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Poster Abstracts

Friday, April 20 1 - 4PM - LBJ Ballroom

Poster Session

Below is a list of poster abstracts that will be presented at this year's Undergraduate Research Conference. Please note that posters must be 42" x 36".

Second Presenter Co-Presenter Third Presenter Title Abstract
Aina, Deola

Computational Fluid Dynamics Study of an Atmospheric Water Generator The goal of this project is to use Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) to study an Atmospheric Water Generator (AWG) to aid the development of an optimal AWG configuration. The AWG utilizes a thermoelectric cooler (or Peltier) which is a device that when powered, transfers heat from one surface of the device to the other. This results in a very hot side and a very cold side. Under the right atmospheric conditions (dry bulb temperature and humidity), the cooling of the Peltier device allows humid air to be converted into moisture.

CFD is utilized to analyze the heat exchange between all components of an AWG assembly. The assembly consists of a condensation plate, a Peltier device beneath the condensation plate, a single heat sink to draw heat away from the Peltier, and a fan to cool the heat sink. A CAD model of the water generator is created, and flow simulation is conducted on the AWG assembly. CFD is used to solve for the surface temperature of the condensation plate, heat dissipation from the thermoelectric cooler to the heat sink, and the rate of cooling that the fan provides to the heat sink. Currently, a single AWG assembly is being analyzed using CFD. Future progression of the study will be to model a larger system consisting of multiple AWG units to study the most effective method of cooling all the heat sinks so as optimize the efficiency of the Peltier.

Alviso, Elizabeth
Riley, Horner
Preventing Failure and Catastrophe in Precision Farming System Utilizing Failure Modes and Effects Analysis (FMEA) The goal of the evergreen project is to create a sustainable hydroponic system that is independent of utilities. Hydroponic farming is a method which replicates the natural processes for harvesting crops without soil. Sunlight, ventilation, climate stability, room to grow, and life-sustaining nutrients are a few of the thing needed to replicate this process. Benefits of soilless farming include reliable mass production, faster turnover rates for crops due to climate-controlled environment, and the utilization of technology to automate natural processes. Automation of this process will limit human control thus drastically reducing labor cost while increasing the importance for the automation to execute properly. Failure to do so could lead to major catastrophe potentially affecting profit margins, plant life or even human life. By performing a failure modes and effects analysis (FMEA) the goal is to prevent such risks before they occur. FMEA is a systematic tool that identifies how a product or process might fail, the effects and causes of such failure, and the likelihood of detection of failure. Industries such as Aerospace and automobile manufactures use this method for determining prospective failure; encouraging companies to redesign in consideration of these factors. By reducing risk of failure, we can ensure that the customer will have fresh produce like clockwork.
Anderson, Blaine

A Study of Domestic Abuse and Legal Recourse for Spanish Women The purpose of this research is to take an in-depth look at the issue of domestic abuse throughout the centuries of Spain. It aims to explore the change in legal recourse for Spanish women while attempting to answer the question: "Why is domestic abuse still so prevalent in modern day society, despite the legal overhaul for victims?" I use the story "La fuerza del amor" (The Power of Love), written by early 17th century feminist writer María de Zayas y Sotomayor, to explain the options given to women seeking to escape abusive relationships in the 1600s. Then a comparison is done on statistics of occurrence of domestic abuse in present-day Spain and research over return-to-abuser rates of victims. The conclusion is that despite Spanish women having the sufficient legal remedies needed to escape abusive

relationships, the psychology, culture, and human nature behind abuse is still very much the same.
Baucum, Nicole

Administration of Corticosteroids Prior To Preterm Delivery Background: Premature delivery is a significant problem around the world with great implications to these infant’s respiratory development. Premature infants do not make sufficient amounts of surfactant, which lowers the surface tension of the alveoli and aids in the exchange of gases within the lungs. This leads to a high incidence of Respiratory Distress Syndrome (RDS). Would the administration of Antenatal Corticosteroids (ACS) reduce the risk of RDS in these infants? Methods: This literature review was conducted by reviewing previous research and gathering all the data to provide a full picture of the use of ACS and their implications on RDS. Discussion: ACS have been used for many years to prevent and reduce the severity of RDS. The optimal timing of administration is 24 hours to 7 days, with a full reversal of benefits after 7 to 14 days. Repeat courses of ACS have been studied after the 7 days, but their safety and the risks associated with it are still under investigation. Conclusion: It can be concluded that when ACS are used at least 24 hours prior to delivery and in less than 7 days, there is a substantial reduction in the incidence and severity of RDS.
Boldt, Clint

X-Ray Sources from the Whirlpool Galaxy The Whirlpool Galaxy (M51) is an on-face spiral galaxy 23 million light years away host to many X-ray sources. We used data from the Chandra X-ray Observatory to detect and analyze the X-ray source population in M51. We will present our preliminary results, including color-color diagrams used to categorize the X-ray sources and distinguish between low mass X-ray binaries (LMXBs), high mass X-ray binaries (HMXBs), and Thermal supernova remnants (Thermal SNRs).
Boynton, Hayley
Hannah Brown,
Elizabeth Wrightsman, Juan Aguliar, John Rayha,

Edges, and Vertices, and Paths! Oh, my! - Hamiltonicity of Unbalanced Tripartite Graphs. There’s no graph like a Hamiltonian graph! A graph with a path that travels through every vertex exactly once and returns to the starting vertex is a Hamiltonian graph. In 1952, Dirac proved that for a graph to be Hamiltonian, it is sufficient that every vertex neighbors at least half of the remaining vertices. This result paved the way for the study of hamiltonicity in graphs. Improvements of Dirac's result are known in balanced multipartite graphs, i.e. graphs whose vertices can be split into sets of equal size, and no edge joins two vertices in the same set. All former results from Dirac, Ore, and others applied to balanced multipartite graphs. A tripartite graph is a multipartite graph in which the vertices are partitioned into three independent sets, and is unbalanced when each of the three sets do not have the same number of vertices. We extend preceding results and present sufficient conditions for determining hamiltonicity of unbalanced tripartite graphs. Hamiltonicity of tripartite graphs has many applications such as optimizing neural networks, enhancing municipal services, configuring data systems and computer network topology.
Brashear, Brittany

Deep Inhalation Breath Holds: Are They Useful? This paper reviews the use of DIBH (Deep Inhalation Breath Holds) in radiation therapy. The purpose of this paper is to get a better understanding of how the heart moves during DIBH. This paper reviews multiple studies that have been done on DIBH. By using DIBH the heart receives considerably less dose during a radiation treatment than if DIBH is not used.
Brinker, Daniel
Lonvis Naulls, Solomon Enobabor, Jonithan Pilgrim,
Tyler Tredaway,

Social and Epidemiological Assessment of Calhoun County, Texas Introduction. This project was a community health needs assessment of Calhoun County, Texas featuring a comparative analysis with four regions: Texas; Public Health Region 8; the United States; and Port Lavaca, Texas. This needs assessment included social and epidemiological assessments, following the first two phases of the PRECEDE‐PROCEED program planning framework. The purpose of this study was to identify priority health needs for Calhoun County residents. Methods. The social assessment evaluated demographic, socio‐economic, and quality of life indicators. The epidemiological assessment assessed natality, mortality, morbidity, and trauma indicators. Data were collected from state and federal databases as percentages, age-adjusted rates, and crude rates. Comparative analyses were conducted to determine the percent differences among the comparative regions for each category. Results. The comparative analysis showed that Calhoun County compared closely to Texas in heart disease mortality, with less than a one percent difference. Percent differences of teen pregnancy (60%), cancer (14%), and the category of all other diseases (14%) revealed disproportionality worse outcomes for Calhoun County compared to Texas counterparts. Discussion. The priority matrix that the priority health concern for Calhoun County was heart disease. Data from the Texas Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System revealed those at most risk for heart disease, which narrowed the subpopulation for the intervention to Hispanics between 30-45 years of age. The next step recommended is the third phase in the PRECEDE‐PROCEED program planning framework, the Behavioral and Environmental Diagnosis.
Brock, Will

Jazz Influences on Rock Music in the 1950s: Chuck Berry and Elvis Presley Will Brock

Jazz Influence on Rock Music in the 1950s: Chuck Berry and Elvis Presley

Although jazz music’s influence on pop culture and popular music has been explored previously, few have focused specifically on jazz’s influence on the early rock music that turned the music scene in the mid-1950s upside down. This poster will present analyses of portions of the music and interviews of Chuck Berry and Elvis Presley to determine what jazz influence lies in early rock music. Both Berry and Presley show a jazz background to their music, alongside rhythm and blues and country influences.


“Chuck Berry: Biography.”, A&E Television Networks,

“Elvis Presley Biography : A Comprehensive History of Elvis Presley's Dynamic Life.” Elvis Australia, 1 Jan. 2016,

Palmer, Robert. “The 50s: A Decade of Music That Changed the World.” Rolling Stone, Rolling Stone, 25 Oct. 2017,

Garcia-Navarro, Lourdes, and Chuck Granata. “Record Producer Chuck Granata Remembers Chuck Berry.” National Public Radio, National Public Radio, Inc., 19 Mar. 2017. Accessed 19 February 2018.

Brown, Dorian

The Effectiveness of Dual Bronchodilator Therapy in COPD Patients Background: Dual bronchodilation in critical COPD patients is a course of treatment based on its effectiveness in optimizing bronchodilation. The long-acting β2 agonists and long-acting muscarinic antagonists are the hallmark pharmacological classes in the therapy for COPD patients. The use of a combination of the two demonstrates a greater significance in the functionality of the lung. Methods: Data supporting this research stemmed from comparing studies between classes of drugs effectiveness and outcomes based upon exacerbation rates, lung function testing and health related quality of living. Results: Based on the outcomes of the literature review, the data reported examined the treatment of a COPD exacerbation, the clinical use of dual bronchodilators and the spirometry values after long-term use when comparing to post exacerbation results. Conclusion: The effectiveness of dual bronchodilation therapy reigned supreme over other monotherapies and LABA/ICS combination drugs. Olodaterol/Tiotropium represents a dual bronchodilator that after being given once daily is shown to give additional improvements in lung function once given together, reduces exacerbations, decrease dyspnea and improve quality of life.
Brune, Cassidy

The role of Insurance in a patient’s treatment plan and how it affects their overall treatment outcome This research is to bring to light the ways that health insurance companies can control the process and overall outcome of cancer patients. The methods used to compile data for this research paper were online articles and medical journal entries. In conclusion of extensive research over this topic, it was discovered that, health insurance companies are starting to have effects on the timeline and treatment success rate of cancer patients in oncology departments. There are many ways that health insurance companies can affect the process that cancer patients go through during their search for the best treatment plan for their cancer diagnosis.
Bryant, Allie

Photon Volumetric Modulated Arc Therapy Versus Intensity Modulated Proton Therapy When Treating Brain Tumors This paper discusses two radiation therapy treatment modalities for brain tumors – photon arc therapy and proton therapy. In examining these two specialized treatment choices, this paper reviews the literature regarding what these treatment modalities are, the differences between the two, if there are any clinical advantages for one treatment over the other, how each effects the patient – both biologically and physically, and the long-term outcome for the patient’s future.
Bussell, Alyssa
Sterling Woodcox,
Jasmine Ortiz,
Garrett Mitchell,
Thomas Alford,
Domingo Medina

Prioritizing Health Needs in Midland County: The Need to Reduce Motor Vehicle Accidents Introduction:

The purpose of this project was to conduct an overall health-based needs assessment for Midland County, Texas. This needs assessment identified public health concerns and determined how the issues impact the quality of life in Midland County.


Secondary sources of social and epidemiological data were analyzed to determine the primary issues impacting overall health and quality of life in Midland County. This assessment explored morbidity and mortality rates while utilizing the PRECEDE-PROCEED Model as a framework. Sources for data collection include Healthy People 2020, Texas Department of State Health Services, U.S. Census Bureau, and Data U.S.A. A prioritization matrix was created to categorize the health issues based on changeability and importance.


Rates per 100,000 population indicated issues with the following health conditions: chlamydia at 530.9 (Texas= 494.4), Varicella at 16.4 (Texas= 7.1), and Alzheimer’s disease at 39.5 (Texas= 31.1). Additionally, the county has experienced high rates of motor vehicle accident mortality (48.8) compared to Texas (37.1). Among males, the unintentional motor vehicle accident injury rate was 40.4 compared to 13.6 for the state of Texas. Mortality related to alcohol impaired driving in the county has increased from 21% in 2012 to 39% in 2015.


Motor vehicle accident rates were both elevated and increasing. Addressing this public health issue is a priority for Midland County as the community seeks to improve overall quality of life for residents.

Buysman, Lara

Different Imaging in Radiation Oncology: The Benefits and Purpose of Image Guided Radiation Therapy The practice of imaging is widely used around radiation oncology clinics. The purpose of this paper is to explain how imaging is being used inside and outside of the treatment room and to discuss the direct relationship it has in the radiotherapy planning process. Today, linear accelerators have computed tomography (CT) capabilities to provide the opportunity for tighter field margins and more precise treatments. This research will also exemplify the benefits of imaging for both prostate and liver cancer. Image guided radiation therapy (IGRT) allows for the correction of positional set-up errors and to provide better and more accurate care for patients.
Cantu, Chris

A Race to the Top The Grammys are held to the highest esteem in the music industry. Mainstream music artists aspire to line their careers with accolades from Music's Biggest Night. Winners are voted on by a committee of peers. Yet, do the critics have an implicit bias when it comes to nominating artists within specific categories? Sociological research suggests that much of cultural influence comes from the decisions made at the "top" of society that eventually trickles down to the masses (Shepard & Sutcliffe, 2018). With that idea in mind, the idea that music critics have the ability to shape racial stereotypes seems to hold significant weight. By tracking Grammy winners from the past decade, this poster will analyze the correlation of artists of color and the categories they are typically nominated for. For example, while African-Americans typically flood the R&B and hip-hop categories, they are virtually nonexistent in pop or country categories. By extension, white artists, whether Caucasian or white-passing Latinos, seem to rarely break into the R&B and hip-hop categories. While these biases aren't necessarily harmful to the artists nominated at these award shows, it creates challenges for artists who break from their stereotype, leaving their artistic expression limited. While there has been research on specific representation of race in the Grammys, especially for African-Americans (Faraji, 2016), virtually no research has been done on the inhibiting effects of the Recording Academy itself. This poster intends to begin the conversation of the top-down effects of the music industry on cultural perception of race.


