Mary Gates Endowment For Students

Aaron Davis

Mary Gates Research Scholar, Autumn 2020

Research Project: Racial Disparities in Health Funding: a mixed-methods analysis of medical crowdfunding campaigns.

What have you learned throughout your research project?

Utilization of crowdfunding websites as a means to pay for medical cost has increased over the years, particularly so as the COVID-19 pandemic has surged this last year. We are interested in understanding the archetypes of successful campaigns, what campaigns reflect about social conventions of deservingness, and what racial disparities exist in medical crowdfunding. This research will utilize data gathered from viral medical funding campaigns on the GoFundMe platform, and use quantitative and qualitative analysis to review demographic characteristics of highly successful campaigns.

What piece of advice do you have for future applicants?

The advice I have for future applicants is to think through what it is you want to take away from the research and the MGE opportunity. Consider how the project itself will help you build skills or advance your understanding in an area, and have realistic learning goals for the timeline given. It is also helpful to choose a mentor who is invested in the vision you have for your future and who is willing to aid you in your goals.