Researcher of the Month: October 2020

Presented by the Center for Undergraduate Research


Recent Research Activity/Event or name of the ongoing project:

Understanding the Lived Experience of Being Ostracized at an HBCU through a Communications Perspective

Meet the Faculty Member

Dr. Lukas J. Pelliccio

Assistant Professor
Department of Mass Communications

The Relevance of the research, broader implications, and applications

HBCUs are places where unity and community thrive and studies suggest that this is one of the many reasons that students choose an HBCU over other options. However, as an ostracism researcher, I was curious about what happens when someone is left out or ostracized in such an environment. The goal of the current study is to examine what it is like for a student to experience ostracism at an HBCU. I am currently collecting data, and am hopeful that the findings help us understand more about our students’ everyday social interactions so that we can continue to promote an inclusive environment that helps students thrive socially, academically, and mentally.

Plans for the future

Exploratory Study

This is an exploratory study, which means that we are just beginning to scratch the surface of the many different directions this line of research can take. The first goal for this research, though, is to continue learning about ostracism and to eventually begin constructing social training, support seminars, and other programs that could teach people more about how to cope with and make sense of ostracism experiences.

Lived Experiences

The second goal is to learn more about the lived experiences of HBCU students so that we can continue to develop strategies that support their well-being.