Project Overview

Mobility Derailed?: How are Recent Lower-Income, First-Generation Selective College Graduates Navigating the COVID-19 Economic Crisis?

Faculty Sponsor

Janel Benson (


Sociology and Anthropology


COVID-19 has caused massive job losses across virtually all occupational sectors. What does this mean for recent college graduates from lower-income, first-generation (LIFG) backgrounds, who are just beginning to reap the rewards of a college degree and who have little available family support? This project will re-interview 64 racially- and gender-diverse LIFG selective college graduates from my recently published book project (Benson and Lee, 2020).  These individuals graduated in the last 5-7 years and are just beginning their careers. Student researchers will assist with conducting, transcribing, and coding interview data.  They will also be responsible for conducting literature review research.

Student Qualifications

Student researchers should have taken at least one social science research methods course, such as SOCI 250, and have experience working with qualitative interview data.  Students from lower-income and/or first-generation backgrounds are especially encouraged to apply. 

Number of Student Researchers

2 students

Project Length

8 weeks

Applications open on 01/03/2021 and close on 03/22/2021

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If you have questions, please contact Karyn Belanger (