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Undergraduate Research Day 2018

Members of Undergraduate Research Day 2018


On April 5, 57 students representing the four campuses of the University of Missouri System participated in Undergraduate Research Day at the Capitol. The annual event gives students an opportunity to share with state elected officials the wide variety of undergraduate research and innovations taking place across the university system.  

“As the state’s only public research university, our students are provided unique opportunities to work alongside our talented faculty to conduct cutting-edge and groundbreaking research on our four campuses every day,” UM System President Mun Choi said. “These experiences, which range from science to medicine to the humanities, help to prepare our students for graduate and professional studies at prominent universities as well as careers in leading industries.”

During the event, students had the opportunity to engage with their hometown representatives and senators to showcase their research experiences and the contributions they make on their campuses and across the state and nation. To see photos from the event, click here.

University of Missouri-Columbia students

Pierce Bloebaum is a senior studying Mathematics and Physics double major at MU. His presentation titled, “The Development of Berry Extract Gold Nanoparticles towards Treating Cancer”, was supervised by Kattesh Katti, professor of Biological Engineering. Pierce is the son of Larry and Tina Bloebaum of St. Peters (St. Charles County).

Carson Broeker is a junior studying Biochemistry at MU. His presentation titled, “Determining the Genetic Mechanism Responsible for Specific Amino Acid Levels in Seeds”, was supervised by Ruthie Angelovici, assistant professor of Biological Sciences. Carson is the son of Roxann and Dennis Broeker of Portage des Sioux (St. Charles County).

Kamryn Chastain is a senior studying Biology at MU. Her presentation titled, “Evaluation of a Natural Alternative to Alleviate Symptoms of Osteoarthritis”, was supervised by Aaron Stoker, associate research professor of Orthopaedic Surgery. Kamryn is the daughter of Mark and Karyn Chastain of Kansas City (Jackson County).

Sierra Clemetson is a senior from Flossmoor, IL, studying Communication Sciences and Disorders, International Studies w/ an emphasis in Latin America at MU. Her presentation titled, “Does Learning a Second Language Change Your First Language?”, was supervised by Roxana Botezatu, assistant professor of Communication Science and Disorders. Sierra is the daughter of Cheryl Price of Flossmoor.

Emily Coonrod is a senior studying Biology at MU. Her presentation titled, “Discovery and Optimization of Hepatitis B Virus Antivirals that Target Virus Assembly”, was supervised by Stefan Sarafianos, adjunct professor of Biochemistry. Emily is the daughter of Lance and Sara Coonrod of St. Charles (St. Charles County).

Sarah D'Amico is a junior studying Communication Sciences and Disorders & Romance Languages: Spanish at MU. Her presentation titled, “Does Learning a Second Language Change Your First Language?”, was supervised by Roxana Botezatu, assistant professor of Communication Science and Disorders. Sarah is the daughter of David and Jenny D'Amico of Pineville (McDonald County).

Sabrea Ewing is a senior studying Biological Sciences at MU. Her presentation titled, “Using Hormones to Control Invasive Species of Crayfish”, was supervised by Dr. Mark D. Kirk, professor of Biological Sciences. Sabrea is the daughter of Kim and Jerry Ewing of Herculaneum (Jefferson County).

Kania Johnson is a senior, from Minneapolis, MN, studying Educational Studies at MU. Her presentation titled, “Black Mothers’ Affection: Effects on Relationship Quality, Mental Health, and Academic Achievement in Black Fifth Graders in Missouri”, was supervised by Jean Ispa, professor emerita of Human Development and Family Science. Kania is the daughter of Stacey Johnson of Minneapolis.

Clare Kercher is a senior studying Biological Engineering at MU. Her presentation titled, “Pupillary Light Reflex in Infants: A potential earlier objective screening for Autism?”, was supervised by Gang Yao, professor of Bioengineering. Clare is the daughter of Kevin Kercher of St. Louis (St. Louis County).

