2015 Undergraduate Research Symposium

The newly inaugurated Scholar Development Undergraduate Research Symposium set records with an impressive display of more than 80 poster presentations from the 2014-15 Freshman and Wentz Research Scholars, which are listed below with links to full-sized PDFs of the posters.  Thanks goes to the large team of OSU faculty, staff, administrators and alumni who made this celebration of discovery a possibility!

Special Thanks To


Lew Wentz Foundation
Robberson Trust
Henry Bellmon Office of Scholar Development

Academic Affairs

Associate Provost Dr. Pamela Fry

Scholar Development

Jessica Roark
Tim O'Neil
Cathy Lopez


All of the Presentation Judges!
(Listed Below)

Freshman Research Coordinators

Dr. Amy Martindale
Dr. Christine Johnson
Dr. Shiretta Ownbey
Cody Cramer
Dr. Steve Damron
Amanda Williams
Meredith Shepard
Dr. Karen Flaherty

Undergraduate Admissions

Aubrey Raupe
Jamie Henry-Troester


All of the Faculty Mentors!
(Listed Below)

Edmon Low Library

Debbie Clemons

Facilities Management

Renee Smith
Don Machart
Daniel Jason

Jazz Ensemble

Damien Cheek
Micaiah Naverrete
Remington Thorton
Tyler Murray


All of the Student Support Teams!
(Parents, Guardians, Friends & Family)

Presentation Awards | Research Presentations | Photo Gallery

Presentation Awards

Best Overall
Wentz Presentation

Forrest Rogers

Dr. Jennifer Byrd-Craven

Honorable Mention
Wentz Presentations

Logan Kunka

Dr. Jamey Jacob
Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering

Jonathan Overton

Dr. Hasan Atiyeh
Biosystems and Agricultural Engineering

Best Overall
Freshman Presentation

Cassidy Gierhart

Dr. Christopher Fennell

Honorable Mention
Freshman Presentations

Megan Ragsdale

Dr. Rita Miller
Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

Madeleine Williams

Dr. Patricia Canaan
Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

These presentations were evaluated by a dedicated team of graduate students:

Juliana  Artier,
Microbiology and Molecular Genetics

Ravendra Chauhan,
Plant Pathology

Eric Conchola,
Health and Human Performance

Li Ding,
Hotel and Restaurant Administration

Leandra Figueroa,
Biomedical Sciences

Garrett Hester,
Health and Human Performance

Sawanya Janthachotikun,
Nutritional Sciences

Brandon Jones,
International Studies

Sathish Lageshetty,

Jeffrey Miller,

Charuskha Walgama,

Jessica  Morrison,
Microbiology and Molecular Genetics

Melynee Naegele,
Teaching, Learning and Leadership

Michael Powers,

Nick Rose,

Sean Simons,

Research Presentations


Freshman Research Scholars

Nanoparticle Characterization for the Use of Delivering Functional Proteins

Presented by Alicia Aguilar, Chemical Engineering
Mentored by Dr. Josh Ramsey, Chemical Engineering

Your Obedient and Humble Servant:
The Tones of Supplicant Letters to Dolley Madison During Her Husband’s Presidency

Presented by Emily Allen, History and Political Science
Mentored by Dr. Richard Rohrs, History

Mineral Differentiation in the Lower Mountain Fork River

Presented by Taylor Baurichter, Civil Engineering
Mentored by Dr. Jim Long, OK Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit

Well Water Salinity in Relation to Natural Upwellings and Hydraulic Fracturing

Presented by Josh Bedell, Geology
Mentored by Dr. Todd Halihan, Geology

Identification of Aha1 and SUMO Interaction Through Immunoprecipitation and Western Blotting of Yeast Cells

Presented by Garret Boren, Biochemistry and Molecular Bioogy
Mentored by Dr. Robert Matts, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

How much of an improvement can hyperthreading give to a CPU

Presented by Daniel BothwellElectrical Engineering
Mentored by Dr. James Stine, Electrical and Computer Engineering

The Effect Of Stress on Diet Regulation of Macronutrients in Crickets

Presented by Taylor BrooksIntegrative Biology
Mentored by Dr. Shawn Wilder, Integrative Biology

Family Relationship and Foster Alumni in College

Presented by Abby Cain, Human Development and Family Science
Mentored by Dr. Kerri Kearney, Educational Studies

Comparing Water Filter Effectiveness

Presented by Callie Carpenter, Mechanical Engineering
Mentored by Dr. Greg Wilber, Civil and Environmental Engineering

