CHBS Student Travel and Research Support (STARS) Fund

The College of Humanities and Behavioral Sciences has an ongoing commitment to helping students access experiential learning initiatives like collaborative research and co-curricular activities such as Model United Nations and competitive Mock Trial.  Participation in these kinds of experiences can shape a student's intellectual and professional trajectory for a lifetime. 

As an example, many of our highly motivated students engage in research projects with their faculty collaborators producing results that are competitive with students at other universities. To get these students to regional or even national academic conferences where they can shine takes funding.  A trip to a regional conference can run well over a thousand dollars, well beyond the reach of many deserving students who may be financially constrained meeting traditional college expenses such as tuition, room, and board.

The STARS fund provides financial support for student travel to short-term, domestic experiential learning opportunities. Through the generous support of our alumni and friends, STARS assists students with funding for expenses such as travel, registration, and lodging so they can explore the world and opportunities beyond southwestern Virginia. 

Student Testimonials


Brittney Gray, Psychology major, received funding to help her travel to the American Psychological Association meeting in Washington D.C.

She shares “When I began my doctoral program in counseling psychology at Radford University in 2018, one of my long-term goals was to attend the American Psychological Association meeting. Due to the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in the spring of my first year, many conferences were cancelled, rescheduled, and moved to virtual. At that time, I wasn’t sure if attending and presenting at conference during my program would be possible but was excited to receive an invitation to present at APA 2023. With STARS funding, I was allowed the opportunity to not only attend APA’s 2023 meeting in Washington D.C., but also to present on my dissertation project completed at Radford through the span of my program. I appreciated the opportunity to come “full circle” with my dissertation project, from initial conceptualization to disseminating the results of my research to the larger scientific community. Additionally, while attending APA 2023 I was able to engage in networking activities with other early career psychologists, meet several prominent researchers, and attend several continuing education sessions on topics relevant to my early career and research. Without support from the STARS fund, I would not have been able to attend APA 2023. I am so appreciative for the opportunities that the STARS fund afforded me to further my professional growth and development.”


Jae Horst, political science student, participated in the 2023 Southern Regional Model United Nations competition in Atlanta, Georgia.

She shares “This is my first semester being a part of Model, UN and in fact, this is my first year at Radford! I have been so excited to be involved in as many clubs but especially Model UN. Model UN is building my public speaking skills, knowledge of other countries as well as diplomacy. The conference was amazing, I learned so much in such a short amount of time. Model UN helped me really understand how negotiation and diplomacy work among different countries. Next semester I am looking forward to speaking at least double the number of times I did this trip.  I’m so glad I had this opportunity here at Radford to go to this conference. I feel way more confident in my negotiation and diplomacy skills, and even though my public speaking skills are not exactly where I want them to be, they have improved thanks to this experience and the STARS funding.”


Lane Chrepta, History major, was able to attend the 42nd Annual International Conference of the Haskins Society this fall and shared a few words on what this experience meant to her.

“Attending the 42nd International Conference of the Haskins Society was an amazing experience. I was able to reconnect with people I met last year and make new connections. Going to this conference last year was what helped me decide that I wanted to major in history, and going this year has helped me narrow down what precisely I want to study. The papers presented ranged from “Visual Storytelling in Stone” to “Recreating Lost Early Medieval Spaces in Virtual Reality.” Every paper had me excited for the next one and showed me just how broad the field of history can be. The conversations that followed the presentations were also just as enlightening. I was able to get feedback and advice on research ideas, help finding resources for my research, and even recommendations on where to go to Graduate School. Attending this conference was a life changing event and I’m incredibly thankful that I was able to attend with the help of the STARS grant. If it weren’t for the STARS grant, I wouldn’t have been able to attend and make all of these wonderful connections and memories."


Cheyenne James used the CHBS STARS funding to not only attend but present her research at the American Psychological Association Conference in Washington D.C in August 2023.

“I had so much fun at the APA 2023 conference! Presenting at APA was a wonderful opportunity to present my dissertation research, network in the field, and learn new techniques and research that can inform my clinical work. I attended last year and this inspired me to submit my poster proposal this year because there were no presentations about older adult sexuality and this is an important population to advocate for their health needs. I was able to present my dissertation, which encompasses social justice issues among older adults. I am passionate about mental health and I was able to attend several talks on postpartum depression in women, supervision, post-doctoral positions, advocacy for client rights, ethics, the EPPP (our licensure), steps to owning a private practice, and competencies on assisted-dying and working with EMTs. I volunteered as a CE student volunteer and I was able to attend a CEU on: Unmask the Secrets of NIH Funding: Your Complete Guide to Successful Research Grant Applications. I also attended Datablitz and Hope as Antidote talks. I was able to consult with a psychologist about owning a private practice and was able to get a headshot for my internship bio profile for internship.”

How to Apply

Please contact Dr. Kim Gainer, the College’s Associate Dean, who will guide you through the process of applying for a grant.

Her email is

How You Can Give

Just scan the UR Code below and choose STARS from the drop down menu.