Story+ Summer Research

Applications for Story+ Summer Research Experience Project 2021 are open!

About Story+

For the first time, International Programs and Social Work departments at Methodist University have partnered with Duke University and Davidson College to conduct an interdisciplinary research project on “Hardship and Resilience: Experiences of International Students during COVID-19” through Story +. Story+ is a 6-week summer research experience for students—undergraduates and graduates—interested in exploring interdisciplinary humanities research topics and methodologies. The program combines hands-on research with storytelling to create dynamic outcomes for diverse public audiences. In Story+, students are organized into small project teams and have the opportunity to participate in a flexible mini “curriculum” on research methods and storytelling strategies. The team project of “Hardship and Resilience: Experiences of International Students during COVID-19” will be led by Duke University, Davidson College and Methodist University, and will be supervised on a day-to-day basis by graduate student mentors. Full details about the project can be found here: Story + “Hardship and Resilience: Experiences of International Students during COVID-19”

Program Duration

Story+ takes place during Summer (May 12 to June 25, 2021), and this year will have a modified schedule. Story+ recognizes the multiple strains brought on us by the pandemic, remote learning, and systemic global uncertainties, and has in response opted this year to move from a full-time program to a modified partially-full program. This will allow us to maintain the rigor and dedication required for hands-on interdisciplinary humanities research while also giving us a necessary flexibility that recognizes the profundity of our present. Story+ learning opportunities and research training will occupy roughly 25-30 hours per week for six-weeks. If funds are available, undergraduate stipend may be offered. The MU student will work in collaboration with students from Duke University and Davidson College.

Project Sponsors

  • Li-Chen Chin, Assistant Vice President for Intercultural Programs, Duke University
  • Lisa Giragosian, Director of International House, Duke University
  • Thomas Greene, Director of International Student Programs, Davidson College
  • Sara Parrott, Assistant Director of International Student Programs, Davidson College
  • Minnu Paul, Interim Director of International Programs and Director of International Recruitment, Methodist University
  • Tracey Hinds, Assistant Professor of Social Work and Field Education Coordinator, Methodist University

Required & Preferred Skills

  • Active listening
  • Organizational skills
  • Ability to analyze and synthesize information
  • Digital Media Skills such as video recording editing, etc.
  • Digital story-telling creativity is strongly encouraged
  • Skills to communicate with people from different cultural backgrounds
  • Be able to be flexible and work as a part of the team
  • Ability to speak and understand another language other than English is preferred, although not required

Benefits & Outcomes

  • Have the opportunity to work with staff and students from MU, Duke University and Davidson College
  • Develop interviewing and documentation skills
  • Gain knowledge about research methods and story-telling strategies
  • Develop intercultural competency
  • Visibility of the project to the public
  • Recommendation letters from staff members
  • If funding is available, then a stipend may be disbursed. This is not a guarantee.

Application Process

You’ll be asked to provide the following information to apply for the undergraduate research assistant position for the interdisciplinary and inter-institutional project with Duke University, Davidson College and Methodist University.

All current MU undergraduate students can apply.

Please fill out the online Story+ Application, and please email the following to Tracey Hinds at

  • Resume
  • Unofficial Transcript
  • A one-paragraph Statement of Interest on the related project
  • A one-paragraph Contribution Statement on this project detailing the experiences, strengths, skills, interests, and abilities in humanities research you bring to the project
  • Up to two References (no actual letters, just names and email addresses)

For any questions about the program or application, please contact Tracey Hinds at

Application Deadline

The priority deadline for all student applications is 11:59 p.m. on Feb. 28, 2021, but we will evaluate applications on a rolling basis, so please get your application in as soon as you can.