IDRPP Salutes University Citizenship Award Recipient, Graduate

By JoLynne Lyon | May 3, 2023
Sybil Cutler

Sybil Cutler’s path to graduation has been busy, but not typical. Most of her university experience happened during the COVID years, which made student involvement and service trickier. “I had to get creative in the ways that I got involved,” she said.

That creativity led her to many experiences of service, research and engagement. She is one of two USU Citizenship Award recipients at Utah State University in 2023. She will graduate with a bachelor’s of science in Human Development and Family Studies this weekend.

Cutler is a teaching assistant for IDRPP Executive Director Matthew Wappett’s course entitled: What is Normal? It is one of the core classes required for USU’s minor in Disability Studies. “It’s really fun,” she said. “I love it.”

She was also involved in research. In the Institute for Disability Research, Policy & Practice she worked with Dr. Alex Schiwal’s on abuse, neglect and sexuality of people with disabilities in Utah, and with Dr. Audrey Juhasz’s on the mental health of direct support professionals in Utah. In the Human Development and Family Studies department, she worked with Dr. Megan Lachmar in the Perinatal Mental Health Lab and Dr. Shawn Whiteman on siblings research.

In addition, Cutler was an undergraduate teaching fellow for two classes, a peer advisor and office assistant at the Human Development and Family Studies department, and a member of the Emma Eccles Jones College of Education and Human Services Council.

A lot of Cutler’s efforts happened over Zoom, especially during the COVID years. “For me, seeking out those opportunities was a way to stay engaged,” she said. “I think that the university did a good job of trying to make sure that students could be involved.”

Her next step is to begin work on a PhD in Human Development and Family Sciences at Purdue in Indiana. After that, she hopes to return here to teach. As an eighth-generation Aggie, Cutler remains loyal to USU. “I love being an Aggie. It’s my favorite thing and I’m so proud of it.”

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