Eastern Michigan University students to partner with faculty members in wide variety of research topics supported by annual Undergraduate Research Stimulus Awards

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YPSILANTI – Ten Eastern Michigan University students will conduct scholarly research in partnership with EMU faculty members with the support of the Winter Undergraduate Research Stimulus Awards.

The Undergraduate Research Stimulus Program is among several initiatives at EMU intended to facilitate research partnerships between undergraduate students and Eastern Michigan faculty. The awards were approved by the EMU Board of Regents at its regular meeting June 18, 2020.

The wide-ranging research topics touch on areas such as music, politics, autism, Alzheimer’s Disease and digestive systems.

Student awardees will receive a $2,000 fellowship in support of their research efforts, which will be paid in bi-weekly installments throughout the award period. This award will be in the form of a credit to the student’s university account. The collaborating faculty member may receive $500 to be used for lab/studio supplies or equipment, or other professional expenses.

The Provost and Executive Vice President of Academic and Student Affairs has awarded a total of $20,000 to 10 undergraduate students and $4,000 to eight Eastern faculty for Winter 2020 research and creative projects under the program.

The cost of the Undergraduate Research Stimulus Program awards listed below will be funded from the Provost's indirect cost recovery. The GameAbove alumni group is also funding a variety of projects.

Listed below alphabetically are the student awardees, their majors, research topics, and faculty partners for their projects.

Megan Angriawan (majoring in Piano Performance). “The Landmark of Nineteenth Century Music - Liszt's Sonata in B Minor.” Faculty mentor: Garik Pedersen (School of Music and Dance).

Sara Baghdadi (majoring in General Biochemistry). “Promoting Antibiotic Activity from Silent Biosynthetic Gene Clusters in Soil Microbes.” Faculty mentor: Paul Price (Department of Biology).

Alexa Cooley (majoring in Political Science). “The Congressional Staffer's Role in Developing a Politician's Public Persona.” Faculty mentor: Jeffrey Bernstein (Department of Political Science).

Olivia Harvey (majoring in Psychology). “Effectively Training Behavioral Technicians at EMU’s Autism Collaborative Center Efficiently: A Sequential Analysis.” Faculty mentor: Adam Briggs (Department of Psychology).

Janelle Janiss (majoring in Clinical Laboratory Science - Pre-professional). “The Effects of Aquamin on the Bacteria of the Microbiome of the Digestive System.” Faculty mentor: Lynne Shetron (School of Health Sciences).

Megan Morrison (majoring in Anthropology). “Addressing the Stigma of Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Dementias in Arab Americans.” Faculty mentor: Kristine Ajrouch (Department of Sociology, Anthropology and Criminology).

Verginio Persicone (majoring in Biology). “Characterization of Cofilin in Xenopus laevis.” Faculty mentor: Robert Winning (Department of Biology).

Daniel Scrochi (majoring in Anthropology). “Washtenaw Drug Recovery: An Anthropological Perspective.” Faculty mentor: Maria Garcia (Department of Sociology, Anthropology and Criminology).

Ronald Stempien (majoring in Computer Science - Applied). “Using Deep Learning to Create a Model for PM2.5 Pollution.” Faculty mentor: Weitian Tong (Department of Computer Science).

Chelsea Van Buskirk (majoring in Professional Chemistry). “Resin the Dead: A DART- MS Analysis of “Resin” on an Old Kingdom Mummy.” Faculty mentor: Ruth Ann Armitage (Department of Chemistry).

About Eastern Michigan University

Founded in 1849, Eastern is the second oldest public university in Michigan. It currently serves nearly 18,000 students pursuing undergraduate, graduate, specialist, doctoral and certificate degrees in the arts, sciences and professions. In all, more than 300 majors, minors and concentrations are delivered through the University's Colleges of Arts and Sciences; Business; Education; Engineering and Technology; Health and Human Services; and, its graduate school. EMU is regularly recognized by national publications for its excellence, diversity, and commitment to applied education. For more information about Eastern Michigan University, visit the University's website.

June 18, 2020

Written by:
Geoff Larcom

Media Contact:
Geoff Larcom