Bridge Program Gives Students a Competitive Edge

Published: September 10, 2021

A primary goal of the Psychology program at College of Western Idaho (CWI) is to help students have a successful transfer experience upon graduation. Through communication with transfer partners, the College has identified research skills and connection to a research lab upon transfer to a four-year institution paramount to ensure students can develop research skills to make them competitive for graduate school and job opportunities upon graduation. To address this, the Psychology Research Bridge Program between CWI and Boise State University was created.

Students currently enrolled at CWI who plan to transfer to the Psychology program at Boise State can apply to be part of this esteemed program. Selected students participate in a year-long research program which includes creating research questions and hypotheses, designing a methodology to test hypotheses, data collection and analysis, and research dissemination in the form of conference posters and papers. Participants are mentored through the process by Dr. Mary Pritchard from Boise State, Professor Heather Schoenherr at CWI, and current Boise State student research assistants. The bridge program allows CWI students to gain invaluable research skills, making them competitive for research assistantships upon transfer and facilitates connections to both Boise State faculty and students.

This year’s Psychology Research Bridge Program team consists of four students from CWI. Timothy Buckles and Meira Vaid, 2020 Psychology graduates, are from the previous cohort and now serve as peer mentors for the incoming research assistants, Kylee Malouf and Mercades Nelson. The research project aims to understand the impact of social media on mental health, with the goal of better understanding best practices for using social media.  

For more information on how to become a research assistant in the Psychology Research Bridge Program, contact Professor Heather Schoenherr at or Dr. Mary Pritchard at

Interested in participating in the team’s current study? Want to win one of four $25 Amazon gift cards? Currently enrolled college students 18 and older are invited to participate in a research study on social media use, mental health, and social support in college students. The survey takes approximately 10-15 minutes to complete.

Participate in the Study: Social Media Use and Mental Health

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