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Student Leadership

Student leadership of language science activities is a key element of our training program, and has many benefits:

  • It ensures that the focus of our programs is closely aligned with student interests;
  • It helps keep activities and events 'fresh' with new ideas and talent;
  • Students develop skills in leadership, interdisciplinary communication, and in creating research networks;
  • Students build and strengthen connections with peers and faculty in different research areas.


Student Committees



Research Skills & Collaboration

The goal of the Research Committee is to provide useful research training not offered in the conventional graduate training of individual departments, as well as to foster a community environment of rich interdisciplinary collaboration, generating increased opportunities for interdisciplinary discussion and project development.

2018-2019 Chair: Zoe Ovans (NACS/HESP)

Professional Development & Communication

The Professional Development Committee aims to support language science students in designing and achieving their career goals and developing "soft" skills. The committee organizes events and resources to promote communication skills, collaboration, and career planning, including the weekly Language Science Lunch Talks.

2018-2019 Chair: Allie Johnson (HESP)


The goal of the Outreach Committee is to inform the public about what language science is and why it’s important. To this end, the committee organizes campus visits from nearby high schools, participates in STEM career fairs, and staffs a language science booth at Maryland Day, among other activities.

2018-2019 Chair: Tyler Knowlton (LING)

Faculty advisor: Jeff Lidz (LING)

Policy & Advocacy

The goal of the Policy & Advocacy Committee is to increase the visibility and impact of language science research on policy at the university, local, and national levels. The committee works to engage UMD language scientists in discussions and outreach on relevant issues, and develop students' skills in communicating with policy makers and the public. 

2018-2019 Chairs: Carolin Arnold (CS) & Zach Maher (NACS/HESP)