Students are an important part of CIPR’s work, whether they are conducting independent research, working on faculty projects, participating in internships, engaging with campus and community members, or applying their education, skills, and training to other projects.


Student Groups

The DU Immigrant and Refugee Rights (Colectivo) is a CIPR-affiliated, student-led group that engages in research, education, advocacy, and allyship around immigration issues. The Colectivo also runs a research digest featuring work by students, faculty, and community partners. See their page here. To get involved, please email and put Colectivo in the subject line.

Contact DU IRRC

Research Digest

We publish 2-3 research digests per year featuring student work, faculty research, community collaborations, resources, and opportunities both at DU and in the community. The Digest is disseminated via our email list and mailer.

Check Out Our 2024 Spring Research Digest

Student Summer Research

As part of our mission, we aim to support undergraduate, graduate, and law students engaging in research and internship experiences related to migration. In 2022, we launched the Student Summer Research and Internship (SSRI) grants for students participating in research, applied work, and internship opportunities related to migration.

The inaugural cohort of grantees received up to $2,000 in support of the following projects:

  • Naiyear Khajavei, PhD Student, Graduate School of Professional Psychology / International Disaster Psychology, Chaska
    • Chaska works with young girls in Peru to interrupt the cycle of poverty and provide additional resources for girls from low SES homes to pursue educational and career goals. Many of the girls attending this program have migrated from rural mountain villages throughout Peru, to the larger city of Cusco. The internship entailed investigating mental health impacts of this migration and building systems to include parents from different rural villages in the program.


  • Lydia Mathis, PhD Student, Graduate School of Professional Psychology / International Disaster Psychology, Hope Partners International
    • The community served by this internship is a settling point for Nicaraguan refugees. The community was founded by refugees from Nicaragua as the pandemic has caused an increase in migration back and forth. Hope Partners International provides under-resourced families with long term educational support and a feeding program for children.


  • Ping Robert, PhD Candidate, Educational Leadership and Policy Studies, Morgridge College of Education, “A Phenomenological Study of International Doctoral Students’ Experiences in Educational Administration Programs in the U.S.”
    • This project investigates international doctoral students in the Educational Administration programs in the U.S. International students in higher education are usually minoritized and racialized and the foreign affairs policies may affect this vulnerable community at any time. I aim to study them and make recommendations for programs and colleges in the U.S. when they recruit international students.


  • Brenda Semerenko, M.A. Student, International Development/Humanitarian Assistance Certificate, Korbel, Young African Refugees for Integral Development
    • The organization I interned for this summer is called Young African Refugees for Integral Development (YARID), based in Kampala, Uganda. The organization provides services and programs aimed at empowering refugees from Burundi, Rwanda, and the Democratic Republic of Congo.


  • Becky David-Hensley, PhD candidate, Iliff School of Theology, “Striving Toward Racial Solidarity in a Culture of White Christianity: Multi-Race + Multi-Faith Organizing in Texas”
    • I am interviewing community organizers in both Dallas/North Texas and the Rio Grande Valley border region of Texas about their work in the areas of immigration and incarceration reform. I hope to learn more about how whiteness and White Christianity shows up in multi-race and multi-faith organizing efforts for racial justice (how whiteness impacts these movements, as well as how White Christians are impacted by the work of such movements). Ultimately, I hope this project provides guidance for White Christians to engage in more ethically and culturally responsible forms of activism in the areas of immigration and incarceration reform/abolition.



Student Showcase

CIPR provides a forum for students to present their work. As part of our end-of-year showcase, Student Summer Research and Internship grant recipients present their research findings, internship highlights, or policy briefs. For example, students in Professor Lisa Martinez’s Deportation Nation class create 2-minute videos addressing different aspects of immigration:

The Crimmigration System by Angy Martinez and Mia Payne

The Myth of Immigrant Criminality by Ila Dovre Wudali and Ailis Shank-Root

Climate Migrants by Lily Fowler and Grace Tabet