My McNair Experience by Felicia VanWinkle

This summer I was able to participate in the McNair summer research internship. The McNair Scholars Program was set up to help students who are minorities, low income, or first gen. college students get into graduate and doctoral programs! As part of this program, scholars get to conduct research over a topic of their choosing under the guidance of the McNair staff and a faculty mentor.

My research is titled, “Hungry, Hungry Hippotherapy: The Caregiver Perspective on Choosing the Hippotherapy Approach.” I was placed at the hippotherapy barn for one of my undergrad clinical placements, and I fell in love.  I enjoyed everything about it and wanted to know more, so I immediately knew that’s what I could do my research over. I asked Mrs. Fisher if she would be my mentor because she was my C.E. for when I was placed at the barn. Thankfully, she said yes! She was so supportive and kept me calm when I thought all my research was going to fall apart!

I spent 2 months interviewing, transcribing the interviews, and analyzing all of my data. It was NOT an easy thing to do, but by some miracle, I was able to get it done. I also got the chance to present my research in Atlanta, GA, Buffalo, NY and a final presentation at Harding.

I was so lucky to get to participate in this internship! I learned so much about my topic, the research process, and how to present my findings. I believe that this research internship has really prepared me to take on my first semester of grad school at Harding!

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