An Examination of the Determinants and Consequences of Firms Accused of Violating the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act of 1977

Presented by Samantha Cheng, Accounting / Management Science and Information Systems
Mentored by Dr. Leah Muriel, Accounting

Computational Studies of Photovoltaic Materials for Better Efficiency in Solar Panels

Presented by Charith DeSilva, Physics
Mentored by Dr. Mario BorundaPhysics

Amino Acid Profiles of Calves Experiencing Bovine Respiratory Disease

Presented by Molly Drakeley, Animal Science
Mentored by Dr. Jennifer Hernandez-Gifford, Animal Science

Organized Disorder:
Packing in Microscopic and Macroscopic Systems

Presented by Cassidy Gierhart, Chemical Engineering
Mentored by Dr. Christopher Fennell, Chemistry

Corruption and Economic Growth: An International Comparison

Presented by Jamie Hays, General Business
Mentored by Dr. Lee Adkins, Economics and Legal Studies

The Effect of Varying Soil Types on the Germination Rate of Bothriochloa ischaemum

Presented by Corban Hemphill, Natural Resource Ecology and Management
Mentored by Dr. Karen Hickman, Natural Resouce Ecology and Management

Precocial Sexual Selection: Presence of Lateral Orange Bars on Male Collared Lizard Hatchlings and the Influence They Play in Female Hatchling Social Behavior

Presented by Rebecca Herrera, Zoology
Mentored by Dr. Stanley Fox, Integrative Biology

The Views of Pre-Med Students on Cultural Factors Affecting the Treatment and Spread of Ebola in West Africa

Presented by Rachel Higgins, Computer Science
Mentored by Dr. Shelia Kennison, Psychology

Varying Usage of the Quotative Like

Presented by Anna Hurlbut, Management Science and Computer Systems
Mentored by Dr. Thomas Wikle, Arts and Sciences

Identification of the Molecular Mechanisms Involved in Calcium-Induced Antibiotic Resistance of Pseudomonas aeruginosa

Presented by Danci Johnston, Microbiology
Mentored by Dr. Marianna Patrauchan, Microbiology

Effects of Dietary Cocoa Powder on Postprandial Glucose, Lipids, and C- Reactive Protein in Patients With Type 2 Diabetes

Presented by Maycee Jones, Nutritional Sciences
Mentored by Dr. Arpita Basu, utrtional Sciences

Women's Empowerment Through Access to Technology in Honduras

Presented by Megan Kibler, Management Science and Information Systems
Mentored by Dr. Jeretta Nord, MSIS

Analyzing Pre-Service Teachers’ Reflections of their Mathematical Learning Experiences

Presented by Amber LaFerriere, Elementary Education
Mentored by Dr. Juliana Utley, Teaching and Curriculum Leadership

Protein Connections to Cancer: INI1 and BAF155

Presented by Carlee Luttrell, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Mentored by Dr. Donald Ruhl, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

Presented by Ben Maes Sociology
Mentored by Dr. Aaron Lukaszewski, Psychology

Capacitive Deionization for Water Desalination

Presented by Aubrey McCutchan, Civil Engineering
Mentored by Dr. John Veenstra, Civil and Environmental Engineering

The Bone Metabolic Response to Dietary Tart Cherry Supplementation in an Animal Model of Postmenopausal Osteoporosis

Presented by Meredith McKnight, Nutritional Sciences
Mentored by Dr. Brenda Smith, Nutritional Sciences

Finding and Isolating Elizabethkingia meningoseptica Bacteriophage from Environmental Samples

Presented by Austin Mefford, Physiology
Mentored by Dr. Patricia Canaan, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

Determining where SUMO and Sumoylation Machinery Interact with Stu2p

Presented by Megan Ragsdale, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Mentored by Dr. Rita Miller, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

Nutrition and Family Functioning

Presented by Sierra Riley, Early Childhood Education
Mentored by Dr. Laura Hubbs-Tait, Human Sciences

Eagle Adventure After-School: A Pilot Program with Promising Results

Presented by Rachel Sharber, Nutritional Sciences
Mentored by Dr. Janice Hermann, Nutritional Sciences

The Frequency of ZnT8 Polymorphisms of an African American Population with Diabetes

Presented by Katie Thompson, Nutritional Sciences
Mentored by Dr. Winyoo Chowanadisai, Nutritional Sciences

Presented by Cassidy WardPlant and Soil Sciences
Mentored by Dr. Liuling Yan Plant and Soil Sciences