Josie Lovejoy is a senior studying Special Education at MU. Her presentation titled, “The Impact of Social and Communication Skill Instruction on Bullying Involvement”, was supervised by Chad Rose, associate professor of Education. Josie is the daughter of Rhonda and Tim Lovejoy of Adrian (Bates County).

Nathaniel W. Mahloch is a senior studying Biochemistry at MU. His presentation titled, “A Test for Elemental Impurities in Pharmaceuticals”, was supervised by Christopher Lee, assistant teaching professor of Biochemistry. Nathaniel is the son of Jeremy Mahloch, Camille Boss of St. Louis (St. Louis County).

Lydia Meyer is a senior studying Mechanical Engineering at MU. Her presentation titled, “Improving the Safety of Supplemental Oxygen for Premature Infants Using Automatic Control”, was supervised by Roger Fales, associate professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering. Lydia is the daughter of David and Ginger Meyer of Jefferson City (Cole County).

Halie Pyla is a senior, from Aurora, IL, studying Special Education at MU. Her presentation titled, “The Impact of Social and Communication Skill Instruction on Bullying Involvement”, was supervised by Chad Rose, associate professor of Education. Halie is the daughter of Jeff & Kristina Pyla of Aurora, IL.

Muhammad Salim is a sophomore studying Biomedical Engineering at MU. His presentation titled, “Computational Modeling of Articular Cartilage”, was supervised by Ferris Pfeiffer, assistant professor of Bioengineering. Muhammad is the son of Hani and Samira Salim of Columbia (Boone County).

Lauren (Olivia) Shafer is a senior studying Special Education at MU. Her presentation titled, “The Impact of Social and Communication Skill Instruction on Bullying Involvement”, was supervised by Chad Rose, associate professor of Education. Lauren is the daughter of Jennifer Butler & Buddy Butler of Appleton City (St. Clair County).

Tessa Valleroy is a junior studying Anthropology, Biological Sciences at MU. Her presentation titled, “The Transformation of La Guignolée in Ste. Genevieve”, was supervised by Karthik Panchanathan, assistant professor of Anthropology. Tessa is the daughter of Diana and Paul Valleroy of Cape Girardeau (Cape Girardeau County).

Mario Wilson is a senior studying Psychology at MU. His presentation titled, “Social-Ecological Characteristics of Juvenile Sex Offenders from Diverse Backgrounds: A mediation analysis”, was supervised by Charles Borduin, professor of Psychlogical Sciences. Mario is the son of Candis Anderson of St. Louis (St. Louis County).

Abigail Wurdack is a senior studying Special Education at MU. Her presentation titled, “The Impact of Social and Communication Skill Instruction on Bullying Involvement”, was supervised by Chad Rose, associate professor of Education. Abigail is the daughter of Sue Wurdack of Washington (Franklin County).

Christopher Zachary is a junior studying Chemistry at MU. His presentation titled, “Iron homeostasis mediated by the possible Iron Zinc Cross-Talk Network”, was supervised by David Mendoza-Cozatl, associate professor of Plant Sciences. Christopher is the son of Iris and Rudy Zachary of Columbia (Boone County).

University of Missouri-Kansas City students

Joseph Allen is a sophomore studying Biology at UMKC. His presentation titled, “Genomic Engineering for the Analysis of Multiprotein Complexes Regulating Neural Stability”, was supervised by Ryan Mohan, assistant professor of Biological Sciences. Joseph is the son of Steven and Heather Allen of Albuquerque, MN.

Stephanie Caples is a fall 2017 graduate who studied Geology at UMKC. Her presentation titled, “Using Drone Technology and Imaging Software to Track the Locations of Boulders on the Island of San Salvador, The Bahamas and Concrete Slabs in Brush Creek, Kansas City.”, was supervised by Tina M. Niemi, professor of Geosciences. Stephanie is the daughter of Stephen Miller of Kansas City (Jackson County).

Megan Connor is a senior studying Biology and Chemistry at UMKC. Her presentation titled, “Attack of bone infections: An alternative to commercial bone cements”, was supervised by Kathleen Kilway, curator's teaching professor and department chair of Chemistry. Megan is the daughter of David and Marsha Connor of Leawood, Kansas.

