North Central College alumna Ashley Popp, class of 2011, co-authored a paper, titled “The Global Transformation of Belly Dancing: A Cross-Cultural Investigation of Counter Hegemonic Responses,” which was accepted for publication in the 2012 No LIV issue of the journal “Physical Culture and Sport. Studies and Research.”
Her contribution to the article evolved from a paper she researched with faculty advisor Gerald Gems, professor of health and physical education, for a project titled “The Transatlantic Transformation of Belly Dancing: A Hegemonic Response in the United States.” She presented her initial research at North Central’s 2010 Rall Symposium for Undergraduate Research. The paper was later turned into an article manuscript co-authored with Taiwanese doctoral student Chia-Ju Yen, whom Gems also was advising from the National Taiwan Sport University.
While a student, Popp majored in sport management and sought out opportunities to learn more about sports on the international stage. She studied abroad in Ireland at the University of Limerick, specifically because of its proximity to the Munster Rugby team. She also completed an internship with a company that distributes sport-related products to both Irish and United Kingdom markets.