Joint Toxicity of Permethrin and Atrazine to Zebrafish (Danio rerio)
Phillip Wages
Faculty Sponsor: Mason Posner, Biology/Toxicology

Determining the effects of individual pesticides to non-target organisms in the environment remains an important aspect of toxicological research. However, examining the toxicity of a single pesticide does not represent typical situations of environmental exposure in aquatic systems. For example, atrazine (an herbicide) and permethrin (an insecticide) are frequently applied jointly since each is effective at controlling different pests. This study attempts to elucidate the toxic effect of atrazine and permethrin as a mixture to non-target aquatic species by first using mixtures with equipotent concentrations of the individual pesticides and then examining possible physiological effects using mixtures of specified concentrations. For the first objective, 96-hour static water only binary mixture toxicity tests were conducted using zebrafish embryos (Danio rerio) as the test organism. The second objective’s conditions were identical to the previous experiment, but instead of binary mixtures five known concentrations of permethrin (6, 10, 14, 19, and 25 ppb) at three different atrazine conditions (0, 3, and 40 ppb) were conducted. Total body length was assessed after 96-hours revealing that increased concentrations of permethrin resulted in reduced growth. However, a trend of opposition to this growth inhibition occurred with the presence of atrazine. Together, the data suggest that permethrin has the potential to cause both acute and chronic toxic effects to non-target fish species, but these effects are reduced when atrazine is also present. This could be valuable information for urban and agricultural pesticide applicators.

Chapter One from the Novel Redeeming Elise
Emily Hoernschemeyer
Faculty Sponsor: Joe Mackall, English

From the time I was a little girl, I have defined myself as a writer, moreover, as an aspiring novelist. I began writing short stories in elementary school and opening chapters to books shortly thereafter, but it wasn’t until I settled into my Creative Writing thesis that I really sunk my teeth into the greatest challenge of all—completing my first novel. This contemporary literary fictional piece follows the story of 17-year-old Elise Wright, as she grapples with the tragic loss of her father. After having her life turned up side down and inside out, Elise is forced to find her own identity and reclaim her relationships with her mother and younger sister. Yet, amidst brokenness and anger, the yearning for forgiveness and truth within this traumatized family unravels the subtle beauty of the healing process and ultimately emphasizes the power of love.

The Effects of Fair-Trade Knowledge on Buying Habits of College-Age Consumers
Lauren Bernath
Faculty Sponsor: Nancy Morris, Family and Consumer Sciences

Fair Trade (FT) is defined as an organized social movement and marketbased approach which aims to assist producers in developing countries with obtaining better trading conditions and promoting sustainability. The purpose of this study was to examine how many college age consumers knew what FT apparel was and whether receiving information would affect their intentions to buy FT products. Eighty-one Ashland University students were given a pre-test to determine their knowledge of FT. It was hypothesized that students would have little or no previous knowledge of FT when they took the pre-test survey. The results indicated 80% of participants did not have previous knowledge of FT. They were then shown a 10 minute informational DVD clip about FT, followed by a post-test to determine the amount of knowledge gained and the willingness to change buying habits after receiving information. It was hypothesized that the post-test survey would show that students would want to gain more information about FT. The hypothesis was accepted, 91% of students indicated they were interested in learning more about FT. Another hypothesis was that students would have a higher intent to purchase FT products after watching the informative DVD clip. Results indicated that 53% would change their buying habits to support FT and ethical manufacturing when able. Approximately 2/3 (68%) of participants indicated they did not know where to purchase FT products. In conclusion, 91% of participants in the study were interested in learning more and 53% were considering FT buying options.

Media Bites Dog: A Rhetorical Analysis of the Myth and Menace of Pit Bulls
Courtney Long
Faculty Sponsor: Daniel O’Rourke, Speech Communication

The study of persuasion requires in-depth research and evidence compilation. Solid arguments with reliable references must be formed in a comprehensive and deferential way. Many breeds of dogs have been the target of blame for bites and attacks in America since the 1800s. From the Bloodhound and the German Shepherd to the Doberman and the Rottweiler, each has taken its place in history as the “super-predator.” But one breed has suffered more than any of its predecessors due to heightened media capabilities and involvement: the Pit bull. The overall view of Pit bulls in today’s society is a negative one which has caused many Breed Specific laws to be enacted taking away the rights of responsible owners and, more importantly, causing the demonization and euthanasia of thousands of Pit bulls. With advanced media like live television and the Internet, people can get their news faster, but in some cases, fast news is not necessarily correct. The goal of this persuasive speech is to redeem the Pit bull of its skewed reputation through the analysis of myth versus fact, while the objective of the presentation is to explain the process of persuasion including: gathering resources, researching, and compiling a comprehensive and fair-balanced case.


Fool Scholarship and Effeminate Insights: Tristram Shandy’s Childbirth Is No Place for Men
Sara Garska
Faculty Sponsor: Hilary Donatini, English

Laurence Sterne’s depiction of Tristram Shandy’s birth in his 18th-century novel The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman captures the negative effects of childbirth’s increasing medicalization, focusing mostly on the mutilatory and fatal effects of obstetrical devices and procedures being employed as a result of the rise of man-midwifery. Sterne makes his critique of male involvement in childbirth apparent through the negative effects of Walter Shandy, father, and man-midwife Dr. Slop’s emotional ignorance. However, Sterne’s stance on the attributes represented by sensitive but sterile Toby Shandy in relation to childbirth is less apparent, especially as insensitivity in childbirth is treated negatively in the text. Despite his ambiguous status in the text, evidence fails to support, and even refutes, the possibility that Toby’s sensitivity could cure the ills of man-midwifery. Careful analysis of textual examples informed by a research-based understanding of 18th century childbirth and man-midwifery reveal that Toby Shandy’s capacity for emotion does not lead to any greater understanding of childbirth than that possessed by satirical targets Walter and Dr. Slop.

Plastique Animée
Edward Carney, Jordan Black, Melissa Bloomfield, Jacob Haury, Katie Vargo
Faculty Sponsor: Marla Butke, Music

Emile Jaques Dalcroze was born in Vienna, Austria in 1865. He influenced the musical world with the creation of a comprehensive approach to understanding music based on movement. By studying Dalcroze, students gain musical appreciation, kinesthetic awareness, and a strong foundation for musicianship. The goal is for the individual to feel the music and express the musical concepts through movement. The road to the final performance of our plastique animée, “Tango Sensations-Fear,” composed by Piazzolla and performed by Yo Yo Ma, began by creating a story. Plastique animée is an artistic embodiment of music through individual or group movement. It is a combination of improvisation and choreography, and visually represents the music in an artistic and meaningful way. The first idea that was established began with the cello solo in the middle of the piece. We all immediately thought of something dying. The vigor of the beginning of the piece brought upon the idea that there would be two groups arguing which would end with someone being killed. After the cello solo the piece goes into a beautiful flowing, melodic section. We treated this as the point in the story where all of the others come together in mourning over the loss of their friend. When the piece goes back to the main theme all turn on the perpetrator and the ghost of the killed character begs them to forgive her. Our story ends with the group together again, which is represented by the circle and the unified movements.

The Relationship between Adoption Success and Social and Emotional Intelligences
Katie Mock
Faculty Sponsor: Jacqueline Wilkins, Family and Consumer Sciences: Child and Family Studies

The emotional intelligence (EI) and social intelligence (SI) of an individual can impact the ability to develop relationships, interact with others, and effectively understand emotions. Both EI and SI have been researched in business and school settings but have never been examined in the context of foster care and adoption. Previous research states that children with psychological conditions can put more strain on their parents as well as impact a child’s attachment, resulting in higher rates of adoption disruption. An exploratory study was performed to examine the relationship between adoption success and EI and SI. A comprehensive case file review was completed with 28 case files of both successful and disrupted adoptions; the EQ-i and a 7-item open-ended survey were completed by adopted children, and a 13-item survey was completed by 7 adoptive or foster parents. Case file review findings revealed that psychological conditions, such as Reactive Attachment Disorder (p<.001), Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (p=.001), Oppositional Defiant Disorder (p=.012), and ADD/ADHD (p=.003), were more prevalent in cases of adoption disruptions. The qualitative data and initial analyses of the EQ-i results suggest that there is a correlation between adoption success and levels of EI and SI. Due to a small sample size, however, this was not supported quantitatively. Additional research with a larger sample will be needed to identify which factors are most influential in adoption success. Understanding these factors can help adoption agencies provide additional support to children and parents and improve adoption placement processes and outcomes.