Anne Crawford is a senior studying English at UMKC. Her presentation titled, “Exploring Women’s Communication with Public Figures: A Study of Angelica Schuyler Church’s Letters to Founding Fathers”, was supervised by Jane Greer, professor of Women's and Gender Studies. Anne is the daughter of Jamie Crawford of Blue Springs (Jackson County).

Melody Kimbrough is a senior studying Chemistry at UMKC. Her presentation titled, “Investigating the Role of Jaspine B on the Function of Ceramide Transfer Protein”, was supervised by Xiaolan Yao, assistant professor of Biological Sciences. Melody is the daughter of Jonny and Mercy Kimbrough of Independence (Jackson County).

Shana Malone is a junior studying Civil Engineering at UMKC. Her presentation titled, “Effect of Water to Cement Ratio on Pervious Concrete Performance”, was supervised by John T. Kevern, associate professor of Computing Engineering. Shana is the daughter of Levy Malone of Kansas City (Jackson County).

Carolyn Nordengren is a junior studying Art History at UMKC. Her presentation titled, “I Mean to Do That: The Intentionality of Tool Marks on Ancient Greek Tombstones”, was supervised by Robert Cohon, visiting research associate professor of Ancient Art. Carolyn is the daughter of Joanne and Fritz Nordengren of Kansas City (Jackson County).

Sarah Rapp is a junior studying Biotechnology at UMKC. Her presentation titled, “Discovery of Novel Therapeutic Targets for Disease Treatment”, was supervised by Ryan Mohan, assistant professor of Biological Sciences. Sarah is the daughter of Misty Wyman of Chillicothe (Livingston County).

Laurie Ray graduated with a B.S. in biology and a B.A. in chemistry at t UMKC in December. Her presentation titled, “Expanding Applications of Green Fluorescent Protein Expression to Include Criminal Justice Reform”, was supervised by Samuel Bouyain, associate professor of Biological Sciences. Laurie is the mother of Maximillian Ray of Kansas City (Jackson County).

Missouri University of Science and Technology students

Ryan Baumann is a senior studying Biological Sciences at Missouri S&T. His presentation titled, “Interchangeable Pollutant Detection in Arabidopsis”, was supervised by David Westenberg, associate professor of Biological Sciences. Ryan is the son of Thomas and Nancy Baumann of Saint Louis (St. Louis County).

Cooper Broman is a sophomore studying Information Science and Technology at Missouri S&T. His presentation titled, “The Impact of Monetary Gains and Losses on Cybersecurity Behavior”, was supervised by Fiona Nah, professor of Business and Information Technology. Cooper is the son of Roger and Carolyn Broman of Festus (Jefferson County).

Alexandre Cristea is a Senior studying Biochemistry at Missouri S&T. His presentation titled, “Simultaneous Determination of Amino Acid derivatives in Urine by Capillary Electrophoresis for Breast Cancer Risk Screening”, was supervised by Yinfa Ma, curator's teaching professor, associate dean of research & external affairs, and director of the center of biomedical research of Chemistry. Alexandre is the son of Cristopher and Christina Cristea of St. Charles (St. Charles County).

Daniel Drury is a Senior studying Ceramic Engineering at Missouri S&T. His presentation titled, “Dissolution Behavior of Na-Mo-Fe-P Glasses”, was supervised by Richard Brow, professor of Materials Science and Engineering. Daniel is the son of Dawne Christy of Wentzville and Dan Drury of O’Fallon (St. Charles County).

Lucas Dyer is a junior studying Chemistry at Missouri S&T. His presentation titled, “Interchangeable Pollutant Detection in Arabidopsis”, was supervised by David Westenberg, associate professor of Biological Sciences. Lucas is the son of Micheal and April Dyer of Jefferson City (Cole County).

