Undergraduate Research Grant Awards

Students from several departments applied for funding to attend conferences to present research, compete in academic competitions, and purchase supplies to complete research.  The current semester of faculty sponsors, the students, and the title of the projects are listed by department below.

Spring 2020 Awards

Art and Art History Department
Faculty Sponsor: Rosemary Jesionowski
Students: James Glover, Emily Warren, and Courtney Chetister – Society for Photographic Education

Faculty Sponsor: Jon McMillan
Students: Six Students – The National Council on Education for the Ceramic Arts

Faculty Sponsor: Marjorie Och
Student: Sarai David – A Tale of Two Paintings: Leonardo da Vinci’s “Virgin of the Rocks”

Biological Sciences Department
Faculty Sponsor: Josephine Antwi
Student: Matthew Smith – Comparing pollinator communities between managed and unmanaged areas

Faculty Sponsor: Dianne Baker
Student: Chris Good – The effect of benzo[a]pyrene in zebrafish
Students: Rachel Summers and Bailey Johnson – Development of the stress axis in two teleost species

Faculty Sponsor: Lynn Lewis
Student: Fernando Cabezas – Remediation of Diesel spills using Fungi and Bacteria
Student: Ashley McAleese – Identification and Analysis of Enzymatic Activity of a Consortium of Petroleum Hydro-Carbon Degrading Bacteria

Faculty Sponsor: Deborah O’Dell
Students: Nicole Haynes, Meredith LeBel, and Laura O’Dea– Effects of Probiotics on Inflammatory Responses in Neuronal Tissue
Student: Tamara Natour – Aggregation of Alpha Synuclein and Tau Protein in Cell Cultures Containing APOE4 Gene in Response to Taxol and Estrogen Treatments

Faculty Sponsor: Parrish Waters
Students: Laura Leonard and Haley Lavach – The influence of two stressors on the physiology and behavior of laboratory mice

Faculty Sponsor: April Wynn
Student: Joseph Gray – Effect of Trichoderma Harzianum Inoculation on Salt Stress Tolerance of Two Pepper Cultivars
Student: Cayley McGuire – Differential uptake of pathogenic and nonpathogenic Escherichia coli in Arabidopsis thaliana roots a low nitrogen environment

Chemistry Department
Faculty Sponsor: Janet Asper
Student: Rachel Gunraj –Identification of microplastics in waterfowl via IR spectroscopy

Faculty Sponsor: Leanna Giancarlo
Student: Emily Matuczinski -The effect of a potential glioblastoma treatment on normal cells
Student: Ashley Parkhurst – Effects of Magnetic Field Presence on the Coating of Bioconjugated Superparamagnetic Iron Oxide Nanoparticles

Faculty Sponsor: Randall Reif
Student: Marshall Walker -Regulation of Enzyme Activity
Students: Ashley Utz and Miranda Hiller – Reusability of affinity-coated microfluidic devices

Classics, Philosophy, and Religion Department
Faculty Sponsor: Joe Romero
Student: Brooke Prevedel -How Taking the Day is Being Taken: The Evolution of “Carpe Diem” Literature

Computer Science Department
Faculty Sponsor: Stephen Davies
Students: 26 Students –2020 Datafest

Earth and Environmental Science Department
Faculty Sponsor: Tyler Frankel
Student: Thomas Bustamante – Assessing the presence and concentrations of micro plastics in the gizzards, intestines, and feces of VA waterfowl
Student: Catherine Crowell – The impacts of pH on Trace Contamination Leaching and Toxicity of Coal Ash in Planorbella duryi
Student: Mary Hoffman –Lethality and Behavioral Toxicity of Sulfoxaflor on Daphnia magna Student: Spencer Saunders – Impacts of Thiamethoxam on Physa acuta

Faculty Sponsor: Pam Grothe
Student: Cheyenne Palmo -Oxygen isotope variation in Crassostrea Virginia shell and from the Chesapeake Bay (and its tributaries): Applications to regional paleoclimate

Faculty Sponsor: Ben Kisila
Student: Lauren Chartier –Soil Reclamation: Biogeochemical Effects of Sand Mining

