L&S Honors and Chadbourne Residential College Panel Explores the “Loneliness Epidemic”

Panelists Dr. Kate Phelps, Dr. Christine Whelan, Dr. Marcy Carlson, Brennan Porter, and Dr. Chris Cascio discuss the implications of loneliness for college students.

As the noon hour began on Wednesday, April 10, a host of L&S Honors and Chadbourne Residential College (CRC) students gathered in the main lounge of Chadbourne Residential Hall, grabbed slices of pizza and joined a group of UW faculty and staff to explore academic perspectives on what the U.S. Surgeon General has deemed an “epidemic of loneliness and isolation” in the United States.

The relaxed setting set the stage for an exceptionally approachable and engaging experience for undergraduate students and staff alike. The event was moderated by two current L&S Honors students, Ellie Thoma and Jonathan Morris, each of whom is conducting their own undergraduate research related to the topic.

The two moderators led the panelists through opening remarks on how their research was related to the topic of loneliness. The panelists were exceptionally engaging, each offering their own perspectives on the causes, impacts, and long-term potential solutions to the current epidemic.

Sincere thanks to the Chadbourne Residential College for sponsoring this event. We also share many thanks to the planning committee members, the panelists, and the student moderators who offered their time and expertise to make this event possible.


  • Kate Phelps (Gender & Women’s Studies)
  • Christine Whelan (Consumer Science)
  • Marcy Carlson (Sociology)
  • Brennan Porter (University Health Services)
  • Chris Cascio (Journalism)

Student Moderators

  • Ellie Thoma
  • Jonathan Morris

Event Planning

  • Pete Keys, L&S Honors Program
  • Kim Lowe, Program Coordinator CRC