Response to The Response: A Playwright’s Journey
Benjamin Isaiah Black
Student’s Major: Theatre
Faculty Sponsor: Prof. Fabio Polanco, Theatre

For my senior project in the Department of Theatre, I chose to write a play entitled The Response. This play asks the question, what would happen if a group of outspoken individuals, from different minorities, gathered together to respond to stereotyping, discrimination, and their relationship to individuality? My goal for this project was to cultivate my tools and skills as a playwright. I faced many challenges throughout the process. Those challenges included finding the proper structure for the play, creating realistic characters, writing truthful dialogue, and determining the actions the characters would employ in pursuit of their objectives. The first draft of the play simply explored the dramatic action. As I continued to write new drafts, I was challenged by three important questions: what do I want; what do I want to have happen in this play; and what is important? In other words, what are my desired outcomes, and what is necessary in order to achieve them? One of the obstacles I encountered was trying to make realistic and relatable characters. I decided to create a realistic objective for them to which I could also relate. In this session I will further discuss these challenges, the tactics and methods employed to overcome them, the results of these efforts, and whether or not my work on this project cultivated my tools and skills as a playwright.

Method Development for the Extraction and Analysis of Toxic Alkaloids from Jimsonweed (Datura stramonium) at Various Stages of Decomposition
Cassandra Nix
Student’s Major: Toxicology
Faculty Sponsors:  Dr. Andrew Trimble, Biology/Toxicology & Dr. Jeffrey Weidenhamer, Chemistry

Jimsonweed (Datura stramonium) grows invasively throughout Ohio and may contaminate hay and compost, which puts people and livestock at risk.  Typically, the methods of extraction and analysis of alkaloids from plant tissue are expensive and time-consuming. The goal of this study was to develop a more rapid and cost-effective method for detecting the toxic alkaloids atropine and scopolamine from Jimsonweed in fresh leaf, hay, and compost.  Detection in suspect material involves: 1.) freeze-drying and homogenization; 2.) methanol extraction; 3.) clean-up via syringe filtration; 5.) volume reduction with nitrogen; and 6.) analysis via high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC).  Replicate leaf samples (n = 3) were prepared for each of the three leaf products.  Field weights were determined by weighing each sample prior to drying.  Fresh leaves were extracted immediately, hay leaves were dried by placing them on a table in part-sun for seven days, and compost leaves were prepared by sealing them in airtight jars and storing them in the dark for four weeks.  Detectable levels of atropine and scopolamine were present in all three of the leaf products using this method.  Scopolamine concentrations in hay were significantly higher compared to fresh and composted material (p < 0.05), but atropine concentrations were not significantly different among any of the treatments (p > 0.05) using field weights.  The results confirm that these compounds are not significantly decreasing in these degradation products when aged for approximately four weeks.  This method provides a rapid, reliable and cost-effective means of screening for these toxic plant alkaloids in hay and compost.

Inner Eye
Karly A. Beuck
Student’s Major: Painting
Faculty Sponsor: Prof. Charles Caldemeyer, Art

Strong women have been seen in the art of western culture as threatening and grotesque since ancient times. Medusa was betrayed by Athena and turned into a gorgon whom all grew to fear. Artemis lived the life of a huntress and had Actaeon killed for simply gazing upon her bare flesh. Even the Sphinx, who plagued Thebes in all her horrid glory, had the people frightened of her otherworldly power. Back then these women were viewed in a negative manner based upon their aggressive natures. In many ways, this negative view is still pervasive in our society. By means of thorough research, sketches, color selection, and small-scale projects, my final paintings explore this aggressiveness through metaphors of Greek myth. My work uses gender roles we find in the past to make a statement of feminine strength. My talk will focus on my painting process, symbol selection, and the aesthetic choices that I use to make these statements.

Aluminum Cookware Is a Potential Source of Lead Exposure in Cameroon
Peter Kobunski
Student’s Major: Biochemistry
Faculty Sponsors: Dr. Jeffrey Weidenhamer, Chemistry & Dr. Rebecca Corbin, Chemistry

Lead toxicity is a global health problem.  Lead accounts for 674,000 deaths annually and consumption of even trace amounts of lead is a risk factor for attention-related behaviors, learning disabilities, and criminal behavior.  Our objective was to determine whether cookware obtained from Cameroon, Africa leached unsafe levels of lead during conditions simulating cooking. In this study, 29 aluminum cookware samples derived from recycling scrap metal were analyzed.  Initial screening by X-ray fluorescence showed that all samples contained less than 1100 parts per million of lead.  Each sample was tested using two different leaching methods.  Pieces of each pot were soaked in a 4% acetic acid solution for 24 hours.  Duplicate pieces were boiled in a 4% acetic acid solution for 2 hours.  The resulting solutions were analyzed for lead content using both graphite furnace atomic absorption spectrophotometry and inductively coupled plasma spectrometry (ICP).  Samples released as much as 899 micrograms (mcg) of lead per liter in the 2 hour extraction, and as much as 402 mcg/L in the 24 hour extraction.   For several cookware samples, estimated doses of lead per one cup serving exceed 100 mcg.  Scanning electron microscopy of pot samples showed obvious surface erosion after 2 hours of boiling.  Given that the total tolerable daily intake of lead is 6 mcg per day for a child under 5 years, children and their families using these pots could be exposed daily to poisonous levels of lead.  We conclude that this cookware is a previously unrecognized threat to public health. 

Exploration of Past Experiences
Barbara Mooneyham
Students Major: Fine Arts/ Sculpture and Printmaking      
Faculty Sponsors: Prof. Keith Dull, Art & Prof. Dan McDonald, Art

This body of work attempts to recreate and explore difficult past experiences by incorporating established and reinterpreted symbolic uses of the body and animal forms allowing an open investigation of these issues rather than internalizing the feelings that each experience created. The experiences addressed in this body of work have had both a positive and negative impact on my life. My work attempts to recreate my emotional response towards my personal health battles and particular events that have happened in my life. Connecting personally and intimately to my work allows me to successfully deal with these issues. To create this body of work, I use the casting process to replicate my body, limbs, and face. I also incorporate animal forms by using the bodies of animals I have found to represent established symbolic meanings of each animal. The purpose of the symbolic meanings of the animals is to guide the viewer to think about life’s processes, how the preservation and progression of life apply to all living things, and how my feelings relate to these life processes. Through the use of the human body and animal forms, I have successfully explored the thoughts and feelings of my past allowing the externalization of these issues, leaving them behind. 

