The following undergraduates and faculty mentors will be awarded with funding support to partner on collaborative research projects during the summer and upcoming academic year. Funding support comes from the VCU Undergraduate Research Program, the Division of Community Engagement, the Wright Center for Clinical and Translational Research, the Institute for Inquiry Inclusion and Innovation, the Rice Rivers Center, the Dept. of Biology, and the VCU School of Social Work.
Many thanks to our funding partners for their support of undergraduate research and creative scholarship at VCU. And congratulations to our 2019-2020 VCU Undergraduate Research Fellows, with utmost gratitude to our faculty mentors!
Undergraduate Research and Creative Scholarship Summer Fellowship – Awardees
Carolyne Biondi, with Drs Lisa Brown and Nancy Jallo, School of Nursing: An Inside Look in the Transition from the NICU to Home
Kyla Bosh, with Dr. David Cohen, Dept. of Biomedical Engineering, College of Engineering: Examination of Additively Manufactured 3-D Constructs Possessing Complex Geometry
Alan Branigan, with Dr. MaryAnne Collinson, Dept. of Chemistry, College of Humanities and Sciences: Fabrication of Nanoporous Gold Electrodes
Heidi Brightman, College of Health Professions, Clinical Laboratory Sciences, with Dr. Carl Wolf, Dept. of Pathology, School of Medicine: Evaluating Matrix Effects of Beverages on Tetrahydrocannabinol and Cannabidiol Measurement Using Liquid Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry
Annemarie Carver, Dept. of Biology, with Dr. Rita Shiang, Dept. of Human and Molecular Genetics, VCU Health: Effects of Alterations of the PNPT-1 Gene in C. elegans
Brigid Donahue, Dept. of Communication Arts, VCUArts, with Dr. Cristina Stanciu, Dept. of English, College of Humanities and Sciences: Immigration in American Political Cartoons
Mark Edmunds, with Dr. Derek Prosser, Dept. of Biology, College of Humanities and Sciences: Analysis of a Clathrin-independent Endocytic Pathway using Yeast as a model organism* additional funding from the Dept. of Biology: Undergraduate Research Award.
Saskia Engle, with Dr. Christopher Kelly, Dept. of Chemistry, College of Humanities and Sciences: Photoredox Catalysis Enables Access to an Amide Isostere
Benjamin Feliciano, with Dr. Sonali Gulati, Dept of Film, VCUArts: Hotline Dating; a Queer Short Film
Francys Fortes, with Dr. Cristina Stanciu, Dept. of English, College of Humanities and Sciences: Medicalized Nativism: Immigrant Health and Literature
Jhanys Gardner, with Dr. Christopher Saladino, Dept. of Political Science, College of Humanities and Sciences: Expanding on Current Early Warning Systems in Genocide Studies: Pairing Prevention with Mitigation and Policy
Laura Griffith, Dept. of Psychology, with Dr. Jason Chow, Dept. of Counseling and Special Education, School of Education: Language Skills of Children and Youth with Schizophrenia: A Meta-Analysis
Gabrielle Gurdin, with Dr. Bridget McInnes, Dept. of Computer Science, College of Engineering: Sentiment Analysis of Drug Reviews
Amulya Kotha, with Dr. Amanda Dickinson, Dept. of Biology, College of Humanities and Sciences: How does ECIG exposure affect jaw development?* additional funding from the Dept. of Biology: Undergraduate Research Award.
Xavier Moore, Dept. of Chemistry, with Dr. Zheng Fu, Dept. of Human and Molecular Genetics, VCU Health: Polo-Like Kinase 1 Mediated Regulation of Androgen Receptor: Potential Role in the Development of Castration Resistant Prostate Cancer
Dane Nielson, with Dr. Joshua Cohen, Dept. of Biomedical Engineering, College of Engineering: Using MircoRNAs 122 and 451 to Prevent Osteoarthritis
Ryan Pobiak, Dept. of Biology, with Dr. Lesley Bulluck, Center for Environmental Studies, VCU Life Sciences: The effects of female plumage quality, age, and clutch size on incubation effort in a monogamous songbird
Russell Simmers, Dept. of Physics, with Dr. Qingguo Xu, School of Pharmacy: Single Injection of Fenofibrate-loaded Nanoparticles for Treatment of Diabetic Retinopathy
Christopher-Zoe Symeonides, Dept. of Sculpture, with Dr. Wesley Taylor, Depts of Graphic Design and Art Foundation VCUArts: “Home is Where the Art is”
Tristen Taggart, with Dr. Bethany Coston, Dept. of Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies, College of Humanities and Sciences: “Bodies of Trespass: Ableist Migration Discourse, Respectable Violence, and Queer(ed) Survival at the U.S.-Mexico Border.”
