WARF-Funded Graduate Students

The Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation (WARF) plays an essential role in supporting the innovative research and graduate education that are cornerstones of the University of Wisconsin–Madison. WARF invests in graduate education through University Fellowships and Advanced Opportunities Fellowships/Graduate Research Scholars. The following profiles illustrate the diverse and important ways that WARF contributes to graduate student success at UW–Madison.

WARF-funded student profiles

  • Jeffrey M. Thomas

    PhD student, French
    Jeffrey M. Thomas is a PhD student in French whose research focuses on literature about and from Corsica, specifically from the 19th and 21st centuries.

  • Sheena Finnigan

    PhD student, History
    Sheena’s research focuses on the history of motherhood among non-elite women in classical Rome.

  • Cortney Anderson Kramer

    PhD candidate, Art History
    If you’ve ever driven by a roadside concrete art park – think sculptures, grottos, or even houses – and been intrigued, art history PhD candidate Cortney Anderson Kramer is the person to ask. Kramer studies and writes about this unique art style in the Midwest.

  • Karen García Escorcia

    PhD student, Spanish
    Karen studies debt as a literary motif and a protagonist that has the power to actively impact literary characters, their ideologies, and their interpersonal relationships.

  • Kurt Kuehne

    PhD student, Sociology
    Kurt’s dissertation research studies the politics of low-wage labor migration in the modern, global economy. Using a comparative case study in Southeast Asia, he discusses the hidden costs for migrant workers that come with temporary guest worker programs.

  • Brianna Lafoon

    PhD student, History and Educational Policy Studies
    Brianna's research examines how schooling intersected with nation-building and expansion in the U.S. in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, specifically regarding African American, immigrant, and colonial subjects.

  • Steffen Silvis

    PhD student, Interdisciplinary Theatre Studies
    Steffen studies the role that Japanese Noh theatre played in the development of American modernist drama and dance.

  • Laura M. Alexander

    PhD candidate, Microbiology
    As a member of Dr. Jan Peter van Pijkeren’s probiotics lab, Laura focuses on the development of the probiotic Lactobacillus reuteri as a biotherapeutic delivery vehicle.

  • Dylan Schmitz

    PhD student, Mechanical Engineering
    Dylan studies how wearable robotic exoskeletons change the forces on the tendons and ligaments inside the body.

  • Mónica Rodríguez Morris

    MS student, Civil and Environmental Engineering
    Mónica’s research focuses on sustainability and life cycle assessments. Specifically, she works on the impact of bioplastics on solid waste management infrastructure and the environment.

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