Intrinsic Fusidic Acid Resistance within Staphylococcus aureus Mutants

Presented by Karley WashburnBiochemistry and Molecular Biology
Mentored by Dr. John GustafsonBiochemistry and Molecular Biology

Isolation of the Protein of the FaiR Gene

Presented by MacKenzie Wedman, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Mentored by Dr. Donald Ruhl, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

Evaluation of Heat-in Bag and Serve Products Produced by Ambassador Foods

Presented by Emily Wilkinson, Animal Science
Mentored by Dr. Gretchen Mafi, Animal Science

Biofilm Formation of Elizabethkingia meningoseptica

Presented by Madeleine Williams, Sociology
Mentored by Dr. Patricia Canaan, Biochemistry

Cloning and Characteristics of E. Meningoseptica β-lactamases

Presented by Caleb Wilson, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Mentored by Dr. Patricia Canaan, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

Presented by Stephen ZiskeAerospace and Mechanical Engineering
Mentored by Dr. Jamey Jacob, Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering

Wentz Research Scholars

Improving the Stability of Chitosan-Gelatin Based Injectable Hydrogels for Cardiac Regeneration Therapy

Presented by Carol Abraham, Chemical Engineering
Mentored by Dr. Sundar Madihally, Chemical Engineering

Culture Shock and Adjustment Issues of International Students at Oklahoma State University

Presented by Arkasama Bandyopadhyay, Mechanical Engineering
Mentored by Dr. Stephen Perkins, Sociology

Arkansas River Sedimentation Study

Presented by Hannah Blankenship, Biosytems and Agricultural Engineering
Mentored by Dr. Garey Fox, Biosystems and Agricultural Engineering

Wax Appearance Temperature in a Model Oil

Presented by Bailey Bruns, Mechanical Engineering
Mentored by Dr. Peter Clark, Chemical Engineering

Optimization Application: Algae Growth

Presented by Larcyn Carter, Chemical Engineering
Mentored by Dr. Russ Rhinehart, Chemical Engineering

Biochar as a Soil Amendment

Presented by Nicole Carter, Biosystems & Agricultural Engineering
Mentored by Dr. Ajay Kumar, Biosystems & Agricultural Engineering

Effect of Herbicide Application on the Lifespan Length of Captive European Honeybees (Apis melifera)

Presented by Ana Chicas-Mosier, Biology and Psychology
Mentored by Dr. Charles Abramson, Psychology

Cattle Grazing Preference on Yellow Bluestem (Bothriochloa ischaemum)

Presented by James Craun, Natural Resource Ecology and Management
Mentored by Dr. Karen Hickman, Natural Resource Ecology and Management

The Vine that Eats Our Pocketbooks: Kudzu's Economic Effect in Oklahoma

Presented by Aaron Cromer, Finance and Business Sustainability Management
Mentored by Dr. Karen Hickman, Natural Resources Ecology and Management

A Novel Device to Guide Neural Cells by Electric Fields

Presented by David Ede, Chemical Engineering
Mentored by Dr. Sundar Madihally, Chemical Engineering

The Role of Endothelins in Regulating Bovine Granulosa Cell Function

Presented by Jacqueline Ervin, Animal Science
Mentored by Dr. Leon Spicer, Animal Science

States on Appeal: An Examination of State Litigants before the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals

Presented by Jedidiah Gibson, Political Science
Mentored by Dr. Eve Ringsmuth, Political Science

The Impact of Surfactant Type on Hydrate Formation in Flowing Systems

Presented by Thomas Gunter, Chemical Engineering
Mentored by Dr. Clint Aichele, Chemical Engineering

Ecosystem-Level Soil Dynamics following Woody Plant Encroachment from Rough-Leaf Dogwood into Grasslands

Presented by Kayla Hess, Natural Resource Ecology and Managment
Mentored by Dr. Gail Wilson, Natural Resource Ecology and Managment

Protecting the Workers Wellbeing: Secondary Trauma to Workers Providing Help to Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Survivors

Presented by Jordan Hobbs, Human Development and Family Sciences
Mentored by Dr. Kami Gallus, Human Development and Family Sciences

​The Effect of Hydrogen Sulfide on PLGF Secretion by Human Vascular Cells

Presented by Sydnee Homeyer, Physiology
Mentored by Dr. Jennifer Shaw, Integrative Biology

"Oh, Drive These Cruel Doubts Away"
Grace and the Scrupulous Conscience in the Poetry of Anne Bronte

Presented by Caroline Jennings, English
Mentored by Dr. Linda Austin, English

Antibacterial Efficacy of Pseudomonas aeruginosa Pyocins

Presented by Dillon Jones, Microbiology
Mentored by Dr. Erika Lutter, Microbiology

