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Undergraduate Summer Research Projects Announced

May 31, 2018

These 20 projects have been selected for the 2018 ESU Summer Undergraduate Research Program. ESURP seeks to fund our very best Undergraduate students in a high-impact learning experience under the mentorship of a dedicated faculty member. The selected projects exemplify the themes of “collaboration” and “authenticity” by forming mutually beneficial partnerships between faculty and students. ESURP aims to create an impactful, mentored learning environment for undergraduates while supporting the pursuit of scholarly productivity by the faculty.  

Grants of up to $7,000 to support these projects include faculty summer salary, student scholarship or compensation and a generous supply budget. Six of the 20 students were selected as K-INBRE Summer Scholars by the Kansas IDeA Network of Biomedical Research Excellence, which provides $4,500 toward their summer research.

Savannah Bender (Biochemistry and Molecular Biology) was selected for the K-INBRE “STAR Trainee” program which aims to support the very best students of the K-INBRE program. Savannah will receive $7,000 to support a research project with her mentor Dr. Tim Burnett. Savannah is the fourth student from ESU to be selected to this program in the past 17 years.  The title of their project is: The role of Treg cells in establishing mucosal immunity.

ESURP also receives funding and support from The Honors College, ESU Research and Grants Center, Office of the Provost, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, School of Business and The Teachers College.

ESURP Researchers

  • Camille Abdel-Jawad (English) and Dr. Amy SageWebb, English, Modern Languages, and Journalism. Researching and Writing the Young Adult Novel.
  • Audrey Desrosiers (English Education) and Dr. Amy Sage Webb, English, Modern Languages, and Journalism. Travel Writing: Creative Nonfiction Research & Writing in China.
  • Breanna Gilger (BS of Nursing) and Dr. Gina Peek, Department of Nursing.  The Effect of Music Therapy on Geriatric Depression and Cognition: A Pilot Study.
  • Hailey Hilgendorf (BS in Social Science Education) and Dr. Darla Mallein, Department of Social Sciences.  History to Go Boxes: A Collaborative Project with the Lyon County History Center.
  • Aidan Johnson (BS in Psychology) and Dr. Phil Kelly, Department of Social Sciences.  Conflict on the Nile: Possible riverine Negotiations in the Middle East.
  • Joseph LaForge (Biology Science Education) and Dr. Darren Rebar and Dr. David McKenzie, Department of Biological Sciences.  Pollinator recruitment and native plant success in tallgrass prairies following seasonal burns.
  • Xinwei Liu (Psychology) and Dr. Joyce Zhou, School of Business. Chinese Parents' Gender-Role Attitudes toward Their Young Child in Entertainment Market.
  • Ana Perez-Lebron (Biology) and Dr. Stephen Fields, Department of Biological Sciences.  Characterizing a Kleptoplastic lifestyle.
  • Sarah Spoon (Spanish and English) and Dr. Rachel Spaulding, English, Modern Languages, and Journalism. Publishing in the Digital Humanities: Soler Manuscript Transcription and Critical Introduction.
  • Garrett VanArsdale (BM Clarinet Performance) and Dr. Dawn McConkie, Music Department.  An investigation of the Correlation of Jaw Structure and Clarinet Mouthpiece and Reed Selection. 
  • Song Yang (Mathematics and Economics) and Dr. QiangShi, Department of Mathematics and Economics.  Acoustic Identification of Bird Species Using Wavelets and Learning Algorithms.
  • Chieko Zimmerman (BSE Elementary Education) and Dr. Melissa Reed, Elementary Education/ Early Childhood/ Special Education.  Girl Power: Cultivating confidence, self-respect, and assertiveness in adolescent girls.
  • Callie Zirkle (Business Administration Concentration in Finance) and Dr. Tanja Steigner, School of Business.  Determinates of ICO Returns.

K-INBRE Summer Scholars

  • Colin Dallimore (Biochemistry and Molecular Biology) and Dr. Qiyang Zhang, Department of Physical Sciences. Determination of Nicotine Level in Soil on Campus.
  • Alireza Nasrazadani  (Chemistry) and Dr. Andrea Luthi, Department of Physical Sciences. Impact of the Properties of Peptide-Polymer Nanoparticles of Blood Interactions.
  • Elizabeth McCuistion (BS of Nursing) and Dr. Melissa Bailey, Department of Biological Sciences. Exploring the Teratogenic Potential of Cannabidiol Oil in ICR Mice.
  • Mariah Emily (BS of Psychology) and Dr. Melissa Bailey, Department of Biological Sciences. Exploring the Interaction pf Cannabidiol Oil and Cyclophosphamide in ICR Mice
  • Eric Ebert (Biochemistry and Molecular Biology) and Dr. Stephen Fields, Department of Biological Sciences.  Analysis of putative components of the C. elegans melatonin signaling pathway.
  • Rachel Diebold (Biochemistry and Molecular Biology) and Dr. Stephen Fields, Department of Biological Sciences. Expression start site of a motorless myosin V transcript. 



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