May 2019

Dr. Mary Stenson with student Rachel Nelson

The collaboration between faculty and students is at the core of liberal arts education at Minnesota private colleges. College of Saint Benedict senior Rachel Nelson wanted to research whether there were physiological changes to Division III cross-country student athletes over a season, but knew she’d have to get started early. “I wanted to get pre- and post-season readings for my research and the cross-country season actually starts before the fall semester,” Nelson said. “So I had to start my research before classes started.”

And that meant working over the summer to get approval from the institutional review board, according to Dr. Mary Stenson, Rachel’s advisor and associate professor of exercise science and sports studies. Complicating it further, Rachel spent the spring semester of her junior year studying abroad. But her advisor and the college helped her make it work.

Read more about how Rachel's college experience helped make her research a success.