Brett Nachman at his Epcot honors thesis defenseI have participated in and/or developed research opportunities in various arenas, including higher education and journalism. My primary research interest is to best understand and support the experiences of college students on the autism spectrum, as well as capture the transfer trajectories of community college students.

Research Work Experience:

Project Assistant for WISCAPE (August 2017 – Present)

Graduate Student Researcher for the College Autism Network at Florida State University (March 2017 – Present)

Graduate Student Researcher at University of Wisconsin-Madison (September 2015 – Present)

Here are some examples of my more recent ventures:

I am conducting research as part of the College Autism Network (CAN), based out of Florida State University. CAN, headed by Dr. Bradley Cox, develops projects aimed at serving and spreading awareness about students on the autism spectrum in postsecondary education institutions.

I am a graduate student researcher on Dr. Xueli Wang’s research team, as part of the “Expanding STEM Talent Through Upward Transfer: Factors Influencing Transfer in STEM Fields from Two-Year to Four-Year Institutions” at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. This project, funded by a grant from the National Science Foundation, tracks STEM students at two-year colleges in Wisconsin to evaluate their academic/professional objectives and pathways. More specifically, I am a part of two studies: one centered on the experiences of female STEM students at two-year colleges and their transfer intent, and another focused on how two-year college students view themselves as STEM learners.


The former study was recently published as a peer-reviewed journal article in Frontiers in Psychology.

  • Wang, X., Chan, H.-Y., Soffa, S. J., & Nachman, B. R. (2017). A nuanced look at women in STEM fields at community colleges: Factors that shape female students’ transfer intent. Frontiers in Psychology8.

I have written a chapter (on the relationships among how community colleges’ honors programs and universities’ honors programs/colleges operate) for a new book on honors education. I reviewed partnerships from across the nation in conducting my research.

  • Nachman, B. (2017). Bridging the academic gap. In Robert W. Glover & Katherine M. O’Flaherty (Eds.), Structural Challenges and the Future of Honors Education (Honors Education in Transition). Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield.

During my undergraduate experience, I wrote Barrett, The Honors College thesis that analyzes the connections and implications between technology and culture over the evolution of Epcot, the Walt Disney World theme park once envisioned as a futuristic community of tomorrow.

  • Nachman, B. (2014). Epcot’s evolution: Disney’s ultimate world’s fair of technological and cultural synergy (Unpublished undergraduate honors thesis). Arizona State University, Barrett, The Honors College, Phoenix, AZ.

Other Projects:

  • Heading a team for the Cronkite Public Relations Lab that investigated Honeywell Aerospace’s internal communication efforts. We developed the foundation of a campaign for its 100th anniversary, based on research we conducted of other corporations that celebrated milestones. Our project took the form of a substantial document outlaying our plans, secondary research and a campaign presentation.
  • Creating the platform for a “Social Media Playbook” for City of Scottsdale during my internship in its office of communication.
  • Forming an independent t-test research project template for students to complete during my time as a teaching assistant in an Introduction to Statistics class at Arizona State University.

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