From Nothing, All Things: The Nature and Evolution of Noise Music
Samuel Becherer
Faculty Sponsor: Hilary Donatini, English

Noise, the definitive post-modern musical movement, is the rejection of all tonality, notation and musical history. The music is inherently interesting because what seems to be chaos is actually well organized frequencies, carefully arranged to record the smallest nuances of sound, to the largest aspects of rumbling chaos. The presentation is a look at the nature of Noise music as both an artistic and philosophical movement. I will provide sound clips, a brief history of the key musicians and explore the medium of Noise. I am setting out to give meaning to the supposedly “meaningless” form of music and will be discussing the nihilistic and contrarian as well as the life affirming nature of Noise music. Noise is worth examining for several reasons. Its development was isolated almost exclusively in Japan, its connection to an astonishing range of topics from sexuality to art to politics, and it remains on the fringe of social norm. There are also artists who use Noise or Ambient Noise as a form of art to highlight the minute sounds of humans’ daily lives, from traffic, to train noises or wildlife. In this presentation I will examine a few key bands: Merzbow, Guilty Connector, Aube and others. I am a Noise musician myself, which has given me a more complete understanding. It is a largely unknown genre, something that is not only enlightening but inherently fascinating and represents the modern man’s conditions more completely than the aggression, apathy, or joy of many music genres.


Identification of Neuronal Interleukin-16 Binding Partners Using Glutathione-STransferase Protein Affinity Purification
Charles Davis
Faculty Sponsor: Steven Fenster and Rebecca Corbin, Biology and Chemistry

Neuronal Interleukin-16 (NIL-16) is a neuronal-specific protein expressed exclusively in the hippocampus and cerebellum: brain regions involved in learning and memory, but also vulnerable to neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Ataxia. Previous studies have shown that NIL-16 is capable of organizing neuronal signaling complexes called synapses via PDZ binding domains. Understanding synapse formation is critical for understanding nervous system function and will contribute toward improved diagnosis and treatment of brain disorders. To gain a better understanding of the role of NIL-16 in synapse formation, we devised an affinity purification assay to identify proteins that interact with the PDZ domains of NIL-16. DNA plasmids were engineered to express the individual coding regions for the five PDZ domains of NIL-16 fused to the affinity tag glutathione-S-transferase (GST) to generate GST fusion proteins. SDS-PAGE and coomassie staining revealed that only GST.n.PDZ.2 and GST.PDZ.2 of NIL-16 were efficiently expressed in our bacterial system. Coomassie stained bands for GST.n.PDZ.2, GST. PDZ.2, and a GST-only control were excised from the gel and digested with trypsin. MALDI MS results for GST-only and PDZ.2 revealed 60% and 67% sequence coverage, respectively. Results for n.PDZ.2 were inconclusive and will require further analysis. To optimize conditions for affinity purification of NIL-16 binding-partners using GST-fusion proteins, we generated an epitope-tagged version of a known NIL-16 binding partner, HDAC3. Binding efficiency of HDAC3 for NIL-16 was examined through western blot analysis. Future studies will involve affinity purification of mouse brain extract to identify unknown neuronal binding partners for the PDZ domains of NIL-16.

Adjusting Focus: From Script to Screen
Bradley Eustathios, Daniel Griffin
Faculty Sponsor: Tim McCarty, Journalism and Digital Media

Presently, there is a great shift of information from television and radio to the vast spaces of the Internet. As such, producers are flocking to the medium, creating content that is shorter, while remaining entertaining. Adjusting Focus is our entry into such a market. By tapping the wealth of student talent, we have utilized over twenty students to help write, act, and produce an original web series reminiscent of a traditional television sitcom with a deep, underlying story. Currently, we have two completed episodes, with three more episodes written and to be produced by the end of the Spring 2011 semester. Adjusting Focus, at its heart, is a story about every new college student’s adjustment to college life. Nick, a freshman at Greshell University, joins an infamous film club with a deep and dark past. Nick meets Wayne, the leader, who is more than he appears to be, Jeph, the arrogant star with a jealous complex, Margot, the under-appreciated girl, and Arnold, the social freak. After the release of the notorious hit, CBG, the previous semester, the group struggles to reclaim their former glory. Nick enters the group, and, much to his dismay, Wayne makes him the poster child for the group, placing a great weight upon his shoulders. Nick must try to adjust to college life, while dealing with the difficult and flat-out weird people who have entered his life. We believe that, through our experiences in creating Adjusting Focus, we have produced a comedic story that remains visually appealing. The purpose of our web series is to not only entertain and grab our audience’s attention, but also to tell a few good jokes in the process.

Discovering and Revealing Universals through Art
Joshua Risner
Faculty Sponsor: Charles Caldemeyer, Art

My work is the result of the belief that art is a visual representation of the artist’s philosophy. The philosophy that feeds my work is an ardent belief in universals which give value to life and are a source of knowledge. My desire to discover and reveal universals has put me in direct opposition with a set of beliefs growing in our culture known as existential nihilism. Existential nihilism rejects universals, devalues life, and elevates nothingness in an attempt to destroy meaningful existence. From my perspective, its destructive nature is more evident in the art world than any other place in our culture. Nowhere else has the destructive nature of a belief system, that subtracts meaning and value from life, been so widespread and successful. For this reason, I attempt to reveal the existence of universals in my art as an attempt to counteract destructive belief systems. The search for ways to reveal universals is not an original undertaking. At the core of my practice and research is a focus on artists such as Raphael and Odd Nerdrum, and philosophers such as Plato and Aquinas. These great painters and thinkers, along with others like them, spent their lives creating arguments and art that reveal truth and maintain meaning for existence. I seek to create artwork that respects and builds on their progress. My preferred result is work that reinforces the traditional quest to discover and reveal universals such as beauty, goodness, and truth. Revealing universals not only provides something positive for humanity but also for the artists who wish to continue pushing art and existence in a positive direction.

Pop.: A Reading of Select Poems
Javier Felipe Garcia-Wasnich IV
Faculty Sponsor: Susan Guiher Huff, English

I will be reading a selection of poems from my senior thesis, Pop., which is the product of the work and revision of my own poetry during my time in Ashland University’s Creative Writing program. In my thesis I seek to explore the interaction of different aspects of culture with the psyche and emotional states of different characters, fictionalized historical figures, and the general human consciousness. Culture is not a simplistic idea to label or identify, and thus ultimately streams into several different aspects of society, defining and affecting individuals in ways that they may not even realize. My thesis deals with two traditionally classified trends in culture, popular (such as pop music and trash television) and high-mind (such as canonized poetry and art), and shows how both are important in illuminating the struggles, emotions, and issues of the individuals who encounter them. The speakers and characters within my poems deal with weighty topics such as death, loss, happiness, complacency, desire, addiction, obsession, grief, love, emptiness, and failure, all through the lenses of culture. This connection is expanded upon in my poetry through stark portrayal of characters as well as abstract associations, metaphors, and imagery, all set into the format of free verse poetry. The poems that I will choose to read exemplify and showcase this interaction between individuals and culture and how the details of the human consciousness are revealed through said interactions.


Liturgy and Pseudo-Liturgy in Modernity
Stephanie Rickel
Faculty Sponsor: Craig Hovey, Religion

Liturgy is not only essential for Christian worship, but for the Christians life as a whole because of its superior ability to form values and behavior in those who practice liturgy in their lives. Coming from the Greek word leitourgia, liturgy means “the work of the people”; as such, it is not simply practiced within the setting of worship, but throughout the Christian life. It is significant because it not only consists of a behavior, but of a radical change in values and beliefs. Because of these abilities, the form of Christian liturgy has been adopted for secular purposes. One prime example of this is the Pledge of Allegiance, where the values of nationalism are inculcated in those who take part in the recitation, but many other examples can be found in culture. Because these liturgies have adopted the Christian form, they are known as secular liturgies or pseudo-liturgies. The reason that they are pseudo-liturgies is because they fail to adopt the sacramental time present in Christian liturgy: This time, often referred to as “sacramental time,” refuses to see time as just one event after another, of past, present, and future as a linear progression. Instead, sacramental time views the past, present, and future as interconnected—Christians today directly connected to the death and resurrection of Christ, practiced in the sacrament of communion. Thus, liturgy and its adoption for secular purposes are separated by the beliefs they instill and by their understanding on time, so that pseudo-liturgies are clearly delineated from their Christian counterparts.

Waxed Fruit
Natasha Cline
Faculty Sponsor: Teresa Durbin-Ames, Theatre

The play Waxed Fruit is a play about how a couple struggles to make their marriage work after they have hit a brick wall. This is a topic that can be relatable to anyone and has been seen on stage many times. Having been inspired by the works of Tennessee Williams, David L. Abaire and Neil LaBute, writing a drama was something that had to be undertaken. The purpose of this project was to write a play with a more serious subject matter. A playwright must take into consideration many things when writing a stage work including conflict, character development, dialogue, structure and dramatic action. The process of writing a play involves multiple revisions, collaborating with a director, with actors and then an audience. The way the actors say the words, the ideas that the director gives and the audience feedback will be crucial for this. A goal that I would like to achieve is to see if my audience can relate to this piece when it is put on stage. The audience will be crucial to this project because their input will be taken into strong consideration. The process will reach one stage of completion when it is performed for an audience on March 27th. The feedback from the audience will be used in reflection in the final stages of this process.