Faculty Sponsor: Melanie Szulczewski
Students: Emily Brooks and Kaitlyn McClung – Evaluation of Metals Contamination and Soil Properties at Former Mines in Poland
Student: Hannah Pullen – Environmental Study of Papermaking

Economics Department
Faculty Sponsor: Amrita Dhar
Students: Brandon Williams and Robert West– Eastern Economic Association Annual Meetings: Issues in Political Economy Undergraduate Research Conference

Faculty Sponsor: Amrita Dhar and Don Lee
Students: 7 students– Economic Scholars Program at the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas

English, Linguistics, and Communications Department
Faculty Sponsor: Laura Bylenok
Students: Julia Manuel, Emma Yerly, and Kelly Donaghey – Rappahannock Review at the 2020 AWP Annual Conference and Bookfair

Faculty Sponsor: Elizabeth Johnson-Young and Emily Crosby
Students: 23 students – CDS Undergraduate Conference Travel to Virginia Association of Communication Arts & Sciences

Faculty Sponsor: Zach Whalen
Student: Katelyn Wolfgang – Educational, Digital Studies and the Graphic Novel
Students: Christina Montemorano, Alexander Rudenshiold, and Aleksandra Shrabnaya – NaNoGenMoCat: Documenting Computer-Generated Fiction

Geography Department
Faculty Sponsor: Dawn Bowen
Student: Alex Chrvala – Participation in the World Geography Bowl Competition
Students: Brenna Creamer and Alissa Flores -Agroforestry for Nutrition in Alta Verapaz, Guatemala

Faculty Sponsor: Steve Hanna
Students: Kelsey Chavers, Kylie James, Chinnae Faustor, and Elizabeth Devine – Descendant Community Involvement in Presidential Plantation Museum Tours and Exhibits

Historic Preservation Department
Faculty Sponsor: Lauren McMillan
Students: Frederick Altenberg, Lillian Salamone, Delaney Resweber, Claire Ross, Ethan Knick and Angus Long – Student Presentations at the Middle Atlantic Archaeology Conference

History and American Studies Department
Faculty Sponsor: Krystyn Moon
Student: Anisha DeSilva – The Hindu Conspiracy: A Transnational Surveillance
Student: Christina Scoot – Senior Thesis on Japanese American Redress movement

Music Department
Faculty Sponsor: Brooks Kuykendall
Student: Mary Dye – Laser Harp

Physics Department
Faculty Sponsor: Laura Dickinson
Student: Rebecca Callaway – Laser Harp

Political Science and International Affairs Department
Faculty Sponsor: Emile Lester
Student: Zach Handlin – Constitutional Education in Virginian High Schools

Psychological Sciences Department
Faculty Sponsor: Mindy Erchull
Students: Madeleine McGann, Kathryn Amtsen, Rebekah Stone, and Kaylin Clinkenbeard – The effects of scientists’ advocacy of perceived credibility

Faculty Sponsor: Dave Kolar
Students: Sam Taylor, Mathew Crawford, Jessica Whitney, and Kaitlan O’Keefe – How to Slay Your Dragon

Faculty Sponsor: Jennifer Mailloux
Student: Anna Higginbotham – Predicting Sexual Satisfaction in Women

Faculty Sponsor: Chris McBride
Students: 25 students – Attend the Virginia Academy of Academic Psychologists annual meeting with students

Faculty Sponsor: Holly Schiffrin
Students: Erin Whitesell, Nicole Boigegrain, Miranda Batte-Futrell, and Christine Cao – The Effects of Helicopter Parenting on the Self-determination and Prosocial Behaviors of Emerging Adults

Theatre and Dance Department
Faculty Sponsor: Gregg
Student: Jacob Dodges – Directing BODY AWARENESS by Annie Baker in Studio 115
Student: Aaron Hoffman-Wilson – Directing CONSTELLATIONS by Nick Payne in Studio 115
Students: 16 students – Notions of Self, Community, and Transformation in Performance


Previous Awarded Grants: