Rising Senior conducts summer research at Harvard Business School
As part of the 10-week Markets and Organizations Research Program, Adonis Brooks ’23 sees first-hand what it would be like to move on to a PhD. program.
From: Meghan Kita
Tuesday, July 19, 2022 3:23 PM
Last year, Adonis Brooks ’23, a double major in business administration and psychology, went through research methods with psychology professor Kate Richmond ’00 and loved it. She told him about the Research Experience Programs for Undergraduates (REUs), and he began researching and applying to the ones he thought were a good fit. Ultimately, he was selected as one of approximately 30 Markets and Organizations Research Program (PRIMO) Fellows at Harvard Business School.
“I’ve always been a curious person,” says Brooks. “Research gives me the opportunity to ask questions and find answers, and someone pays me on top of that. It’s a dream job.
Brooks works with Harvard Business School associate professor Alison Wood Brooks (no relation), whose research focuses on conversation. One of Brooks’ summer projects is to participate in a study that assesses the link between eye contact during conversation and feelings within the group. He also assists Professor Brooks’ doctoral students with their research projects, which focus on managerial coaching, the relationship between mentorship and employee performance, and perceptions of employees of color that speak to race and racism.
The 10-week program also includes seminars, social opportunities and opportunities for participants to present their projects. PRIMO Fellows are encouraged to network and explore research opportunities beyond those they are specifically working on, and Brooks makes sure to do so.
“I want to meet as many people as possible and figure out what my research interest is,” says Brooks. “These super smart people here, I get their feedback and suggestions. They help me with my graduation thesis. I was able to pitch and develop the idea.
Her research goal for her dissertation is “to examine whether racial code-switching improves the perceived intelligence of black employees and students.” (In her dissertation, Brooks will use Courtney L. McCluney, an assistant professor of organizational behavior at Cornell University,’s definition of racial code-switching, which is “an impression management strategy where black people adjust their self-presentation to receive the desired results”. [e.g., perceived professionalism] reflecting the norms, behaviors and attributes of the dominant group [i.e., white people] in specific contexts. This thesis experience, as well as her experience this summer, will help inform what’s to come.
“At the end of this [summer], i really want to know if i want to get a doctorate. So far, I’m leaning towards yes,” says Brooks, who has an interest in industrial and organizational psychology or organizational behavior programs. “I didn’t really understand how many opportunities there were after you got your doctorate. and the freedom that research gives you.