2 female students examining a human lung sample

SPARK: Students Pursuing Applications, Research, and Knowledge

Preparing for the 2024-2025 SPARK Cohort

We are currently working on matching SPARK applicants with professors. This is a tedious process that will be completed by the beginning of August. All applicants will be informed via email as to whether they have been chosen to participate by the beginning of August.

SPARK Research Showcase

The culmination of SPARK is the presentation of slides on each student's research efforts. We are thrilled by the hard work completed by all the SPARK students. Below the Showcase you can see more information about the SPARK students and the Undergraduate Research Symposium. Congratulations SPARK students!

Message from the Dean

SPARK Research in Review

Undergraduate Research Symposium 2024

These are the SPARK students participating in the 2024 Undergraduate Research Symposium.

  • Ava Amabile: Investigating Topic Maintenance and Organization to Advance Understanding of Kindergarten and First Grade Opinion Writing
  • Saiesha Bollapragada: Public Health Preparedness Among UIUC Students During Extreme Heat Conditions
  • Tess Giddens-White: Speech Intelligibility with Airpods Pro
  • Shaun Gillespie: Testing Speech Intelligibility Using Firefighter’s Two-Way Radios
  • Kate Gronlund: Latina and Latino Experts’ Perceptions of Activity-Friendly Routes to Everyday Destinations
  • Claire Grossen: Online Adult Entertainment Platforms: Understanding Motivations and Differences between the Users and Non-Users
  • Kate Harty: Vocal Effort in Dining Halls to Optimize Speech Intelligibility
  • Brianna Osmon: Entrainment to Naturally and Rhythmically Spoken Speech: Effect of Age and Hearing loss
  • Megan Thing: Effects of Age, Hearing Loss, and Test Modality on Memory for Backward Digits
  • Alexa Worthley: Usability Testing of a Digital Medication Self-Management Tool for Persons with Mild Cognitive Impairment
  • Max Zagorski: Differences in the Multidimensional Sexual Self-Concept between Transgender and Cisgender Individuals


If you have any questions about the SPARK program, please contact Dr. Tonya Pulley, tonyap@illinois.edu.