Senior receives Psi Chi grant for psychology

Ethan Magoc photo: Senior Nicole Vaisey received $1,500 for her research.Ethan Magoc photo: Senior Nicole Vaisey received $1,500 for her research.Senior psychology major Nicole Vaisey has been awarded a Psi Chi Undergraduate Research Grant. The grant is intended to help defray the cost of conducting undergraduate research projects in the field of psychology.

Psi Chi is the International Honors Society in Psychology. The society was founded in 1929 to encourage, stimulate and maintain excellence in scholarship, while advancing the science of psychology.

Psi Chi is a federation of chapters located at more than 1,090 colleges across the U.S., Canada and Ireland.

The society aims to serve two goals: “to provide academic recognition to its inductees by the mere fact of membership, and to nurture the spark of that accomplishment by offering a climate congenial to members’ creative development.”

Vaisey is the president of the Mercyhurst chapter of Psi Chi. After applying for the Psi Chi Research Grant, she was awarded the highest possible amount of $1,500 to defray the costs of her research.

While any member of Psi Chi can apply for this grant, the application process requires some thought.

“In order to get the grant that I received,” Vaisey said, “I needed to provide Psi Chi with an abstract, a description of my research, a budget that outlined how I would use the money I received and a copy of my curriculum vitae.”

As a psychology student, Vaisey is required by Mercyhurst to complete either a psychology internship or a senior research practicum in order to earn her degree. She has the opportunity to explore an area of psychology most interesting to her.

“I enjoy studying social psychology the most because I am fascinated by the way that people interact with each other and society as a whole and how they function as an individual in a group,” she said.

After graduation, Vaisey plans to take a short break from her studies. However, she plans to attend graduate school in the near future, and in 10 years hopes to be established as a professor of psychology in a university setting.

In addition to her duties as president of the Psi Chi Mercyhurst chapter, Vaisey is also a member of the Mercyhurst Psychology club and the Mercyhurst Active Minds chapter.

She also works at the Math Lab and the Mercyhurst Center for Applied Politics. On top of all her extra work, she is putting her grant to good use by planning and carrying out her own research project.

Psi Chi, which can be found at, also offers a wide range of other grants and awards to its members, including summer research grants and grants for computer-based research.