Research and Experiential Learning

Engage in Unique Student Research

Senior Capstone Project

As a Public Affairs Senior, you will investigate an identifiable public or social problem about which you are capable of gathering information.  

Recent Capstone Projects include:

  • Evaluating the Effectiveness of Rapid Rehousing in Reducing Family Homelessness
  • Food Literacy for the Future: Impact of School-Based Food Education on Youth
  • Bridging the Value-Action Gap for Reducing, Reusing, Recycling through Environmental Communication Best Practices
  • The Efficacy of Community Based and Restorative Justice Programs in Lowering Juvenile Recidivism Rates
  • Alternative Discipline: A National Review and Recommendations for Program Implementation
  • Syringe Services Program as HIV Prevention: Addressing Critiques and Geographic Disparity of Coverage
  • Effective Methods of Arts Advocacy and Funding for Seattle’s Creative Advantage Initiative

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Present your work

You may choose to present your research at the National Conferences on Undergraduate Research. Through this annual conference, NCUR creates a unique environment for the celebration and promotion of undergraduate student achievement, provides models of exemplary research and scholarship and helps to improve the state of undergraduate education.


Apply for a Scholarship, Fellowship or Research Grant

  • The Udall Foundation awards scholarships to college sophomores and juniors for leadership, public service and commitment to issues related to Native American nations or to the environment.  Contact Tanya Hayes for additional information.
  • The Truman Scholarship is the premier graduate fellowship in the United States for those pursuing careers as public service leaders.
  • The Fulbright U.S. Student Program offers research, study and teaching opportunities in over 140 countries to recent graduates.
  • The Public Policy and International Affairs Program helps students achieve a Master’s or joint degree, typically in public policy, public administration, international affairs or a related field.
  • The Association for Public Policy Analysis and Management offers a fellowship that supports the travel and participation of up to 40 students from traditionally underrepresented backgrounds at the APPAM Fall Research Conference. 
  • The Association for Research on Nonprofit Organizations and Voluntary Action (ARNOVA) brings ten (10) undergraduates from underrepresented groups to the ARNOVA annual conference to attend a workshop on paths to higher education, ideally in the field of nonprofit, philanthropic and voluntary action studies.  
  • The Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) program supports active research participation by undergraduate students in any of the areas of research funded by the National Science Foundation
  • Challenge Detroit is a competitive leadership and professional development program that invites tomorrow's leaders to live, work, play, give and lead in and around the greater Detroit area.
  • Ignite Fellowship is a premier fellowship program for women in or just out of college who want to jump-start their public service careers. 
  • Gortons Leadersip Program offers ten-month fellowships to undergraduate students in the Pacific Northwest to participate in monthly roundtables with foreign policy experts and to support their professional development.
  • Learn about additional fellowships and receive application support at the SU Office of Fellowships

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Contact Us

Tanya Hayes, PhD

Associate Professor and Director Casey 210-05


Kimberly Gawlik, JD

Senior Administrative Assistant Casey 210



 SU Undergraduate Research Award


  • Individual Project Prize: The first place prize winner will receive $500. Second and third place winners will each receive $250.
  • NEW! Group Project Prize: The first place prize-winning group will receive $1000. The $1000 prize will be split evenly among identified project members.
  • The prize award funds will be awarded as a grant to students' accounts through Student Financial Services.

To be eligible, students must be currently enrolled at Seattle University as an undergraduate student in any class level and have completed and submitted an original research project for an SU credit course.

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Engage with the Local Community

Seattle University’s Center for Community Engagement s the main entry point for students, faculty, and staff for all forms of community engagement. The volunteer portal for all of their programs, including the Seattle University Youth Initiative, is a good place to get started if interested in volunteering. 

The Office of Fellowships

The Office of Fellowships and the Student Research Program collaborate to support students and alumni from all Colleges who want to apply for merit-based grants, fellowships, conferences, and other long-term goals

Outstanding Scholarship Award

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Congratulations to Dr. Tanya Hayes, who was recognized by her peers at the College of Arts and Sciences annual All College Day with the Outstanding Scholarship Award for 2020.