A Discourse Analysis of Contradictory Health Messages on the Iconic Show: The Secret Life of The American Teenager
Lauren Fattlar
Student’s Majors: Health and Risk Communication & Strategic Communication and Public Relations
Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Kimberly Field-Springer, Communication Studies

Teenage pregnancy remains a concern for health practitioners in the United States.  The U.S. has the highest teen pregnancy rate in the developed world while 18% of teenage girls in the United States are predicted to give birth to a child before the age of 20 (Mollborn & Jacobs, 2012). The current study explores how health messages aimed towards a teenage audience on the iconic show, The Secret Life of the American Teenager, are failing to promote healthy behaviors. The Secret Life of the American Teenager follows the life of a teenage girl who becomes pregnant.  Simultaneously, ABC Family network airs a Public Service Announcement (PSA) to convince viewers pregnancy is preventable.  I employ discourse analysis (Gee, 2011) to explain how contradictory health messages perplex viewers, especially impressionable teenagers, who come away confused about what health practices to adopt. The health belief model (Rosenstock, Strecher, & Becker, 1988) and cultivation theory (Gerbner & Gross, 1967) guide my analysis as these are two complementary theoretical perspectives offering insight into why one might adopt a certain health behavior “as seen on TV.” Findings suggest that the network does not use the PSA as a source of authority.  Rather, the network uses the PSA as a disclaimer to avoid responsibility related to messages conveyed by a show that trivializes teenage pregnancy.  This analysis contributes to practical and theoretical implications significant for health practitioners and scholars interested in designing effective PSAs.

James Madison and British Commercial Policy in the Making of the U.S. Constitution, 1783-89
Lindsey Richey
Student’s Majors: Political Science & History
Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Michael Schwarz, History/Political Science

In July 1783, only months after the end of the American Revolutionary War, British policymakers, operating under the centuries-old logic of mercantilism, launched their first peacetime assault on U.S. interests when they voted to exclude American merchant vessels from the lucrative West Indian carrying trade.  Many American revolutionaries had believed, somewhat foolishly, that their rebellion against the British Empire would inspire the nations of the Atlantic World to adopt principles of free trade.  Britain’s hostile and damaging post-war commercial policy proved otherwise.  Meanwhile, the U.S. Congress under the Articles of Confederation was unable to respond to British aggression because the power to regulate trade, like all other legislative powers, resided in the individual states.  Standard histories of American constitution-making in the 1780s tend to focus on domestic affairs and internal divisions: the need for a taxing power, conflicts between large states and small states, cosmopolitans vs. localists, etc.  On three separate occasions in the early 1790s, however, James Madison, so-called “Father of the Constitution,” claimed that the need to retaliate against British commercial policy, more than any other single factor, best explains why the Constitution of 1787-88 was adopted.  In my presentation, I will examine Madison’s claim in light of evidence from the 1780s.  If Madison was correct, as I believe the evidence shows he was, then the consequences for our understanding of the Constitution, its origins, and its original purpose, could be significant.   

The History and Development of the Ohio Juvenile Justice System
Kelsey Golec
Student’s Major: Political Science
Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Jeff Sikkenga, History/Political Science

The juvenile justice system, established in 1899, was founded on core progressive principles, including the assumption that human beings are not evil by nature and therefore, that they could be improved under the right circumstances, no matter their flaws or bad choices. For the first 85 years the juvenile justice system embodied these progressive principles, but the past 30 years have witnessed a steady erosion of the progressive principles that originally formed the meaning of justice for juveniles. Retribution, a long standing component of the adult justice system, now has found a prominent place in the juvenile correctional process. In this talk I will briefly discuss those original progressive principles, explain how they were applied to the juvenile justice system, and examine the consequences of their diminished influence. I will raise the question whether rehabilitation should return to a more prominent place in the juvenile justice system.

Step Into the Spotlight: An Experience of Dramatic Arts for Special People
Hilary Rheinheimer
Student’s Major: General Theatre
Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Teresa Durbin-Ames, Theatre

Theatre can be used as entertainment, a way to educate, or even as a healing process.  Drama therapy is the planned use of healing aspects of drama in a therapeutic process; this can be used for people with special needs, or individuals suffering from posttraumatic stress, depression, schizophrenia, or a variety of other mental health conditions.  From October 14th -18th 2013, I used drama therapy with a class of special needs students at Ashland High School.  I introduced this class to theatre games that focused on eye contact, relationship building, and communication skills.  At the end of the week, they performed a scene from You’re a Good Man Charlie Brown in front of an audience using skills they had learned while playing theatre games.  Throughout the week each students slowly came out of their shells, and built relationships not only with one another, but also with me.  This project required me to research drama therapy and methods to use in the classroom, to have hands on experience in this field, but most importantly, it gave students, who are not given a chance at the spotlight, to be onstage in front of an audience.  These students experienced a transformation through their relationship building, eye contact, and communication skills. 

Race-consciousness and Bourgeois Ideology in Nella Larsen's Passing
David Mohn
Student’s Major: Integrated Language Arts Education
Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Sharleen Mondal
, English

In the racially segregated America of the 1920s, light-skinned African Americans daringly “passed” as white, crossing racial boundaries due to economic and social motivations. Some passed in brief stints for convenience, shopping or working in the white community before returning to their black families and communities.  Others passed permanently, concealing their mixed racial identities from everyone—even husbands and wives—who resided in their new spheres of existence. Unsurprisingly—in an era of lynchings and legal prohibition against interracial marriages—to disregard society's inflexible racial norms could have tragic consequences. In Passing (1929), Harlem Renaissance author Nella Larsen dramatizes the repercussions of passing through two childhood friends now reunited in adulthood: Clare, who has passed completely into the white world and is married to a white racist, and Irene, who married a black man and remains within the black community, passing occasionally for convenience. Through close reading the novel in its social and historical context, and responding to relevant literary criticism on the novel, I argue that Larsen does not offer a direct or unequivocal judgment of the act of passing itself, but rather a critique of that which passing could enable: a ruinous obsession with American bourgeois ideologies free from the race-consciousness that was so necessary for combating the racism of the era.

The Effects of Music on Learning with Introverts and Extroverts
Amanda Mayes
Student’s Major: Psychology
Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Diane Bonfiglio, Psychology

Studies have shown that introverts and extroverts respond differently to background stimuli, such as music.  This variation of response makes it so that introverts and extroverts perform at differing levels of skills when confronted with a cognitive task.  This study compared extroverts and introverts while performing a memory task in either silence or with pop music playing.  The experimental condition and control condition performed the same tasks, but the former group listened to music during the protocol.  51 participants (12 male, 39 female; mean age = 19.14 years) were asked to memorize a list of words and recall the words within a time limit.  A 2 (disposition: introvert vs. extrovert) x 2 (condition: experimental vs. control) ANOVA revealed no statistically significant main effect of disposition, and no interaction effect between disposition and condition, on recall, suggesting that introverts and extroverts did not perform differently in this experiment.  However, results did indicate a main effect of condition, such that participants in the music condition recalled fewer words than participants in the no music condition (F(3, 47) = 2.796, p < .01): participants in the music condition (n = 24) recalled a mean of 4.96 (SD = 2.24) words; participants in the no music condition (n = 27) recalled a mean of 6.59 (SD = 1.99) words.  These results suggest that listening to pop music may impede the ability to effectively recall information.