Plausibility of Variable-Pitch, Variable-Tilt Quadcopters

Presented by Logan KunkaMechanical and Aerospace Engineering
Mentored by Dr. Jamey Jacob, Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering

Sociocultural Factors Affecting Sun-Seeking Behavior for Infants Living in Rural or Urban Communities in Southern Ethiopia

Presented by Riley Larson, Nutritional Sciences
Mentored by Dr. Barbara Stoecker, Nutritional Sciences

Characterization of Echogenic Temperature Sensitive Liposomes in Physiological Buffer

Presented by Kevin McLean, Nutritional Sciences
Mentored by Dr. Ashish Ranjan, Physiological Sciences

Environmentally Friendly Synthesis of Unnatural Amino Acids for Applications in Drug Discovery

Presented by Mitchell Meyer, Mathematics / Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Mentored by Dr. Ronald Rahaim, Chemistry

INI-1 and All of Its Friends: The Analysis of the INI-1 Protein and Associated Proteins that Contribute to Cancer Formation

Presented by Gretchan Moore, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology  / Microbiology
Mentored by Dr. Donald Ruhl, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

Bright Men of Castile

Presented by Samantha Mori, Spanish and Multimedia Journalism
Mentored by Dr. Erik Ekman, Foreign Languages and Literature

Efficient Syntheses of Substituted (±)-3-Oxoisoindoline-1-Carbonitriles and Carboxamides Using OSU-6

Presented by Maeghan Murie, Chemistry / Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Mentored by Dr. Richard Bunce, Chemistry

What if Good Intentions are Not Good Enough?  Ubuntu Youth and the Varying Outcomes of NGO Practices

Presented by Payton Noel, English
Mentored by Dr. Katherine Hallemeier, English

Impacts of Current Food Regulations from the Perspective of Local Producer

Presented by Meagan Osburn, Agribusiness
Mentored by Dr. Rodney Holcomb, Agribusiness Economics

Production of Hydrogen from Renewable Feedstocks by a Novel Thermophilic Bacterium

Presented by Jonathan Overton, Biosystems and Agricultural Engineering 
Mentored by Dr. Hasan Atiyeh, Biosystems and Agricultural Engineering

Natural and Reliable Alternatives to Antibiotics

Presented by Hannah Paradis, Entomology
Mentored by Dr. Glenn Zhang, Animal Science

Childhood Protective Factors and Adult Optimism as a Possible Moderator in the Relation Between Adverse Childhood Experiences and Anxiety Symptoms

Presented by Georgeanna Roberts, Psychology
Mentored by Dr. Lana Beasley, Psychology

Hormonal Response to Partner Exposure in Female-Female, Female-Male, and Male-Male Romantic Partnerships

Presented by Forrest Rogers, Biological Science, French
Mentored by Dr. Jennifer Byrd-Craven, Psychology

Characterizing the Role of Lipid Oxidation Products in Beef Enzymatic Metmyoglobin Reduction

Presented by Shelby Spring, Animal Science
Mentored by Dr. Ranjith Ramanathan, Animal Science

Factors Affecting Family Functioning

Presented by Brianna Sullivan, Psychology
Mentored by Dr. Maureen Sullivan, Psychology

Timing of Trauma and Effect on Marriage Satisfaction Among Clinical Couples

Presented by Emily Tucker, Human Development and Family Science
Mentored by Dr. Kami Gallus, Human Development and Family Science

Oklahoma Wind Energy in Rural Communities: Identifiying Policy Necessary for Productive Coexistence

Presented by Philip White, Mechanical Engineering
Mentored by Dr. Karl Reid, Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering

Design of Roll-to-Roll Manufacturing Machine for Flexible Electronics

Presented by Joshua Whitman, Mechanical Engineering, Mathematics
Mentored by Dr. Prabhakar Pagilla, Mechanical Engineering

A Bayesian Analysis of Carbon Dioxide Emissions in States Under the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative

Presented by Derek Wietelman, Political Science and Statistics
Mentored by Dr. Ye Liang, Department of Statistics

Genomic Imprinting & Social Behavior in Hybrid Offspring of Species of Mus

Presented by Samantha Grider, Integrative Biology
Mentored by Dr. Polly Campbell, Integrative Biology

Symposium Slideshow

Photo Gallery 



Slideshow Title: 
2015 Scholar Development Undergraduate Research Symposium
Slideshow Subtitle: 
Featuring the Freshman and Wentz Research Scholars
Slideshow Image: