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Institute for Health Care Policy and Aging Research
Julia Gomez
Project L/EARN Intern - 2004
Julia Gomez
How does Acculturation affect Paternal Involvement?
Mark Schmitz

Julia had been a Livingston College (Rutgers University) senior majoring in Social Work and working towards a minor in Puerto Rican and Hispanic Caribbean Studies when she decided to become a part of the Project L/EARN family. Julia, a James Carr scholar from the Bronx, New York, chose to attend Rutgers because of the “very competitive social work program offered”. Project L/EARN has helped to shape Julia’s educational goals towards a social work graduate program and eventually a doctorate in Administrative Policy and Planning.

Julia gained new confidence in understanding research and research methods, and now values the importance of supporting claims through valid and reliable methods. Her project determined if living in the United States negatively affects paternal involvement in childrearing activities. This project served as a stepping stone for her to achieve the ultimate goal of becoming an Administrative social worker with a focus on juvenile and immigrant Hispanic and immigrant rights.

The Methods of Social Work course offered at Rutgers gave Julia the opportunity to work with her mentor before applying to Project L/EARN. Her interest in Project L/EARN stems from her past struggles in understanding research in Dr. Schmitz’s class, along with her desire to learn about good research ethics. Project L/EARN has made Julia a more educated critic when presented with facts from journals or other information media. She grew to appreciate the small Project L/EARN setting and felt comfortable with the instructor, TAs and other interns who had helped to reassure her at times when she felt she was the only person not understanding a particular concept. Julia has enjoyed this “Unique learning experience,” and the opportunities it has offered her.

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