The Relationship Between Extroversion and Online and Offline Relationships
Shawna Brough
Student’s Major: Psychology
Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Curtis Ickes, Psychology

Extroversion is a personality characteristic that determines how socially outgoing a person is.  This study investigated whether one’s score on an extroversion scale is related to the total number of online (social media) and offline friends.  Specifically, extroversion scores were correlated with the number of friends on Facebook, followers on Twitter, close friends on Twitter, and close offline friends.  A close friend was defined as someone with whom there is an ongoing positive emotional contact.  It was hypothesized that positive relationships exist between extroversion scores and the total numbers of both online and offline friends.  Participants were volunteers from introductory psychology courses. To determine their levels of extroversion, a short version of the NEO-5 personality questionnaire was administered along with a survey about the total number of Facebook friends, Twitter followers, close friends on Twitter, and offline close friends.  The results indicated positive correlations between extroversion and the number of Facebook friends (r(47) = 0.34, p = 0.02); the number of close friends on Facebook (r(47) = 0.33, p = 0.02); and the number of close friends on Twitter (r(47) = 0.38, p = 0.02).   However, the relationship between extroversion scores and the number of followers on Twitter was not significant (p > .05).  This suggests that a higher level of extroversion is related to an increased number of online friends on Facebook and Twitter, and offline close friends, but not the number of those simply following one’s Twitter account.

Synthesis of 2-hydroxy Ester Analogs of Niclosamide Analogs for a SAR Study of Anti-tumor Activity
Kelvin Stimpert
Students Major: Biology
Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Nick Regan, Chemistry

The drug Niclosamide, 5­chloro­ N­(2­chloro­4­nitrophenyl)­2- hydroxybenzamide, is a FDA approved antihelmintic drug used to treat worm infections and has shown promise against cancer proliferation.  More specifically, niclosamide has shown to be involved in the inhibition of the signaling cascade mTORCI as well as inducing Wnt co-receptor LRP6 degradation. Under the direction of a structure activity relationship (SAR) study, niclosamide was synthesized as well as four individual analogs.  These analogs were designed and synthesized by attaching ester linkages at the 2 position giving slightly different variations.  Once characterized using melting point, 1HNMR, 13CNMR, and infrared spectroscopy the analogs were subject to a biological assay to determine their ability to inhibit cancer progression. All three analogs showed similar activity comparative to niclosamide in the inhibition of the Wnt pathway and breast and prostate cancer cell proliferation.  In vitro hydrolysis of the ester bond may be responsible for these observations.

Evaluating Satellite Precipitation Estimates Using Lightning Information
Mitchell Ramsey
Environmental Science/Geology
Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Michael Hudson, Geology

Satellite-derived precipitation data from NASA’s Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) Multi-satellite Precipitation Analysis (TMPA) 3B42 algorithm and  ground-based lightning observations from the Global Lightning Dataset 360 (GLD360 – a Vaisala©  product) provided incongruent information during 2012 with regard to the location and frequency of lighting and rain, since lightning is expected to occur during rain events.  The datasets were compared on a common 0.25° × 0.25° coordinate grid (50oN-25oS, 115-180oE and 0-180oW) at 3-hr intervals per day to identify where they aligned or differed for four sets of conditions: (1) no rain and no lightning, (2) rain with no lightning, (3) rain with lightning, and (4) lightning with no rain.  Globally, the most common condition was no rain/no lightning (88.80% of the 860,832,000 time-location data points), so the study focused on the weather-related conditions, i.e., rain and/or lightning.  A chronologic- geographic subset (July in North America) was studied in detail.  Rain with no lightning occurred most often (44.52%); however, lightning with no rain (30.48%) occurred more often than rain with lightning (25.00%).  Analysis of individual cases revealed two contributing factors: (1) the satellites miss portions of storms because they provide ~90 sec snapshots while the GLD360 provides continuous observations throughout each 3-hr period, and (2) large quantities of ice (i.e., hail and graupel) can trigger a false snow reading by the TMPA algorithms, often resulting in precipitation holes embedded within the heaviest convection.  These findings suggest that lightning information can be used to help improve satellite precipitation estimates.

The Effect of Visual Stimuli on Emotions
Dylan Pelham
Student’s Major: Psychology
Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Diane Bonfiglio, Psychology

Previous literature has found that colors have an effect on an individual’s pleasure, arousal, and dominance.  It was hypothesized that exposure to blue would decrease arousal in an individual due to social conditioning with feelings of peace and tranquility.  To test this theory, sixty undergraduate students were exposed to words that were presented on either a white or blue colored background.  Fifty randomly selected words from the Affective Norms for English Words were presented on standardized colored backgrounds using the Munsell Color System.  Pleasure, arousal, and dominance levels of participants were analyzed through using the Self-Assessment Manakin.  Independent samples t-tests were conducted to analyze the mean scores for both groups. The mean arousal scores were 273.76 (SD = 56.56) for the blue group and 268.92 (SD = 67.40) for the white group, but the observed difference between groups was not statistically significant, t(48) = -.275, p = .784.  The mean dominance scores were 241.67 (SD = 43.79) for the blue group and 237.71 (SD = 46.89) for the white group, but the observed difference between groups was again not statistically significant, t(46) = -.304, p = .763.  The mean pleasure scores were 243.15 (SD = 25.66) for the blue group and 227.88 (SD = 21.06) for the white group, and this observed difference between the groups was statistically significant, t(49) = -2.305, p = .025.  The collected data did not support the hypothesis regarding arousal; however, blue did lead to higher levels of pleasure.

Hot Set: The Process of Set Designing a Musical
Kelli Lennox
Student’s Major: Theatre
Faculty Sponsor: Prof. Jason Coale, Theatre

On February 14th, 2014, Ashland University's production of Songs for a New World opened in the Hugo Young Theatre. This musical by Jason Robert Brown is a song cycle; a series of songs that are written to go together as a group, with common themes and images. As the scenic designer it was my job to create a set that reflected the world of the play. Collaborating with the directors, we determined that the major themes of the story were flying, jumping, and taking a step into the unknown while still having hope. The creation of a set that would communicate these ideas while representing the different locales suggested in the lyrics meant that the set needed to be flexible. I learned to rely heavily on my research. The research process for scenic design is a key element that, when done properly, keeps inspiration alive and options endless. The research process included design meetings with the directors, lighting designer, and costume designer. A research board was created with over 100 photos, paintings, pictures, colors, and fabrics that the designers felt represented the essence of the musical. During this process I also had the opportunity to learn two computer programs that professional set designers are using today. Through these programs I was able to create three-dimensional digital models to communicate my ideas from the research and develop scaled architectural drafting to be used for construction. This poster session will explore the design process needed to create a set for a musical.

