Dr. Elizabeth Craig has compiled an impressive amount of communication research over her career, resulting in numerous publications and awards, but she insists that the most important thing to her is making an impact with her work.
“I want to make sure that I’m not just doing research for research sake; I really want it to matter and to mean more,” Craig explains.
Dr. Craig has focused much of her research on equine therapy and has been working with a local non-profit in Cary called the CORRAL Riding Academy since 2014. Through her work with this organization, she has been able to closely study how horses can provide therapeutic benefits and relief to at-risk young females. Outside of Dr. Craig’s work with equine-assisted therapy, she spends a lot of her time working with the Center for Family and Community Engagement on NCSU’s campus, focusing on assisting foster families and foster youth as they move in and out of different foster homes. She has also done research on LGBTQ youth and how those individuals can communicate openly at home with their families.
Dr. Craig was recently honored for her incredible work with the Outstanding Extension and Engagement award by the College of Humanities and Social Science, due to her research and outstanding contributions to the community.
“It was really cool to win that award; I have received multiple awards for teaching and other things, but I think this is one of the biggest awards I have ever received, because it was strictly for my research, which is something that I really value,” said Dr. Craig.
This award is very fitting for Dr. Craig, as she very clearly wants to make an impact on others through her research and has been immensely successful in doing so. When asked about the most important research she has conducted thus far, Dr. Craig was hesitant to single out a specific aspect of her research. She stated that she believes all of the work she has done is equally important, and that she does not approach any study differently in terms of its potential impact.
Dr. Craig has consistently displayed a selfless mindset throughout her time at NC State, making it even more appropriate that she was honored for her work. The good news is that it’s only continuing to go upward from here for Dr. Craig, as she emphasized that she still has many aspirations and goals to continue her research and benefit the community.