Winners of the 2022 Library Research Prize

Image of the winners of the 2022 Library Research Prize with the Dean of the Library

On May 3rd 2022, Caroline Timmerman '22 and Rev. Dious Joseph '22 were each awarded the 2022 Library Research Prize of $1,000 and were honored at a reception in the Library. The committee also presented two honorable mentions and $250 to undergraduate students, Molly Lamendola '22 and Nikki Koval '22. Attendees had the opportunity to hear the students speak about their projects and ask questions. The Library Research Prize plaque in the lobby, listing undergraduate and graduate winners since 2009, will be updated over the summer.

Image caption: 2022 Library Research Prize winners and honorable mentions with the Dean of the Library & University Librarian. Left to right: Molly Lamendola, Nikki Koval, Christina McGowan, Caroline Timmerman, Rev. Dious Joseph.

Undergraduate Winner

Caroline Timmerman, Class of 2022

Major: International Studies, with Anthropology minor

“The Language of Discrimination: Accentism and Multicultural London English”

INST 4999 (Spring 2022), Dr. Janie Leatherman

In Dr. Leatherman's faculty support statement she summarizes the work as follows: "Caroline’s paper traces the emergence of a multicultural dialect in London over the past 40 years among diverse immigrant youth from Jamaican, Indian, Pakistani, Bangladeshi, South Asian and African backgrounds. Caroline then raises questions about the social effects of this accent, substantiating why accentism is a form of discrimination that deserves human rights protection along with other forms, such as racial discrimination......Her work spans the fields of sociolinguistics, phonetics, globalization, migration and integration studies, multiculturalism, the study of discrimination and also human rights protections and gaps therein."

Caroline utilized a breadth of library resources including databases from the International Studies library course guide to find articles, books, and streaming media, as well as Zotero to manage citations. In her application she shared "My 166 and counting source bibliography is evidence of the import and impact the library has had on my work......As we are emerging from two years of isolation and on-line learning, I’m increasingly grateful for the ease and accessibility of the University’s library resources. As a student who spent the much of my time, pre-pandemic, in the library’s upstairs atrium, the isolation of COVID policies and closure of the physical library was certainly a shock to my routine. I greatly appreciate how, even when disease and uncertainty prevented us from being together, the library provided a steady foundation for remote learning that kept me on track and on task whether at my dining room table or back on campus. The ample research resources and accessible digital library allowed me to complete a nearly 50-page research project that has enriched me as a student and helped to solidify my decision to study linguistics at the post-graduate level."

On graduation from Fairfield University this May, Caroline will pursue a Master’s in Linguistics at the University of Manchester in England, with a focus on sociolinguistics.

Graduate Winner

Rev. Dious Joseph, Class of 2022

MA Communication

“Anointing of the Sick: A form of final conversation from a Priest's perspective”

COMM 6971 (Fall 2021), Dr. Sean Horan

Rev. Dious Joseph's research study, with data collected from 200 priests in the U.S. and India, was designed to better understand Anointing of the Sick, a Catholic sacrament often administered at the end of life. Dr. Horan shared "His primary research goals were to better understand communication at the end of life – that is, what do the dying (or sick) and their loved ones ask at the end of life. The goal of this project, then, is to provide guidance to inform the training of priests......It should be noted that communication in the Catholic Church is incredibly under-researched. Thus, his contributions fill an important void."

In Rev. Dious Joseph's essay describing his process, and extensive bibliography, the judges were struck by the extensive and unique interdisciplinary research from fields such as Communication, History, Religion, Dogmatic Theology, Psychology, Spirituality, Palliative Care/Medicine, Survey Statistics, and more. "I had to access maximum library collections and seek assistance from librarians. However, due to the COVID situation, I had to work remotely and utilize the entire virtual potency of the Library. Therefore, I used the 24/7 chat room to seek assistance in searching the database and find primary researched articles, books, and journals utilizing advanced search filters." He also gave special thanks to the Interlibrary Loan service to obtain access to materials from the other libraries.

Rev. Dious Joseph begins his PhD in Communication at Ohio University this Fall and is receiving full funding/scholarship. He also will teach undergraduate communication courses while a doctoral student.

Honorable Mentions

Nikki Koval, Class of 2022

Major: Accounting with Business Analytics minor

“Cryptocurrency has arrived; U.S. accounting guidance has not”

 ACCT 3990 (Spring 2022), Dr. Dawn Massey

Molly Lamendola, Class of 2022

Major: Art History & Politics

“The Log Cabin Republicans and the Construction of Male Citizenship in the GOP”

POLI 3990 (Fall 2021), Dr. Gwendoline Alphonso

2022 Library Research Prize judges

Each year the judging committee consists of faculty members from the Faculty Library Committee as well as librarians.

Undergraduate Category

Dr. Julie Berrett-Abebe, Assistant Professor, Social Work

Laura Cossette, Systems Librarian

Nicole Marino, Digital Scholarship Librarian

Lisa Thornell, Student Engagement & Outreach Librarian

Dr. Liyang Zhang, Assistant Professor, Mathematics

Graduate Category

Laura Cossette, Systems Librarian

Dr. Mary Laughlin, Assistant Professor of the Practice, Core Writing 

Nicole Marino, Digital Scholarship Librarian

Lisa Thornell, Student Engagement & Outreach Librarian

Dr. Liyang Zhang, Assistant Professor, Mathematics

For more information about the Library Research Prize visit

Thank you to Fairfield University's Charles F. Dolan School of Business, College of Arts & Sciences, School of Education & Human Development,Marion Peckham Egan School of Nursing & Health Studies, and the School of Engineering for their financial support of the prizes, in addition to the DiMenna-Nyselius Library's financial commitment.