Skip to main content

Established in 1999 by Lorna Ness ’75, this fund supports the University Fellows program.

Intentional community, non-capitalism, and identity


While last semester I spent a course learning how to design my own research project, this summer I started doing it. I spent 8 weeks living within a commune in rural Virginia and learned what it was like to live in an income-sharing community with 75 other members. While I spent some time in the garden, cooking community meals, and packing vegetable seed packets, I also spent time doing in-depth interviews, participatory observation, and ethnography.

The Next Frontier


Today, 75% of residential land in the United States is zoned for detached single-family homes. This means that anything other than detached single family homes including apartments, low-income housing, senior living, and student housing are prohibited in these areas. Zoning regulations are the foundation of city planning, making them a fundamental aspect of society to evaluate when assessing the future of our nation.

Testing Fruit Ripeness with a Portable, Affordable Spectrometer


My Modern Physics lab with Dr. Munir Pirbhai taught me a lot about spectroscopy, spectrometers, and their applications, how they work, and how to carry out experiments in an effective manner. Spectrometers are expensive devices but could be made for a very low cost, and I wanted to see if we could create an inexpensive spectrometer that can be used for the same applications as an expensive one. After taking computer science courses with Dr. Lisa Torrey and Dr. Choong-Soo Lee, I had a strong background in a few programming languages which was very helpful.