Six Kentucky State University Behavioral and Social Science students participated in the second annual meeting of the Mid-Southern Interdisciplinary Sciences Association in Franklin, Tennessee. 

Graduate student Chandler Al Namer of the Master of Arts (MA) program in interdisciplinary behavioral science was awarded first place ($125) in the graduate student paper competition for her paper titled “Understanding and Overcoming Barriers to Minority Participation in Intelligence and Security Careers.”

Undergraduate student Robbie Olson of social work and psychology was awarded first place ($100) in the poster competition for his poster titled “Sex Trafficking Victimology and Social Work Practice and Policies.”

Undergraduate student Mariah Bailey of psychology and interdisciplinary intelligence studies was awarded second place ($75) for her paper titled “Human Trafficking: Who’s Being Taken?”

Other Kentucky State presentations included “Culture Competency, from Training to Practice in the Social Work Profession,” a paper presented by Robbie Olson and Piarre Easley; “The Global Terror Threat and Counterterrorism Challenges Facing the U.S. Intelligence Community”, a poster presented by Darryl Pinto; “Is There Such a Thing as Hip Hop Behavior?,” a poster presented by Sydnie Miller; and two papers presented by Dr. Mara Merlino titled “The Social Construction of Academic Legitimacy:  Art, Science, and Innovation in Law, Intelligence” and “Security and  Interdisciplinary Approaches to Education:  Making a Big Impact with Small Numbers.” Undergraduate student Shamayime Starr also attended the meeting.

All students are members of the behavioral and social sciences interdisciplinary lab and are active in the Kentucky State University Bluegrass State Intelligence Community Center for Academic Excellence, as well as the Behavioral and Social Science Club.  Merlino is a professor of psychology and sociology and oversees the MA program in interdisciplinary behavioral science.