Identifying Important Regulatory Regions of the Zebrafish Alpha-Bb-crystallin Promoter
Amy Drossman
Faculty Sponsor: Mason Posner, Biology/Toxicology

The protein alpha B-crystallin is found in diverse tissues and is involved in demyelinating diseases like multiple sclerosis and several cancers. Detailing how the body controls alpha B-crystallin production will help explain both its normal function and role in disease. Previous studies have examined the function of a small portion of the mouse alpha Bcrystallin promoter, the region of DNA next to this gene that controls where and when alpha B-crystallin is produced. My project has focused on the promoter region from another species, the freshwater zebrafish. This species provides an inexpensive and fast-throughput model for detailing the role of gene controlling promoter regions. I analyzed a 6000 basepair (bp) sequence distal to the zebrafish alpha Bb-crystallin gene (one of two alpha B-crystallins in this species) for important regulatory sequences. The majority of those regions were located between 1000 and 2000 bps from the alpha Bb-crystallin gene, with only one found in the first 1000 bp. A 1000 and 2000 bp fragment of the promoter was amplified by PCR, fused to a green fluorescent protein (GFP) reporter gene and injected into 1-cell stage zebrafish embryos. At 48 hours post fertilization, distinct GFP expression could be seen in muscle cells when the 2000 bp promoter construct was injected. GFP expression could also be seen surrounding the eye, possibly in the brain or olfactory pit, and in skin pigment. Comparison to fluorescence produced with the 1000 bp promoter fragment will help determine the function of regulatory regions between 1000 and 2000 bp.

Hallie A. Dahlhofer
Faculty Sponsor: Charles Caldemeyer, Fine Arts

Finding and following my own path as an artist was like throwing myself off a cliff into the waters below. After the initial anticipation, the freefalling, and the shock of cool water, there was the gasp of air as the water encased and suspended me. The painting process has taught me to swim, acknowledging interconnectedness in the beauty and pain of growing up. By comparing slide images of my work throughout my college career, I will explain the process of my initial ambition in the small, illustrational, and relatively disingenuous work that has come to grow naturally into works of large suggestive shapes and earthy colors that express sincere connection. Drawing on specific memories of growing up outside playing by a creek, my work sees natural forms of branches, roots, and colors as grounding metaphors for the abstract notions of time and memory. I work in oil paint on smooth boards, which allows the paint to take on an ethereal line and color quality. In each piece, I enter with the intention of honest self reflection. I seek the elusive sense of understanding that escapes us during the rigors and structures of everyday life. I find interconnectedness in the complimenting notions of memory and family, nature and culture, perspective and awareness. The metaphors and symbols grow organically when approached honestly, and a relationship is formed, like diving into the water. The life I now have is suspended in my paintings, a place of solitude, reflection, and sustenance.


Forces of Man, Nature, and Their Mysterious Connection
Christa E. Gast
Faculty Sponsor: Charles Caldemeyer, Art

I feel a connection to water lilies because the stems run like veins into the heart of the muddy water from which they grow. For water lilies, life comes from the mud and dirt. Even human life can be reflected in nature. The organic forms in my work suggest both figurative and glyphic allusions. I believe there is a ancient link between humans and our connection to nature, despite modern society’s attempts to remain as distant as possible from the natural world. I want people to be able to witness my personal and spiritual experiences that I find in the natural world. I want them to be able to interpret the forms and see the spiritual aspects in that mysterious and unknown realm. To show this idea, I paint magnified subjects to emphasize the impact that nature has on humanity. Through my application of oil paint films and technique, I want to talk about and share the evolution of my artistic process. In the beginning, I experimented with many paint application techniques ranging from thin layers to thick impasto. I soon discovered my style and worked on building the paintings to communicate my ideas about nature and man. It is important to try to understand what it means to be human and how humans must never turn their backs on nature but instead embrace it and accept it with all its mysterious powers and forces.

Unnatural Law: A Natural Law Analysis of Blended and Same-Sex Households
Tyler Millhouse
Faculty Sponsor: Jeffrey Tiel, Philosophy

Family life, now more than ever, is in a state of flux. Blended and samesex households continue to challenge our traditional concepts of marriage and family. While these new institutions continue to gain popular acceptance, conservative natural law ethicists have levied serious concerns against these new modes of family life. While the social impact of these new households is a question for sociologists, there seems to be a deeper ethical concern at work in the objections of these natural law theorists. It is no surprise that an ethic so grounded in a naturalistic principle should be suspicious of these novel forms of family. However, even granting the normative role of the natural, can these objectors actually substantiate their moral concerns? Working from this premise, it will be demonstrated that natural law theorists have failed to identify an important ethical category: prosthetic goods. These goods, while ontologically unnatural, manage to secure natural ends without forfeiting additional goods. The implications of this new but consistent category are far-reaching. Same-sex spouses or grafted parents can be seen as standins for the natural members they replace. Most importantly, this category does not undermine the teleology undergirding natural law. Advocates of the traditional family can maintain its unique benefits and recognize the imperfect but beneficial alternatives. In other words, natural law can preserve a naturalistic ideal while recognizing the important restorative role of these prosthetic goods in family life.

Tristram’s Travel Narrative
Joseph Paulucci
Faculty Sponsor: Hilary Donatini, English

Tristram Shandy was heralded by Virginia Woolf as the greatest novel of all time. It was Thomas Jefferson’s favorite book and he and his wife would spend many nights reading excerpts from the book to each other. While this is high praise from two very prodigious individuals, the book has also been described as confusing, nonsensical, and utter “cock and bull”. These descriptions at times may seem correct; however, there is one moment of clarity that stands out among the rest of the confusing banter and innuendos of the novel. This is Tristram’s travel narrative. This presentation seeks to explain one of the few moments of clarity in Tristram Shandy. In analyzing and preparing for this presentation, I consulted many books on traveling and travel narratives of the 18th Century. Furthermore, I will include in this presentation maps to show where Tristram was traveling and what he would have seen in his travels on the European continent. Although I consulted many historical texts, it was ultimately the text of Tristram Shandy itself that proved to be the most fruitful. This is because while Tristram does concede to some of the conventions of travel narratives, he splits from these conventions far more. So, while Tristram spends less time on the landscape, his travel narrative is more about the people he meets and their stories, his own metaphysical progress, his exploration in explaining human nature, and his understanding of what it means to be a human being.

On the Edge: An Original Play in the Making
Courtney Long
Faculty Sponsor: Deleasa Randall-Griffiths, Speech Communication

The field of performance studies offers nontraditional approaches to scripting and staging performance using literary and non-literary texts to present topics in a style that differs from traditional theatre. One of these approaches is known as Reader’s theatre. In her book titled Experimental Theatre, Judy Yordon defines Reader’s theatre as “a flexible, creative medium for presenting all kinds of literary and nonliterary texts.” My play, On the Edge, was created in this style. The show centers on a controversial issue that is prevalent in today’s society: depression and suicide. Using texts from books, songs, television shows, magazines and movies On the Edge attempts to both educate and alert the public to this important issue. This presentation will describe the process of: gathering texts, selecting excerpts, compiling and organizing the material into a cohesive script, casting performers, directing, and presenting the final performance. A short segment of the show will also be visually presented.


Poster #1: Shared Shortest Paths in Graphs
Nicole Peterson
Faculty Sponsor: Gordon Swain, Mathematics (With S. McCulloch, Department of Mathematics and Computer Science, Ohio Wesleyan University)

A weighted graph is a set of vertices, connected by edges with certain weights. The shortest path between two vertices is a collection of contiguous edges from one vertex to the other, which has a minimum total weight. This can always be found using Dijkstra’s algorithm. This project investigates a similar problem, in which multiple source and destination pairs (called journeys) must be routed within a graph. Assuming the weight of an edge is equally divided between the journeys traversing it, each journey’s individual cost can depend on the routings of other journeys. This project employs Game Theory to develop a heuristic, which searches for the shortest path of each journey. Although unproven, the program should lead the set of journeys toward a strong Nash equilibrium, where no journey has the potential to improve its cost by collaborating with other journeys, and sharing the cost of their common path. In order to accomplish this, the program forms groups of common sub-paths between the Dijkstra paths of every journey. These sub-paths are extended, depending on whether or not any journeys will benefit from sharing a longer path. Further extensions of the shared component are considered until no possible expansion of the sub-paths will improve the cost of any journey. Ideally, this algorithm will direct journeys toward a mutually beneficial collaboration of two or more journeys. This collaboration will be more resistant to defecting coalitions, and will thus be more comparable to a strong Nash equilibrium.