Shepherd, Dean A. and Kathleen M. Sutcliffe. "Inductive Top-Down Theorizing: A Source of New Theories of Organization." Academy of Management Review, vol. 36, no. 2, Apr. 2011, pp. 361-380.

Faraji, Salim1,2, "Kendrick Lamar's Grammy Performance Points to a Simple Truth, #Black Lives Matter When Africa Matters." Journal of Pan African Studies, vol. 9, no. 2, Apr. 2016, pp. 3-6.

Cervantez, John

Is Robinson Crusoe's Natural State Hobbesian or Lockean? In Robinson Crusoe, Daniel Defoe tells a story about a man (Crusoe) who is stranded on an island by himself. This means that he has escaped society and his responsibilities entirely. At this point, most would consider Crusoe to be in the “Natural State.” Thus, one might ask if Crusoe’s natural state more “Hobbesian” or “Lockean”? In other words, whose idea of a “Natural State” does Crusoe fall under the most; Thomas Hobbes’ or John Locke’s? Some might argue that he falls more under Locke because of Crusoe’s Emphasis on individualism in the beginning. Otherwise speaking he had to learn how to preserve himself at all costs. Others argue that Crusoe falls under Hobbes’ more. This is because Crusoe eventually finds more people on the island. When the number of people on the island increases, conflicts arise. This relates to Hobbes’ because he believed that humans would immediately betray each other and live for their own self-interest. Though there are a lot of other points to be argued. One must also recognize how much Crusoe falls under both philosopher’s ideas.
Chamberlain, Alec
Deola Aina, Riley Horner

NASA Digital Badging for Additive Manufacturing With advancing technologies, traditional textbook and classroom style of teaching is not always the best way to convey new information. The NASA STEM Educator Professional Development Collaborative (EDPC) digital badge programs facilitates students and teachers with innovative methods and models to quickly gain new skills. NASA describes digital badging as "an online professional development process for certifying learning. The NASA STEM EPDC Digital Badging System allows selection from a wide variety of STEM topics, engage in exciting learning opportunities, demonstrate mastery of the topic, and receive a badge of accomplishment for work that can be shared with others".

This badge utilizes Next Generation Science Standard (NGSS) lesson plans within a Biological Sciences Curriculum Study (BSCS) 5E framework. This structure summarizes large amounts of information into easily understood and applicable concepts using interactive lessons.

This method is being applied to create a certification badge for additive manufacturing. Additive Manufacturing is a broad STEM discipline; by introducing and demonstrating the skills needed basic concepts can be easily portrayed through a 3-hour course. Upon completion, those certified will be able to demonstrate and teach the ideas outlined in the course using resources provided.
Chamberlain, Alec Mohamed Sghari
Zaid Almusaid Additive Manufacturing Assisting Thermoacoustic Refrigeration Traditional refrigeration systems have historically provided a cheap and effective method of cooling by using mechanically compressed refrigerants. While cheaper compared to alternative methods, these refrigerants are harmful to the environment and can make systems more maintenance complicated. Due to increasing concern for the environment, other methods of cooling are being explored to substitute traditional refrigerator. One alternative is a Thermoacoustic refrigerator (TAR), which requires no harmful refrigerants and much easier to maintain. However, complexities with components have made TAR’s traditionally expensive to implement.

Additive Manufacturing (AM) provides a solution. While components with complex geometry can be complicated to manufacture using traditional subtractive methods, AM can readily create these complex shapes with minimal waste. Further, these components are expensive to produce in such limited quantities due to the level of preparation required for subtractive manufacturing. However, the setup for 3D printing remains largely unchanged between productions of two completely different designs. This allows Rapid Prototypes to be cheaply developed, tested, and redesigned in a relatively short time frame.

These advantages are explored by applying AM, specifically in the design and fabrication of components for a TAR. Using a variety of 3D printing methods and materials, two key components of the TAR were fabricated using AM. Multiple setups were assembled and tested using a Wave Generator and an oscilloscope. The performance of components as well as compatibility was evaluated based on dimensional accuracy. While AM successfully produced dimensionally accurate components, further materials should be explored for more desirable characteristics.

Chang, Daphne

"Hound Dog" - The Exploitation of Black Musicians Abstract

The "King of Rock and Roll", Elvis Presley, was known for many of his hits throughout the years. However, most people are unaware that his most well-known hit, "Hound Dog", was a cover of a song from Black Artist Big Mama Thornton. Throughout his career, Elvis continued to use music and dance moves from black artists, resulting in profit and fame. This trend of exploitation of Black musicians by White artists propelled a culture of injustice and profiteering that has continued into the present-day music industry. There have been several studies published about cultural appropriation of Black music (Ziff 1997), Black musicians in rock and roll (Brinkley 2009), and the impact this song had on Big Mama Thornton in her musical career (Spörke 2014). The following questions will be answered on the proposed poster: Has this trend of popular musicians covering lesser-known musicians affected musical and popular culture in modern society? Where is the line drawn between cultural appropriation of Black music and "Blue-eyed Soul?" Original contributions of this research include: comparing the aspects of music borrowing during the time of rock and roll with contemporary music; comparing select artists' popularity and success during their early works against more recent songs, in which they incorporate styles generally found in African-American music. In summary, the poster deals with the exploitation of black musicians, which has become normalized in today's society and has incited a trend of fetishizing and profiting from black culture.


Brinkley, Alan. American history. a survey. McGraw-Hill, 2009.

Leiber, Jerry. et al. Hound Dog: The Leiber and Stoller Autobiography. Simon & Schuster, 2009.

Rodriquez, Jason. "Color-Blind Ideology and the Cultural Appropriation of Hip-Hop." Journal of Contemporary Ethnography, vol. 35, no. 6, 2006, pp. 645-668.

Spörke, Michael. Big Mama Thornton: The Life and Music. McFarland & Company, 2014.

Swindell, Warren C. "Black Musicians' Struggle for Subsistence." Onetwothreefour: A Rock 'N' Roll Quarterly, vol. 3, Fall, pp. 7-38.

Ziff, Bruce H., and Pratima V. Rao. Borrowed power: essays on cultural appropriation. Rutgers University Press, 1997.

Corrigan, Connor

Live Animals in Global Commodity Trade Commodity trade is the exchange of objects that have value in themselves such as food products and rare minerals. The focus of this project is what impacts the net trade amount in live animals. To find this information I will be using logistic regression with a dataset of commodity trade statistics in order to predict the trade of livestock.
Delgado, Chelsea
Shamarr Williams,
Allison Maker, Christian Chase

Community Health Needs Assessment for Stephens County, Texas Introduction. This research project presents a community health needs assessment for Stephens County, Texas, using Phases 1 and 2 of the PRECEDE-PROCEED program planning model. Phase 1 was a social assessment evaluating demographic factors, socioeconomic characteristics, and quality of life indicators. Phase 2 was an epidemiological assessment assessing natality, mortality, morbidity, and trauma. The purpose of this project was to identify and prioritize the community health needs of Stephens County, Texas. Method. Data were collected using government owned databases for Stephens County, The State of Texas, United States, non-metropolitan, and Public Health Region 2. Results. Comparative analysis revealed three priority health conditions in Stephens County. The incidences of diabetes mellitus (168% proportionately greater than Texas), heart disease (40% proportionately greater than Texas), and obesity for males (34.7% proportionately greater than PHR2/3). Discussion. Based on the results for Stephens County, Texas, the major health concern for both the social and epidemiological assessment was obesity. A program logic model will be created to implement a health program to reduce the rate of obesity and diagnose the contributing factors for this concern.

Dyer, Kristin

Activity patterns of Hantavirus infected cotton rats Hantaviruses are zoonotic pathogens maintained in rodent reservoir hosts, including cotton rats (Sigmodon hispidus). Studies have suggested that hantaviruses may increase host aggression, thus facilitating horizontal transmission, thought to occur via agonistic interactions. Our goal was to quantify cotton rat behavior within a closed environment to determine if hantavirus infection corresponded to a change in diel use patterns. Cotton rats of known infection status were uniquely marked to allow for identification, then released into outdoor enclosures. Each enclosure was equipped with 12 motion sensing cameras that recorded all activity. We conducted 4 trials, 5 nights each, with 2 adult male rodents per enclosure (one Hantavirus-positive and one uninfected). Upon trial completion, we reviewed camera video data to tally individual activity patterns. Our evidence suggests that all individuals were active during the same hours of the day, independent of Hantavirus infection status (P > 0.2). When comparing overall activity, we found no evidence to suggest that activity was affected by Hantavirus infection (P = 0.0939). Our results indicate that epidemiology models can confidently assume that Hantavirus infection has no effect on the activity levels or diel use patterns of rodent hosts.
Eaton, Travis
Dr. Cynthia Luxford
What do fixation and saccade patterns reveal about the visual attention, interpretations, and patterns of analyzing commonly used representations in chemistry Abstract ideas in biology and chemistry are typically taught using two-dimensional representations. These advanced structures move past the one-dimensional drawings that only show placement and allow the student to mentally rotate the image to gain a higher level of understanding in its structure or function. Even with advancement in our teaching and learning capabilities, it has been found that students continue to struggle with abstract ideas and dimensional analysis. Using eye-tracking, the similarities or differences in gaze patterns, correlating eye movement patterns, and viewer responses via retroactive think-aloud interviews had been collected and reviewed as students answer questions related to a common biochemistry mechanism. The data collected was used to analyze how students focus on the representations. All participants had been enrolled in or completed the Organic Chemistry II as required by their major or minor degree plan. Preliminary eye-tracking results will be presented.
Ellison, Wyatt

Using LIDAR and GIS to Model Paleo-Indian Archaeology The increasing popularity of LIDAR technology has allowed archaeologists to roll back layers of ground clutter and vegetation, allowing a detailed, multi-dimensional look at the landscape of archaeological sites around the world and helping to both discover new sites and better comprehend old ones.

Working as an Intern with the Gault School of Archaeological Research, I have been using LIDAR data available online to create maps and 3D models of Paleo-Indian archaeological sites, moving towards a better understanding of how these sites were formed and what Characteristics they hold in common. Using the information provided by LIDAR elevation mapping, in combination with soil, vegetation, geological and cultural data from other sources, I have begun creating predictive models using GIS to try and pinpoint locations which are likely to contain buried archaeological sites. In this poster I will display many of the graphics I have created using LIDAR, as well as the results of some predictive models I have been experimenting with.

Fahey, Haley
Tyler Radtke,
Blake Draper, Daniella Gonzalez,
Michael Howard

Burleson County, Texas: Social and epidemiological community health assessment utilizing PRECEDE-PROCEED. Introduction. The purpose of this project was to conduct a health needs assessment of Burleson County, Texas. Social assessment research was conducted on the background, demographics, socioeconomic characteristics, and quality of life indicators in order to examine any deficits within the community that may affect health. Epidemiological assessment data were collected for mortality, natality, morbidity and trauma indicators to identify current health needs among community residents. Method. Data were collected from government databases and health data query systems. Secondary data were used due to time and ethical constraints of the researchers. All data was analyzed descriptively with comparative analysis. Results. Major disparities were observed in the healthcare access. Specifically, a low rate of healthcare providers in Burleson County was noted, compared to Health Region 7, Texas, and the United States. Burleson County had a high rate of abortion among teens. There was also a low rate of all vaccination of the DTaP vaccine, which coincided with a high rate of pertussis. Heart disease was the leading cause of death in Burleson County. Trauma in Burleson County also reflected high rates from unintentional falls and motor vehicle accidents when compared to Public Health Region 7 and Texas. Discussion. Social and epidemiological assessment findings suggest heart disease as a health need for developing a health intervention for Burleson County residents. Resources can be assessed and compared with the values of stakeholders and the priority population to tackle this identified issue to reduced disease and improve quality of life among Burleson County residents.

Faulkner, Mark

Development of CRISPR-Cas Nickase tool for genetic manipulation in Clostridium difficile Abstract

Development of CRISPR-Cas Nickase tool for genetic manipulation in Clostridium difficile

Mark Faulkner and Manish Kumar*

Department of Biology, Texas State University, San Marcos–TX-78666

Clostridium difficile is an opportunistic pathogen that causes the disease known as C. difficile associated diarrhea (CDAD). CDAD causes $12.6 billion dollars in healthcare related costs every year. Many clinical studies have been done to show the impact of CDAD. Despite this, very little is known about the molecular biology and genetics, in reference to C. difficile’s pathogenicity. A lack of effective tools for gene editing in C. difficile is the main reason for this gap in knowledge. Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats-and associated proteins (CRISPR-Cas) is a now well-founded system for genome editing in all organisms. This system can be modified to only make single-stranded DNA breaks. Clostridia, as a family, have been shown to not survive double-stranded DNA breaks. Here, I propose the implementation of a CRISPR-Cas Nickase system to increase the efficacy of CRISPR-Cas genome editing in C. difficile. Homologous recombination is induced via single-stranded DNA damage and can be used to induce mutations via Homology Arms (HAs) provided on a plasmid. Previous studies have used the nickase based method in conjunction with HAs on the plasmid for homologous recombination for removal of genes in other Clostridium species.

