theatre
performance. Later, she was a secondary social-science education major. Now, in the 2014-15 academic year, Harper has declared a sociology major, and it’s a
major she is making major professional progress in, especially since becoming a USTARS (Undergraduate Sociology Teaching and Research Student) for the 2014-15 year. Her experience as a USTARS has been her first internship experience.
Harper first learned about the USTARS program from Brittany Piper, a graduate student and instructor in sociology at UNL, in fall 2014. Interested in the program, Harper applied to the program with Brittany Piper as her advisor, and was accepted into the program.
As a USTARS, Harper has been able to gain experience teaching and organizing events while being paid for her work.
Harper’s primary duties as a USTARS involved promoting and organizing events for UNL’s Undergraduate Sociological Association. These events took place on an almost weekly basis throughout the fall and spring semesters and included events such as homework help sessions, movie nights, as well as lectures and discussions.
During her internship, Harper was surprised at the amount of planning which went into events such as movie nights. Not only did films need to be pre-screened, Harper and her advisor, Brittany, also had to create discussion questions to discuss with undergraduates after the films ended.
“At first, Brittany led the student discussions at movie nights,” Harper said. “But by the end of fall semester, preparing and leading discussions at these events was my primary duty.”
In the future, Harper plans to continue working with USTARS and studying sociology. Though she is still uncertain what career path she will end up choosing, Harper has developed an interest in studying sociology as it relates to women and gender issues.
Story by Lane Chasek
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