Gina Tuzzolo, with Dr. Ryan Garten, Dept. of Kinesiology and Health Sciences, College of Humanities and Sciences: Investigating the Impact of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder on Peripheral Vascular Function
Jorge Vargas, with Dr. Bridget McInnes, Dept. of Computer Science, College of Engineering: A Nightmare for Reinforcement Learning: Training Agents to Assist Humans
Gabriella Vazquez, with Dr. Rosalie Corona, Dept. of Psychology, College of Humanities and Sciences: Parent-Child Attachment as a Predictor of Depression Symptoms and Prosocial Behavior in African American Families
Parker Webster, with Dr. Patricia Kinser, Dept. of Family & Community Health Nursing, School of Nursing: Identifying Themes among the Way Women with Substance Use Disorder Describe the Most Traumatic Event in their Lives
Cara Weidinger, with Dr. Shelly Orr, Dept. of Adult Health and Nursing Systems, School of Nursing: An Analysis of Biomarkers of Pain and their Implications for Effective Management of Dying Patients in the ICU
Undergraduate Fellowship for Clinical and Translational Research – Awardees
Sam Cole, with Dr. Joao Soares, Dept of Mechanical and Nuclear Engineering, College of Engineering: Bioreactors for Mechanical Training of Engineered Tissues
Yasmina Zeineddine, with Dr. Carrie Peterson, Dept. of Biomedical Engineering, College of Engineering: Effect of onset age of spinal cord injury on shoulder contact forces during wheelchair propulsion
Undergraduate Fellowship for Community Engaged Research – Awardees
Kaitlyn Novalski, with Dr. Andrea Simonelli, Dept. of Political Science, College of Humanities and Sciences: Perceptions and understandings of climate change, migration, and human security in the Pacific
Alisha Robinson, School of Social Work, with Dr. Erin Brown, VCU ASPiRE: Strengthening Student Engagement in Alternative Schools through Research* additional funding from the School of Social Work: BSW Research Award.
Ris Rodina, with Dr. Bethany Coston, Dept. of Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies, College of Humanities and Sciences: LGBTQ+ Mental Health and Nature-Based Healing
Undergraduate Research Fellowship for Inquiry, Inclusion and Innovation – Awardees
Keosha Haskins, Dept. of Biology, with Dr. Shelby McDonald, School of Social Work: An Inter-sectional analysis of stress, social support, and mental health among LGBTQIA+ young people
Desiree Longmire, with Dr. Christine Booker, Dept. of Kinesiology and Health Science, College of Humanities and Sciences: The Use of Physician Assistants for Health and Wellness in Aging Populations
Damian Massie, with Dr. Sonali Gulati, Dept. of Photography and Film, VCUArts: Classical-inspired Trans Male Paintings
Castiel Moore, Dept. of Sociology, with Dr. Claire Kimberly, VCU Health: Sexual Discomfort In The Transgender Community
Ruthann Tesfaye, School of World Studies, with Dr. Susan Bodnar-Deren, Dept. of Sociology, College of Humanities and Sciences: Us too – Narrowing the Maternal Mortality Rates of Black Women in the United States
Rice Rivers Center Undergraduate Research Scholarship – Awardees
Brendan Finnie, Dept. of Chemical Engineering, College of Engineering, with Dr. Rodney Dyer, Center for Environmental Studies, VCU Life Sciences: Physiology as a Mechanism Driving Early Fitness Response in Cornus florida
Chelsey Johnson, with Dr. Arif Sikder, Center for Environmental Studies, VCU Life Sciences: An Assessment of the Active and Legacy Pollution of the Coal Terminal in Norfolk, Virginia.