*Corresponding author

Fishbeck, Kirsten
Paril Bhakta,
Jovanna Gerardo,
DeShaun Sellers

Webb County, Texas: A PRECEDE-PROCEED Community Health Needs Assessment Introduction.This project comprised social and epidemiological assessments of Webb County, Texas utilizing the first two phases of the PRECEDE-PROCEED program-planning model. The social assessment, Phase 1, evaluated demographic, socioeconomic, and quality of life indicators. The epidemiological assessment, Phase 2, measured natality, mortality, morbidity, and trauma variables. The purpose of this study was to identify and prioritize the health issues of Webb County. Methods. Data were collected from federal and state government databases for Webb County, The State of Texas, Texas border area region, and Texas Public Health Region 11. Data were then organized into comparative tables to highlight similarities and differences between regions and comparative analyses conducted. Results. The percentage of residents who identified as Hispanic was disproportionately greater (145%) in Webb County (95.9%) compared to The State of Texas (39.1%). The percentage of residents who had a cause of death due to diabetes mellitus was disproportionately greater (93%) in Webb County (5.6%) compared to The State of Texas (2.9%). Tuberculosis among Webb County residents was disproportionately greater than The State of Texas by 234%. Discussion. Findings suggest that the current priority health condition in Webb County is diabetes mellitus, with a special emphasis needed to overcome disparities seen among the Hispanic population. Further research is needed to determine what risk factors can be realistically reduced in a community health intervention to decrease the rate of Webb County residents with diabetes mellitus to improve their quality of life.
Garcia, Lynette

Hypofractionation for Breast Cancer Treatment The basis of this research paper is to educate the readers about a hypofractionated radiation therapy treatment for breast cancer patients. The comparisons to the standard U.S breast fractionation treatment will be explained as well as the advantages it has for patient’s regarding time and cheaper cost. In this paper breast conservation studies are included to show unbiased, factual success rates that come with the treatment. Dr. Boyle, a Radiation Oncologist who practices this form of shorter treatment with her patients participated as part of my research process including various medical journals which I was able to gather valuable data. My statics showed very successful results in hypofractionation being of better advantage to breast cancer patients with time, money and breast tissue conservation than standard treatment.
Gonzales, Matthew

Discovering the World To Discover Man During the 17th and 18th Century Europe was undergoing a period of advancement for all academic subjects. The discovery of new understandings of natural phenomena of the time for Physics and Philosophy became a catalyst in the form of motivation for one another. As such, the most prominent evolutions in thought came from the minds of philosophers and physicist who redesigned the beliefs of the state of nature for the common man due to their curiosity of the physical state of the world. By comparing the influences and work of Thomas Hobbes and Jean Jacques-Rousseau it can be approved that this relationship between physics and philosophy occurred throughout the Age of Enlightenment.
Gonzalez-Aponte, Luis Giselle Izaguirre
Hayley Rambo, Gabriel Vazquez An Examination of Note Writing Activities on Note Reading Ability in Suzuki Based Ensemble Classes The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of the inclusion of note writing activities on the note reading ability of first-, second-, and third-grade students participating in a Suzuki based violin/viola class and a Suzuki based cello class. Specifically, the researchers wanted to know if students who participated in note writing activities in addition to note reading exercises would perform better on an end of the semester note reading quiz over their peers who only participated in note reading exercises. Participants (N=12, n=7 violin/viola, n=5 cello) were first-, second-, and third-grade students from two intact Suzuki based classes. Over the course of 11 weeks, an additional section was added to the already in place curriculum, focused on increasing music reading ability. During week one students in both classes were given a pretest. Based on the pretest results, students were placed in matched ability experimental and control groups (experimental group vln/vla n=4, cello n=3, control group vln/vla n=3, cello n=2). Nine weeks of note reading instruction followed the pretest. The control group focused on identifying and playing notes, while the experimental group included note writing activities in addition to identifying and playing. A posttest was given at the end of week 11. The results of an ANCOVA used to compare the posttest scores of the experimental and control groups showed no significant difference, however the experimental and control groups saw higher posttest scores.

Gore, Benjamin

Pain Management -focusing on the many challenges for patients with metastatic bone pain. Objective: To understand that pain is a complex experience for patients, family, and caregivers to address. Illustrate how beliefs and responses to pain shape society. To become efficient at identifying pain management needs. Methods: Data from scholarly articles and government resources were searched and interpreted. Conclusion: Pain management requires access to many academic disciplines. The goal is to develop a comprehensive plan addressing pain while recognizing its impact on social conscience and economic consequence.
Guidry, Meredith

Death Due to Opioids: Music’s Contribution to the Opioid Crisis When pop legend Prince was pronounced dead, the entire world went into shock. That shock was amplified when it was announced that he died from an overdose on fentanyl, and then again when Lil Peep and Tom Petty died from the exact same overdose (Coscarelli 2018). There have been discussions of the similarities of these episodes in the fact that they were all musicians that died from a highly contained and concentrated opioid, but no scholarly writing discusses the impact that music may have had on these musicians, or society as a whole, leading to their imminent deaths. This poster will, for the first time, examine the effect that hip-hop and rap music could possibly have on society’s use of opioids today. To fully understand music’s contribution to the opioid crisis, it is important to look at specific artists that encourage drug use and determine how they might contribute to CDC charts that demonstrate increases in deaths due to opioids. While most incidences in which opioids have led to death was caused by safe, prescribed drugs, abuse of those drugs is still influenced by many artists. This poster will show how popular artists encourage inappropriate drug use by analyzing their lyrics, social media posts, and overall influence on society. This poster will catalyze more awareness for the opioid issue that our country has and demonstrate the significant impact that music has on the opioid crisis.


Coscarelli, Joe. “Tom Petty Died From Accidental Drug Overdose Involving Opioids, Coroner Says.” The New York Times, 19 Jan. 2018.
Gutierrez, Adriana

The Existence of the Natural State in Correlation to Human Behavior The state of nature is classically defined as a concept to designate the hypothetical state of what people’s lives might have been before societies came into existence. Furthermore, I will contrast descriptions of the state of nature in the views of Jean-Jacques Rousseau and Thomas Hobbes. More specifically, the arguments of the nature of human beings and the existence of the state of nature will be discussed. For Hobbes, the natural state exists to a degree and he believes that men are inherently selfish to obtain self-preservation. However, Rousseau is certain that the state of nature cannot exist because we do not know a true “savage man,” but the existence to him is irrelevant for the use of this concept. In the contrast to Hobbes, Rousseau thinks that humans are fundamentally good. In conclusion this dissertation will enforce the idea that humans cannot truly imagine the state of nature nor can they predetermine human’s behaviors, or core, based on this notion.
Gutierrez, Carolina

SoundCloud and the Rise of Rap in America Social media have been an increasing influence on the success of hip hop artists. Many of the biggest names in rap today started their career on SoundCloud, a platform in which artists can post their own music and receive feedback from the social media community (Caramanica, 2017). Research has been done on the evolution of technology on rap music; however, not much scholarly research has been done on SoundCloud specifically. This platform has allowed artists to rapidly gain popularity without the help of a record deal. Some artists later choose to sign to a label, but as they have already proven with the success they achieved independently, this step is not as integral to becoming a “big name” in the industry as it once was. Since many artists have achieved grand success independent of any record company, how important is signing a record label today? How important was SoundCloud in pushing rock aside and making hip hop the most popular music genre in the Unites States? (McIntyre, 2017). Based on an analysis of secondary and primary literature and online resources, this poster will show that SoundCloud has played an integral role in enabling artists to become successful in the music industry independently.
Gutierrez, Marco,
Teixeira, Esteban

Exploring Organic Fertilizers in Hydroponic Production Due to the energy intensive methods of producing commercial synthetic fertilizers, as well as their cost, interest is growing in organically sourced fertilizers, specifically those developed from composting and vermiculture methods. Vermiculture is the cultivation of annelid worms for use in composting organic material. A type of organic fertilizer is in the form of a “tea” which is the liquid exudate produced from composting materials such as food waste, leaves, grass clippings, and paper. Vermicompost tea is a nutrient and microbe-rich liquid produced by the organic matter decomposition that worms perform. This project will explore whether or not these two organically sourced fertilizers can achieve the high yields attained from a common commercial liquid fertilizer in an indoor hydroponic crop production system. Butter crunch lettuce plants that receive the organically sourced fertilizers will be compared with lettuce that receive Fox Farm liquid fertilizer in equivalent macronutrient (nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium) doses over the growing period. 24 plants will be hydroponically grown in each fertilizer treatment and the control. Plant dry weights will be collected after harvest to determine differences in yield. Also, plant tissue analysis will be conducted to determine any differences in plant nutrient uptake between organic and commercial fertilizers, as well as reveal effects of microbes that naturally occur in compost and vericompost teas but are not present in synthetic liquid fertilizers.
Hanley, Brooke

Palliative Patients and the Treatment Rationale The purpose of this research is to obtain research and documentation on what palliative patients truly go through for their radiation treatment and hopefully improve their quality of life. Time and time again palliative patients struggle to understand what the treatment really means and they lack the correct support in these decisions from family and their power of attorney occasionally as well. Research on this topic was obtained from the Red Journal in the library resources.
Hansen, Heather

Medical Mindfulness and Hidden Health More than 10 billion laboratory tests are performed in the United States each year. Laboratory test results constitute an estimated 70 percent of the patient’s medical record and are vital to the diagnosis and treatment of illness and disease. Since laboratory professionals often work behind the scenes, few people know much about the vital testing they perform every day. Using a Knowledge, Attitude and Practices (KAP) survey method, this study was conducted to determine the awareness that college students at a Texas University have of Clinical Laboratory Science (CLS) professionals and their responsibilities. We surveyed 234 undergraduate students and asked them 5 scenario-based questions and 5 demographic questions to gauge their knowledge of the Clinical Laboratory Science profession, their knowledge of other common health professions, and the frequency that they visit various health professionals. Our results concluded that 47.0% of students have heard of CLS, 34.5% can describe some of the duties of a Clinical Laboratory Scientist, and 95.5% of students can correctly determined the duties of other health professions. The data collected demonstrates the need to inform and educate the public about the medical laboratory. There should be a requirement to discuss Clinical Laboratory Science in college, whether in the classroom or through a health advisor, to increase the public’s knowledge and awareness of CLS. This could diminish the shortage of vacancies within the profession and no longer make Clinical Laboratory Science the “hidden profession that saves lives.”

Hanson, Eugene

Fat Freddy’s Drop and its African-American Popular Musical Influences Fat Freddy’s Drop is a group from Wellington, New Zealand. They are

a popular group in the country; their popularity largely spread by word of

mouth. This paper analyzes the African-American musical elements in their

work, in relation to the dissemination and acceptance of African-American

inspired music in New Zealand. There has been some scholarly research on

African-American musical influences in New Zealand. There doesn’t appear

to be any scholarly works analyzing the content of the music by Fat Freddy’s

Drop. There is a large variety of non-scholarly work discussing their music,

however. The aim of this research is to bring together past work analyzing

African-American musical influences in New Zealand (mostly applying to the

20th century) in relation to the musical stylings of Fat Freddy’s Drop. The

question answered is what influences does Fat Freddy’s Drop exemplify. The

sources consist of scholarly work on the dissemination of African-American

influences in New Zealand, along with non-scholarly sources such as reviews

and radio interviews. The research question is answered by identifying elements

in the group’s music, supported by reviews. These elements are also

compared against New Zealand popular music. Fat Freddy’s Drop blends

older African-American pop music with modern African-American influenced

electronic music to create its own slow ever changing rhythms. Individuals

interested in the dissemination of African-American pop music, especially to

New Zealand, would be interested in this research.


[1] Whitcher, G. F. (2012). More than America: Some New Zealand responses

to American culture in the mid-twentieth century: A thesis submitted

in fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy

in History, the University of Canterbury, 2011 (Master’s thesis,

University of Canterbury, 2011). Canterbury: University of Canterbury.

[2] Hardie, R., & Thomas, A. (2009). Jazz Aotearoa: Notes towards a New

Zealand history. Wellington: Steele Roberts.

[3] Fat Freddy’s Drop. (2013, July 5). Age [Melbourne, Australia], p.

11. Retrieved from


[4] Based on a True Story Fat Freddy’s Drop. (2005, June 10).

Age [Melbourne, Australia], p. 7. Retrieved from http://link.


[5] STEEL, G. (2013). RENEGADE GOLD. Metro (NZ), (375), (pp. 129-


[6] Fat Freddy’s Drop. (2009). Encyclopedia of Popular Music,


[7] Raz G. (Host). (December 26, 2009). Fat Freddy’s Drop Blends Reggae,

Soul And DJ Culture [Radio program]. In npr (producer). All Things

Considered. Washington, D.C.: NPR

[8] Ministry for Culture and Heritage. (2014, May 9). Fat Freddy’s DropFat

Freddy’s Drop. Retrieved from

Hearn, Holly

The Inauthentic Garden In this paper I will explore themes of the natural in 18th century French gardens as present in Françoise de Graffigny’s Letters from a Peruvian Woman (1747) and Emile (1762) by Jean-Jacques Rousseau. Graffigny critiques the French garden in her epistolary novel as an unnatural and contrived attempt of French society to master the natural world. The narrator, Zilia, sees the gardens as beautiful, yet unnatural, especially compared to her Incan homeland which flourished without restraint. Although Rousseau tends to highlight gardens in the context of education, he does underscore social implications similar to Graffigny’s. I will focus on mans’ relationship to nature through gardens as displayed in both works while highlighting authenticity and man's desire for order.