Synthesis of Resorcinarene-core Polylactide/Polyethylene Glycol Star Block Copolymers using Click Chemistry: Optimizing Polymer Coupling Reactions Using No-D NMR Spectroscopy
William H. Horn
Student’s Major: Chemistry
Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Perry Corbin, Chemistry

Micelles are soap-like aggregates formed from molecules that have hydrophobic (water-hating) and hydrophilic (water-loving) parts.  These aggregates have potential for use in drug-delivery applications. My research has focused on development of a method for the synthesis of new resorcinarene-core polylactide (PLA)/polyethylene glycol (PEG) star block copolymers, which have the potential to self-organize into micelles.  This method involves a convergent synthesis beginning with a macrocyclic core that then has PLA chains grown from it.  In this synthesis, the end groups of star PLAs have been modified with alkyne functional groups and, subsequently, coupled to an azide-functionalized PEG via a Huisgen dipolar cycloaddition reaction, also known as a click reaction. In the process of synthesizing the star block copolymers, No-D (no-deuterium) nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy has proven invaluable for optimizing the polymer coupling conditions.  Through a series of No-D NMR studies, the correct ratio of reactants was determined in order to minimize residual PEG azide and to make the purification of the desired product easier.  Then, the ratio of copper catalyst was, likewise, optimized to minimize residual amounts in the product, while still allowing for completion of the reaction in a reasonable amount of time.  In this presentation, the synthesis of resorcinarene-core PLA/PEG star block copolymers will be described in detail. The general utility of No-D NMR spectroscopy in optimizing polymer coupling conditions will also be illustrated.  In addition, these studies are an important step in the development of new drug-delivery devices.

Level of Expertise as Perceived by Peers
Mary Moeller
Student’s Major: Psychology
Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Diane Bonfiglio, Psychology

Expectations can influence perceptions. Research in this area has indicated that people tend to rate things higher when they are perceived as being done by experts rather than amateurs. The current study looks at the effects that expectations of a higher skill level can have on how participants rate a painting done by a peer. Sixty-three participants were told either that a peer had years of experience as a painter and had won many awards for their skill in painting, or were told that the peer had no experience as a painter. Participants were then asked to rate a painting purported to be painted by that peer. The participants told the painter was highly skilled rated assigned the painting a mean quality rating of 5.90 out of 10, and the group told the painter was a beginner assigned the painting a mean quality rating of 6.73 out of 10 on average. A t test revealed that this difference was statistically significant, t(61) = -2.135, p = .037. These results indicate that the group made to think that the artist was more skilled actually rated the painting as worse than the group made to think the artist was an amateur. This finding is not consistent with my hypothesis. Being told the student was highly skilled may have caused participants to have higher expectations than those told the student was a beginner. More research is needed on this phenomenon before firm conclusions can be drawn.

Analysis of Mutant Bacteria Resistant to Phage Infection
Rachel Farley
Student’s Major: Biology
Faculty sponsor: Dr. Paul Hyman, Biology/Toxicology

Bacteriophage are viruses that specifically infect bacteria. They do this by first attaching themselves to the bacteria. Phage receptors are molecules on the surface of the bacteria that are bound by the phage using antireceptor proteins. The types of molecules the phage attach to and the antireceptor proteins used to bind determine the bacteriophage’s host range.  Host range refers to the range of different bacterial strains the virus can infect. Bacteriophage T5 and its Escherichia coli host were used to study how mutations in the bacteriophage T5 receptor, an iron transport protein, and antireceptor can alter host range. As the initial step, E. coli bacteria that had mutations in the receptor, FhuA, that made the bacteria resistant to infection by the bacteriophage were isolated and analyzed. Of the first 27 mutants I analyzed all stopped FhuA from being made. To find mutants that made a changed FhuA protein I grew the E. coli in media with an iron binding chemical called bipyridyl to lower the iron content of the media. I also tried growing the E. coli on minimal media with low and no iron. I analyzed 11 more mutants from these medias.  None of the mutations were useful for studying host range changes so I am now cloning the receptor gene for site-directed mutagenesis to create more useful mutations.

The Influence of Color on Perceived Attractiveness
Shanna Valenti
Student’s Major: Psychology
Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Mitchell Metzger, Psychology

Colors make up a vast part of the environment, and evidence suggests that while they are not always consciously acknowledged, colors may influence how certain objects are perceived. In the case of attractiveness, red is thought to increase physical attraction (Elliot & Niesta, 2008). Past research has shown that this “red effect” is universal, and specifically pertains to pre-menopausal women (Schwartz & Singer, 2013).  Past research also suggests that the “red effect” is more prominent when subjects are rating photos of the opposite gender, rather than the same gender.  The present research further investigated the “red effect” by comparing it to effects of other colors such as blue, black, and white.  White was chosen as a control color, while blue and black were chosen in order to include a popular primary color and a neutral, non-control color. Features other than attractiveness, such as friendliness, approachability, and agreeableness, were also measured. Participants were asked to rate these characteristics of headshot photos of former Ashland University students wearing blue, black, red, or white shirts.  Both female and male photos were used, and both female and male participants were tested.  ANOVAs were calculated on the ratings from each color group. No statistically significant evidence was found for overall attractiveness (F(3, 82) = 0.701, p > 0.05), or gender differences (F(3, 82) = 1.274, p > 0.05), suggesting that certain conditions must be in place for the red effect to be observably present.

Pond Identification and Indicator Organism Analysis in Black Fork Wetlands Preserve
Rosalie Sepesy
Student’s Major: Environmental Science Biology
Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Patricia Saunders, Biology/Toxicology

In wetlands, the hydroperiod, or duration of pooled water, is a factor that influences the entire ecosystem. In the Black Fork Wetlands, where ponds are also subject to flooding, two ponds were identified, their habitat data were compared, and zooplankton were evaluated as potential indicator organisms. The first pond had inconsistent depths ranging from 4 cm to 43 cm, reaching its highest during flooding, and temperatures between 6° C to 18° C. Its cycle of drying and filling along with temperature fluctuation supported the hypothesis that it is vernal. The second pond showed more consistency, with depths typically between 30-50cm, flooding to 70 cm, and temperatures from 13° C to 19° C. This consistency indicates its permanency. Lastly, the effect of these conditions on four groups of zooplankton, cladocerans, copepods, their nauplii, and ostracods, was examined. Each population peaked in May and decreased throughout the rest of the ice-free period. Most groups showed either consistency or unpredictability during non-peak months, but cladocerans had interesting patterns. Most notably, sharp increases in abundance and individual size were observed in late fall of both 2012 and 2013. When compared to temperature, depth, and turbidity, cladocerans appear more sensitive to habitat changes than the other three options. By identifying useful indicator organisms, we can begin to understand how different types of ponds support different species and how organisms with these ponds respond to hydroperiod and flood events. This is valuable information for conservation areas supporting diverse ecosystems, such as the Black Fork Wetlands Preserve.

