A Postcard From: Jamie DiDomenico ’18

Name: Jamie DiDomenico
Class Year: 2018
Major: Psychology
Minor: Child and Family Studies
Hometown: Staten Island, N.Y.

Internship Placement: Summer Science Research Program
Job Title: Research Intern
Location: Bryn Mawr College

What’s happening at your internship?

For my last summer at Bryn Mawr College, I was accepted into Bryn Mawr’s Summer Science Research Program. Through this program, I am conducting cross-cultural psychological research with Dr. Heejung Park on how acculturation, or the process of adjusting to the host culture when multiple cultures come into contact, influences multiethnic families in South Korea. More specifically, I am examining the influence of acculturation on immigrant mothers’s behaviors and how those behaviors relate to their children’s behaviors and well-being in South Korea. Through conducting an in-depth literature review on multiethnic families, I have formed a hypothesis that suggests that adolescents will experience poorer well-being when mothers are less acculturated to Korean culture. Additionally, I hypothesize that this association would be explained by less acculturated mothers’s more negative parenting practices, which in turn would be associated with adolescents’ poorer well-being. As I continue my research, I will analyze data that was collected from 1,635 children and 1,625 of their mothers that allowed mothers to self-report their acculturation levels and parenting behaviors and adolescents to self-report their well-being.

Why did you apply for this internship?

I applied to the Summer Science Research Program to gain experience in conducting my own research. As a rising senior, I thought that this opportunity would be extremely helpful in teaching me the skills necessary to create my research-orientated thesis in the upcoming academic year. Additionally, I believe that this experience can help me decide whether or not research is a career path I would like to follow in the future.

Can you talk about the skills you are learning and why they are important to you?

I am gaining so many important skills from this program. Two of the most important skills that I feel I am gaining are patience and perseverance. Through conducting my own research, I am learning that researching any question is a slow and lengthy process, as there are many steps that need to be completed with precision and care. In consequence, I am learning how to think and conduct my research in an efficient manner that I believe is helping me consistently produce work related to my project and will help me develop my thesis in the future.

What is most rewarding about your internship?

I have found the potential for my research to shed knowledge on the implications of acculturation on a culturally unique and understudied population to be incredibly rewarding. Not only may my research provide information about immigrant mothers in South Korea, but it may also shed light on the implications of globalization. The ability for research to educate politicians, professionals, and the public on the implications of our changing society motivates me to continue my research now and in the upcoming years so positive and beneficial change can take place.