Picture of Chris Pulliam

“Do not be afraid,” shares Christopher Pulliam, Class of ’17. Pulliam offers this advice to anyone working on their capstone. As he worked on piecing his project, he found it challenging to remain confident in his research. He says it is easy to second guess your ideas and to get lost in the literature, but he continues to push until the finish line.

Through his project, Pulliam is conducting an experimental survey to examine how an individual’s values and the race of the recipient group affect public opinion towards social welfare policy. He’ll be analyzing how humanitarianism, egalitarianism, economic individualism, and racial resentment influences programs like Medicare and Medicaid.

Pulliam says a capstone gives him the freedom to explore a topic he enjoys and gives him the opportunity to contribute a small amount of knowledge to that topic through his own research. Part of this freedom is supported through his Crown Wise Award and his supportive thesis advisor, Professor Shana Kushner Gadarian.

Professor Gadarian has guided him through several versions of the project and to weed out the good ideas from the bad ideas. Now, with the award, he can write and administer his own survey experiment, which allows him to isolate causal mechanisms and perform robust regression analysis.

For more information about how Crown Awards can help you reach the finish line, visit the Funding section on our Honors website.

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