Identification of Antibacterial Agents in an Environmentally Friendly Cleaning Product: Implications of Bioassay and Chemical Data
Hannah Baumann
Student’s Major: Toxicology
Faculty Sponsors: Dr. Douglas Dawson, Biology/Toxicology & Dr. Jeffrey Weidenhamer, Chemistry

Concerns about the toxicity of commercial cleaning products have resulted in the development of a number of environmentally friendly cleaners based on natural products. Thyme oil, from the plant Thymus vulgaris, has antibacterial properties. As a result, thyme oil is often added to environmentally friendly cleaners as a disinfectant. The components of thyme oil were analyzed for antibacterial properties through single chemical and mixture toxicity tests using the Microtox® bioassay. The bioassay utilizes the natural luminescence of the bacteria Vibrio fischeri to measure the effects of a chemical based on decrease in luminescence. Several monoterpene components of thyme oil were investigated: thymol, p-cymene, geraniol, carvacrol, terpinene, borneol and linalool. Seven concentrations of each component were evaluated for toxicity at exposure times of 5, 10 and 15 minutes. Each concentration and control was tested in duplicate. For every two-chemical combination, each chemical was tested alone and with the other agent to determine toxicity. From the toxicity data EC50 values, the concentration at which bacterial luminescence was inhibited by 50%, and other toxicity parameters were calculated. Bioassay solutions were analyzed using a gas chromatograph-mass spectrometer to confirm that the compounds remained in solution. Response factors for each thyme oil component were determined relative to camphor. Aqueous concentrations of each component proved to be 17%-79% of expected concentrations. This study revealed information regarding the synergism and solubility of components of thyme oil. Cost and effectiveness of environmentally friendly cleaners could be improved through the specific use of synergistic, antibacterial components of thyme oil. 

A Costume Technician At Work
Kimberly Lennox
Student’s Major: Theatre 
Faculty Sponsor: Prof. Sarah Russell, Theatre

As a costume technician I drape, pattern, and sew costumes.  I also design wigs and makeup. Draping is the process of positioning and pinning fabric on a dress form to develop the structure of a garment design, which is then turned into a pattern piece. In my senior project I have draped three costumes from three different time periods (Elizabethan, Regency Era, and the 1960’s). Draping was found to be a useful way to make a pattern to fit an actor’s body.  For each time period I began with a research image.  Then I designed and created wigs and makeup, placed them on a model, and took pictures. This poster session will give a look at the process necessary to be historically accurate in draping, building, and designing costumes, wigs and makeup for the theatre, showing step by step how I started with the research image, and finished with a realized design. I discovered that this is time consuming, hard work, and requires attention to detail and dedication.

Verifying the Genus and Stratigraphic Position of Petrified Wood Found in Coshocton and Holmes Counties, Ohio
David Hogue
Student’s Major: Geology
Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Nigel Brush, Geology

In Ohio, petrified wood is mostly found in the unglaciated portion of the Allegheny Plateau in the southeastern part of the state. The Conemaugh Group of the Pennsylvanian Period (318-299 ma.) is where petrified wood identified as Psaronius can be found. Petrified wood, however, can also be found in the northeastern Ohio and has been hypothesized to be Psaronius. The purpose of this work was to determine the genus and stratigraphic position of these fossilized trees. In 2011, 20 specimens were collected from the eight sites in Coshocton and Holmes Counties. The samples were cut and polished in the Rock Laboratory at Ashland University and photographed under magnification in the Tree Ring Laboratory at the College of Wooster. These photographs were then sent to Dr. Gar Rothwell at Ohio University in Athens, Ohio.  Although Dr. Rothwell tentatively identified all the specimens from Holmes and Coshocton as belonging to the genus Mesoxylon, he needed photographs at higher magnification in order to be certain of this identification. A higher power microscope was used to re-photograph the original 20 samples, and new samples from a ninth site in Coshocton County were also cut, polished and photographed. The photos were then resubmitted to Dr. Rothwell for final identification. Revisiting some of the collection sites in Holmes and Coshocton Counties allowed for clarification on the exact stratigraphic position of these petrified wood sites. The study of petrified wood has given a more accurate description of the trees growing in northeastern Ohio during the Pennsylvanian.         

Optimism and Persistence in Creativity
Katlyn Grayson, Mary Moeller, Nicole Austin, Amanda Mayes and Patti Brown
Student’s Majors: Psychology & Criminal Justice (Grayson, Austin); Psychology (Moeller, Mayes, Brown)
Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Diane Bonfiglio, Psychology
The purpose of this study was to examine effects of priming optimism or pessimism on a creativity task.  Forty-eight participants (7 male, 41 female; mean age = 19.06 years) were randomly assigned to be primed with a sentence scramble for optimism, pessimism, or neutrality.  Then, participants were asked to work on a creativity task for 8 minutes.  They were given an anagram task as a distractor, and then were asked to work on the creativity task for an additional 8 minutes.  The creativity task called for participants to generate as many novel uses for an everyday object (a ruler) as possible.  We predicted that those primed for optimism would produce a greater number of responses to the creativity task than those who were primed for pessimism or neutrality.  Participants in the optimism priming condition (n = 12) listed a mean of 14.92 (SD = 5.74) uses for the ruler in the first 8 minute segment; participants in the pessimism priming condition (n = 19) listed a mean of 11.95 (SD = 4.35) uses; and participants in the neutral condition (n = 17) listed a mean of 12.53 (SD = 5.54) uses.   However, one-way ANOVA indicates that the observed relationships are not statistically significant (F(2, 45) = 1.29, p = 0.29), likely due to the relatively small sample size.  Additional research is needed to determine if participants primed for optimism generate more creative responses to a stimulus. 

Comparative Toxicity Assessment of Triclosan Alone and in an Antibacterial Hand Soap
Jennifer Peyton
Students’ Majors: Biology & Toxicology
Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Doug Dawson, Biology/Toxicology

Triclosan, an antibacterial ingredient used in many household soaps and oral care products, has been shown to alter hormone regulation in animals and may contribute to development of antibiotic-resistance in bacteria. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is currently reviewing triclosan to determine if it provides a health benefit to humans that outweighs any negative effects. For this study, seven concentrations of a consumer hand soap containing triclosan and a solution of just the soap’s active ingredient (irgasan) were applied to luminescent bacteria (Vibrio fisheri). The concentrations, tested in duplicate, were made via serial dilution from stock solutions of 0.02% antibacterial soap and 1 mg/L irgasan. The bacteria give off light as part of their normal metabolism.  When exposed to toxic agents, those light levels become reduced and can be measured using a light detector.  Inhibition of luminescence was measured using the Microtox® detector to determine toxicity after exposure durations of 5, 10, and 15 minutes and 15, 30, and 45 minutes. Actual concentrations of triclosan in the soap product and the irgasan solution were assessed by UV-visible spectrophotometery, to allow direct comparison of the concentration of irgasan in the soap and the irgasan-alone solution.  There was virtually no change in toxicity of either the antibacterial soap or the active ingredient over the exposure durations tested.  Toxicity and analytical chemistry data were then used to determine if the toxicity of the soap was due mostly to the toxicity of irgasan.  

Name-Pronunciation and Character Assumptions
Hannah Neumeyer
Student’s Majors: Psychology & Child and Family Studies
Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Diane Bonfiglio, Psychology

Throughout history, those in the field of psychology have researched the power that the name of a person has on the life of that individual.  The goal of my experiment was to study the name-pronunciation effect, which states that individuals have more positive feelings towards easy-to-pronounce names rather than difficult-to-pronounce names.  Sixty-two participants were randomly assigned to read one of two short narratives.  The narratives were identical except that the main character in one narrative was Mr. Smith, and the main character in the other narrative was Mr. Colquhoun.  Participants then completed a questionnaire asking them to rate the friendliness, reliability, degree of caring, and overall favorability of the main character in their narratives.  The participants reading about Mr. Smith were expected to rank his personality more favorably when compared to the group that read the same narrative about Mr. Colquhoun.  Independent-samples t-test analyses revealed no statistically significant differences in the scores for personality ratings between Mr. Smith and Mr. Colquhoun (all p values > 0.67).  My study did not reveal statistically significant evidence suggesting that a person perceives a character in a story differently based on the difficulty in pronouncing the name of that character.  The name-pronunciation effect may have been diluted in this study because participants were reading silently.  Future research may ask participants to read the narratives aloud in order to more effectively activate this effect.

