Schar School Student Duo Win ‘Most Interesting Presentation’ in Student Research Competition

In This Story

People Mentioned in This Story
Sally Kishi
Sally Kishi

Originally published on May 20, 2020

Seven Schar School teams, along with numerous others from colleges at George Mason University, signed up to “virtually” display their research posters in an annual campus-wide competition. The “Virtual Celebration of Student Scholarship” is sponsored by the Honors College.

While judges considered many elements in the three-minute presentations of the posters—among other attributes, the judges looked at the information, organization, creativity, and potential impact on its field—only one team could be awarded “Most Interesting Presentation.” This year that award went to Government and International Politics majors Sasha Silva and Sally Kishi for their research poster titled “Chile: Populism, Nativism, and Economic Uncertainty.”

“I think we won because our research provided a new and unique perspective on a topic that has been previously researched by other Mason students and faculty,” said Kishi, a junior from Fairfax, Va. “We supported our statistical findings with an explanation based on real-life events that I believe made our presentation more understandable, accessible, and intriguing to a broader audience.”

Sasha Silva
Sasha Silva

Overseen by faculty advisor Associate Professor Delton Daigle, their research poster presented a quantitative analysis on the 2017 general election in Chile. They verified that the right-wing vote was related to high levels of nativism and economic uncertainty.

“We stripped our research down to its basics to make it digestible and engaging for the audience, and Dr. Daigle really pushed us to make it our best work possible,” said Silva, a junior from Annandale, Va.

Not to mention rehearsing the presentation “for about four hours,” she added. “It still did not come out perfect but I’m proud of it given our time constraints.”