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Students Recognized for Outstanding Scholarship in Annual Undergraduate Symposium

Adrian Diaz (center) received First Place for his paper presentation on “Evaluating the Role of Vimentin in Establishment of HIV-1 Infection in Macrophages.” Diaz worked with faculty mentor Josh Loomis (left), Ph.D., assistant professor in the Division of Math, Science, and Technology. Pictured with Loomis and Diaz are Allan Schulman, Ph.D., professor in the college’s Division of Social and Behavioral Sciences, and Don Rosenblum (far right), Ph.D., dean of the Farquhar College of Arts and Sciences.

For the ninth year, the NSU community gathered in celebration of outstanding student scholarship at the 2010 Undergraduate Student Symposium, hosted by the Farquhar College of Arts and Sciences on Apr. 9. Symposium projects cover areas of student scholarship ranging from the experimental, applied, and computational to the theoretical, artistic, and literary. The submissions come from class assignments as well as from independent projects. Each student works with an NSU faculty member, who serves as a mentor, adviser, and sponsor for the student’s research.

In addition to the symposium, the college also hosted the fourth annual Undergraduate Film Festival, which featured screenings of three student-made short films, each corresponding with this year’s academic theme of “Good and Evil.”

The college honored those students who received awards for their outstanding research and work at a ceremony and luncheon on Apr. 22. Students earning recognition for their scholarship included:

Paper Presentations (First Place):

  • Adrian Diaz—“Evaluating the Role of Vimentin in Establishment of HIV-1 Infection in Macrophages,” working with Josh Loomis, Ph.D., assistant professor in the Division of Math, Science, and Technology
  • Mary Crider—“Changes in Coral Cover (Diaseris distorta and Porites sverdrupi) at Isla Catalana, Gulf of California, Mexico,” working with Joshua Feingold, Ph.D., associate professor in the Division of Math, Science, and Technology
  • Annarely Rodriguez, Nichelle Farrington, Chelsea Seignious, and Vittoria Santini—“The Role of Social Media in the Development of Interpersonal Communication Skills,” working with Megan Fitzgerald, Ph.D., assistant professor in the Division of Humanities
  • Amanda Thompson—“Boxed In: Examining Faulkner’s Linguistic Silhouette of Addie’s Interment,” working with Christine Jackson, Ph.D., professor in the Division of Humanities
  • Christine Klopp and Carlos Garcia—“Psychological Stress Improves Hippocampal-Dependent Memory,” working with Jaime Tartar, Ph.D., assistant professor, and Allan Schulman, Ph.D., professor; in the Division of Social and Behavioral Sciences

Paper Presentations (Second Place):

  • Sara Silverstein—“Synthesis and Incorporation of Photoactive Chlorin-Heme Dimers into Proteins,” working with Dimitri Giarikos, Ph.D., associate professor and coordinator of sciences, and Reza Razeghifard, Ph.D., assistant professor, in the Division of Math, Science, and Technology
  • Honey Diaz Perez—“Bromelain-Induced Apoptosis in the GI-101A Breast Cancer Cell Line,” working with Mark Jaffe, D.P.M., associate professor in the Division of Math, Science, and Technology, and Appu Rathinavelu, Ph.D., executive director of NSU’s Rumbaugh-Goodwin Institute for Cancer Research
  • Daniel King—“A Dream of Flying, A Dream of Death,” working with Suzanne Ferriss, Ph.D., professor in the Division of Humanities
  • Kristen DeAlmeida—“Emotionally Negative Pictures Increase Attention to Subsequent Stimuli,” working with Jaime Tartar, Ph.D., assistant professor in the Division of Social and Behavioral Sciences

Poster Presentations:

  • (First Place) Jessica Bradbury, Adero Francis, Sameed Ashfaq, and Catalina Breton—“Nanotechnology Solutions to a Big Water Problem,” working with Dimitri Giarikos, Ph.D., associate professor and coordinator of sciences in the Division of Math, Science, and Technology
  • (Second Place) Lesley Hagan—“New Materials for Modification of Metallic Gold Nanoparticles,” working with Donald Baird, Ph.D., assistant professor in the Division of Math, Science, and Technology
  • (Third Place) Florin Cicortas and Adailys Trincado—“Investigating Pentamethycyclopentadienyl Rhenium(I) Reactivity with Cycloalkane: Synthetic Strategies Toward Crystalline Metal-Alkane Complexes,” working with Jeremy Perotti, Ph.D., assistant professor in the Division of Math, Science, and Technology

Poster Presentations (Honorable Mention):

  • Bryan Candela—“Computer Simulation of a Chaotic Chua Circuit,” working with Victor Castro, Ph.D., assistant professor in the Division of Math, Science, and Technology
  • Amy Van—“Genetic Diversity in Helicosporidium Using ß-Tubulin as a Marker,” working with Aurelian Tartar, Ph.D., assistant professor in the Division of Math, Science, and Technology
  • Christie Rubio—“Investigating Potential Changes in Gene Expression for Yeast Cells Exposed to Pediatric Flu Vaccine with and without Thimerosal,” working with Emily Schmitt, Ph.D., associate professor and coordinator of biology science in the Division of Math, Science, and Technology
  • Ana Delgado—“Preliminary Examination of Gill Vasculature in the Grey Snapper (Lutjanus Griseus) Using Vascular Corrosion Casting,” working with Robin Sherman, Ph.D., associate professor and associate director in the Division of Math, Science, and Technology
  • Reena Parikh—“Synthesis of Porous Organic Materials as Gas Storage Media,” working with Donald Baird, Ph.D., assistant professor in the Division of Math, Science, and Technology

In addition, Kelsey Cortez received first place for Life Unmentioned, her film created for the Undergraduate Film Festival. Cortez, a freshman English major, worked with Weylin Sternglanz, Ph.D., assistant professor in the Division of Social and Behavioral Sciences, and Chetachi Egwu, Ph.D., assistant professor in the Division of Humanities.

Also recognized at the ceremony were students who submitted award-winning works to the 2010 issue of Digressions, the student-run literary magazine produced by the college’s Division of Humanities. Those who received awards were Keren Moros, for “What’s in a Name” (First Place, short fiction); Victoria Mazzella, for “Nana’s Cookies” (Second Place, short fiction); Daniel King, for “Ghazal for Paola” (First Place, poetry); Juan A. Miranda, for “Witness” (Second Place, poetry); Alexis Irias, for “Don Quijote’s Sunset” (First Place, visual art); and Grace Cox, for “Joy” (Second Place, visual art).

The event concluded with recognition of students who received awards for their noteworthy submissions to On the Wire: Second Annual Juried Student Exhibition, on display at NSU Mar. 30 through Apr. 26. View the list of On the Wire winners and photos of their award-winning works.

For more information on the annual Undergraduate Student Symposium, visit www.fcas.nova.edu/currentstudents/uss.