Two Outstanding McKendree University Juniors Win Prestigious Fulbright-Mitacs Research Award to Study in Canada

(LEBANON, Ill., February 17, 2022) – Peyton Osgood and Breanna Sampo, juniors at McKendree University, have been chosen to receive a Fulbright-Mitacs internship to conduct research in Canada this summer. The Fulbright-Mitacs Globalink enables about 60 students from the United States to attend a Canadian university in which they will undertake advanced research projects for 10 to 12 weeks in their area of interest under the supervision of a professor. Additionally, students will be given the opportunity to take part in professional training and extensive cultural, social and recreational experiences.

Osgood will be conducting research at Ryerson University in downtown Toronto with Dr. Andrew (Hyounsoo) Kim. She will be conducting a cross-cultural study of loot boxes in video games, exploring the possible relationship between the boxes and problem gambling in non-Western countries. “This study really stuck out to me because I love video games and believe that they have a lot of interesting psychological impacts that have mostly gone untouched,” Osgood said. “This research could have an impact on policies and restrictions on loot boxes in games in non-Western countries where there are currently no regulations.”

Sampo will be working on a research project at Wilfrid Laurier University in Waterloo, Ontario with Dr. Steve Sider. Her project, titled “School Leadership and Inclusive Education in Canada,” will examine how the leadership of Canadian schools incorporates students with special needs into general classes. “This topic is particularly interesting to me because I have a passion for inclusion,” Sampo said. “I strongly believe everyone has a special place on this earth and we should never exclude those who are different as it creates unnecessary barriers for those who deserve an equal chance in the world.”

Osgood, of Crest Hill, Ill., will graduate in May 2023 with a bachelor’s degree in psychology and minors in history and clinical and counseling psychology. She is the vice president of both the Psychology Club and Psi Chi, the psychology honors society. A member of Pi Gamma Mu, the international social science honor society, and first-chair French horn player in the McKendree University concert band and wind ensemble, Osgood also serves as a resident assistant in Barnett Hall and as a research assistant to Dr. Guy Boysen, professor of psychology at McKendree.

Sampo, of Cedar Point, Ill., will graduate in May 2023 with a bachelor’s degree in psychology and minors in communications and clinical and counseling psychology. She is the president of the Psychology Club and Psi Chi, the secretary of the Student Government Association, and a member of McKendree’s Academic Excellence Celebration Committee. A psychology tutor and section leader of the McKendree Color Guard, Sampo also serves as a research assistant to Dr. Boysen.

Upon their return to the U.S., both students plan to attend McKendree for their senior year and continue working as research assistants and developing their skills in the research process.