The National Science Foundation (NSF) Graduate Research Fellowship Program (GRFP) awards fellowships to promising early-stage graduate students across a wide range of disciplines. Jared Celniker ’14, a graduate from Chapman’s Psychology program and Ph.D. student at UCI’s School of Social Ecology was recently accepted into this prestigious and highly competitive program. He received honorable mention when he first applied during the 2016 award cycle but after reapplying as a UCI graduate student, he got the full award.  The program allows Jared to receive a stipend which he uses to conduct research into political & moral attitudes and behavior. “Most of my projects come down to exploring the kinds of biases we have in perceiving the world and trying to figure out ways to make us a little more accurate and humble in addressing emotionally-charged societal concerns,” he says.

During his time as a Chapman undergrad, Jared gained a lot of experience conducting and presenting research. He credits those experiences with helping him get into grad school and transition into a research-intensive program. “Research is not for everyone, but it was something I truly enjoyed and found meaningful.” After graduating, Jared worked as an intern in Washington D.C. and spent some time traveling before starting his Ph.D. program in social psychology.

Interestingly, Jared does not intend on staying in academia when he completes his Ph.D. He is considering a career in either public policy or industry. “I still have some time to figure all that out, but as much as I love aspects of academia I’m fairly certain it’s not where I want to make a career. I want to be more directly involved in solving problems than academia often allows.”

In the meantime, Jared is staying focused on his studies and research. He finds time to write for Psychology Today. Articles like “Should You Donate to Disaster Relief” and “Overcoming the Allure of Fake News” have garnered him a good deal of attention on social media. Those wishing to learn more about Jared can visit his LinkedIn profile.

When asked what advice he has for current Chapman undergraduates, he has this to say:

“I made lifelong friends at Chapman and had some of the best times of my life there. Only you know what the right balance is for yourself, but I’d encourage you to seek a balance between studying and partying to make the most of your limited time at Chapman.”