Poster #3: Rapid Assessment Method for Density of Green Fluorescent Protein-Labeled Escherichia coli Important to Observing Small Daphnia
Rachel E. Day, Alicia D. McBride
Faculty Sponsor: Patricia Saunders and Andrew Greene, Biology and Environmental Science; Biology

Chemical cues released from both plants and animals are thought to impact the behavior of Daphnia. Daphnia dentifera, a planktonic crustacean, is expected to alter its behavior when exposed to kairomones from planktivorous fish. Initial bioassays of lab-grown D. magna and D. pulex indicated no chemical or physical recognition of a natural predator, bluegill sunfish (Lepomis macrochirus). Thus it is important to perform experiments with “wild” Daphnia, from an environment that selects for traits that help individuals cope with visual predators. The small size (<1.2mm) and relative lack of color of D. dentifera impedes our ability to effectively monitor their behavior in experimental tanks. To enhance their visibility, a method is being developed in which Daphnia are fed transgenic Escherichia coli labeled with the Green Fluorescent Protein (GFP). GFP-labeled E. coli fluoresce when exposed to UV light. When clumped together, such fluorescence is observable microscopically using a fluorescent microscope or macroscopically using a black light. A crucial aspect of method development is to quantify and manipulate cell concentration for each feeding experiment. A standard curve was developed using direct cell counts of GFP-E.coli and sample fluorescence. This allows the relatively easy measurement of fluorescence to predict cell density and helps to speed up and facilitate feeding and evacuation experiments. E. coli concentrations, which vary among liquid cultures, are expected to greatly impact the feeding rate and ultimately the fluorescence of Daphnia. Optimized fluorescence levels may eventually allow effective monitoring of the behavior of Daphnia or other small species.

Poster #5: Cadmium Contamination of Consumer Products: An Emerging Threat to Children’s Health
Daphne Guinn, Jennifer Miller
Faculty Sponsor: Jeff Weidenhamer, Chemistry

Cadmium concentrations above 900,000 ppm have recently been found in children’s jewelry. Cadmium bioaccumulates in the body and chronic exposure causes kidney damage and weakens bones. The Consumer Product Safety Commission has issued five recalls of high-cadmium jewelry and proposed cadmium standards based on tests, which simulate mouthing or swallowing jewelry. Our objective was to characterize the extent of cadmium contamination of inexpensive jewelry and to determine its availability through leaching tests. Jewelry was screened for cadmium by X-ray fluorescence (XRF). Accessibility was measured by placing items either in saline solution at 37oC for six hr to simulate exposures from mouthing of jewelry, or in dilute HCl at 37oC for 6-96 hr, to simulate the worst case scenario of a child swallowing a jewelry item. Total cadmium was determined by atomic absorption. A total of 113 components of 69 jewelry items were found to contain >10,000 ppm cadmium by XRF. The six hr saline extraction of these items yielded as much as 2200 μg, while 24 hr dilute HCl extraction yielded a maximum of more than 20,000 μg. Leaching of cadmium in dilute HCl increased linearly over 6-96 hr, indicating potential for increasing harm the longer an item remains in the stomach. Leaching did not correlate directly with cadmium content. We conclude that there is potential for dangerous cadmium exposures to children who wear, mouth, or accidentally swallow high-cadmium jewelry items. Continuing studies are examining the potential hazards of handling high-cadmium jewelry and glassware decorated with lead and cadmium paints.

Poster #7: Synthesis and Self-Organization of Resorcinarene-Core Polylactide/Polyethylene Glycol Star Block Copolymers
Zach Il’Giovine, Tiffany Weaver
Faculty Sponsor: Perry Corbin, Chemistry

The synthesis of resorcinarenes is well-developed and a variety of functional groups may be integrated into the “primary structures” of these macrocycles. As a result, resorcinarenes are excellent platforms for the attachment of polymers for subsequent use in drug-delivery applications. In this presentation, the successful synthesis of recorcinarene-core polylactide (PLA)/polyethylene glycol (PEG) star block copolymers will be reported. Studies are currently underway to examine the capabilities of the resorcinarene-core star-shaped copolymers to form multimeric, micellar assemblies in water. As an example, a four-armed benzylresorcinarene-core star block copolymer with ~57 PLA and 100 PEG repeat units, respectively, have been prepared in reasonably high yield. Subsequent studies indicate that the copolymers aggregate in water to form micelles with a low critical micelle concentration (~1-2 mg/L) and average diameter of ~100 nm, as determined by dynamic light scattering. Results of these and related studies will be described.

Poster #9: Seasonal Change in Daily Migration Behavior of Daphnia dentifera in Sites Lake (Richland Co., Ohio)
Rachael Glover
Faculty Sponsor: Patricia Saunders, Biology

Studying daily migration patterns in zooplankton offers insight into the ecology of these planktonic animals. Sites Lake, Richland Co., OH is a small, eutrophic, plant-rich kettle lake (A0=3.7 ha, Zmax=12.8 m). It is known to stratify throughout the growing season (~Apr-Nov). Previous studies in Sites Lake found that Daphnia dentifera moved away from the central open-water of the lake in fall daytime but not in spring. This behavior has not been observed for a deep lake, but daily horizontal movement is commonly found in shallow, plant-rich lakes. One hypothesis for why D. dentifera are behaving like Sites is a shallow lake is that lower oxygen levels on the bottom in the fall make it hard for them to hide from fish in the day. Understanding zooplankton behavior during the summer-fall transition (i.e. Daphnia, Diaphanosoma, Ceriodaphnia, Bosmina, and Calanoid copepods) and comparison to environmental data may reveal when and why deeper lake depths are not a hospitable refuge. Samples were taken as triplicate whole-water column net-tows from the center of the lake at mid-day (~1300 hours) and mid-night (~0100 hours). Samples were collected at ca. 2-4 week intervals throughout the growing season. This study focused on the transition from summer to fall conditions. Preliminary results show strong evidence for daily horizontal migration behavior in mid-October, e.g. there are roughly twice as many Daphnia in night samples than in day samples. Further results may point to the change in lake environment that favors Daphnia with daily horizontal migration behavior in Sites Lake.

Poster #11: Weight Changes in First Semester University Students
Jessica Bates, Lauren Goossens, Nicolle Valentine
Faculty Sponsor: Diane Bonfiglio, Psychology

Several studies have demonstrated the phenomenon of weight gain in first-year university students, known as “the freshman fifteen” (e.g. Provencher, Polivy, Wintre, Pratt, Pancer, Bernie-Lefcovitch, & Adams, 2009). The purpose of this study was to examine the connection between social support and that weight gain. It was predicted that students with better social support would experience less of this adjustment-associated weight gain. Sixteen first-semester students (mean age = 18.8, 62.5% female, 87.5% Caucasian) were recruited from psychology classes in Fall 2010. At the initial session, each participant completed questionnaires assessing social support and concern for social desirability. Each participant’s height and weight were recorded. Each participant returned eight weeks after the initial session to repeat the procedure. Participants gained an average of 1.02 kg over the course of the study. Increased concern regarding social desirability at first assessment was related to less weight-gain over the course of the study (r(14) = -.596, p = .007). Further, available social support reported at the second assessment was related to weight gain: participants who reported fulfilling a greater number of social roles had experienced less weight gain (r(14) = -.491, p = .027), and participants who reported having a greater number of people in their networks had experienced less weight gain (r(14) = -.746, p = .031). These findings are important because they indicate a relationship between social functioning and weight in college freshmen.

Poster #13: Collegiate Athletes’ Perceptions of Parental Involvement and Sport Success
Leah Allen
Faculty Sponsor: Jacqueline Wilkins, Family and Consumer Science, Child and Family Studies

In sport, research indicates that the involvement of parents has been found to increase intrinsic motivation and competence in child athletes. Though, as a child moves into adolescence, less attention has been given to parental involvement (PI) as other social agents come into play such as coaches and teammates. With the growing number of collegiate athletes in the United States, research should be given to this area in an effort to find if PI is still influential in collegiate athlete sport success. Questionnaires were distributed to 146 collegiate athletes from various teams containing items measuring PI (i.e., financial support, encouragement, active and parental pressure) as well as intrinsic motivation and competence. In this study, athletes with higher levels of PI reported higher levels of intrinsic motivation and competence whereas athletes with lower PI had significantly lower levels of intrinsic motivation and competence. No significant difference was found when comparing scholarship versus non-scholarship athletes in PI, intrinsic motivation and competence. The results of this study indicate that PI is important among collegiate athletes and has been shown to have a significant impact on the intrinsic motivation and competence collegiate athletes have in their sport. Furthermore, participating on athletic scholarship compared to non-scholarship athletes does not indicate more PI, intrinsic motivation and competence in sport. The implications of this study reveal that even as an adult-child, PI is still important in college athletics and can impact the sport success of an athlete.

