SALT Scholar Capstone Project Descriptions



Exploring mediation in family and workplace conflicts.


Charli Hailey

Law, Justice, and Society

May 2013

Charli Hailey
Anger and Aggression in African American Adolescent Males
Research study into some of the contributing variables to gain a more accurate understanding of this issue,

This semester I had the opportunity to intern at John Early Museum Magnet Middle School (JEMMMS).  This middle school serves students in grades six through eight.  As a social work intern I was able work side by side with a licensed school social worker.  A few of my roles included mediating student interpersonal conflicts, providing grief support, supporting the faculty and staff in any way possible, and rectifying student truancy issues.  Once a week I also facilitated a boys and girls psycho-educational group, creating an environment where students were able to learn from the facilitator and each other.  Students were educated on issues such as self-esteem, peer pressure, bullying, and other topics most relevant to this age group.  Through the course of this internship a noticeable issue with student anger and aggression, particularly that of African American males was clearly evident.  An interest peaked as to the source of this anger and aggression in JEMMMS students.  As a senior social work student I conducted a research study into some of the contributing variables of this issue.  The purpose was to gain a more accurate understanding of this issue, so the faculty and staff of JEMMMS can familiarize themselves with the necessary tools to counteract this problem.  Through the research process several factors were identified as causes of anger and aggression among African American adolescent males nationally, however only two of those variables could be generalized to the students of JEMMMS.  These variables included student’s socioeconomic background, specifically lower socioeconomic status and students with emotional disorders.  These were the most prevalent causes of anger and aggression in JEMMMS students.

Lesa Williams
Social Work
May 2012


Domestic Violence
The Impact of Case Disposition on Domestic Violence Recidivism Rates

In conjunction with the District Attorney's Victim Witness Services and based on a retrospective case review, the study compared recidivism rates of convicted misdemeanor domestic violence offenders based on case disposition.  Of particular interest was whether a maximum probation sentence of eleven months and twenty-nine days  resulted in a less likelihood of recidivism than did a jail sentence or retired charges.  Additionally, the study produced a demographic profile of domestic violence cases in Williamson County, Tennessee from the year 2011.  Discussion of the findings included implications for victim support services. 

Ricki Adkins
Social Work
May 2012


The cost of death
Comparing the costs of the death penalty to a sentence of life without parole
For my capstone work I researched various cases where the death penalty was the punishment for the offender and compared costs to life without parole sentences.  Through the research I was able to help Tennesseeans for Alternatives to the Death Penalty get a more firm number on how much more costly it is to convict someone to death as opposed to life without parole.  
Jackson Sprayberry
Political Science
May 2011
Ending animal cruelty
Breaking the Cycle Among Troubled Youth
As an underclassman I served as a volunteer for Saint Francis Animal Welfare Group and assisted in fostering and placing animals in their forever homes.  It was through that experience that I decided to expand my project during my senior year and am working to implement two outreach programs targeting troubled youth and incarcerated adjults. 
The goal of my capstone project is to create awareness and address issues of animal cruelty among troubled youth as a preventative measure to stop the cycle of violence that could lead to their incarceration as adults. 
Shelby Farrell
Law, Justice & Society
May 2011
Standing up for the abused
Providing Legal Aide to Victims of Domestic Violence
As a senior studying in Lipscomb's Institute for Law, Justice & Society, I completed a research project where I focused on the ever-increasing need for legal representation on behalf of victims of domestic violence.  I was able to interview a Vanderbilt law professor who also operates a legal clinic specializing in providing services to abused women who could not otherwise afford legal aid. 
For my capstone project, I proposed the creation of an organization that would be dedicated solely to providing legal aid to domestic abuse victims.  This organization would function in a comprehensive manner and would ideally provide economic, social and legal services to victimized women and their dependents. 
Nicole Brasfield
Law, Justice & Society
May 2011
Conflict resolution and children's theater
Connecting American history and Conflict Management using children's theater
When brainstorming of how I could use my passions and skills to best serve the community of Middle Tennessee, I immediately thought of two tracts that I could pursue.  My love for theater has been a part of me since birth, literally.  My other passion, conflict resolution, was introduced to me in my very first course at Lipscomb and has continued to inspire me with its universality.  I was torn between which option to utilize, when I realized I could intersect my interests to create my capstone project.  This blossomed into my unconventional creation, a children's play that teaches the audience conflict resolution skills. 
Rebecca Bennie
Law, Justice & Society
May 2011
Eliminating Violence in Schools
Equipping Youth with the Principles of Conflict Resolution
My capstone project focused on the implementation of youth mediation and conflict management training programs within schools.  Many different forms of these programs exist, but all share a common goal.  These programs seek to reduce the rate of school violence by equipping juveniles with skills in conflict resolution. 
Currently, there is not a mandatory or system-wide program in the Nashville area that offers conflict resolution or youth mediation training; however there are a few private programs that have been established.  The purpose of my study was to make recommendations for the expansion of conflict resolution training programs, specifically the SNAP program headed by the Lipscomb Institute for Conflict Management. 
Brooke Baird
Law, Justice & Society
May 2011