The effect of αA-crystallin on the Formation of Cataracts in Cloche Mutant Zebrafish
Baley Bernthisel
Student’s Major: Biology
Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Mason Posner, Biology

Alpha crystallins are small heat shock proteins known to prevent protein aggregation, which can cause diseases such as Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s and cataracts, a leading cause of blindness. The protein αA-crystallin is abundant in the lens of the eye and required for its normal function.  Our lab has developed the zebrafish as a model species for investigating αA-crystallin function.  A previous study found that the addition of αA-crystallin can prevent congenital cataracts in a zebrafish cloche mutant strain that produces abnormally low amounts of αA-crystallin. Our present project intends to develop this cloche mutant as a model to examine how various αA-crystallins could inhibit cataract formation. As a first step, we characterized the development of the cloche lens. We anesthetized cloche zebrafish embryos at 2,3,4 and 5 days after egg fertilization, fixed them in agar and sliced through them with a Leica cryostat to produce 10 μm thin sections.  These sections were then stained to show cellular components and imaged with an inverted fluorescent microscope. The results showed increasing irregularity in the lenses at each stage when compared to the wildtype.  We are currently injecting DNA plasmids containing the αA-crystallin gene into cloche mutant single-celled zygotes to increase the amounts of this protein and assess its effect on lens development and cataract.  If successful, we will then be able to test genetically engineered versions of αA-crystallin for their enhanced ability to prevent cataracts.  These future discoveries have the potential to identify possible treatments for this very common form of human blindness.

Extroversion and College Adjustment
Shanna Valenti
Student’s Major: Psychology
Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Mitchell Metzger, Psychology

This study investigated how one’s personality type may be associated with level of stress, specifically while transitioning and adjusting to college life. While many personality characteristics may be related to how one deals with this transition, this study specifically investigated the personality characteristic of extroversion. Past research has shown that individuals with high levels of extroversion as a personality trait often have lower levels of stress than those with low extroversion (Siprelle, Ascough, Detrio, & Horst, 1977). Few studies have been completed measuring the stress of transitioning college students; however, it is expected that students with high extroversion will show less adjustment stress than those with low extroversion. This is expected because extroversion has shown to be a general buffer for stress, regardless of the situation (Shen, Zhou, & Kong, 2010). To establish the subjects’ level of extroversion, a Big Five Personality Inventory (BFPI) was given. Participants were also given the College Adjustment Test (CAT), where positive, negative, homesickness, and overall adjustment scores were measured. Half of participants took the CAT before the personality test, while the other half were given the personality test first. There were no significant correlations between scores on the BFPI and any of the CAT measures (r = -0.07, 0.1, 0.15, and 0.06, respectively; all p-values were > .05). These results indicate no relationship between extroversion and college adjustment, and that both extroverts and introverts can experience successful college adjustment.

Microsatellite Variation in Ohio Populations of Reed Canary grass (Phalaris arundinacea)
Morgan Shultz & Angela Martinson
Students’ Majors: Biology & Environmental Science
Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Soren Brauner, Biology/Toxicology

Reed canarygrass (Phalaris arundinacea) is an invasive grass that forms dense monocultures in wetlands. An earlier study of reed canarygrass at the Ashland University Black Fork Wetland Preserve used ISSRs (Inter-simple sequence repeat) and found high levels of genetic diversity in this population. The establishment of this population was primarily by seed with clonal establishment generally only over 2-3 meters. The presence of significant genetic variation led to the possibility of using DNA markers to study the invasion history of reed canarygrass in different watersheds and regions of Ohio. The current study is using DNA markers (microsatellites) to examine the genetic structure of Ohio populations of reed canarygrass. PCR (polymerase chain reaction) is being used to amplify and analyze samples of DNA collected from fifteen populations from different regions and watersheds. Analysis is underway with microsatellite primers previously used in another study of European and North American populations of reed canarygrass, which will allow comparison to potential source areas. Initial results for six primers revealed limited variation and do not distinguish between the populations sampled. Given the high intra-population diversity observed for ISSRs, it is possible that the initial primers used may not reflect genetic diversity. The study is being continued with additional primer sets to identify genetically variable markers that will better answer questions regarding the invasion history of reed canarygrass in Ohio.

The Art of Strategy
Kees Edwards & Kenny Bogner
Students’ Majors: Computer Science & Computer Art and Graphics Programming (Edwards); Computer Science (Bogner)
Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Mark Nadler, Economics

Our goal is to teach people to think strategically by playing entertaining phone games.  The games we employ are drawn from the formal discipline of game theory used in both the natural and social sciences.  A game is simply a modeling situation where individual agents have to take into account the choices of others when making their choices.  This can occur either consciously or as a result of an evolutionary process.  Our phone app games use 2-D design, color theory, and psychology in order to lead individuals away from the correct answer.  By doing this we are making the game theoretic solution less obvious and forcing the player to replay the games to figure out the best solution.  We have identified a subset of games that we are currently considering for development into phone apps.  The pedagogy we use to teach individuals (i.e. players) to think strategically is induction:  present a player with a gaming situation, repeat the game until its strategic message emerges by proof of successful play, then formalize the game’s insight and demonstrate its wider applicability.

Natural Revelations
Marissa Uhrig
Student’s Majors: Computer Arts & Graphic Programming/Computer Science
Faculty Sponsor: Prof. Jessica Wascak, Art

When gazing upon the open sky, I am driven to contemplate the connection between the sky and its sublime nature. I create my work to encourage the viewer to recognize this connection, and to show the majestic presence that the sky holds. I believe that by manipulating images of the sky, I am able to suggest to the viewer its grandeur and to provoke and inspire a deep emotional response. My artwork is created with intuition. Each piece drives me to its completion; it is within this process that I develop the deeper meaning that each holds. My process begins with a picture that I have taken of the sky, which I then manipulate and abstract through Photoshop. I use stark contrasts and vivid colors to heighten the energy of the image as well as to enhance its emotional impact. I encourage the viewer to leave the world we commonly perceive and to experience the awe-inspiring world in which we live.  