Poster #15: Effects of an Asymmetry Parameter on Curve-Fitting for Single Chemical and Mixture Concentration-Response Data: 2) 20 Randomly Selected Soft Electrophile-Containing Mixtures
Nicole Genco, Heather Bensinger, Zach Il’Giovine*
Faculty Sponsor: Douglas Dawson, Biology/Toxicology

Recent mixture toxicity studies with soft electrophiles, chemicals that can react with body proteins, have examined potential relationships between relative reactivity and time-dependent toxicity. These chemicals, some of which are used as fragrance additives in commercial products, can be harmful to living organisms. For people, toxicity problems relate to skin sensitivity and respiratory irritation. In this study, toxicity was assessed, using Microtox®, at 15, 30 and 45 minutes of exposure with seven concentrations and a control (each duplicated) for each single agent and mixture. In mixture toxicity studies it is important to determine the best curve fitting function for the data. Therefore, concentration-response data obtained from twenty combinations of Michael acceptors, SN2-H-polar agents or nonreactive agents were randomly selected for comparison of curve-fitting functions. The data were fit to sigmoid curves using the four-parameter logistic function (4PL) and the five-parameter logistic minus one-parameter (5PL-1P) function. The r2 values for 5PL-1P curves were greater than (54%) or the same as (30%) those for 4PL curves for 152 of 180 curves. Calculated EC50 values were sometimes fairly different between functions; thereby affecting calculation of predicted dose-addition and independence curves and, on occasion, the interpretation of combined effect. By comparing the degree of asymmetry among the agents singly it was observed that with increasing asymmetry there was a greater disparity in calculated parameters between the 5PL-1P and 4PL functions, accounting for the improved curve-fitting with 5PL-1P.
* This research was conducted along with individuals from outside of Ashland University: T. Wayne Schultz of the Department of Comparative Medicine at The University of Tennessee, Knoxville, and Gerald Poch of the Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology at the University of Graz, Graz, Austria.

Poster #17: Synthesis and Self-Organization of Four-Armed, Calixarene-Core Polylactide/
Polyethylene Glycol Star Block Copolymers
Victoria Goudy
Faculty Sponsor: Perry Corbin, Chemistry

The chemical synthesis of polymer building blocks that have varied molecular architectures and are rationally designed to self-organize or assemble into higher-order structures is critical to the design of multifaceted materials. Along these lines, this presentation will focus on the efficient synthesis of unique four-armed, calixarenecore polylactide (PLA)/polyethylene glycol (PEG) star block copolymers that have the potential to function as effective drug-delivery vehicles upon assembling into micelles (“soap-like” aggregates) in water. To prepare the micelle building blocks, lactide ring-opening polymerizations were first carried out using an appropriate calixarene initiator to provide star-shaped homopolymers with PLA arms. In order to couple PEG onto the PLA chains, the chain ends were activated with an appropriate leaving group, and, subsequently, the activated PLA arms were reacted with a nucleophilic, amino-PEG. Upon synthesizing the PLA-PEG copolymers, they were purified via precipitation and dialysis, and various techniques were examined in order to find the most efficient way of dispersing the copolymers in water. Fluorescence spectroscopic studies of the dispersions, indeed, suggest that micelles are formed from the star block copolymers. Likewise, dynamic light-scattering studies are underway to investigate the size of the aqueous micellar assemblies.

Poster #19: The Effects of Terror Management and Positive Encouragement on Motor Skill Ability
Shawn Yambor, Jenn Schultz
Faculty Sponsor: Brent Mattingly, Psychology

Terror Management Theory has been proposed as the reason human beings create self-esteem (Landau, Greenberg, & Sullivan, 2009). TMT suggests that awareness of our inevitable death provokes us to strive for success. Encouragement has also been shown to produce positive effects on the motivation of participants and increase performance (Jung & Hallbeck, 2004). The current study investigated whether engaging in a terror management theory (TMT) based activity along with positive encouragement would affect the performance in a motor skill ability task. Participants completed a series of three tasks. The first task involved either priming TMT or the control condition of priming fear of dental pain. A common procedure in social-psychological research was followed in which the participants answered questions regarding either their own death or a dental experience (Greenberg, et.al., 1994), (Cooper, Goldenberg, Arndt, 2010). Next the participants were asked to complete a filler task. The last task asked participants to throw tennis balls into a trash can where one condition was primed with positive expectation and the other condition (control) had no expectations primed. We hypothesized a main effect of TMT and a main effect of encouragement with an interaction between the two. The results supported that those in the TMT condition performed better than the control condition, while those in the encouragement condition performed worse than those where no encouragement was primed. An interaction also was present where the presence of TMT canceled out the negative effects caused by encouragement.

Poster #21: The Association of Attachment with Romantic Relationship Satisfaction
Nicole Tiberi, Stephanie Gordon
Faculty Sponsor: Brent Mattingly, Psychology

This study investigated the association between attachment and satisfaction in romantic relationships. Undergraduate students (N = 42), recruited from the Ashland University campus, who were in a romantic relationship at the time of the study, completed a series of questionnaires involving scales measuring attachment style (Brennan, Clark, & Shaver, 1998), satisfaction (Fletcher, Simpson, & Thomas, 2000), investment model (Rusbult, Martz, & Agnew, 1998), and inclusion of the other in the self (Aron, Aron, & Smollan, 1992). We hypothesized that there would be an association between anxious-attachment and avoidant-attachment of individuals involved in a current romantic relationship and the level of satisfaction and commitment they feel. Our results showed that individuals who fall in the avoidant-attachment dimension showed less commitment to their romantic relationship and the analysis also showed a non-significant correlation for anxious-attachment and commitment. In regards to the statistical analysis of satisfaction, we ran a correlation between both attachment dimensions and satisfaction. The results of our study suggested that individuals who fall under both the avoidant attachment dimension and anxious-attachment dimension are less satisfied with their romantic relationship. Interestingly, we found a positive correlation between commitment and satisfaction. In addition to other research studies, this study may help the advance therapeutic methods when counseling individuals in marital or dating relationships.

Poster #23: Evoking Reality in an Unrealistic World: Creating the World of Marisol through Sound
Chelsea Nicholls
Faculty Sponsor: Teresa Durbin-Ames, Theatre Arts

In the fall of 2010, the Ashland University Theatre Department presented the play Marisol in the Studio Theatre. This play took a look into an apocalyptic New York world. As a sound designer, the project’s purpose was to face the challenges of finding suitable music to convey the atmosphere and audio effects that provoked realness to the moments. Getting an audience to become part of the surroundings of the play is a number one priority, especially for a play that is, in our time, unrealistic. The methods used to create a sound design include: analysis, research, selection and composition. Research was done for preshow and intermission music based on characters from the play and script analysis; and the sound effects were made to sound as real as possible; or at least make the scene feel as real as possible. For example, one scene had city sounds that consisted of almost 15 minutes of horns, car drive-bys, sirens, and helicopters to create the atmosphere during an otherwise silent scene. The results from the sound effects were used to pull the audience in. Through the sound design, the audience was able to stay focused on the action of the play. This was important to achieve, because by doing so, the audience was able to experience this unrealistic world as realistically as possible.

Art Exhibition #3: Excavations
Anna Kiehn
Faculty Sponsor: Charles Caldemeyer, Art

The images I create are not of the real world, but rather express that which can only be found in the subconscious mind, the world of dreams. My technique reflects the excavating process I associate with searching through the layers of the mind in order to make sense of this chaotic world of symbols, pictures, and memories. I work with oils in order to add and remove paint in layers, revealing what lies beneath. What has been painted over is much like the mind burying emotions or memories of the past. I also use wax medium and modeling paste which allows me to thicken my paint to create a layer of higher relief that I can scratch back into to create suggestive forms and reveal buried layers. My content is largely focused on the use of symbols as a representative tool. With these symbols I am able to process the images found in my subconscious mind.