Hendrikz, Daniel Hygen Duma

Effects of Economic Indicators on S&P 500 Prices Macro-economic news, regulatory policy, and political landscape are influential in the price of stocks. Investors have a sense of this, for example when we expect the future of the economy to take a dive, stock prices typically drop. If we could more accurately measure how influential these topics are, it would allow us to see which stocks are over/under priced. This paper uses the Conference Board Leading Economic Indicators (LEI) such as weekly hours of manufacturing, weekly initial claims for unemployment, manufacturing orders for consumer goods, manufacturing orders of non-defense goods capital good excluding aircraft, building permits for private housing, and the interest rate spread between 10-year Treasury Bond & Federal Funds to explain changes in S&P 500 returns. Our data was taken from the FRED (Federal Reserve Economic Data) database and Yahoo Finance. We use regression/time series algorithm to determine how each variable of the LEI affects S&P 500 asset pricing. From this paper we expect to find out if our explanatory variables are significant, the degree of influence they have on stock prices, and if our model is validated to predict S&P 500 returns. This project can assist in the finance sector of the economy by giving better representation of the true value of a stock.
Hoelscher, Kyleigh

Pass The Gravy: An Ethnographic Study On Food Insecurity During The U.S. Fall And Winter Holiday Season Pass The Gravy: An Ethnographic Study On Food Insecurity During The U.S. Fall And Winter Holiday Season: During the fall and winter holidays in the U.S., groups typically gather for a meal, granting them a sense of warmth and belonging. But, what if there were no food to begin with? In Hays County, Texas, one out of every seven people experience food insecurity year-round, including the holidays that generally require people to spend and eat excessively. The societal pressure to provide an expensive feast along with presents during this season generally deposits an equally emotional and financial burden on the household. My research, funded by the Undergraduate Research Fellowship at Texas State University, investigates how the food insecure population of Hays County, Texas combats hunger during the holidays, negotiates holiday traditions, and manages other difficulties associated with the holiday season.0000000202f It accomplishes this through the implementation of ethnographic methods consisting of ten qualitative interviews and demographic surveys from the population who seeks assistance from Hays County Food Bank. Two central questions guiding the research are: what holiday traditions do participants value and engage in?, and how does being food insecure affect their experiences with these holiday traditions? My research aims to uncover specific issues universal to food insecure individuals, regardless of race, gender, or religious affiliation, in order fill an important gap in the social scientific literature, inform policy in Texas, and improve services provided by the Hays County Food Bank.

Keywords: Food Insecurity; U.S. holidays; Poverty; Texas.

Horner, Riley
Elizabeth Alvizo
Engineering approach used in hydroponic design and automation Current farming methods are labor intensive, use many natural resources, and have low profit margins. They are also strongly dependent on environmental factors. With our growing population and continual depletion of natural resources there is an increase need for innovative farming techniques. Hydroponics, a soil-less way of farming, have been an up and coming solution to this problem. They offer an economically and space efficient way to mass produce crops while still being environmentally friendly. In this research the engineering design approach is used to design and implement a controlled hydroponic system within a shipping container that is independent of utilities.

There are a multitude of aspects that go into creating a successful hydroponic system. This portion of the study will be addressing most efficient automated way to deliver nutrients to plants. Utilizing the five steps in the engineering design approach, aspects of the system were developed, tested and compared. Things that needed to be determined through these comparisons were the pump, trays for the plants, drainage valves and their placement, and the number of reservoirs.

After comparing all alternatives, a sustainable and automated design was implemented on one rack. This system was then used to determine other variables within the overall hydroponic system. These variables include the number of plants we can have, how long and often the pump in the reservoir will be on, the lighting system, etc.. The engineering design process has allowed for a systematic way to improve and expand on all of these variables.

Irving, Shauniece
Katarina Schaefer,
Meshell Serda,
Rachel Franke,
Sahara Thomas

Taylor County Community Health Assessment Taylor County is in the PHR 2/3 and is located near Dallas and Fort Worth, Texas. With a population of 136, 051 people, the county’s Health Rank is 161 out of 243 in Texas. The county is predominantly non-Hispanic white. MAP-IT was utilized to find the important health issues in the county.Taylor’s priority health issues include Alzheimer’s Disease, stroke, diabetes, and lack of prenatal care in the first trimester. It was determined that black women in Taylor County are at a 6.5% lower rate of prenatal care in the first trimester than any other race/ethnicity. According to Healthy People 2020, Taylor County did not meet the prenatal target goal. The goal for Taylor County is for Black women to receive prenatal care in the first trimester by raising awareness of the importance and the many consequences that could occur. The creation of outreach programs, reaching out to the youth and partnering with stores to educate people on healthier choices can all be used to increase the rate of prenatal care in the first trimester.
Jacobs, Harley
Daniela Williams,
David Pozuc,
Logan Pittdman,
Victoria Morgan

Needs Assessment of Gonzales County Gonzales County is in Central Texas, East of San Antonio and is part of Public Health Region 8. A health needs assessment was conducted for Gonzales County. Utilizing the Precede Proceed model data collected in the assessment-included race, gender, age, causes of death, education, and health for the County. The rate of heart disease (174) and delayed onset of prenatal care in Hispanic women (51.2%) were amongst the top two health issues in the county. The prioritization matrix was used to select which needs were most important and most changeable. After considering and discussing all the facts, it was concluded that the area of health which needed the most focus was prenatal care for Hispanic women. Information gathered will be directly related to changes that will improve the numbers of this health need. The goal is to focus on educating, developing, implementing, and reassessing a program(s) for Hispanic women in Gonzales County. The result of the intervention should show an increase in the percentage of Hispanic women obtaining prenatal care. Improving prenatal care and providing information to Hispanic women will help improve the overall quality of life for the community. The focus of the assessment is Hispanic women in Gonzales County. Long-term success of improving prenatal care for Hispanics within the community relies directly on the joint effort of the community.
Jimenez, Jessica

The Riffian Identity and the Battle for Freedom The poster presentation will be a visual representation of my research paper submitted and accepted by the URJ. The region of focus is the Rif of Northern Morocco. The region is populated by the Berber (Amazigh) population known as Riffians.I will describe their struggle for human rights by highlighting important leaders of the latest uprising. The purpose of this presentation is to show why their culture and language is worthy of international attention and recognition. My research has been funded by the URF.
Johns, Andrew

Preparation of a Mechanistic Probe for a Neuroblastoma Differentiation Agent Neuroblastoma is a cancer of the sympathetic nervous system. It is the most common tumor in infants with a five-year overall survival rate of 50%, indicating the importance of research into potential therapeutic agents. Previous research identified Compound X that was found to induce differentiation of neuroblastoma cells. To elucidate its mode of action, an analog of compound X, functionalized with an alkyne moiety, was prepared and evaluated against neuroblastoma cells. Unfortunately, this alkyne probe was found to have no differentiation activity precluding its use for the mode of action study. Future work focuses on preparing an alkyne-containing probe with the alkyne attached to a different part of the molecule.
Johns, Andrew

Preparation and Evaluation of an Alkyne Functionalized Neuroblastoma Differentiation Agent for Mode of Action Studies Neuroblastoma is a cancer of the sympathetic nervous system. It is the most common tumor in infants with a five-year overall survival rate of 50%, indicating the importance of research into potential therapeutic agents. Previous research identified Compound X that was found to induce differentiation of neuroblastoma cells. To elucidate its mode of action, an analog of compound X, functionalized with an alkyne moiety, was prepared and evaluated against neuroblastoma cells. Unfortunately, this alkyne probe was found to have no differentiation activity precluding its use for the mode of action study. Future work focuses on preparing an alkyne-containing probe with the alkyne attached to a different part of the molecule.
Johnson, Matthew P Nicholas Alexander

Outlier Detection and Network Analysis of Medicare Insurance Fraud Our research is an attempt to address the increasing trend of healthcare fraud using data analytics. We study the claims and prescription data aggregated by healthcare providers within the Part D network of Medicare. These techniques will help auditors in the task of identifying fraudulent providers which would result in decreasing the amount of fraud, waste, and abuse. The goal is to disclose any abnormal relationships among the providers and the co-occurrences of prescribed drugs. We use outlier detection and network analysis to investigate the providers that deviate from the expected behaviors. We also analyze providers that share the similar characteristics with excluded providers. The main goal is to alleviate the challenges faced by auditors when investigating fraudulent providers within the current healthcare system and to address the methods of fraud that are constantly evolving.
Jones, Cedric

Finding a Niche in Music Society Doesn’t Believe Affiliates with You In Hip-Hip, which has been dominated by African-Americans since the 1980s, it may seem unlikely for any musician of another race, especially Caucasian, to become affiliated with this type of music. After releasing debut albums Infinite in 1996 and Slim Shady EP in 1998, Dr. Dre signed Eminem to his label, Aftermath Entertainment, in 1998. Being signed by a well-known and respected artist like Dr. Dre forced the Hip-Hop culture to accept Eminem and his music. Eminem has recorded songs with Jay-Z, Dr. Dre, Lil Wayne, Drake, Kayne West, Beyoncé, Rhianna, and many more. He has won 15 Grammys and has been nominated for a total of 43. Yes this success did not come easy. Even Snoop Dogg didn’t want to make a song with Eminem, because he felt Eminem would “kill” (rap better than) him on his own track. Published research on Eminem is missing discussions about the hatred Eminem had to face before a large audience started calling him Eminem instead of Marshall Bruce Mathers III, nor has Eminem’s nervousness walking into Detroit’s St. Andrews Hall (being the only white man) been addressed in the research so far. Based on an analysis on Eminem’s lyrics, my poster will illustrate how he persevered through his career to become one of the most honored and greatest Hip-Hop artist of all time.


“12 Things You Never Knew About Eminem.” Clash Magazine, March 6, 2009.

Coscarelli, Joe. “Eminem Beats Taylor Swift for His Eight No. 1 Album in a Row.” The New York Times, December 25, 2017

Caramanica, Jon. “3 Rappers Peeking at Eminem’s Playbook.” The New York Times, December 18, 2017

Popcast by The New York Times. “Will Eminem Ever Change?” The New York Times, December 22, 2017

Caramanica, Jon. “Hip-Hop Changes. Eminem Doesn’t.” The New York Times, December 18, 2017


Kazi, Isra

The Incorporation of Islamic Culture Into Hip Hop music and culture Islamic influence on hip-hop culture and lyrics has become more prevalent in past and recent decades. This poster will strive to trace the origin of influence from the Nation of Islam (NOI) in cities such as Detroit, Harlem and Philadelphia resulting in the rise of the Five Percent Nation by Clarence Smith, a former follower of the NOI. This group of predominately black Americans have incorporated Islam into their artistry, and this research poster shows where religious referrals appear in lyrics, on album covers and social media posts. Hip Hop artists of other faiths have also included phrases that are commonly used by followers of the Five Percent Nation. The poster also addresses the influence of Islamic culture on the identities of artists, such as Lupe Fiasco, Busta Rhymes, French Montana and more. There are many factors that influence each artist in their inclusion of religious reference in their work, and this poster seeks to review how upbringings, political involvement, and conversion have incorporated Islam into Hip Hop music.

Daulatzai, Sohail. “Return of the Mecca: Public Enemies, Reaganism, and the Birth of Hip-

Hop.” 2012. Black Star, Crescent Moon: The Muslim International and Black Freedom beyond America.

Khabar, Suad. “The Loop of Muslim Cool: Black Islam, Hip Hop, and Knowledge of self.”

2016. Muslim Cool: Race, Religion, and Hip Hop in the United States, 27-76.

Knight, Muhammad. “The Five Percenters: Islam, hip-hop, and the Gods of New York.” 2007.

Oxford, United Kingdom: Oneworld, 39-97.

Kimmel, Samuel

Investigating the Effects of Iron substitution on the Structure and Magnetization of α-Nickel Hydroxide and Nickel Oxide Nanosheets Nickel Iron systems that exhibit two-dimensional nanosheet properties have long proven to be effective economically viable and highly active catalysts for oxygen evolution. Here we introduce the synthesis and structural characterization of nickel iron hydroxide and nickel iron oxide systems with varying molar amounts of iron substituted into a nickel hydroxide system. SEM and EDS mapping showed that at low concentrations of iron, both systems maintained their nanosheet structure and that the iron was well distributed throughout the system. However, at higher levels of iron concentration the overall morphology of both systems changed significantly. X-ray diffraction of the nickel hydroxide series showed that even small amounts of iron had a significant difference on the morphology but still maintained the alpha nickel hydroxide phase. In the nickel iron oxide series, at low iron concentration, the long-range order of the system shifted dramatically, and the phase was not maintained and not highly crystalline. However, the nanosheet structure was still present at higher iron concentration and therefore electrochemical investigation of iron substituted nickel hydroxide and oxide systems should be explored as an economically viable oxygen evolution catalyst. With continued magnetic characterization, a better understanding of the materials phase and structure may also arise.
King, Mckynzie

Human Nature Filtered Through Foreign Vernacular Communication through language is one of the fundamental aspects of natural human development. The acquisition of a new language can lay bare the harshness of human nature, as seen in Françoise de Graffigny’s Letters from a Peruvian Woman (1747). In the recently popular epistolary novel, the Incan princess Zilia culminates a unique outsider’s perspective of French society and ethics, with which she is completely foreign, through her gradual apperception of spoken word. Superficiality and imitations of sincerity are incredibly unnatural to the moralistic “barbarian”, and she is horrified by almost every aspect of European culture. Her letters esteem that human nature is brusque and malevolently complicated. In a contrasted analysis, Daniel Defoe’s Robinson Crusoe (1719) offers the idea that garnering a different tongue can give precious insight to the wonders of the natural world and the serenity of religion. Robinson’s conscientious instruction of Friday in the English language implores opportunity and the possibility of salvation for the “savage”. Knowledge of the physical and spiritual universe becomes overwhelmingly accessible to the ignorant slave through common speak, information he had previously not had admission to. His account elucidates the bias that human nature is fundamentally benevolent, employing the theory that every soul longs for salvation.
Kramer, Aaron
Dr. Cynthia Luxford
Using Open-Ended Questions to Identify Student Errors in Gas Law Stoichiometry Problems As part of a longitudinal retention study, a survey was given to students in General Chemistry I, General Chemistry II, Organic Chemistry I, and Organic Chemistry II at both the beginning and end of the semester. Through administering the surveys, we are tracking how students study habits and metacognitive awareness change as students move through the course progression. On the end of semester survey students were asked to identify the steps for answering a problem requiring them identify the Ideal Gas Law, convert units, and use stoichiometry for a combustion reaction. The retention of student skills as they progress into higher chemistry classes can also be measured using this common question across time. The open-ended responses have been coded in NVivo and analyzed to determine the most frequently missed steps in the problem. Open ended responses are being compared to students reported problem solving approaches. In the future, it is hoped that the responses could also be compared to common final exam data to see if they are making similar mistakes in other questions. The development of the coding scheme as well as preliminary results will be presented.
Limon, Alberto
Ashley McAnarney,
Dominique Davila,
Kristin Boyd,
Sarah Gonzalez

Cameron County Community: Social and Epidemiological Assessment Introduction: This assessment sought to determine the behavioral, environmental, and health issues that impact overall quality of life in Cameron County.