Jana Hochard is a senior studying Petroleum Engineering, Economics at Missouri S&T. Her presentation titled, “Application of Safety Systems Management in Rigsite Operations”, was supervised by Rickey Hendrix, lecturer of Geosciences & Petroleum Engineering. Jana is the daughter of Jackie and Alan Hochard of Weston (Platte County).

Ryan Honerkamp is a senior studying Civil Engineering at Missouri S&T. His presentation titled, “Role of a Laboratory Tornado Simulator in Achieving Tornado-ready Communities”, was supervised by Grace Yan, assistant professor of Structural Engineering. Ryan is the son of Mandy Reese and David Honerkamp of Farmington (St. Francois County).

Sarah Jemison is a senior studying Civil and Architectural Engineering at Missouri S&T. Her presentation titled, “Compressive Behavior of Masonry Columns Confined with Fiber Reinforced Cementitious Matrix (FRCM) Composites”, was supervised by Lesley Sneed, associate professor of Structural Engineering. Sarah is the daughter of Sandra and Thomas Jemison of Nixa (Christian County).

Sara Johnson is a junior studying Psychology at Missouri S&T. Her presentation titled, “Predictors of Freshmen Engineering Students’ Report of Cheating”, was supervised by Amber Henslee, associate professor of Psychlogical Sciences. Sara is the daughter of Beth Johnson and Jeff Johnson of St. Louis (St. Louis County).

Michael Khayat is a junior studying Ceramic Engineering at Missouri S&T. His presentation titled, “New Cast Steels for High Temperature Automotive Applications”, was supervised by Simon Lekakh, research professor of Materials Science and Engineering. Michael is the son of Kamal Khayat and Regina Valente of Rolla (Phelps County).

Jonathan Kuchem is a senior studying Civil Engineering at Missouri S&T. His presentation titled, “Mechanical Properties of Steel Fiber Reinforced Concrete made with Recycled Materials”, was supervised by Nicolas Libre, assistant teaching professor of Civil, Architectural, and Environmental Engineering. Jonathan is the son of Chris and Steve Kuchem of Augusta (St. Charles County).

Alexis Lee is a senior studying Civil & Architectural Engineering at Missouri S&T. Her presentation titled, “Developing a Sustainable Controlled Low-Strength Material (CLSM) by Incorporating Off-Specification Fly Ash and Bottom Ash”, was supervised by Mohamed ElGawady, associate professor of Civil, Architectural, and Environmental Engineering. Alexis is the daughter of Craig & Ruthie Lee of West Plains (Howell County).

Tiffany Lyche is a senior, from Portland, OR, studying Mining Engineering at Missouri S&T. Her presentation titled, “Evaluating the Effect of Text Message Prompts on Miners’ Decision Making in a Disaster”, was supervised by Kwame Awuah-Offei, associate professor and graduate program coordinator of Mining & Nuclear Engineering.

Joel Merz is a senior studying History at Missouri S&T. His presentation titled, “Thunder in the East: Wehrmacht versus RKKA”, was supervised by Irina Ivliyeva, associate professor of Arts, Language & Philosophy. Joel is the son of Steve and Cheri Merz of Rolla (Phelps County).

Erin Nischwitz is a senior studying Chemistry at Missouri S&T. Her presentation titled, “Interchangeable Pollutant Detection in Arabidopsis”, was supervised by David Westenberg, associate professor of Biological Sciences. Erin is the daughter of Maria and James Nischwitz of Wildwood (St. Louis County).

Luis Ocampo is a freshman studying Information Science & Technology at Missouri S&T. His presentation titled, “Neuropsychological Assessment of Fatigue Utilizing Eye-Tracking Data”, was supervised by Fiona Nah, professor of Business and Information Technology. Luis is the son of Paolo and Cristina Ocampo of Chesterfield (St. Louis County).

Devin Olds is a senior studying Civil Engineering at Missouri S&T. His presentation titled, “Addressing the lack of public awareness in regards to antimicrobial resistance”, was supervised by Dan Oerther, professor of Civil, Architectural, and Environmental Engineering. Devin is the son of Marsha Rice of Maryland Heights (St. Louis County).