Poster #2: Magmatic Differentiation and Monazite Geochronology of Calc-Alkaline Metavolcanics and Metaintrusives in the Adirondack Lowlands
Jennifer Miller
Faculty Sponsor: Michael Hudson, Chemistry, Geology, Physics

This study uses chemical and geochronologic evidence to differentiate various rock units in the Adirondack Lowland and to determine when these bodies were subjected to multiple thermotectonic events. These Mesoproterozoic calc-silicate and siliciclastic rocks were deposited in a back-arc basin and episodically metamorphosed (peak T = 710-740oC, P ~ 6-7 kb) and intruded during protracted periods of collision (producing the Grenville province) as the supercontinent Rodinia was amalgamated. Within the Lowlands, two marble units and the quartzofeldspathic Popple Hill Gneiss (PHG) are intruded by a variety of syn-orogenic, chemically heterogeneous, calc-alkaline magmas, including the Hermon Granite (HG). Variation diagrams for ~100 samples of PHG yield magmatic differentiation trends, with compositions ranging from rhyolite to andesite. This data supports the interpretation that the PHG is a fractionated calc-alkaline metavolcanic. U-Th-Pb dating of 26 polygenetic monazites (957 analyses) indicates that the PHG contains inherited Elzevirian orogeny xenocrysts or detritus (~1270-1240 Ma) and experienced thermotectonic events at ~1195-1150 Ma (Shawinigan-orogenesis), ~1115-1110 Ma, and ~1085-1080 Ma (early Ottawan-orogenesis). The HG is a chemically and texturally heterogeneous intrusive predominantly within the PHG. It ranges from granite to tonalite and from megacrystic to fine-grained. Despite this textural disparity, variation diagrams from ~90 samples yield calc-alkaline differentiation trends compatible with those for the PHG. U-Th-Pb dating of 11 polygenetic monazites (325 analyses) has identified three age domains: ~1150 Ma (Shawinigan/AMCG), ~1120 Ma, and ~1060 Ma (Ottawan). This work supports the hypothesis that the HG was derived from melting of the PHG because of its structural position, lack of Elzevirian ages, and chemical similarity with the PHG.

Poster #4: Effects of an Asymmetry Parameter on Curve-Fitting for Single Chemical and
Mixture Concentration-Response Data
Daphne Guinn
Faculty Sponsor: Douglas Dawson, Biology/ Toxicology

Halogenated acetonitriles are byproducts of the water chlorination and chloroamination process. They are produced and introduced into the environment through reactions with organic materials found in the water system. Halogenated acetonitriles can cause developmental and genotoxicity. The toxicity of the single chemicals is well known, but they have never been studied in chemical mixtures as they would be in the water system. Agents tested included the mono, di and tri-halogenated forms. Toxicity was assessed with Microtox at 15, 30 and 45 minutes of exposure with seven concentrations and a control for each single agent and mixture. Concentration-response data were fit to sigmoid curves using the four-parameter logistic function (4PL) and the five-parameter logistic minus one-parameter (5PL-1P) function. For the 4PL, parameters included minimum effect, maximum effect, EC50 and slope, while for 5PL-1P the minimum effect parameter was removed and an asymmetry parameter (s) was added. Fifteen combinations were tested. Correlation coefficient (r2) values for 5PL-1P curves (mean = 0.9979) were higher than (68%) or equal to (21%) those for the 4PL (mean =0.9962) for 120 of 135 curves. Improved r2 values were also observed at each exposure duration (e.g., 15-min: 5PL-1P: mean =0.9978, 4PL: mean = 0.9961, n = 45). With inclusion of the asymmetry parameter, calculated EC50 values were usually different between functions. This affected calculation of theoretical dose-addition and independence curves and held the potential to alter the conclusion on combined effect. Overall it was found that the 5PL-1P function had more statistical relevance in the analysis.

Poster #6: The Influence of Attachment Style on Electronic Communication between
College Students and Their Parents
Abbey Latham
Faculty Sponsor: Cindy Moseman and Jacqueline Wilkins, Family and Consumer Sciences

Now, perhaps more than ever before, technology (e.g., cell phones, texting, and e-mail) has become an important tool for college students to communicate with their parents about a variety of issues and to maintain relationships. This study explores the mode, frequency, and content of electronic communication between college students and their parents by examining differences between student attachment styles. An adapted survey was used assess technology use and frequency of communication and also to classify the attachment style to the mother and father (e.g., secure, ambivalent, and avoidant). Securely attached students have mutual trust and autonomy from their parents, ambivalent attachment style indicates an active engagement with parents but a diminished level of trust, and avoidant attachment style reflects a lack of trust and higher avoidance of parents. The majority of 174 college students (80%) were identified as securely attached to their mother and their father. Interestingly, college students reported preferring to communicate with both parents by talking on the phone over other forms of electronic communication. However, students with an avoidant attachment indicated a preference for communicating with their mother through text messaging. Securely attached students communicated significantly more frequently by talking on the phone to both their mother and father, compared to students who have an avoidant attachment (p=.001). This is one of the first studies to investigate the differences in preference in the mode of communication by attachment style. Future research should seek to control parental efficacy in electronic communication to determine its impact on modal choice.

Poster #8: Reactivity of Selected Osteolathyrogens with a Model Cofactor for Lysyl Oxidase
Heather Bensinger, Nicole Genco
Faculty Sponsors: Robert Bergosh, Douglas Dawson, Biology

Osteolathyrogens are chemicals that disrupt the normal connective tissue fiber cross-linking process, thereby making connective tissue fragile. When too many seeds or green parts of the plant Lathyrus sativus are eaten by people or animals it can lead to bone damage and pain. Exposure to these agents during pregnancy has the potential to disrupt bone and blood vessel development, leading to malformations. Normal connective tissue cross-linking relies, in part, on lysyl oxidase (LO) to catalyze an oxidation reaction that eventually gives rise to insoluble fibers. Lysyl tyrosine quinone (LTQ) serves as an important cofactor for LO in this process. Chemicals from a variety of structural classes have been shown to induce osteolathyrism, including certain aminonitriles, ureides, acid and benzoic acid hydrazides, carbazates, and dithiocarbamates. Previous work has shown that some osteolathyrogens have the ability to react with 4-butylamino-5-methyl-o-quinone (mLTQ), an agent developed as a model cofactor for LO. In this study mLTQ was synthesized and its structure verified using NMR spectroscopy. Relative reactivity of mLTQ was determined using UV-vis scanning spectrophotometry through sequential 1 mM additions of an osteolathyrogen every 10 min to reach a final concentration of 20 mM. Three previously tested osteolathyrogens were re-evaluated with mLTQ and the results confirmed earlier findings. Osteolathyrogen-mLTQ reactivity was then assessed for eight additional agents. Overall three patterns of reactivity were observed. The results, when coupled with data available from frog embryo mixture toxicity studies, offer the opportunity to develop a more definitive assessment of mechanisms of action for osteolathyrism.

Poster #10: Synergistic Effect of Caffeine and Glucose in College Students of Varying Stress Levels
Chelsea Kamp
Faculty Sponsor: David Vanata, Family and Consumer Sciences

Glucose and caffeine are two food ingredients commonly found in products such as “energy” drinks. With the popularity of these products on the rise, identifying potential synergistic effects of these two ingredients is warranted. Previous studies indicate that caffeine and glucose, when consumed in isolation, positively impact an individual’s memory performance. Although this is heavily supported, few studies have researched the synergistic effect, while even fewer have assessed its effect among college students of varying stress levels. Recall and recognition memory of participants (n=20) was measured in three separate sessions, following exposure to a stimulus solution containing caffeine, glucose, or a combination of the substances. Participants also completed a questionnaire evaluating perceived stress and daily caffeine intake. The recall and recognition memory of college students was not enhanced by any of the three stimuli. A negative correlation was observed in Session 1 between stress score of participants and memory assessments, although no significance was concluded (p >.05). Habitual caffeine consumers were found to perform significantly worse than non-consumers in baseline recognition 1 (p =.01), baseline recognition 2 (p =.03), and recognition 2 (p =.04). Students with a greater stress level and/or habitually consume caffeine were found to be at risk for negatively impacting cognitive functioning. Cognitive abilities were examined by exposing participants to a list of 20 words. Because of study limitations and potential confounders, further research is necessary to reexamine the memory enhancement effects of glucose and caffeine and its impact on stress.

Poster #12: The Effects of Self-Expansion on Effort Exerted on a Physical Task
Kayla Hoover, Rachel Carson
Faculty Sponsor: Brent Mattingly, Psychology

The self-expansion model suggests that engaging in novel tasks should lead to increased effort exerted on a task. Thus, our hypothesis was that participants who have recently engaged in the self-expanding activities should have an increased feeling of self-efficacy which would lead them to exert greater physical effort on other tasks. Twenty-six undergraduates participated in this study (18 female, 8 male). Participants began with a self-expansion task that was either at a high or a low level. Participants carried a variety of objects across the room, and placed them into a box. Low expansion participants carried the objects across the room by hand, while high expansion participants used only a pair of chopsticks. After completing this activity the participants were given a digital hand grip meter to measure their hand grip strength. As predicted, there was a significant effect of self-expansion, F(1,22) = 5.83, p = .025. Specifically, individuals in the high expansion condition had greater grip strength (M= 75.2 lbs) than individuals in the low expansion condition (M= 61.3). This study was the first to show there was an increase of physical effort associated with participating in self-expansion tasks outside of a relationship context. The participants that engaged in the high expansion task applied more effort on the hand grip strength test. This implies that people who engage in a self-expansion activity will feel a greater self efficacy, and this would then lead to a an increased effort, or a higher
level of effort, on other subsequent tasks.