Enter into the Dark Side: A Study of Modern Black Theatre
Benjamin Isaiah Black
Student’s Major: Theatre
Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Teresa Durbin-Ames, Theatre

African-American theatre can be defined as theatrical plays and productions written, produced, and featuring African-Americans. In the twentieth century, African-American playwrights and plays, such as Lorraine Hansberry’s A Raisin in the Sun (1959), Ntozake Shange’s for colored girls who have considered suicide when the rainbow is enuf (1975), and August Wilson’s Fences (1985), thrived on stages all across the United States of America. However, there are not many well-known African-American playwrights or plays from the twenty-first century. It could be because the plots for African-American plays and musicals are much simpler compared to mainstream plays and musicals. It could also be due to the strict control African-American playwrights have over their plays. It could be due to the fact that many of today’s African-American plays only have a limited amount of time to be seen live before they are released on video and DVD. Perhaps it is because many believe that African-American theatre has low budget, poor quality, and it is not relevant. These can all contribute to why twenty-first century African-American theatre is not as familiar to the general American audience.

Isolation and Characterization of Novel Bacteriophages
Mack Reece
Student’s Majors: Biology & Biochemistry
Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Paul Hyman, Biology/Toxicology

Enterococcus faecalis is a gram-positive, non-motile bacterium and is predominately found in the large intestine of humans. This bacterium has emerged as a healthcare associated infection, especially with the use of IV’s and catheters. Typically, antibacterial agents must be used to control the pathogen. Bacteriophages (phages) are viruses that infect bacteria and have proven to show antimicrobial activity to host bacteria, a method called phage therapy. When compared to other antimicrobial activity, bacteriophages have no serious side effects to humans. In this study, two novel bacteriophages that infect E. faecalis were isolated from partially processed sewage from the East Liverpool City, Ohio waste water treatment plant. AUEF2 and AUEF3 were obtained from separate treatment steps. These phages were then passaged in order to isolate and purify of contaminants. Common characterization techniques were performed including lysis timing, adsorption rate, and burst assay. These tests show that both phages grow lytically, breaking open host cells about an hour after infection, releasing progeny bacteriophages. Electron microscopy revealed that AUEF3 has a Myoviridae morphology. AUEF2 is being purified in order to obtain images using electron microscopy. DNA was also isolated from both phages. The genome of AUEF2 was sequenced and a partial sequence showed a total size of 41,157 base pairs in two fragments. Genome sequencing and analysis of AUEF2 is continuing including comparison to other known bacteriophages. The sequencing of AUEF3 is in progress.

Úrsula Buendía: Power and Women in Cien años de soledad by Gabriel García Márquez
Stefanie Stoops
Student’s Majors: French & Spanish
Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Jennifer Rathbun, Foreign Languages

Cien años de soledad by Nobel Prize winner Gabriel Garcia Márquez has been called one of the most important books of the twentieth century. It chronicles 150 years of the misfortunes and demise of the morally corrupt Buendía family. The Buendía family is the heart and soul of their town; the paths they take will be the paths the town takes, so that the decadence and promiscuity of the family lead to the town’s ruin. The author constructs his fictional town of Macondo as a microcosm/ allegory of his native Colombia and Latin America, and, although the story is fictional, it hints at the often violent and doomed history of Latin America. Arguably the most important female character is Úrsula Buendía, the family’s matriarch who sees 6 generations of her family before dying at age 125. In my essay, I study the interaction of power and women through this character. Úrsula, a forceful presence, fulfills the traditional feminine role, but succeeds, sometimes, in having great power in atypical places for a woman of her time. Úrsula, then, becomes a representation of the powerful matriarch of the Latin American family. My essay also studies how the society Márquez has reflected in his creation defines Úrsula by generally confining her to the spheres of piety and domesticity. I will read an abridged version of my essay in Spanish with an English translation provided using PowerPoint.

Frederick Douglass and the Ideals of Manhood
Zachary Hoffman
Student’s Majors: History & Political Science
Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Emily Hess, History/Political Science

Frederick Douglass (1818-95) is widely and rightly remembered as an abolitionist and civil-rights advocate.  His writings on moral philosophy, however, remain relatively obscure.  A freed slave who lived through the institution of slavery, the Civil War, and Reconstruction, Douglass experienced so much human triumph and tragedy that we, in some ways his intellectual and spiritual heirs, have much to learn from his unique perspective on what it takes to be a good individual.  Though Douglass was primarily concerned first with freedom and then with the just incorporation of freed slaves into society, his ideals about how best to live transcend his own era.  Douglass argues that individuals have a duty to push themselves to live up to their full potential. In my talk, I will focus on Douglass’ writings, particularly his speeches “Self-Made Men” and “What the Colored Man Wants,” as well as brief excerpts from his autobiographies.  From my analysis of these writings, I hope to explain why Douglass, a transcendent historical figure who has much to teach us about freedom and equality, should be remembered as well for his lessons in moral philosophy.

“The Almost Chosen People”: Lincoln’s Use of Scripture and Biblical Allusions in the Gettysburg Address and the Second Inaugural
Joseph Griffith
Student’s Majors: Political Science & History
Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Peter Schramm, History/Political Science

Abraham Lincoln, according to Isaac Arnold, his close friend and biographer, “knew the Bible by heart. There was not a clergyman to be found so familiar with it as he.” Some historians, in fact, maintain that it was the only book Lincoln’s impecunious family owned. Throughout his life, he frequently, carefully, and intentionally employed biblical imagery, rhythms, phrases, and themes to communicate his ideas. Together, the Gettysburg Address and the Second Inaugural Address—two of Lincoln’s most significant speeches—asked Americans to see both the possibilities and limits of the nation’s Politics, to ask questions of purpose and theodicy. On the one hand, since America was brought forth with a purpose—somehow connected to its grand charter: that all men are created equal, a proposition now denied—it is the responsibility of the living to dedicate themselves to the unfinished work at hand. On the other hand, the God of Abraham ultimately guides man’s attempts to avoid war; to abolish slavery; to bind up the nation’s wounds; and to understand the right. Politics, directed in one direction, is a futile art when the Lord wills that the world travel in another direction. On November 19th, 1863 and March 4th, 1865, Lincoln provided perhaps the most profound elucidation of the purpose of the American regime in the nation’s history, and he used the medium of biblical imagery to do it. In 1861, Lincoln claimed that America was “God's almost-chosen people.” In light of these speeches, what does he mean?

Scott Joplin’s Treemonisha: Its Significance and Its Failure
Devyn Renninger
Student’s Major: Music Education
Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Christina Fuhrmann, Music

Scott Joplin (1867-1917) is known as the “King of Ragtime Writers.” Although Joplin is best known for his piano rags, such as The Maple Leaf Rag, he also composed two operas. My research focuses on his second opera, Treemonisha. Joplin spent the latter part of his life ardently working on Treemonisha, but the opera failed during Joplin’s lifetime and was not recognized until 1972. The goal of my research is to discuss Treemonisha’s significance and importance to Joplin, the correlations to his own life, and the reasons for its failure. First of all, Treemonisha represents Joplin’s values in education, female leadership, and the progression of the African-American race. Furthermore, the opera contains specific correlations with Joplin’s life, which indicates how deeply connected Joplin was to Treemonisha. Joplin’s father was a former slave and his mother valued Joplin’s education and had him educated by her Caucasian employer. Despite Joplin’s efforts, the opera failed for several reasons, including a weak libretto (text), an unpopular plot, copyright restrictions, and the time period and location in which it was presented. By means of a presented paper and recorded examples, my research will demonstrate how Treemonisha exemplifies Joplin’s values, how it relates to Joplin’s life, and why it was not successful during his lifetime.