Ian Roberts is a senior from Jackson (Cape Girardeau County) studying B.S. Electrical Engineering at Missouri S&T. His presentation titled, “Underwater Acoustic Communication”, was supervised by Y. Rosa Zheng, professor of Electrical & Computer Engineering.

Brandon Sullivan is a senior studying Geology & Geophysics at Missouri S&T. His presentation titled, “Heavy Mineral Analysis of The Viburnum Trend, Southeast MO Lead-Zinc District”, was supervised by Marek Locmelis, assistant professor of Geosciences & Petroleum Engineering. Brandon is the son of James and Sonia Sullivan of Lake St Louis (St. Charles County).

Julia White is a senior studying Electrical Engineering at Missouri S&T. Her presentation titled, “Optic Fiber Sensor for Strain Measurements in High Temperature Sensing Applications”, was supervised by Jie Huang, assistant professor of Electrical & Computer Engineering. Julia is the daughter of Kellie White of St. Louis (St. Louis County).

University of Missouri-St. Louis

Drake A. Anderson is a junior studying Psychology at UMSL. His presentation titled, “Staying Silent in Response to Sexism: Is it Bad for Your Health?”, was supervised by Bettina J. Casad, assistant professor of Psychological Sciences. Drake is the daughter of Steve Anderson and Julie Hartman of O'Fallon (St. Charles County).

Samantha Austin-Murphy is a senior studying Psychology at UMSL. Her presentation titled, “I take my coffee with cream and cats: The brain’s response to the unexpected”, was supervised by Suzanne Welcome, assistant professor of Psychological Sciences. Samantha is the daughter of Bev and Bob Austin of High Ridge (Jefferson County).

Anne Birchem is a senior, from O’Fallon, IL, studying Psychology at the University of Missouri-St. Louis. Her presentation titled, “Relationships Between Childhood Reading Experiences and Current Reading Ability”, was supervised by Suzanne Welcome, assistant professor of Psychological Sciences. Anne is the daughter of Mary and Bryan Birchem of O'Fallon, IL.

Claudia Campbell is a senior studying Psychology at UMSL. Her presentation titled, “Severe and repeated childhood abuse & violence: Do racial groups experience it differently?”, was supervised by Rachel Wamser-Nanney, assistant professor of Psychological Sciences. Claudia is the daughter of Randy Campbell & Gail Campbell of O'Fallon (St. Charles County).

Dana Channell is a senior studying Anthropology & Music UMSL. Her presentation titled, “Rediscovering the Healing Waters of Excelsior Springs, Missouri: An Archaeological Investigation”, was supervised by Patti Wright, associate professor and chair of Anthropology & Archaeology. Dana is the daughter of Suzanne and Gary Channell of St. Charles (St. Charles County).

Tianna McBroom is a senior studying physics at UMSL. Her presentation titled, “Transportation technologies for the 21st century: Hydrogen storage for PEM fuel cells”, was supervised by Eric Majzoub, professor of Physics. Tianna is the daughter of Elma McBroom and Monty McBroom of Rolla (Phelps County).

Elise Trombetta is a graduate studying Psychology at UMSL. Her presentation titled, “Severe and repeated childhood abuse & violence: Do racial groups experience it differently?”, was supervised by Rachel Wamser-Nanney, assistant professor of Psychological Sciences. Elise is the daughter of Tracy Trombetta of St. Louis (St. Louis County).

Ari Zakroff is a senior studying Biology, BA at UMSL. His presentation titled, “Lizards, Warming Climate and Body Temperature: How Hot is Too Hot?”, was supervised by Godfrey Bourne, associate professor of Evolutionary and Tropical Ecology. Ari is the son of Dr. Sandra Zakroff and Mr. Bert Zakroff of St. Louis (St. Louis County).
 

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Campus: System
Key words: Innovation, KC Campus, MU Campus, Rolla Campus, St. Louis Campus, Technology, UM System,
County: Boone

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