Poster #14: Nutritional Habits and Muscularity Concerns in College Males
Stephanie Ashmore
Faculty Sponsor: David Vanata, Family and Consumer Sciences

There is little research on body image concerns in men. With body image issues, especially muscularity concerns, on the rise there is a growing need for more research in this area. This research looked at muscularity concerns in college males and how those concerns were related to diet, exercise, and body image. Participants were 82 men enrolled in a private midwestern undergraduate university. Participants completed a 48 question survey. The survey was comprised of questions focusing on exercise, body image, diet, and the Muscle Dysmorphic Inventory (MDI). High scores on the MDI are strongly related to psychobehavioral correlates of muscle dysmorphia. Scores on the MDI were used to divide the men into groups of low- and moderate-high muscle concerns. Between and within group comparisons were made regarding their dieting patterns, supplement use and acceptance, athletic involvement, body satisfaction, and exercise habits. Twelve (14.6%) men had moderate-high MDI scores, the remaining 70 (86.4%) had low score. As expected men with high scores were more likely to diet (p = .008), use supplements (omega-3, p = .017; glutamine, p < .001), and work-out frequently (p =
.021). Men with higher MDI scores also reported higher body satisfaction. High MDI scores are normally associated with body distortion and subsequently body dissatisfaction. Based on results of the present study further research is warranted to investigate dieting and factors influencing
body satisfaction among males.

Poster #16: Sport, Communication, and Racial Stereotypes: The Perpetuation of African
American Stereotypes in Modern Culture
Adena Siefert
Faculty Sponsor: Karen L. Hartman, Communication Studies

This research project analyzes the use of African American stereotypes in sport and contemporary culture. The project stems from Gary Sailes’s (1998) article entitled “The African Amercian Athlete: Social Myths and Stereotypes,” and his argument that two popular stereotypes about African American athletes function in our society: the brute stereotype and the sambo stereotype. While the brute stereotype represents African Americans as “primitive, temperamental, over-reactive, uncontrollable, violent, and sexually powerful,” the sambo stereotype represents African-Americans as “benign, childish, immature, exuberant, uninhibited, lazy, comical, impulsive, fun-loving, good-humored, inferior, and lovable” (p. 188-189). Using contextual analysis of a 2010 McDonald’s commercial featuring professional basketball players Lebron James and Dwight Howard, I demonstrate how the commercial includes both stereotypes. I also argue that the stereotypes frame how the American public views and communicates about African American athletes and how commonly viewed advertisements can perpetuate the stereotypes through a seemingly innocent message.

Poster #18: Identification of Circadian Clock-Associated Proteins in the Filamentous Fungus Aspergillus nidulans by 2D Gel Electrophoresis and MALDI-MS
Wendy Dria
Faculty Sponsor: Andrew Greene, Biology and Toxicology

Circadian rhythms are daily oscillations in behaviors such as sleep/wake cycles in humans and spore formation in fungi. In humans, mutations in genes that control circadian rhythms can lead to disorders such as jet lag, shift work, familial advanced sleep phase syndrome (FASPS), delayed sleep phase syndrome (DSPS), and diabetes. We study circadian rhythms in filamentous fungi to better understand the molecular basis of circadian rhythms. Although the proteins that control circadian rhythms are not the same in humans and fungi they are controlled by a similar mechanism in both humans and fungi, so we use fungi as our model organisms since they are easy to work with in the lab. Circadian rhythms can freerun in the absence of temporal cues with approximately 24-hr periods, and they are controlled within single cells by protein-based oscillators. Among the fungi, circadian rhythms have been most extensively studied in Neurospora crassa, and in N. crassa, most rhythmic activity depends upon the FREQUENCY protein. Aspergillus exhibits circadian rhythms in spore development and gene expression, however, no detectable ortholog of the FREQUENCY protein exists in the sequenced genomes of any Aspergillus species. The objective of our research is to identify oscillator components in Aspergillus, by using 2D gel electrophoresis and MALDI-MS analysis. To date, we have identified cycling proteins including GAPDH (glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase), PGK (phosphoglycerate kinase), and an ortholog of Schizosaccharomyces pombe Sfc4, a transcription factor subunit. We now seek to confirm rhythmic expression of these genes using real-time PCR or northern blotting.

Poster #20: Impression Management on Facebook
Megen Valerino, Sarah Sladick
Faculty Sponsor: Brent Mattingly, Psychology

This study investigates whether or not people accept friend requests from strangers on Facebook based on the impressions they form from their profile picture and their mutual friend count. The purpose of this study is to examine whether that people have more control over the impressions that they form on their Facebook profiles than in face-to-face communication. In this 2 (picture: present, absent) X 2 (friend information: present, absent) study, the participants are randomly assigned to one out of four profiles to look at and then answer a questionnaire about their impressions of the profile. In condition one, there was no profile picture or mutual friend information. In condition two, there was no profile picture, but there was mutual friend information present. In condition three, there was a profile picture present with no mutual friend information present. In condition four, both profile picture and mutual friend information were present. There was significance involving the presence of either a profile picture or mutual friends, but not both. Participants were more likely to “friend” the profile when mutual friends were present (versus absent), p = .008. Participants were also more likely to “friend” the profile when the picture was present, p = .005. If either a profile picture or mutual friend information is present, they were more likely to accept them to view their full profile to see if they knew who
the individual was.

Poster #22: The Social Adjustment of International Students at a Private University
Sarah E. Ebinger
Faculty Sponsor: Cindy Moseman, Family and Consumer Sciences

Social support has been found to contribute to an overall positive adjustment for International students in U.S. colleges. This study addressed the relationship between International students’ perceptions of university assistance in adjusting to campus life and their social adjustment levels. Questionnaires were divided into two sections: 1) university helpfulness— being established in the campus community, having companionships, and the various campus events offered; and 2) assessing social adjustment through The Student Adaptation to College Questionnaire (SACQ). The questionnaire was then distributed to undergraduate students attending a private midwestern university with 62 usable responses gathered, 31 American and 31 International students representing eight international countries. Statistical analyses revealed that Americans were more socially adjusted to university life when compared with International students. The data also disclosed that there was no relationship between level of adjustment to campus life and student perception of being respected by peers and faculty. However, International students with relatively lower adjustment were significantly more likely to perceive campus activities as less useful than their more well-adjusted International peers. All the International students reported being treated well by faculty and students, yet suggested improvements could be made for social events to create opportunities for multicultural relations. Implications of this study suggest that well-developed campus events that connect International and American students could have a positive impact on social adjustment for International students.


A Reconstruction of the Federal Government’s Balance Sheet
Sarah Muse
Faculty Co-Sponsors: Michael Schwarz and Mark Nadler, History/Political Science and Economics

The U.S. government now faces a financial crisis similar to the governments of Spain, Portugal, Greece, and Ireland. The problems these foreign governments face are yearly imbalances between current receipts and expenditures (i.e. deficits) and accumulations of past debts that challenge these governments to service their outstanding liabilities. In the case of Greece and Ireland, this has led to financial crises and government austerity programs. Economists have predicted that the U.S. government is on a similar financial path. My paper begins with a historical evaluation of U.S. government deficits and debt beginning with the Revolutionary War. Tracing the time series of U.S. deficits and debt I uncover the major causes of deficits and debt to be wars and recessions. This pattern held true until the latter half of the 20th century and the beginning of the 21st century when U.S. deficits and debt begin to rise to pay for domestic government programs. My paper then takes a new approach in the analysis of the U.S. government’s financial health: it looks at the balance sheet of the federal government. Using data provide by the Financial Management Service, Congressional Budget Office, Government Accounting Office, and other sources I reconstruct the federal government’s balance sheet and calculate its net position. This exercise shows that the federal government is insolvent. I conclude with a discussion of what insolvency means for the U.S. government and the American people and its implied future tax burden.

