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Olivia Anderson presents on climate change politics at Posters on the Hill

Published on May 05, 2021

Olivia Anderson presents on climate change politics at Posters on the Hill

Olivia AndersonEastern Connecticut State University political science major Olivia Anderson '21 recently presented at the prestigious Posters on the Hill Conference on April 28. 

The conference, which was hosted virtually this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, provided students from across the country with the opportunity to present their research to U.S. senators and other government officials.

Anderson's research, titled "Understanding the impact of partisanship on climate change opinion from 1973-2016," explores the influence of climate change, which she says is one of the most significant issues of our time.

Out of hundreds of applicants across the country, Anderson was one of 60 students to present at this year's Posters on the Hill Conference. Along with presenting their work, students spoke with legislators regarding the importance of undergraduate research. "I found that everyone asked thought-provoking questions," said Anderson, "which made the experience very engaging for everyone. I am always eager to answer questions about my work and it is certainly meaningful to hear what others have to say."

Her research, which explores the politicization of climate change, is a topic Anderson is well versed in. "I wanted my study to be interdisciplinary," she explained. "Climate change is something I have a passion for learning about and I believe understanding opinions of it will help inform climate policy in the future."

Anderson went on to explain that her research was over a year in the making. With the process starting in January 2020, the project initially started as her thesis for Eastern's honors program. After completing the written aspect of the project in December 2020, Anderson began exploring presentation possibilities with her mentor, Professor of Political Science Courtney Broscious. "My mentor and I knew my work was timely and worthy of being submitted to the conference, so we decided to go for it."

Along with Posters on the Hill, Anderson also presented her work at the National Conference for Undergraduate Research (NCUR) and Eastern's annual CREATE Conference. She was one of two students to receive the President's Award as part of CREATE, which stands for Celebrating Research Excellence and Artistic Talent at Eastern.

After graduating this May, Anderson will continue her studies at Columbia University, where she will pursue her master's degree in Climate and Society. "I believe this presentation experience will prepare me for future endeavors," says Anderson, "whether it be presenting at other conferences or in courses in graduate school."

Written by Molly Boucher