For her leadership project, Emily Conners is working with the UNH Child Study Development Center (CSDC) in collaboration with the Departments of Nursing, the Department of Occupational Therapy and the Center for Digital Health Innovation (formerly the Telehealth Practice Center) on the implementation of a Biofeedback Emotional Regulation Training program for preschoolers. Using heartrate watches, Nursing and Occupational Therapy students educate preschoolers on the mind/body connection, discuss how the heart works, and how they can tune into their bodies. This is followed by a short unit on mindfulness and balancing one’s emotions and feelings. Emily works with the research team to make field observations, assist with semi-structured qualitative interviews with the teachers, UNH students, and parents. She is also participating in an iterative qualitative analysis which will culminate in a co-written research manuscript.
“I never thought I'd be involved in research and it's never something I imagined myself doing, but the project we're doing really speaks to my interests. Being a part of this project has enhanced my skills as a researcher and using that information in clinical practice. I've also had the wonderful opportunity to practice interdisciplinary work and build connections that will be undoubtedly beneficial as I begin my career.”