The Philosophical Implications of the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle
Keith Darsee
Faculty Sponsor: Louis Mancha, Philosophy

Heisenberg’s Uncertainty Principle is one of the cornerstones of quantum theory. The Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle illustrates that the more precisely a given particles momentum is known, the less certain its position is known. Heisenberg saw this limitation not as a result of the inaccuracy of one’s ability to measure complimentary variables, but as a fundamental truth about quantum mechanics. Not originally widely accepted, it has become a forefather in its own right to several important theories. The Copenhagen Interpretation and the Multiverse theory have been developed as an interpretive schema for the Uncertainty Principle. The Copenhagen Interpretation postulates that the observer is a participant in any given experiment, and that this participation prevents one from conceptualizing the experiment as separate from the observer thereof. The Multiverse theory postulates that the wave function does not collapse due to the participation of an observer. Rather, reality diverges in to separate simultaneous states, or parallel realities. The worrisome philosophical implication of the Copenhagen Interpretation is that it seems to necessitate indeterminacy. Indeterminacy is potentially problematic, since it is difficult to see how it does not undermine the natural sciences, rendering the Copenhagen Interpretation self-defeating. While the Multiverse theory neatly avoids the indeterminacy paradox, it denies the validity of the concept of a rational, conscious agent. If an observer is not necessary, then it is itself unobservable. The Multiverse theory, therefore, seems to leave no room for knowledge of rational, conscious agents. An investigation of the philosophical implications of the Uncertainty Principle is presented.

Homelessness and Humanity in Cleveland
Brian Stevens
Faculty Sponsor: Jayne Waterman, English

Homelessness is often either invisible or ignored. When homeless people are recognized by the media, they are depicted as immobile solitary creatures who sleep and panhandle all throughout the day. The truth is that homelessness means a constant struggle for survival against multiple odds. Homelessness means both each individual’s survivalism and the necessity of camaraderie. A vital though far from perfect system of hospitality works in opposition to a system of social oppression that works against the homeless and keeps them from leading a truly human life. The five days I spent in Cleveland living as homeless with my friend Daniel McCaulley changed my life. My naïve and romanticized vision of humanity was replaced with skepticism, realism, and a struggle for justice and understanding. My presentation (PowerPoint images interspersed with a creative nonfiction piece) will explore the social system of street life and analyze how misconceptions are formed, and secrets are kept, about the urban homeless. My presentation will also examine the issues of community and conflict on the streets of Cleveland. Along with integrating the research of others such as George Orwell, Adam Shepard, Jacob Riis, and Gwendolyn Dordick into my presentation, I will profile the people Daniel and I met, the places we stayed, and the treatment we received throughout the city. There are positives and negatives in the system of help and refuge. Through the use of such research and the profiles of specific establishments in Cleveland, I will demonstrate in what ways that system of hospitality works and in what ways it fails.

The Old Maid and the Thief, scene i, composed in 1939 by Gian Carlo Menotti
Derek Jackenheimer, Kara Minton, Johanna Regan, Katie Vargo
Faculty Sponsor: Stephanie Sikora, Music

To set the scene: Miss Todd and Miss Pinkerton are two aging spinsters in a small American town. They meet often for tea in order to share the latest gossip about their neighbors. On this rainy afternoon their chat is interrupted by a knock at the back door of Miss Todd’s house. She sends her maid Laetitia to investigate. Laetitia returns with astonishing news that there is a man at the door who wishes to speak to Miss Todd in private. Miss Todd and Laetitia usher Miss Pinkerton out hastily. Laetitia confesses that the man is really a beggar, although a young and handsome one who deserves her attention. Both women are overcome by his masculine presence and Miss Todd impetuously invites him to stay overnight. Scandalous! This scene is part of the Opera Workshop program to be performed on April 1 and 2 in Pastor Recital Hall. Throughout the process, each performer has studied the musical score, has done a character development analysis, has memorized the music—emphasizing excellent vocal technique, and has attended musical and staging rehearsals. The goal is to experience the performing art form of opera as all these areas come together to create a cohesive believable ensemble performance for both the singers and the audience.


Now That’s What I’m Talking about: The Anomaly of the Upper North Dialect in United States English
Dantan Wernecke
Faculty Sponsor: Hilary Donatini, English

Throughout history, a language will continually evolve and change. Time, geography, and necessity often bring about such change within every language. Just as the language itself evolved through vocabulary changes and grammatical shifts, the pronunciation of these words have changed as well. The purpose of this presentation is not to simply address a dialect of the English language, but it is to explore an aspect of American English that absolutely baffles linguists today. The staggering results and implications of this research speak to the main point of confusion that the shift in this region’s dialect has caused over the last thirty years. The far-reaching impact of the “Northern Cities Vowel Shift,” has robbed the Upper North of the distinction of considering their dialect to be “standard” English. If we as humans are to understand ourselves, we must study that which is pivotal to our identity. By all accounts, the way in which we speak certainly qualifies. The research surrounding this project includes a vast yet particular examination of the English language as well as its history. Grasping the central tenants of language and pronunciation are also vital components of this undertaking. If there are changes in the pronunciation of words over time, it can be seen not only as a cosmetic alteration, but also one that is far more internal and tied to the fabric of our humanity. This project attempts to unravel the complex shift that leaves most linguists tongue-tied.

Homage for Satan, Woe to Hell: Rebellion and Revolution in Paradise Lost
Samuel Becherer
Faculty Sponsor: Hilary Donatini, English

This will be a presentation on the revolutionary thoughts of the political thinker, poet and polemicist, John Milton as presented in his seminal work Paradise Lost. I will explain the religious viewpoints of Milton at this period and give a brief introduction of the political climate of the times. The presentation itself is largely based on primary sources including Milton’s
The Tenure of Kings and Magistrates, The Divorce Tracts, De Doctrina Christiana and of course Paradise Lost. The presentation will be a textual analysis of the character of Satan, the political ideas found in the unholy rebellion and the underlying irony to the literary figure of Satan himself. I will be analyzing sections of the text and will incorporate some theological analysis as well. However, the presentation itself is largely literary and political, relying heavily on character development and the usage of irony and subtlety primarily within Books I and II.

Heracles and Divine Founders
Nick Granitz
Faculty Sponsor: Edith Foster, History and Political Science

Heracles was the most commonly depicted hero of the ancient Greek myths, consistently appearing in art, literature, and architecture for the duration of the Greek and Roman religions. Heracles was the favorite hero and founding patron of many small Greek poleis, as well as large ones such as Athens and Sparta. As the Mediterranean hero of choice, Heracles myth and cult formatively affected the myths and cults of many local heroes. For example, a small Attic city might, over time, come to claim Heracles as its founder rather than a less famous hero: the original founding myth was assimilated into the cult of Heracles. My thesis seeks to analyze the character of Heracles and the evolution of his cult and myth, and then to analyze two Greek founders, Theseus and Lycurgus, and the Roman founder, Romulus. These Greek and Roman founders will be interpreted in light of the “founder qualities” that Heracles possesses. The thesis thus seeks to answer the question: “What are the qualities of a founder that Heracles possesses, and in what way did Heracles affect the myths of the great Greek and Roman founders?” For the purposes of the Symposium, an analysis of the character of Heracles and his evolution will be presented, as well as an evaluation of what characteristics make him conducive to the role of the “ideal founder.”

Exploring the Platonic Relationship between Probability and Yahtzee
Kara Biltz
Faculty Sponsor: Christopher Swanson, Mathematics

Yahtzee is a well-known game which consists of thirteen turns. During a turn, a player can roll five six-sided dice up to three times to get the highest scoring combination for one of the categories on his/her score card. Consider a variation of the game consisting of five distinct dice with four, six, eight, twelve, and twenty sides. These dice are the five Platonic Solids, three dimensional figures with faces of regular polygons. In this talk, I will use combinatorial and probabilistic techniques to determine the probabilities and expected values of rolling each category in the Platonic Solids variation of Yahtzee, and I will compare these calculations to those for the actual game. The probability of rolling a: Three of a Kind is 437/5760, Four of a Kind is 1/240, Yahtzee is 1/11520, Full House is 31/5760, Large Straight is 3/640, and Small Straight is 119/2304. These probabilities are smaller than in the regular version of the game, but the order of difficulty in rolling each category remains the same.

The Construction of Self within Jane Eyre
Diana Popa
Faculty Sponsor: Hilary Donatini, English

Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte is the tale of an independent-minded young governess. My research explores the growth of the main character, Jane, through her relationship with Edward Rochester. However, its primary intention is to explore the extent to which Jane is her own person, taking into consideration the historical background of the time period, and her ambiguous social status as governess. In conducting this research, I have carefully explored the new-found development of consciousness that Jane Eyre experiences, prompted by Rochester, but ultimately controlled by Jane, in the pursuit of self-knowledge, not only as a woman, but also
as a human being. Jane’s response to the “broken” engagement with Edward Rochester and final decision to marry him is one of the issues central to the text. Through examination of Jane’s response to the previous scenario, in contrast to the second marriage proposal, one can see a clear emphasis on the value she attributes to herself. Within Jane Eyre’s new-found development of consciousness is her quest for pragmatic independence, which contrasts with her desire to be loved and “drawn out” by another, namely, Rochester. There is an undeniable paradox within her two opposing desires. Although her marriage may seem like a threat to her pragmatic independence, ultimately she does not betray her concept of self in order to marry Rochester. As such, Jane values self-knowledge above her own happiness.

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