Along with her mentor, Dr. William O'Hara, Austin was a Kolbe Fellow at Gettysburg College during the summer of 2018. Her research centered on America romantic composer Amy Beach's art song, and the tonal patterns and form of songs that she or her husband, Henry Beach, wrote poetry for. Austin presented her research at the Music Theory Society of the Mid Atlantic's Seventeenth Annual Meeting in March, 2019. She also gave a lecture recital on the songs at Gettysburg in April 2019, presenting her findings and performing the songs, and presented her research as a poster at Gettysburg College's 2019 Undergraduate Research Celebration. The resulting paper, "When Far From Her I Roam: Tonal Structures in the Early Songs of Amy Beach," is currently under review for publication.
During the summer of 2019, Austin traveled to Paris, France, for a month-long immersion in the contemporary music scene. She participated in the Eastman in Paris program, taught by Dr. Robert Hasagawa, which consisted of lectures and detail study on scores. During the last two weeks, Austin also participated in the ManiFeste festival at IRCAM at the Centre Pompidou, and attended conferences, participated in masterclasses, and saw many live performances of contemporary, spectral, and electroacoustic music. Austin also researched and wrote a thesis paper about the less-studied variations in Ben Johnston's String Quartet no. 4, "Amazing Grace".