HNN Staff

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. – Eighty-eight students representing 15 West Virginia universities and colleges, including 17 from Marshall University, will present their discoveries in poster format in the 8th annual Undergraduate Research Day at the Capitol in Charleston on Tuesday, Jan. 25.

The event, which takes place from 8:30 a.m. to 11:45 a.m. in the Capitol rotunda, helps members of the state Legislature and the executive branch understand the importance of undergraduate research by talking directly with the students who produced these projects. The projects are original research and the posters are designed for a general audience.

The posters will be in the areas of engineering, biochemistry, environmental science, biology, psychology, chemistry, philosophy, computer science and anthropology.

“These projects are important for students because they are some of the best preparation for entering the workforce or post-graduate education,” said Dr. Michael Castellani, professor and chair of Marshall’s chemistry department, and co-chair of the event’s organizing committee. “To be successful, students must use knowledge from many courses and think critically to solve the problems that crop up in research.  This skill is essential to their long-term success. Our event is a way of sharing one of the unique educational experiences provided by higher education with the general public.”


The following is a list of Marshall University’s participants, along with their home counties or cities, disciplines, research posters and advisers:

· Ennis Barbery, Kanawha County (Anthropology), “Narratives of Heritage: Preservation, Progress, and Public Space.” – Dr. Brian Hoey, adviser

· Emily Beckelhimer, Cabell County (Biology), “FT-IR Analysis of Tissue Sections from Normal and Malignant Mouse Colorectal Tissues.” – Dr. Menashi Cohenford, adviser

· Benjamin Blodgett, Knoxville, Tenn., and Shaheed Elhamdani, Cabell County (Biochemistry), “Understanding the Temperature Dependence of the Assembly of the Photosystem II Water-Oxidizing Complex.” – Dr. Derrick Kolling, adviser

· Cameron Buchman, Cabell County, and Yasmine Zeid, Cabell County (Biochemistry), “Understanding How Photosynthesis Functions at a Molecular Level: Assembly of the Water-Splitting Catalyst.” – Dr. Derrick Kolling, adviser

· Allison Combs, Mercer County, and Sara Lilly, Cabell County (Chemistry), “Exploring the Photochemistry of Radical Precursors.” – Dr. Laura McCunn, adviser

· Laura Mader, Cabell County, Morgan Efaw, Wayne County, and Alison Williams, Wayne County (Biology), “Temperature and Exercise Effects on Bone Mineral Density and Growth Plate.” – Dr. Maria Serrat, adviser

· Christopher Fine, Wayne County (Biochemistry), “Increasing Docetaxel Sensitivity of Prostate Cancer by Omega-3 Fatty Acids.” – Dr. Elaine Hardman, adviser

· Hannah Mick, Cabell County (Biology), “Characterization and Identification of Novel Genes Affecting Gravitropism.” – Dr. Marcia Harrison-Pitaniello, adviser

· Patrick Murphy, New York (Biology), “Effects of Temperature on Net Nitrification in Nitrogen-Saturated Soils of a West Virginia Mixed Hardwood Forest.” – Dr. Frank Gilliam, adviser

· Courtney Nichols, Kanawha County (Biochemistry), “Understanding the Lipid Metabolism of Chlorella vulgaris for Use of Lipids as Biofuels.” – Dr. Derrick Kolling, adviser

· Amy Parsons-White, Kanawha County (Biology), “Driving Neurogenesis in Stem Cells Derived from Adults.” – Dr. Elmer Price, adviser

· Adam Van Horn, Cabell County (Biochemistry), “The Role of Chromatin-Remodeling Proteins in the Differentiation Event of Sublingual Glands.” – Dr. Philippe Georgel, adviser

For more information on Undergraduate Research Day at the Capitol, contact Castellani at 304-696-6486.