Methods: The Precede-Proceed model was used to frame the assessment process. Phases of this model included the social assessment and the epidemiological phase. Data was collected from the U.S. Census Bureau, Texas Health Data, and Healthy People 2020 for national goals and objectives. A prioritization matrix was incorporated to determine what health problems were most modifiable and important.

Results: Major health concerns identified among Cameron County residents were diabetes, nephritis, and chronic liver disease. Diabetes rates were remarkably high compared to the other morbidity factors. Diabetes had the biggest rate difference between the county and state mortality rates. The age adjusted rate for the county and state was taken from the most recent data available (2015) and represented a rate per 100,000 population. Cameron County’s diabetes rate was 34.1 and Texas’ rate was 21.3. For nephritis, Cameron County’s rate was 18.8 and 16.4 for Texas. Finally, chronic liver disease was Cameron County’s third leading cause of death at a rate of 18.4 and Texas had a rate of 13.8. Diabetes was the only cause that increased in rate from 28.5 to 34.1.

Conclusion: The prioritized need for health improvement in Cameron County is diabetes. Factors contributing to this condition may be more easily modified for residents. Programs should be created for both prevention and appropriate management of diabetes.

Long, Sarah

The 18th Century Woman Françoise de Graffigny and Mary Wollstonecraft tackled the controversial topic of the roles and rights of women in society in their works, Letters from a Peruvian Woman (1747) and A Vindication of the Rights of Woman (1792) respectively. Graffigny wrote from the perspective of a fictional outsider looking in on the culture that she was criticizing, while Wollstonecraft took a more direct approach and bluntly pointed out the shortcomings she saw in her world. This thesis will analyze how these writers presented the difference between the natural roles and rights of women in the 18th century and the problems that Graffigny and Wollstonecraft saw in the treatment of women in their respective cultures. There will be a focus on women’s education and their roles leading up to and in a marriage relationship.
Lopez, Emily

Frank Ocean and the Exploration of Sexuality in His Music Emily Lopez

Frank Ocean and the Exploration of Sexuality in His Music

When Frank Ocean first revealed his sexuality in a 2012 Tumblr Post, many of his fans were left shocked, as being homosexual in the music industry was very frowned upon at the time, especially in the black music industry. Part of the homophobia in the black community stemmed from the hyper-masculinity culture, which has been brought on by historic racism. Although Frank Ocean did face some backlash he ultimately began pushing boundaries in his lyrics by mentioning his sexuality. The poster will examine his exploration of using queer themes in his music, and their tie to his racial identity by analyzing the lyrics in his music. The significance of his racial identity is often spoken about, as many people in the black community are religious. He often challenges the ways the black LGBT community are often dismissed. The poster will furthermore analyze his lyrics to examine the way his music pushes the boundaries by exploring themes of homophobia and violence that is faced in the black LGBT community.


Russell, Stephen Thomas, and Stacey S. Horn. Sexual orientation, gender identity, and schooling: the nexus of research, practice, and policy. Oxford University Press, 2017.

Homophobia: sexual identity and human rights. Amnesty International, 2003.

Stanford, Anthony. "Homophobia in the Black church: how faith, politics, and fear divide the Black community”.2013

Lopez, Leonel
Sarah Mason,
Natalie Rios,
Andrea Gangoso,
Cody Cagle

Community Health needs assessment: Mason County, Texas Introduction. This research project was a social and epidemiological needs assessment of Mason County, Texas, utilizing Phases 1 and 2 of the PRECEDE-PROCEED program planning framework. Social factors including demographic, socioeconomic, and quality of life indicators were assessed for Phase 1. In Phase 2, natality, mortality, morbidity, and trauma indicators were chosen to analyze current community health status. The purpose of this study was to determine a priority health need for program implementation. Method. Secondary data were retrieved from federal and state government databases on selected social and health indicators and organized into comparative tables. The researchers then analyzed data descriptively with comparative analyses to identify similarities and differences between Mason County and relevant other regions. Results. Mason County had a proportionately high amount of non-Hispanic white residents (76.2%) and individuals aged 45+ (56.9%). A prioritization matrix was utilized within the epidemiological assessment and determined cancer was the priority health issue for Mason County. Cancer was especially prominent among the elderly population (65+ years old). Tobacco use was identified as a behavioral risk factor for increasing the risk of cancer among the elderly population: 47.5% of elderly individuals in non-border regions had ever smoked in 2015. Discussion. Findings suggest a smoking cessation program customized for the elderly population of Mason County is warranted to reduce their risk of cancer and improve overall quality of life. An educational and ecological assessment of Mason County is advised to determine an intervention plan.
Mabilia, Katlyn

An Analysis of the Philiosphical and Psychological Perspectives on Dream Phenomena In this paper, I will compare and contrast a philosophical perspective on the definition and origin of dreams to a psychological perspective. Through the analysis of Thomas Hobbes’s Leviathan and Sigmund Freud’s The Interpretation of Dreams, I will clarify the similarities and differences in the two perspectives, and analyze the inspiration previous thinkers, like Hobbes, had on Freud’s theories and the psychological field. Hobbes and Freud agree that dreams are formed by memories. However, Freud argues that dreams are more complex than the simplified explanation Hobbes uses in Leviathan. Freud connects dreams to the deep innerworkings of the unconscious, where as Hobbes, claims that there is no specific goal or order to dreams, for they are not goal oriented. The two thinkers also differ in their opinion of effect. Hobbes believes that dreams can be affected by physical stimulants to the body, while Freud would argue that dreams effect and can explain a human’s behavior. While Freud and psychology may have been influenced by Hobbes’s and other previous philosophical works, Freud and the psychological perspective delves deeper into the meaning behind dreams and provides a clearer and more accurate description of the phenomena.
Maldonado, Luis
Brittney Lopanec,
Katlyn Batterton

What Makes You Happy? Happiness is a proper measure of social progress. This is important because in the world today, happiness matters and depicts the effectiveness of a country. Keeping the happiness score high means the country is being effective and the people who live in that country are for the most part happy. The World Happiness Report is a landmarked survey of the state of global happiness, in which 155 countries are analyzed. There are seven variables that are considered; economy, family, health, freedom, generosity, trust in government and residual error. Once the data is collected, each country is given a happiness score and rank annually.

Due to happiness being recognized as a proper measure for social progress, it is important to determine how each variable contributes to a countries success.

We are using data from the World Happiness Report and World Bank. We will use clustering and regression as analytical methods.

Our project will give an insight as to why each country holds their ranking in the World Happiness Report.

Marshall, Najha

Go-Go Music in Washington, D.C.: How it Created a Cultural Shift in Local Music Go-go music originated in the 1960s and 1970s in Washington, D.C. Based on funk, this form of popular music became unique to the D.C., Maryland, and Virginia (DMV) area. Accredited with the rise of go-go, American guitarist Chuck Brown made this music a familiar sound. Many sources can be found on Brown and the origins of go-go, such as Lornell and Stephenson 2009. However, when looking at how the rise of this form of popular music impacted the city around it, not much can be found. In order to determine how go-go music affected Washington, D.C.'s culture, this poster will show the presence of go-go music during its peak. Specifically, this poster will show data from go-go music concerts in the 1980s. When comparing photos of these performances with photos from performances in the 1960s and 1970s, cultural differences will be noticed. Based on concert statistics, this poster will show that the percentage of go-go music performances at local concerts increased during the peak of the go-go music era. Thus, this poster will provide evidence that a cultural shift occurred in the D.C. area during the 1980s as a result of the rise go-go music.
Mata, Michelle

Comparing and Selecting the Ideal Hydroponic Automated System Available in the Market for Application Hydroponics is classified as a non-soil method for mass producing plants. Hydroponics itself is distinct from normal farming methods because it requires and highly depends on electricity and measuring devices. It requires less labor than traditional farming but is still tedious because daily monitoring is required to detect pH levels, electroconductivity, and nutrient solution concentration as well as the amount of carbon dioxide in the environment and oxygen levels within the water being supplied to the plants. Currently there are options for automated setups to help with the daily monitoring of a hydroponic system but many only have few sensors that do not meet all of the grower’s expectations to monitor. The automated setups for this research are aimed to work on a hydroponic system, like an ebb and flow system, that houses a reservoir and pumps water to trays of plants. It is planned that the automated setup will tend to the plants 24/7 and require assistance for replenishing the water supply and nutrient solution once a week. This research investigates and compares the automated systems that are currently available in the market and summarizes their functions, options, and capabilities to ultimately identify the model that fits best to our application.
Matza, Joseph

Interactive Displays and Education Since the 1960s a growing body of research has emerged which seeks to determine the effectiveness of interactive educational displays on improving information retention, and the development of a sounder understanding of biological processes. Through analyzing this research, I have developed a concept that seeks to incorporate an interactive type display into the Texas State University Department of Agriculture. The display utilizes both the indoor space as well as the garden that surround the agriculture building. The aim of this project is to create an interactive display that corresponds to the Economic Entomology class in order to give students a deeper understanding of the course material as it relates to real world applications. The project consists of four shadow box style display cases to be installed in the Agriculture building. Inside of the display cases will be agriculturally important insect specimens. Accompanying the shadow boxes will be a poster with information relating to the field of Entomology. The poster will also direct students and visitors to the gardens where they will look for insects of agricultural importance as described in the Economic Entomology course. A series of aluminum signs will be placed throughout the gardens containing information on particular insect orders. In addition to creating a more comprehensive learning environment, this project is an attempt to give back to the Texas State University Agriculture Program which has been a huge part of my professional development over the past few years.
Mavrakis, Jamela
Tamlynn Niemietz,
Rachel Blumhagen,
Danielle Adams,

Lubbock County Community Health Assessment Introduction: Lubbock County is part of PHR 1, with a population of 303,137. The county is a leader in cotton production and home of the Texas Tech Raiders. Utilizing the Precede-Proceed model, a needs assessment was performed to identify the priority health issue within the community. The assessment identified sexually transmitted infections (STIs), specifically gonorrhea and chlamydia, as Lubbock County’s priority health issue.

Methods: Social determinants of health in the county were compared to those in Texas and epidemiological data from the U.S Census Bureau and Texas Department of State Health Services indicated several community health concerns within the county. These health concerns were placed into a 2x2 prioritization matrix by importance and changeability.

Results: Lubbock County had a higher rate of gonorrhea and chlamydia (244.9 & 621.2) compared to Texas (125.2 & 473.1 respectively). College students were chosen as the target population based on the high percentage of 15 to 44 year-olds in Lubbock County (45.6%) and the ability to team up with the Student Health Center at Texas Tech University.

Conclusion: Chlamydia and gonorrhea were placed in quadrant one of the prioritization matrix and deemed more changeable and more important, based on available resources and time commitment. Due to the high rate of gonorrhea and chlamydia, increased STI testing and sexuality education is needed. The high STI rates are likely due to risky sexual behavior such as lack of condom usage and engaging in sex while under the influence.

McDonald, Imani

Sexual Assault Awareness This study gauged the awareness that Texas State students had about sexual assault and their perceptions of it. Sexual assault is something that everyone at face value looks down on, especially in college. This doesn't reflect in the rates of sexual assault, 1 in 5 women and 1 in 15 men, on college campuses. In this study, researchers used both secondary data and in-depth interviews. The in-depth interviews were conducted on campus and involved 13 students. The demographics of these students were 53.8% cis-male 46.2% cis-female and 1 Asian American, 3 African Americans, 4 European/white Americans, and 4 Hispanic Americans. The moderators followed a moderator guide but used probing techniques to understand attitudes and uncover behaviors. Both the study conducted and secondary data resulted in similar findings. Participants had a grey area when it came to sexual assault when alcohol was involved and most participants, 87%, had not has sexual education at home concerning sexual assault. The social marketing strategy suggested was to encourage parents to talk to their student at a younger age when they are more malleable but also can grasp the concepts of sex and sexual assault. Children books and guides for parents would help to make the discuss less uncomfortable and would give students a better understanding of the concepts before college.
Miller, Derek

Ball Culture in New York City from 1986 to 1988 and its Roots in African Movement The ball culture of song and dance peaked in the late 1980s in New York City and culminated in extravagant balls, or competitions, where the Queer People of Color community would unite to celebrate, compete and unite in the dance style of vogueing. This research will explore the dance movement style of vogue through its roots in Early African Dance. This poster will display an analysis of video from the late 1980s and a thorough analysis of the specific styles of the drag families Labeija, Ninja, Xtravaganza, and Pendavis (Livingston 1992 and Edgar 2011) and comparing this style of vogue to written accounts of the early amalgamations of African-American dance of the early 1700s (Thompson 2014). Research already exists in the first-hand accounts and analysis of these styles of dance individually. My original contribution is the cross-analytical framework in which I have drawn comparisons between Early African-American Dance and Vogue Dance. The majority of Vogue dance is not overtly sexual, but often times those on the outside of the queer community view the dance style as sexual because of the booty-bouncing and sultry movement used in the style, much like how African-American dance in the colonial period was used to sexualize women of color. This altered narrative promoted the continuance of oppression of these marginalized groups.

