Please share what has lead you to this position with the Thompson Policy Institute (TPI)?

I was the first GRA hired to be part of TPI. I had written my Master’s Thesis for my M.S. in Special Education at Chapman with the title: A Narrative and Poetic Exploration into Self-Defining Asperger’s: Ceasing to be X-. I was first interviewed by Dr. Don Cardinal to be a GRA, and my work as an GRA continues to evolve and generate greater aspects of my working and learning in disability and autism.

What does your role encompass and how do you believe your experience as a GRA will influence future positions and opportunities in academia?

My role is that of a researcher. My GRA experiences continue impacting my educational journey and expand my research skills with each project I have worked on in the course of three years now. I feel my experiences and exposure as a GRA will impact future research and opportunities in academia.

What current project are you involved in with TPI?

I am currently working with our Associate Director, Dr. Audri Gomez, in the area of Charter Schools and will be soon constructing a survey in this area.

What areas of research do you focus on outside of your work with TPI?

I am a qualitative researcher who is beginning to learn more and beginning to incorporate quantitative survey methods in my research. Along with my colleague Dr. David Isaac Hernandez-Saca who teaches at the University of Northern Iowa, we are conducting a study: The Soul Stripping of Identity and Dis/ability Oppression in LD Diagnosis: A Phenomenological Study of Two Scholars. I also focus on the intersectionality of disability disclosure in higher education. My primary area of interest involves fathers who have a child/young adult along the autism spectrum. I view my research through a lens of intersectionality and disability studies.

What has been the best part of working as a GRA at the Thompson Policy Institute?

The best part of working as a GRA at the Thompson Policy Institute is threefold. First, the continuing opportunities to be part of a community/a team who truly want to make a difference in this world in the work we are all involved with. Second, the opportunities to grow as a researcher and scholar in the areas of disability and autism. Third, the involvement TPI has in the community and our annual Summit on Disability.

Lisa Boskovich, M.S. Special Education from Chapman University. Lisa obtained her B.S. in Human Services from California State University, Fullerton. While at CSUF, Lisa spent a year and a half as a research assistant. She has spent the past 10 years speaking about her journey as a student working and dealing with a disability, and the past three years speaking about her journey with Autism. Lisa’s focus of research encompasses two areas, (1) the voices of father’s who have a child on the Autism Spectrum, (2) the phenomenological experience of Learning Disability and the impact of Disability on identity. Lisa has presented her research at several conferences over the past few years. Her most recent presentation includes presenting at the American Education Research Association (AERA) on disability disclosure in higher education. Her work centers on the social model of disability and its’ impact in today’s education system, as well as the intersectionality of disability in identity. Presently, Lisa is a 3rd year Ph.D. student in Disability Studies at Chapman University.