Jenna’s Visit to Capitol Hill

DiSH Grad Student Jenna Cummings just got back from a trip to Capitol Hill in Washington D.C., where she got to speak with congressional representatives and staff about the importance of funding for social & behavioral research! She went on the trip with the American Psychological Association’s Science Student Council, and we’re ecstatic that she was able to represent the DiSH lab & psychological research as a whole so well!


Check out what Jenna had to say about her experience:


“I’ve been a part of the American Psychological Association’s Science Student Council for about two years now. One of the missions of this student council is to advocate for psychological science. This past week I had the opportunity to visit Capitol Hill in Washington D.C. and have one-on-one visits with congressional representatives and staff. I met with Tyler Lorig – staff in California Senator Diane Feinstein’s office, Kentucky Representative Andy Barr, and Megan Price – staff in California Representative Ted Lieu’s office (the Representative for UCLA’s district).

I described to them my research on alcohol use and eating behavior, and how my National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship critically supports me in carrying out that research. I explained how Dr. T , Laura, and I are writing a grant proposal to receive funds for development of a new intervention for stress eating, and how without those funds, potential new solutions for problematic eating can’t be tested. I asked for these members of congress to strongly and persistently support federal funding for the social and behavioral sciences. I also asked for these members of congress to oppose cuts to this federal funding, and to oppose the social and behavioral sciences being singled out from other sciences. Responses were positive, with most offices explicitly stating their support for NIH and NSF!


Here's Jenna, along with Jenna, along with Representative Andy Barr and fellow SSC member Justin Strickland.

I am extremely grateful for these visits. It brought me insight to how psychological researchers can have effects beyond the lab, classroom, or an academic journal. I urge other psychological scientists to get involved in advocacy, this way our science can continue to flourish.”

It sounds like a really eye-opening and valuable weekend; we’re so proud that Jenna has made such important strides toward progressing our science!

Jenna and   Jenna, along with Megan Price and fellow SSC member Justin Strickland.

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 Jenna with Tyler Lorig.