This poster will provide background on both styles of dance and flow into a visual representation of the similarities in style, with two laptops showing samples of the dance styles.

Millford, Jeremy

Phylogenetic Analysis of Melatonin receptors in teleost Phylogenetic Analysis of Melatonin Receptors in Fish

Melatonin is a hormone well known for its role as a sleep aid. Melatonin levels rise in the dark, and in order for it to exert its effects on the body, it has to interact with a receptor protein. Melatonin receptors belong the a large family of proteins called G-protein coupled receptors (GPCRs). GPCRs are diverse in function and structure and are a popular topic of research because of their role in disease and physiology. With over 800 different (GPCRs) identified, there is a need for precise nomenclature and classification. To investigate and correct possible discrepancies in the G-protein coupled melatonin receptor classification in teleost, computer programs and tools (CLUSTALW and Bayes phylogenetic trees) were used to compare the genetic sequence of melatonin receptor genes (MTNR1A, MTNR1B and MTNR1C) and analyze their evolutionary relationships by producing a phylogenetic tree. The phylogenetic tree displayed some unexpected deviations in the MTNR1A subgroup, with many melatonin receptor genes grouping unexpectedly with non-family members and not exhibiting the ordered grouping displayed in the two other receptor groups (MTNR1B and MTNR1C). Further investigation should be performed to determine why some MTNR1A genes are genetically dissimilar from each other and if a new subgroup is needed as a result. This result is of interest because if melatonin receptors are classified wrong in the database from which their sequences are obtained, it could mislead researchers into fruitless pursuits.
Mireles , Thomas

ABCC4's Role in Adjusting Mouse Eyes to Darkness ABCC4 is member of the family of ATP-binding cassette proteins that specialize in transporting a variety of molecules out of the cell. ABCC4 has shown to export signaling molecules present in the retina including cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cyclic AMP) (Russel, et al.,2008). Cyclic AMP has shown to regulate processes in the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE), including dark-adaptive pigment granule aggregation in fish (Garcia, D. M., & Burnside, B. (1994). The RPE is comprised of a single layer of pigmented cell located in the outer layers of the retina. Mechanisms that drive pigment granule aggregation have been well studied in fish and amphibians, but not much in mammals. To investigate the signals that drive pigment granule aggregation in mice, pigment granule density was measured in the RPE in both wildtype and ATP-binding cassette protein C4 (ABCC4)-knockout mice. Pigment granule densities measured in the RPE of wild type dark-adapted mice differed significantly from light adapted wild type mice (p=0.05). Determination of ABCC4's effect on pigment granule aggregation is underway. If ABCC4 is involved in mediating signaling between photoreceptors and RPE, we expect there to be no difference in pigment granule density between dark and light-adapted mouse RPE in ABCC4 knock out mice. Such results would suggest a novel role for cyclic AMP as a cell-to cell signaling molecule in the retina.
Moreland, Kimberly

Conducting Research from Small University Observatories: Investigating Exoplanet Candidates Kepler has to date discovered 4,496 exoplanet candidates, but only half are confirmed, and only a handful are thought to be Earth sized and in the habitable zone. Planet verification often involves extensive follow-up observations, which are both time and resource intensive. The data set collected by Kepler is massive and will be studied for decades. University/small observatories, such as the one at Texas State University, are in a good position to assist with the exoplanet candidate verification process. By preforming extended monitoring campaigns, which are otherwise cost ineffective for larger observatories, students gain valuable research experience and contribute valuable data and results to the scientific community.
Namuhmuh, Kate Alexi

Rousseau vs. a Peruvian Woman on Human Nature In this paper, I will discuss how the characters in Francoise de Graffigny’s Letters from a Peruvian Woman are an example of Jean-Jacque Rousseau’s argument in the Discourse of the Inequality of Men that human nature is not fixed. Rather, it is alterable and malleable, because men are naturally inclined to perfectibility, which allows man to change according to his environment. Rousseau also claims that the civil man is at a disadvantage to the savage man, because he believes that more knowledge leads to unhappiness. However, Zilia’s character challenges Rousseau’s account that a dependent man (civil man) is weaker than a free man (savage man), because she benefits from transforming from a savage man to a civilized man by becoming more educated by learning the French language. Thus, Zilia’s independence and growth after becoming more knowledgeable allows her to achieve happiness and contentment despite Rousseau’s theory on the revolution of human nature.
Owens, Kaitlin
Ryan Hobbs, Mia Hernandez, Trisha Mitchell, Acori Myrie
Tarrant County Needs Assessment: Hypertension/Renal Disease Introduction:

This needs assessment was conducted to determine and identify health and social issues within the community of Tarrant County to help improve the county’s overall quality of life.


Social and epidemiological indicators were examined. This assessment used secondary data from the Texas Department of State Health Services, Healthy People 2020, Texas Education Agency, and the U.S. Census Bureau. Tarrant County data was then compared to the state of Texas data to gauge overall health needs among county residents. After identifying issues related to morbidity and mortality, a prioritization matrix was used to categorize needs based on perceived importance and changeability.


The most notable morbidity findings of this needs assessment were the rates of hypertension renal disease and unintentional falls in the elderly population (85+ years) in Tarrant County which were both high when compared to Texas rates. The Tarrant County rate for unintentional falls was 287.6 compared to 227.3 statewide. The rate in Tarrant County for hypertension renal disease was 16.1 compared to the 8.6 statewide. Hypertension renal disease also had an average hospital charge of $24,122 per hospitalization. Top causes of mortality included heart disease and malignant neoplasms. Heart disease mortality rate was 166.0 compared to 173.0 in Texas.


The prioritized health need for Tarrant County was to lower the death rate caused by hypertension renal disease since it was determined to be the most important health issue impacting both resident health and overall health care costs.

Ownby, Natalie
Melina Mijares
Temperature Sensing for Atmospheric Water Generation Atmospheric water generation is the process of forming condensation from the moisture in the air. This can be manufactured using thermoelectric coolers to generate potable water. This research looks specifically at the use of a Peltier device to cool a steel surface that is mounted to it. In order to continually form water, the surface should remain in the dew point to ten degrees below dew point range. We will call this the “ideal range”. If the steel surface is below this temperature, the device is unnecessarily cold and may begin to freeze the water. At temperatures above this range, there is no condensation forming.

There are many ways to control the device to keep the surface temperature in this ideal range. This research compares two of these methods; setting a timed on/ off cycle, or including a temperature sensor to detect when the device is approaching the boundaries of the range and turn the Peltier device on or off accordingly. The method that incorporates the temperature sensor will reduce the time the device is outside of the ideal range which will in turn reduce the amount of power wasted and increase the amount of time water will be generated. This method also eliminates the need to determine the on/off time for the Peltier device at different atmospheric conditions. We can also obtain temperature data and compare it to the World Standard Conditions (80 F and 60% humidity) to determine the best conditions at which the system should operate.

Partain, Claire

The Source of Rhythm: How Environment and Culture Affect a Taste for Music Claire Partain

The Source of Rhythm: How Environment and Culture Affect a Taste for Music

Music is something so loved and saturated in our daily lives that it is rarely questioned, and often assumed to be loved by all. There are, however, certain people who actually don’t like music, and some may actually suffer from a condition known as “beat-deafness”, in which a person either struggles with or has no ability to synchronize with a beat. Suggested reasoning behind this includes “impoverished beat perception”, which can result from lack of exposure to rhythms, poor auditory-to-motor mapping, and a form of amusia which results from a functional neurological deficit. The studies behind beat-deafness itself are fairly new, and explanations of this phenomenon, which an estimated four percent of the population experience, is still unconfirmed. This poster will not only present an extension of studies on beat-deafness, but also summarize a more personal study. One goal of this research is to connect the dots between beat-deafness, alternate understandings of music, and people who simply don’t like music in order to find some commonality. In addition, the project will illuminate how upbringing affects people’s perceptions of music as opposed to biological factors as well as why certain people can’t enjoy music in the same way so many others can. Through this, I hope to give the conference attendees a better understanding of beat-deafness, the source of musical tastes, and how far culture can dictate a person’s understanding of rhythm.


Sowiński, Jakub and Simone Dalla Bella. "Poor Synchronization to the Beat May Result from Deficient Auditory-Motor Mapping." Neuropsychologia, vol. 51, 01 Aug. 2013, pp. 1952-1963. EBSCOhost, doi:10.1016/j.neuropsychologia.2013.06.027.

Jessica, Phillips-Silver, et al. "Born to Dance but Beat Deaf: A New Form of Congenital Amusia." Neuropsychologia, no. 5, 2011, p. 961. EBSCOhost, doi:10.1016/j.neuropsychologia.2011.02.002.

Pena, Tania

Hobbes and Rousseau: A Look at Individualism in the State of Nature Abstract

French philosopher, Jean-Jacques Rousseau described the individual man, when in the state of nature, as a solitary blank slate that is essentially, a peaceful, unassuming being. On the contrary, English philosopher Thomas Hobbes believed that the individual man’s powerful drive for his own desires would easily cause him to act according to vice. Both prominent European philosophers described individualism as a central driving force in the hypothetical state of man without established rule. However, Hobbes’ view on the individualism of man paints the concept as one of great malevolence, not in essence, but in outcome because an individual’s goal has the grand potential to impede that of another, resulting in the emergence of a constant state of inevitable conflict. Rousseau lauds the idea of man’s primitive instinct to act for himself because his focus on his own basic urges will result in more solitary living, away from the potential conflicts and introduction of things like pride and envy. This paper will concentrate on these differing theories on the impact of individualism in the state of nature by analyzing various ideas presented in both Rousseau’s Discourse on the Origin of Inequality (1775) and Hobbes’ Leviathan (1651). Individualism is attributed to both negative and positive elements from the ideas of Hobbes and Rousseau respectively, therefore, it is neither completely good nor bad. Conclusively, it will be brought to light that individualism has the ability to bring about good and bad outcomes for man in both the state of nature and in civilizations.

Pender, Claire

Can we use zebrafish to study Alzheimer's? One of the most distinctive features of Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is the accumulation of amyloid-beta (Aβ) plaques in the brain. Zebrafish are a useful model for neurodegenerative research; however, it is not known if their brains actually make Aß or if it accumulates as plaques. Aβ is derived from amyloid beta precursor protein, or APP, and zebrafish have two versions of the gene encoding this protein, appa and appb. The aim of this study is to test for expression of Aβ and APP in adult zebrafish brains by probing slices of zebrafish brain with specific antibodies intended to bind APP and Aβ. If present in zebrafish brain tissue, these antibodies are expected to act as markers and reveal the presence of Aβ and APP. The anti-APP antibody is called 22C11, and our preliminary results suggest it binds zebrafish brain tissue. Further research will be conducted to corroborate this result. If we are successful in demonstrating labeling in zebrafish brain, our results will add further support to using zebrafish as a model for aging and for Alzheimer’s disease in particular.

Perkins, Hannah
Heitmann, Austin
Synergistic effects of Roundup and corticosterone on anti predator reponses in Incilius nebulifer tadpoles Early life exposure to pesticides may negatively impact amphibian populations. These effects may induce direct mortality of individuals, but indirect effects such as impacts on hormonal regulation of homeostasis, growth and development could have negative effects on fitness. Corticosterone (CORT) is the main amphibian stress hormone, and elevations of CORT can interfere with an individual’s antipredator response abilities. We examined the synergistic effects of an herbicide, Roundup (active ingredient = glyphosate), and exogenous CORT on tadpole growth, corticosterone levels and antipredator responses in Incilius nebulifer. We exposed tadpoles for one week to one of four treatments: exogenous CORT, Roundup, CORT+Roundup, and control. We then measured water-borne CORT levels and placed the tadpoles in fresh water for one day, after which we exposed tadpoles to dragonfly nymph predators’ diet cues. We measured tadpole activity before and after exposure to the predator cue. We found that tadpoles exposed to CORT or CORT+Roundup had significantly higher CORT levels prior to predator exposure than those in the other two treatments, but CORT after exposure to the predator cues did not differ across treatments. The tadpoles decreased activity (by freezing) in response to predator cues in all but the CORT+Roundup treatments, and the tadpoles from the CORT+Roundup treatments were also the least active overall. We conclude that there are synergistic effects of Roundup and CORT on the behavior and physiology of Incilius nebulifer tadpoles, indicating that more stressed tadpoles are less likely to survive predator attacks when exposed to the herbicide Roundup.
Petrill, Courtney

Static Headspace Sampling for the Detection of Bicyclic Terpenes from Essential Oils Headspace gas chromatography mass spectrometry (HS-GC/MS) is a technique used to analyze the volatile components in the headspace phase of a sample. Often used in food chemistry to determine flavor composition and defects, HS-GC/MS can separate and detect headspace compounds. Recent research has suggested breath analysis using HS-GC/MS could be an effective and noninvasive method in diagnosing metabolic disease from which volatile organic compounds are produced. Additionally, terpenes are important molecules that drive some atmospheric and environmental processes and play a contributing role in the human exposome. The purpose of this project is to establish an efficient and accurate HS-GC/MS method to observe, identify, and quantify bicyclic terpenes. By using lavender, lemongrass, and tea tree essential oils in which terpenes are naturally occurring, bicyclic terpenes were observed and identified. Sample concentration and injection volumes were varied to determine accuracy and consistency of the method. A positive correlation between sample concentration and the intensity of the sample’s signal has been shown. These results suggest that the current method is efficient in characterizing and quantifying bicyclic terpenes. Future work intends to identify and quantify bicyclic terpenes within a mixture and from samples of unknown concentration.
Poole, Marjorie

The Impact of N.W.A.’s Song “F**k Tha Police” on Police Brutality in LA and Surrounding Areas in 1988. The Los Angeles Police Department reported an astounding 250 complains of excessive force used by police officers in 1989 (L.A. Police Brutality Reports in 5-Year Span 1991). Controversial rap group N.W.A. released their infamous song “Fuck Tha Police” in 1988. The song is about being unfairly treated by police in Los Angeles and surrounding areas and retaliating against the officers. This poster, with the intent to provide why this song was so influential to police brutality rates, will display an analysis of police brutality statistics in the years 1987-89. The poster will also include an in-depth analysis of the lyrical content of the song as well to draw the connection between the song and impact on excessive force used by police officers. By comparing the lyrical analysis with previously done research on the topic and police brutality rates people will be shocked to see just how much a simple rap song influences the world around us. By showcasing this research I think people will be able to take into perspective the important role music actually plays in society.


