Lost and found: lessons from collaborative research with undergraduate students on the Lost Girls of Sudan


  • Laura DeLuca University of Colorado




This article focuses on the challenges and rewards of working  with undergraduate research assistants. The anthropological research project involves interviews and participant observation with Sudanese refugees living  in the United States. Five undergraduates share their reflections as neophyte anthropologists. The audience for this article is primarily anthropologists and  others interested in involving students in field-based research. Undergraduate students embarking on research under faculty supervision may be interested as well.

Author Biography

Laura DeLuca, University of Colorado

Laura DeLuca teaches anthropology at the University of Colorado and is a visiting scholar at the Children, Youth and Environments (CYE) center. She has been conducting research on Sudanese refugees for six years. In 2005, she was invited to participate in the Sudan Field School held in Rumbek, Sudan, and in August 2009 will visit Juba, the southern capital. Laura DeLuca is currently writing a book about the Lost Girls of Sudan with Leah Bassoff and is collaborating with documentary filmmaker Deborah Fryer on this topic. As part of a grant from the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, she is working with Sudanese researchers to collect oral histories that will become part of the Schlesinger Library’s History of Women in America collection. She can be contacted at laura_m_deluca(AT)yahoo.com.