The Art of Marketing Yourself in the World of Journalism
Rebecca Ribley
Student’s Major: Digital Media Journalism
Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Gretchen Dworznik, Journalism & Digital Media

In a competitive job market, making yourself stand out among the rest of the applicants is becoming more and more important. This is especially true in the field of journalism where employers receive hundreds of applications on a weekly basis. It is important for the applicant to know how to market themselves using media in a creative way. Through journalism and digital media classes taken on campus, as well as my experience in a fast paced internship at WKYC Channel 3 in Cleveland, I have learned how to market myself. In this presentation I plan on showing the process of putting together a creative and effective demo reel and the strategic choices I made to catch employers’ attention. I will also dive into the design process of creating a professional, yet memorable, website that I am using to feature my personality and work in an artistic format. Lastly, I will provide attendees with a look at my social media websites where I have begun to post stories to showcase my ability to work in all forms of media. 

The Effects of Aggressive Cues on the Perception of Aggression
Samantha Diemer
Student’s Majors: Psychology & Criminal Justice
Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Diane Bonfiglio, Psychology

Previous research on perceived aggression has shown aggressive cues, such as the presence of a gun, make a person more likely to view others as more aggressive. The current experiment was designed to measure the effects of perception of aggression on a jury. In this study, sixty participants were randomly assigned to either the weapon group or the non-weapon group. Participants were placed in a jury-like situation in which they were given the opportunity to judge the defendant’s aggression and to decide if they would convict the defendant. First, participants were asked to read a court transcript that included details about the crime. When the participants finished reading the transcript, they were then given a binder of evidence which contained pictures of the evidence. Both groups of participants were given the same binder except the weapon group binder contained a picture of a gun while the non-weapon group binder contained a picture of a fingerprint. After reviewing the evidence, participants were given a questionnaire measuring the perceived aggression of the defendant. Analyses revealed that participants in the weapon group assigned a mean perceived aggression score of 4.78 (SD =. 604) to the defendant. Participants in the non-weapon group assigned a mean perceived aggression score of 4.61 (SD = .679) to the defendant. The independent samples t-test of these data confirmed these results are not significant, t(57) = 1.040, p = .303. Based on these results, the presence of a weapon did not affect perceived aggression in a jury-like situation.

Latin America: The Impact of Spanish Colonial Rule
Johanna Mateo
Student’s Majors: Political Science & History
Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Christopher Burkett, History/Political Science

The struggles and obstacles faced by Latin American countries are often explained through the theory of Marxism.  This interpretation, applied to problems in Latin America, assumes that the roots of those problems are of economic origins.  I will attempt to explain the origins of disadvantage in Latin American countries by linking their modern struggles to their colonial experiences under the Spanish dominion. I will explain how the colonial origins under the Spanish dominion are primarily responsible for Latin American countries’ struggle to create republican governments. This talk will explore the theory that the Spanish dominion left political institutions, ideas, and practices that were incompatible with free republics or confederacies. In this way, the current political struggles faced by Latin American countries are the result of those malign political ideals left by the Spanish dominion.

Español, Ehpañol or Eshpañol? A Dialectal Study of Spanish Across Four Countries
Miriah Keller
Student’s Major: PK-12 Spanish Education
Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Barbara Schmidt-Rinehart, Foreign Languages

There are twenty countries in the world with Spanish as an official language not including the U.S., which is home to Spanish-speakers from all around the world. My interest in dialectology began first in phonetics class and later through my study abroad experiences. To investigate the question of “How does Spanish differ from one Spanish-speaking country to another?” I collected speech samples from the three countries I have traveled to during my four years at Ashland: Spain, Costa Rica, and the Dominican Republic. I also chose to include Mexico because of its relevance in the U.S. I selected three salient phonemes, /s/, /x/ and /r/, which vary across dialects. I took samples from each country in two formats: interviews with questions planned ahead of time and free conversation. I recorded between five to ten minutes on my phone, wrote a partial transcription (of about one to two minutes), and later the phonetic transcription. I highlighted the differences between the phonemes from each selected sample, with two to five samples from each country. Using my results, I compared them to what should be expected from each country according to the literature on phonetic variations. Through my research I found that the analysis of the speech samples from Costa Rica and Dominican Republic followed general dialectal tendencies. The pronunciation of the other speakers, however, revealed a sporadic addition of /s/ in Mexico and the absence of the exclusive use of interdental  /s/ in southern Spain, deviations from the expected linguistic phenomena.

“Being There:” Cormac McCarthy’s Fatherhood
Spencer Dolezal
Student’s Major: Integrated Language Arts Education
Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Dan Lehman, English

Cormac McCarthy, one of the most important living American writers, often weaves complex issues involving fatherhood into many of his violent and beautiful plots. In The Road, the father provides for his son in the midst of an apocalyptic setting. McCarthy uses this father character to show the reader that a good father provides both emotional and financial support for his child and family. In contrast, Child of God represents the lasting effects of bad fatherhood and abandonment in a child’s life. The main character Lester Ballard is a cautionary example, a child abandoned by his father and grown into young adulthood.  The reader witnesses him murdering and practicing necrophilia in the Tennessee hill country.  Using these novels, this study determines that McCarthy views involved fathers as good and absent fathers as bad. This study then places McCarthy’s novels in the context of David Blankenhorn’s sociological theories in his book, Fatherless America.  This work focuses on 1990s America and the effects of fatherhood on children and families to show that involved fathers are important for children to learn how to become morally sound and mature individuals, while fatherlessness can contribute to faulty child development and moral issues in adulthood. Blankenhorn’s work validates McCarthy’s view of fatherhood that an involved father is integral to a child and that fatherlessness can cause serious issues in a child’s moral development. By representing involved fathers positively and absent fathers negatively, McCarthy’s novels provide both models and cautionary tales for male behavior in our society.

Sub-rectangles and Super-rectangles: Creation and Properties
Stacee King
Student’s Majors: Mathematics & Integrated Mathematics
Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Christopher Swanson, Mathematics

Given a rectangle and a ratio of two natural numbers p and q, each side of the rectangle is marked with a point that separates the side into two parts with lengths in ratio p to q. When these points are connected they form a new rectangle inside the original, called a sub-rectangle. This process can be repeated infinitely, creating an infinite sequence of sub rectangles. We are interested in determining if this process ultimately results in a limiting sub-rectangle or a single point. The procedure to create a sub-rectangle can be altered to create what is called a super-rectangle, a new rectangle outside of the original, simply by using a ratio of integers –p and q. Each side of the rectangle is extended outward so that the original corner marks the point that separates the new side into two parts with lengths in ratio p to q, connecting the new exterior points results in a super-rectangle. When dealing with super-rectangles we are again interested in what happens when the process is repeated infinitely. We will use matrices and limits to determine if each of the processes will result in a limiting sub-rectangle or limiting super-rectangle or if each process has no limit.

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