Connely, Michael. “Number of Murders Triples in 1988 : Police Report Increase in Gang Violence in Valley.” Los Angeles Times, Los Angeles Times, 10 Jan. 1989,

Edgar, Amanda Nell. “Commenting Straight from the Underground: N.W.A., Police Brutality, and YouTube as a Space for Neoliberal Resistance.” Southern Communication Journal 81/4 (September 2016): 223-236.

Haupt, Adam. “‘True to the Game’: Straight Outta Compton's Affirmation of White Supremacist Capitalist Patriarchy.” Black Camera 8/2 (Spring 2017): 208-225.

“L.A. Police Brutality Reports Rose in 5-Year Span.” Tribunedigital-Baltimoresun, Los Angeles Daily News, 10 Mar. 1991,

Rienhold, Robert. “ Violence and Racism Are Routine In Los Angeles Police, Study Says.” The New York Times, The New York Times, 10 July 1991,

Rogers, Christopher. USC Digital Library. 1990,

Thomas, Pierre. “POLICE BRUTALITY: AN ISSUE REKINDLED.” The Washington Post, WP Company, 6 Dec. 1995,

Pratt, Samantha

The Lived Experience Following Sport-Related Concussions Sustained in High School and Collegiate Athletics Annually, approximately 1.6-1.9 million sport-related concussions (SRC) occur in the U.S. from biomechanical forces applied to the head or body damaging neurons and blood vessels within the brain. SRCs are often not associated with structural abnormalities detectable via neuroimaging. Sustaining a SRC may alter an athlete’s identity (AI), the degree to which a person identifies with their athletic role due to sport socialization. Higher AI is associated with greater risk of adjustment difficulties post-injury, because the individual views self as an athlete first. Being withheld from a sport may impact their emotion regulation causing dysregulation; the reshaping of emotions prospectively regarding the organization and quality of thoughts, actions, and interactions. As frequency of SRCs increase, so does the risk for headaches, mental health decline, and substance abuse that may result in both short- and long-term consequences.

The purpose of this study is to examine emotion dysregulation resulting from SRCs among former high school and/or college athletes. The proposed qualitative study will include in-depth, semi-structured interviews exploring the lived experience of students and faculty at Texas State University with a SRC history. Interviews will be audio-recorded and transcribed verbatim. Data will be analyzed thematically with the constant comparison method to develop a working hypothesis of the SRC lived experience in the context of emotion dysregulation and AI. Findings will fill a literature gap concerning the relationship of SRC, AI and emotion dysregulation, providing insight that could enhance health care and the short- and- long-term outcomes of athletes affected by SRC.
Price, Jacob

Current developmental problems of radiation treatment in Low and Middle income countries and options that can improve this crisis Background

The deficiency of established practices in radiation therapy is an ongoing global crisis facing many low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). Consequentially, many citizens within these countries do not receive necessary radiation treatments for their specific cancer types resulting in preventable deaths and unreasonable suffering. Until action is taken to aid in the implementation of LMIC radiation practices, this universal problem will only continue to fester.


This document contains information from accredited medical research journals and articles.


This paper draws attention as to why radiation treatment is important in LMICs, the multitude of challenges preventing such treatments, and the current considerations that many global leaders are describing as solutions. In addition, an evaluation of the overall situation will entail the strengths of possible solutions, information still needing to be gathered, and the possible limitations to creating world-wide access to radiation therapy.


After reviewing the journal entries, the world is not in a complete deficit with this problem. Many nations have begun building a level foundation for such facilities to be operated. However, the numbers tell no lie and countless of lives are still being lost due to inadequate radiation coverage. The future must hold solid ideas to eliminate such a world emergency.


The evidence collected spotlights radiation therapy as a crucial necessity to countries still developing politically, socially, and economically. Given their current status, intervention of other nations could produce the desired effect of decreasing death and suffering in these regions. No matter how small or large the contribution, continued aid over the course of time can spark the transition into a global coalition to combat cancers requiring radiation therapy. Steps have already been taken and show much promise. The next decision from there is developing a solution on a global scale and using the most feasible techniques, machines, facilities, and educational systems.

Randol, Hannah
Allison McCormick,
Silvia Mayen De La Paz

Prenatal and Parenting Adjustment by Relationship Status in Central Texas Teens While the overall rate of teen pregnancies in the United States is slowly declining, the pregnancy rate in the United States remains considerably higher than in other western industrialized nations (CDC 2017). In addition, racial and ethnic disparities in teen birth rates persist with the highest percentage belonging to those of Hispanic ethnicity (CDC 2017). Previous research has examined teenage prevention (Douglas et. Al 2012), prevalence (CDC 2017), and the future economic and educational outcomes (Hoffman & Maynard 2008) of adolescent parents. Little to no research, however, has examined the influence of relationship status on pregnant and parenting teens. As a result, this study analyzes the differences in prenatal and parenting adjustment by relationship status. To address this, data from the Strengthening Relationships/Strengthening Families was used, which included 257 participants (28.5% pregnant & 61.2% parenting; 72.7% female; 26.2% Hispanic; relationship status: 60.2% together & 39.4% separated). The following measures were used to assess parental adjustment: parental involvement (Cabrera et al., 2009), parental stress (Berry & Jones, 1995) and parental self-agency (Dumka et al., 1996). A series of ANOVAs were used and analyses showed no significant difference between parents who are together or separated. Our discussion will explain how other social support networks (e.g., grandparent supports, school supports) may minimize the impacts of relationship status amongst teen parents. These results will also be linked to the changing demographics of family structures and their theory, research, and practice implications.
Rangel, Wendy
Nicholas Castillo,
Dr. Cynthia Luxford

Through the Eyes of First-Term General Chemistry Faculty: Role of Test Feedback Across the nation, faculty teaching general chemistry courses offer a variety of feedback to their students after completing a regular classroom exam. Testing studies have been exploring the effectiveness of various forms of feedback (i.e., IF-AT, delayed feedback, subscores by topic) in helping students learn from their mistakes, however, it is unclear how often these forms of feedback are being used in classrooms today. To explore current classroom practices, 1st term general chemistry faculty were interviewed via phone interview as a way of determining the types of feedback offered, the ways the feedback is distributed, and faculty opinions on how testing feedback can be used by their students to improve their understanding of chemistry. The phone interviews will be used to develop a national survey. Interviews were transcribed and coded in NVivo. It was perceived by most faculty that students’ attitudes towards feedback plays a major role in how feedback is used. The most significant barrier for instructors giving the quality feedback that they desire to give is the amount of time it takes to provide feedback. Preliminary results will be presented as well as student opinions will be collected.
Raven, Tess

Current and future methods of sustainable retail in the fashion industry: A closer look at San Marcos, Texas This paper aims to analyze the environmental sustainability of certain retailers in the San Marcos, Texas area. Research on the fashion industry is new and relatively unexplored in the academic environment. This study will attempt to analyze methods both consumers and retailers take in sustainable development by describing the effects the fashion industry has on greenhouse gas emissions. Retail types are identified in the San Marcos area and are examined and mapped for their sustainability and location. Past research has shown clear sustainable methods that are in place for certain stores, but little is known about specific regions of the United States. This study advances geographic knowledge by examining San Marcos retailers’ sustainability efforts. The results show that thrift stores have the greatest GHG emissions relative to transportation costs into the U.S., whereas fast-paced retailers have the lowest GHG emissions.
Redding, Alexandra

Transpulmonary Pressures Background: This research is to inform the audience on the use of esophageal pressures as a surrogate for transpulmonary pressures to optimize PEEP in critically ill patients. Esophageal pressures may guide the titration of PEEP settings on a mechanical ventilator to reduce further lung injury. Esophageal manometry is minimally invasive, accurate, and can improve patient outcome on a mechanical ventilator. Methods: Data was gathered through databases of peer reviewed articles and research. Terms such as transpulmonary pressures, esophageal manometry, ARDS, etc. were used in the search of articles. Results: There was clinical significance found regarding the use of esophageal pressures in guiding PEEP titration, improving oxygenation and respiratory system compliance. There were almost clinically significant results in reduced 28-day mortality but it’s still inconclusive. Conclusion: There is potential in the future for further use of esophageal manometry to improve ventilator management in critically ill patients, especially ARDS, by providing more direct assessment of lung distending pressures. Lung function was shown to improve and there was a consistent finding of reduced duration of mechanical ventilation in patients.

Keywords: esophageal manometry, esophageal pressures, transpulmonary pressures, ARDS, PEEP titration

Reed, Alaska

Alzheimer’s patients and radiation therapy It is important to know how to treat all different types of patients whether it be someone who is blind, someone that speaks a different language or even someone when memory problems. Patients with disabilities like these need extra attention and special tactics to treat them correctly. This research will bring attention to a patient that is not spoken of much and is commonly handled incorrectly. The research will also highlight a research study currently going on to treat part of the brain on Alzheimer’s patients to help reduce the dementia effects.

I gathered this research by using the textbook, research studies, Alzheimer’s association and other references. The studies presented in this paper show that an overall better knowledge of how to treat Alzheimer’s patients will improve patient and therapist treatment experience.

Renteria, Karisa
April Ramirez,
Beau Breitigam,
Alan Gomez

Falls County Community Health Needs Assessment Falls County, Texas, located in Public Health Region 7, has an estimated population of 17,000 residents. About half of the residents in Falls County are White (51%), 25% are Black, and 21% are Hispanic. The overall purpose of this health needs assessment is to improve the quality of life for residents in Falls County. Utilizing the Precede-Proceed Model, this assessment identified and prioritized leading health issues in Falls County. The leading health issues identified included cardiovascular disease, chlamydia, and late onset of prenatal care. With a large percentage of Falls County residents aged 65 and older (17%), cardiovascular disease was chosen as the priority health issue to address. According to the Texas Department of State Health Services, the leading cause of death in Falls County is cardiovascular disease at a rate of 220.1, compared to the State of Texas at 170.7 (the percent difference being 128.9%). Secondary data sources such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organization link behaviors including: unhealthy diet, physical inactivity, alcohol, and tobacco use to heart disease. This assessment focuses on behaviors that can lead to increased cardiovascular disease. Compared to Texas, residents of Falls County have a lower income, lower education levels, and a higher rate of disability status. Access to programs that provide information in regards to healthy eating and overall lifestyle improvements can reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease in Falls County, Texas.

Riojas, Matthew

Characterization of photomorphogenic responses of Arabidopsis afb5 mutants Auxin is among the most critical of plant hormones that are necessary for control of plant growth and development. It regulates development through the degradation of a group of transcriptional repressors called Aux/IAA proteins, and thereby inducing auxin responsive genes. Auxin is primarily perceived through a family of auxin co-receptors, TIR1/AFBs that include TIR1, AFB1, AFB2 and AFB3. These receptors are involved in the SCF complex, which degrades AUX/IAA repressors through the 26-S proteasome. Recent evidence suggests that two other proteins, AFB4 and AFB5 found in the same clade may also function as auxin co-receptors. While the functions of TIR1 and AFB1-3 as co-receptors for natural auxin have been proven experimentally, the functions of AFB4 and AFB5, which are more distantly related to TIR1, are not clearly identified.

In a genetic screen we identified several afb5 mutants as they show resistance to the herbicide picloram, a synthetic chemical with auxin like activity. Our recent experiments indicate that picloram induces photomorphogenic response in dark grown Arabidopsis seedlings. This includes greening of cotyledons in dark and shortening of the hypocotyl. However, several independent afb5 alleles do not respond to picloram induced photomorphogenesis suggesting the AFB5 gene is required for picloram dependent photomorphogenesis. Interestingly, natural auxin (IAA) does not induce photomorphogenic responses in the dark. While we do not know how picloram induces photomorphogenic responses in the dark, our results indicates that the mode of action of picloram is different from other natural auxins (though picloram has been considered as an auxinic herbicide).

Robertson, Tafari

Spatial Realization: Understanding Black Cultural Engagement in Context of Space and Whiteness As a space curated to invite audiences to engage with Black cultural objects including media, art, and furniture in juxtaposition to clear reminders of racialized oppression, my thesis installation explores how our interaction with Black culture is affected by the context of who a space represents and who is empowered within it.

Rodriguez, Carlos

Thomas Hobbes vs. Jean-Jacques Rousseau: Human Nature Thesis: Both, Hobbes and Rousseau, shared a common interest in the idea of human nature. They each present their own point of views in the books, Leviathan and Discourse on the Origins of Inequality, to express how man would be in a world without society.

Thomas Hobbes believes that mankind would be evil due to a lack of government not being around to enforce laws. Not only that but also that without society, man would focus on his desire for self-preservation. For Hobbes a person in the state of nature is poor compared to that from a civilized man. On the contrary, Rousseau believes that it is society that corrupts individuals. This is due to the idea that laws or society constricts individuals from shaping their own lives. Rousseau’s idea on knowledge is that as man becomes more understanding then the basic needs for survival no longer satisfy man and an issue of greed and desire arise.

