Davids recognized for psychology research and campus leadership

Chris Davids ’09 earned recognition on campus and beyond for his academic research in psychology and for his leadership of Cornell’s chapter of Colleges Against Cancer.

Chris Davids
Chris Davids presenting research results at the Cornell Student Symposium

Award-winning Research

Davids earned an award from the Iowa Sociological Association for best undergraduate research paper for “Filling the Gap: An Examination of Body Dissatisfaction of Differences of Gay, Bisexual, and Heterosexual Men.” His independent study project arose from three years of work in the lab of psychology professor Melinda Green on various studies related to body satisfaction and eating disorders.

“Participating on Professor Green’s research team has opened doors for me that I never anticipated that I would pursue,” Davids said. “There are countless opportunities that have presented themselves for me, including two national conferences paid for by the school, co-authoring two peer-reviewed articles that have been published so far, mentoring on my own research project that I am submitting for publication, a block long internship at the Hope Lodge in Iowa City, etc.”

Colleges Against Cancer Leadership

Davids also co-led Cornell’s chapter of Colleges Against Cancer, which included two record-breaking years for the annual Relay for Life fundraising event. The 2008 event raised over $57,000, earning Cornell fourth place nationwide for per capita donations. 2009 was even more successful, with 42 teams, 359 total participants, and a record-breaking $61,500 raised.

“The most meaningful aspect of my position was to have the opportunity to reach out to families, friends, and survivors and offer support when they are affected by cancer,” Davids said. “We had 30 students on our committee, and I learned very important management skills, including working with committee chairs, working alongside our American Cancer Society staff partner, and collaborating with our Civic Engagement Office coordinator.”

Graduate Studies & Spanish

Davids plans to pursue his research interests further during doctoral studies in counseling psychology. First on the agenda, though, is six months in Chile polishing his Spanish skills.

“I do not have specific goals to use Spanish in my work,” he said. “Nonetheless, learning another language includes learning a new culture and multiculturalism is important within counseling psychology.”

Davids had previously studied Spanish for a block at the Baden Powell Language Institute in Morelia, Mexico as part of a Cornell course.

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