COS Undergraduate Researchers Excel

Every month, university wide, one student is honored with the Distinguished Undergraduate Researcher Award for their time spent researching a subject of their choice.

So far this year, five students from the College of Sciences have been recognized and honored for their hard work.

During their research, students work with a mentor that guides them and helps during the process. With their mentor’s approval the research is submitted for review by the Student Undergraduate Research Council.

The student with the highest score for the month is awarded. However, students that did not win stay in the pool of applicants for six months. If they have not been awarded after six months they are able to reapply for the award.

In February, Melissa Thye won the Distinguished Undergraduate Researcher Award for her research in the field of Psychology. Under the mentorship of Michael Boyce and Dr. Janan Smither, she submitted research on the Assessment of Instructional Presentation for Emergency Evacuation.

Following her, in April, Hollis Dahn won for her project in Biology on Examining Specific and Sub specific Diversity within the Monotypic Snake Genera. These are genera of snakes that contain only a single species. The project was mentored by Dr. Christopher Parkinson, who’s research focuses on understanding, describing and conserving the world’s biodiversity.

The Psychology department had their second student win in May. Jessy Guler received the award for her research on Exposure to War and Conflict, Acculturation, and Identity Formation Among Adolescent Refugees under the mentorship of Dr. Steven Berman.

Bringing in an award for the Chemistry Department for the month of August was Anna Lewis. Her research was done on Photochemical Response and Etching Behavior of Chalcogenide Glass Films. With the mentorship of Dr. Stephen Kuebler, she spent a total of three semesters doing research before she presented at the Showcase of Undergraduate Research Excellence (SURE) 2014.

The most recent award went to Jessica Sproat from the Psychology Department for the month of September. Her research topic was titled “A Prospective Study of Telehealth Devices and Motivation.” Telehealth is simply the act of using technology to manage health and well-being. While seeking to develop a new metric of anticipation and motivation to use telehealth devices her mentor was Dr. James Szalma.

More information about the award and past recipients can be found at the Office of Undergraduate Research website.

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