BVU senior travels to D.C. to present on fetishes

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Machensey Shelgren, a senior Criminology and Psychology double major from Gilmore City, Iowa, received the William and Lavina Wesselink Student Development Award.

This award will help fund her trip to Washington D.C. in order to present her research on the fetish community bridging criminology and psychology at the American Society of Criminology Annual Meeting.

Shelgren hopes to use this opportunity to make connections with possible graduate schools throughout the nation, and specifically graduate schools such as George Washington University in Washington D.C.

“[The conference] will be good for networking with professionals and with people at grad schools,” Shelgren said. “It will help me get my foot in the door, but it also is going to look good on my resume.”

The application process for the award requires students to submit an application and their research proposal to the Student Affairs office. The application must also include an estimated list of expenses needed to complete the research.

Associate Professor of Criminology Dr. Miyuki Vamadevan Arimoto encouraged Shelgren to apply for the award due to a pilot study that she performed in Arimoto’s Social Deviance class the previous fall. Arimoto knew this would be a great opportunity for Shelgren to pursue her research further.

“She’s looking for graduate schools, so if she has experience that includes a presentation — that’s why I asked her,” Arimoto said.

Arimoto and Shelgren agree that this is a great chance to advocate herself to professionals and graduate programs around the country.

“I was glad. I had already purchased the plane and the hotel just to ensure a spot, but since I was accepted, it was a relief,” Shelgren said.

Shelgren was awarded $1500 for travel expenses and will be flying out on November 18. Her presentation will take place the following day, leaving her two days to network and build relationships with other scholars, professionals, and graduate schools.