Summer Research, Field Trips Focus for 21 UNK Students

Dianne M. Holcomb
assistant director, Office of Sponsored Programs, 308.865.8481

UNK– A canoe trip, a theatre performance in Omaha and a visit to the
Jeffrey Island Habitat Area are just a few things on the field trip roster
for the 21 students participating in the University of Nebraska at Kearney
Summer Student Research Program (SSRP).

One group of students will travel to western Nebraska for tours of dams,
waterways and agricultural sites, and a second group of students will
travel to eastern Nebraska. SSRP is sponsoring the field trips June 3-4 for
the research students.

“It is not important which trip the students go on, because the trips are
used as unity builders,” said Dianne Holcomb, assistant director of
Sponsored Programs. “It is more important for students to build friendships
that last for years.”

“The Central Nebraska Power and Irrigation District has hosted the group
the last seven years,” Holcomb said. “They are always willing to feed and
lodge the students, and show them around the dams and waterways.”

On the first day, students on the western Nebraska trip will visit the
Jeffrey Island Habitat, Johnson Lake, Mac’s Creek Vineyard and Winery, the
Central Diversion Dam and the Jeffrey Hydroplant. The second day of the
trip will consist of visits to Kingsley Dam, Lake McConaughy and Midway
Lake for a canoe trip before returning to Kearney.

Students on the trip to eastern Nebraska will visit the University of
Nebraska Medical Center and the Omaha Community Playhouse to see “Fiddler
on the Roof” on the first day. The second day will include trips to the
Nebraska Center for Virology, Center for Great Plains Studies and
University of Nebraska-Lincoln Archives and Special Collections Love
Library before returning to Kearney.

UNK sponsors for the SSRP trips include: Holcomb; Dr. John Anderson,
political Science; Dr. Joan Blauwkamp, political science; Dr. Aaron Clark,
math and statistics; and Dr. Tobi DeLong-Hamilton, social work.

“The program [SSRP] is open to students from all disciplines and is
structured to enrich the educational experience,” Holcomb said.

“The students are required to fill out a four-page application about why
research is important to them,” Holcomb said. “A committee reviews the
application and decides whether the student is a good candidate for summer
research.” Students selected to participate in SSRP must be full-time
students, and must be available for weekly meetings, field trips and a fall
symposium. Students have 10 weeks, May through July, to work on their
research, for which they receive $3,000 stipends.

In the fall, students will present their research findings at the symposium
on the UNK campus. Over the summer, the students work with a mentor to
prepare a paper, an oral presentation and a poster to present the results
of their research project. Many students present their work at
pre-professional conferences, which may lead to the research being
published in professional journals.

Students selected to participate in the 2010 Summer Student Research
Program are listed below, alphabetically by hometown, along with the
department in which they will study, their mentor and their research topic.

Adams- Jeffery Sacco, criminal justice, Dr. Joseph Carlson, “Waterboarding
in America: Will Americans Justify its Use?”
Atkinson-Kelli Garwood, chemistry, Dr. Cheri Barta, “Lanthanide-containing
Bone Growth Agents for the use in Bone Fusion                   Surgeries”
Grand Island- Collin Grimes, political science, Dr. John Anderson, “Trust
in Rural Nebraska: Demographic Correlates and Community         Histories”;
Danielle Larsen, history, Dr. Carol Lilly, “Lenin: Marxist or ??”; and
Benjamin White, chemistry, Dr. Frank Kovacs,            “Measurement of
ascorbate binding affinity to switchgrass ascorbate perosidase using the
liquid chromatography”
Hastings-Heather Towndrow, social work, Dr. Tobi DeLong-Hamilton, “Burnout:
A Comparison of Compassion Fatigue Among Social         Work Professions”
Kearney- Charles Sepers, exercise science, Dr. Todd Bartee, “Physical
Activity Intervention: Fidelity to Social Cognitive Theory Within       a
12-week Walking Program”; and Thomas Webber, chemistry, Dr. Christopher
Exstrom, “Preparation and Study of                      Nanocrystalline Iron
Sulfide for use as a Solar Cell Material”
Lexington- Taylor Hyatt, philosophy, Dr. David Rozema, “Science and
Philosophy: The Disciplines of Human Investigation”
Lincoln- Sada Hotovy, English, Dr. Kate Benzel, “Carl Sandburg’s 1904
Loup City- Jeremy Eggleston, art/art history, Dr. Mark Hartman and Dr.
Victoria Goro Rapoport, “Layers: Color Theory Project”
Malcolm- Alice Berryman, art/art history, Dr. John Stanko, “Bridging the
Gap Between Traditional and Digital Illustration”
Omaha- Justin Zyla, philosophy, Dr. David Rozema, “An Examination of
Temperance in the History of Philosophy”
Orchard- Eliot Wondercheck, philosophy, Dr. Tom Martin, “Bonds of
Brotherhood: Family Ties to Fellow Men in Brothers Karamazov”
St. Paul- Leanna Brase, social work, Dr. Jody VanLaningham, “Effects of
Religion on Sexual Behavior in Young Adults”; and Jared                 Krejci,
political science, Dr. Joan Blauwkamp, “Analysis of Principal-agent Theory”
Seward- Joshua Moravec, physics, Dr. Aaron Clark, “Systematic Analysis of
Gamma Ray Bursts”
Valentine- Caitlin Jacquot, chemistry, Dr. Cheri Barta, “Fluorescent
Sensors of Mercury (Hg)”
Wood River- Markeya Dubbs, psychology, Dr. William Wozniak, “Disgust
Reactions and Personality Traits”

Manchester- Katlyn Heiserman, exercise science, Dr. Greg Brown,
“Using Electromyography to Evaluate Neuromuscular Function in
the Rectus Abdominus to Determine the Most Effective Abdominal
Strengthening Exercise”

Blantyre-Pamela Thindwa, history, Dr. James Rohrer, “Wyandot
and Malawi Missions” history, Dr. James Rohrer, “Wyandot and Malawi Missions”