Rogalski, Joshua Mark

How Kevin Abstract’s Lyricism Subverts Homonegativity in Rap Music Kevin Abstract (Clifford Ian Simpson) is a contemporary African-American rapper, unique for his openly homosexual rap lyrics. Abstracts lyrical content is contrary to the hyper-masculinity, and more specifically the homonegativity, typically expressed in African-American rap, but also rap in general. While Abstract is not the first openly gay African-American rapper, his profound and progressive lyrics set him apart from other artists in the genre. Work by Nicholas Chiu (2005) shows that homonegativity or homophobia has been evident in rap and hip-hop dating as far back as the late 1980s. This adverse attitude towards homosexuals and even other members of the LGBTQIA community can be traced back to homonegativity apparent in some African-American communities according to research by Kathrine Quinn (2015) and Stacy Smallwood (2016). By utilizing this established research on homonegativity in rap and incorporating contemporary examples of said negativity, the proposed poster analyzes Kevin Abstract’s lyrics and their contribution to revolutionizing the rap genre. Questions answered by the poster are: how Abstract’s lyrics promote the acceptance of homosexuality in rap, what the significance of such lyrics to the African-American and potentially other communities are, and ultimately whether the lyrics effectively subvert homonegativity in rap music. Original work includes the analysis of Kevin Abstract’s lyrical content, whilst incorporating previous research on homonegativity to support the impact of Abstract’s lyrics.


Quinn, Katherine, et al. “The Role of the Black Church in the Lives of Young Black Men Who Have Sex with Men.” Culture, Health & Sexuality, vol. 18, no. 5, 2015, pp. 524–537.

Smallwood, Stacy W., et al. “Different Dimensions: Internalized Homonegativity Among African American Men Who Have Sex with Men in the Deep South.” Journal of Homosexuality, vol. 64, no. 1, 2016, pp. 45–60.

Chiu, Nicholas. “An Educational Exploration of Homophobia and Sexism in Rap and Hip Hop: Homo-Thugs and Divas in Da House.” Forum, vol. 47, no. 1, 2005

Leary, Kimberlyn. “Passing, Posing, and ‘Keeping It Real.’” Constellations, vol. 6, no. 1, 1999, pp. 85–96.

Christmas, June Jackson. “Discussion of The Black Community and Its LGBT Members Papers.” Journal of Gay & Lesbian Mental Health, vol. 17, no. 2, 2013, pp. 215–220.

Brown, Joshua R. “No Homo.” Journal of Homosexuality, vol. 58, no. 3, 2011, pp. 299–314.

The Outline. Kevin Abstract Is Making Art for a Generation of Weirdos., The Outline, 2 Mar. 2017,

Ihaza, Jeff. “Kevin on Earth.” The Outline, The Outline, 2 Mar. 2017,

Saavedra, Richard

Methods for Estimating Stature of Fragmentary Femora Using Laser Scanning New insight on the trajectory of body size change during human evolution has created more questions for the true stature of Homo erectus. Stature estimation aids in the understanding of basal metabolic rate, energy expenditure, diet, locomotion, and provides for implications for the evolutionary trajectory of the genus Homo. Current issues, however, complicate body size estimates for early hominins. These complications include small sample sizes and inaccurate femoral length estimations caused by fragmentary femora of hominin specimens. This provides cause for problematic interpretations of body size and its relation to Homo evolution. Using methods for laser scanning femora to create 3D images, this poster will compare physical measurements of femora to measurements of laser scanned samples to test the effectiveness of stature estimation through 3D scanning. These measurements will be taken in collaboration with Fellmann’s (2006) method for estimating stature for fragmentary femora through “segment based regressions.”

Salcido, Diana

FACTORS IN EFFECTIVE COMMUNICATION FOR RADIATION THERAPY There is a broad range of individuals that health professionals must encounter throughout their careers. Radiation therapists have the responsibility to properly explain the process to any patient and there are many challenges that may intervene. The purpose of this paper is to address the challenges in communication that radiation therapists face daily and current communication practices that are implemented on therapists. This research is intended to further explain how factors such as culture, age, and language barriers effect communication.
Salinas, Karina

Wild Vertebrate Exposure to Soft Ticks in Central Texas Ticks are known vectors for various pathogens that can be transmitted to both humans and animals. Specifically soft ticks, from the genus Ornithodoros, are known vectors for Borrelia turicatae spirochetes, the mediator of Relapsing Fever. Soft ticks are known to reside in areas such as nidicolous habitats. The main objectives were to A) Define vertebrate species with the highest exposure risk to O. turicata, B) establish O. turicata abundance different sites, and C) establish the optimal technique for tick marking. The presence of soft ticks was initially confirmed at 6 cave sites found at Freeman Ranch in San Marcos, TX. To define the highest exposed vertebrate species, footage was collected from motion sensitive cameras set at the sites, since February 2016, and was carefully sorted through. Furthermore, tick abundances were obtained at various distances from site entrances. Protocol included CO2 traps, mark-recapture techniques, and the Lincoln Index. Lastly, establishing the preeminent tick marking technique was done by testing various matters on ticks and documenting activity until mortality. Conclusively, there was 906 vertebrate visits involving 19 different species and the top visits occurring from raccoons, black vultures, and opossums. Additionally, total tick abundances ranged from 0 to 1639 and fluorescent powder was pondered the best tick marking technique. Due to limited understanding of soft ticks, identifying highly exposed hosts can be important in relating mechanisms of disease distribution. Further studies involving their role in the pathogenic life cycle may ultimately result in the reduction of disease risk.
Salters, Rashad L.
Ferrell Kiker,
Cameron Curran,
Sarahi De La Garza,
Natalie Mata

Jefferson County: Assessment to Improve Quality of Life and Impact on Violent Crimes Introduction: The purpose of this project was to conduct an assessment to determine the needs and assets which affect the quality of life in Jefferson County.

Methods: A social and epidemiological assessment was conducted using the PRECEDE-PROCEED Model and guidelines from the Healthy People 2020 initiative to evaluate the needs and assets of Jefferson County. Data was collected and compared to the state of Texas and other health regions using surveillance data from the Texas Department of State Health Services, U.S. Census Bureau, and Texas Education Agency. Overall health concerns were prioritized using a prioritization matrix to identify a health concern that is both changeable and important to overall quality of life in the community.

Results: The needs assessment indicated multiple areas of need throughout Jefferson County. Social issues included high poverty (22.7%) and unemployment (10.81%). Infectious diseases were high, particularly rates of sexually transmitted infections. Among the multiple health needs, violent crime rates were remarkably high. Compared to the state, the incidence rate of violent crime in 2012-2014 far exceeded Texas rate with the County at 687 per 100,000 population while the Texas rate was at 408 per 100,000 population. Additionally, regions within the county ranked high on the crime index scale.

Conclusion: The prioritized health and quality of life need for Jefferson County is a reduction in overall violent crimes. Reducing crime could possibly improve overall quality of life for Jefferson County residents.

Sanchez, Elizabeth

Characterization of the role of PIC30 protein as a salicylic acid transporter in Arabidopsis Plants have developed several defense mechanisms to cope with biotic and abiotic stresses, including hypersensitive response (HR), an apoptotic response of plant tissues to infecting microbes leading to systemic acquired resistance (SAR). Salicylic acid plays an important role in plants when sending signals from the sites of HR to healthy plant organs during the development of SAR. However, the mechanism of salicylic acid transport within plants has not been elucidated yet. PIC30, a protein previously characterized as a transporter protein belonging to the Major Facilitator Superfamily in the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana, transports nitrate ions and the synthetic auxin, picloram into cells. A transgenic reporter line PIC30::PIC30-GUS displayed increased expression of the fusion protein when plants were exposed to salicylic acid, suggesting a role for PIC30 in its transport. When grown on high salicylic acid containing media, primary root elongation of wild-type plants was inhibited while the roots of pic30 knockout mutant showed high resistance to salicylic acid, indicating that PIC30 may be necessary for salicylic acid transport. Further experiments are being carried out to confirm the involvement of native PIC30 protein in salicylic acid transport and SAR in plants.
Sandoval, Angel

Man in the State of Nature: To Rule or be Ruled It has long been a controversial topic whether man is a ruler of his surroundings, or whether surrounding rule man (surroundings being nature, other humans, or animals). This poster will analyze works by historical philosophers such as Aristotle and Hobbes. A conclusion will be presented using the works.
Sanjel, Shaishav Patrick McMullin
Collin Estes NFL Suspensions: How Player Characteristics Can Indicate Suspension Risk NFL Suspensions: How Player Characteristics Can Indicate Suspension Risk

This analysis investigates NFL suspensions and aims to find variables that help predict player suspension risk. Identifying variables that impact the likelihood of a suspension could affect contract negotiations, draft choices, and trade decisions amongst NFL teams. Although teams do not lose salary pay to players, suspensions can negatively impact the team. We will conduct a logistic regression analysis on player age, years played professionally, player position, and type of suspension.

We expect to see that age, defense or offense, and certain positions will likely be a factor. From our logistic regression analysis categorized by type of suspension, we expect to see that most players who commit a substance violation are more likely to be repeat offenders. We also expect that players that have a history of violence related suspensions are less likely to be suspended again, as most of these players tend to have short playing careers. Our work will benefit NFL teams by enabling them to make more educated decisions based on what suspension risk factors players may possess.

Sawyer, Katherine

Secondary Malignancies relating to Pediatric cancer The purpose of this manuscript is to identify if there are certain treatments for pediatric cancer that cause, or prevent, secondary malignancies, better than other common treatments. After reviewing multiple articles, it has been concluded that proton therapy is a better option for pediatric patients than photon therapy. Some secondary malignancies that seem to be more prevalent have been identified as well as etiologic factors that contribute to secondary disease.
Schwartz, Zachary Mauricio Jemal

Scalable Synthesis of Rooperol and Analogues Rooperol (1,5-bis(3’,4’-dihydroxyphenyl)pent-1-en-4-yne) is a naturally occurring bis-catechol that was originally isolated from the African Potato (Hypoxis hemerocallidea). Rooperol shows promising anti-cancer activity in vitro, but it is rapidly and completely metabolized to inactive phase-II metabolites in vivo. To address this problem, synthetic analogues of rooperol may be synthesized in which some or all of the catechol groups are replaced with more metabolically stable isosteres, with the intent of designing a molecule that has the same anti-cancer effects of rooperol, but is not metabolized as rapidly. Our initial efforts in establishing a structure-activity relationship for these analogues involves the preparation and evaluation of a series of symmetrical (in which both catechols are replaced with isosteres) and unsymmetrical analogues (in which only one catechol is replaced). Our original total synthesis of rooperol and its analogues (Kerwin&Cha, Tetrahedron Lett., 2014) employed a Friedel-Crafts alkylation using tetrachlorocyclopropene that was not general and did not scale well. Here, we report a more scalable synthesis that has enabled the preparation of rooperol and analogues on scales required for in vitro and in vivo biological evaluation.
Scott, Colton
Elizabeth Castaneda,
Ronie Ramirez,
Maddie White,
Bryan Trevorah

Assessment of Quality of Life and Social Determinants in Bastrop County Introduction: The goal of this project was to assess the health needs and resources of Bastrop County, TX to suggest programs that may improve overall quality of life.

Methods: The PRECEDE-PROCEED Model was used as a framework for this project. Secondary data was collected from the Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Texas Department of State Health Services, and the United States Census Bureau. A prioritization matrix was created to categorize health issues based on perceived importance and the changeability.

Results: Identified health issues included lung disease, lung cancer, and sexually transmitted infections (STI). Gonorrhea rates in Bastrop County were 233.3 (per 100,000 population) compared to 147.0 in Texas. Chlamydia rates were 763.9 compared to 494.4 in Texas. Limited health care availability was also identified. Compared to Texas, Bastrop County has a lower ratio (per 100,000 population) in each of the following: access to primary care physicians (27.3 vs 73.4), access to physician assistants (9.8 vs 27.9), access to nurse practitioners (29.5 vs 58.3), and access to general dentists (24 vs 36.3).

Conclusions: The prioritized need for Bastrop County is to address the lack of health care availability by increasing access to health care professionals. By increasing access to health care professionals, this may assist in lowering overall morbidity including STIs such as gonorrhea and chlamydia.

Seay, Amani

Political Commentary and Criticism in Rap Music: From the Obama Era to the Trump Era The intersection of rap music and politics originated sometime in the early 1980s and has continued as a tradition of praise and social critique of individual politicians, political structures and institutions. As reported, many rap artists have had controversial relationships with the media and political figures; activist and author Kevin Powell commented: “… The hip-hop community organizing around politics is not a new phenomenon, nor did it begin with the Obama presidential campaign.” The power and the glorification of many rap artists mirrored national political figures, and in many ways artists in a microcosm are political figures in their own communities. African-Americans in urban communities used rap and its artists to engage civically when their traditional vote and voice was silenced in the political arena. Barack Obama’s 2008 presidential campaign heavily influenced the rap community, because it experienced a political icon, activist and someone who reflected their goals. The authors of “The Barack Obama Phenomenon” state: “Obama’s proximity to hip-hop disrupts common notion of cool—as hip-hop is an art form that values cool, authenticity.” By analyzing books, artist’s music and popular commentary from rap artists in the media this poster is exploring whether the positive sentiment towards Obama changed after his first campaign and whether rap artists became more critical of the president. As the political arena shifted with a new presidency this poster will show the mentions of business person Donald Trump and his rise in the political area and how the rap community responded to his campaign. The poster will show a collective positive bias initially in favor of President Barack Obama’s first campaign and that the artists’ lyrics will progressively become more critical the longer he remained in office. This poster will find an approval and glorification of businessman Trump transitioning to a disdain for candidate and President Trump because of his lack of proximity and respect towards the hip-hop and rap community.

This poster will provide images of both Barack Obama and Donald Trump with some bullet point information on analytical findings.

Servellon, Jennifer
Katherine Moritz,
Kiara Jordan,
Jorge Anthony Holguin, Aaron Michael Serna

Willacy County Health Needs Assessment Willacy County is located in South Texas within the Rio Grande Valley and is part of PHR 11. The county has a population of 22,002 with the majority of residents being Hispanic (87.7%). The MAPP (Mobilizing for Action through Planning and Partnerships) model was utilized to assess the health needs of Willacy County. Secondary data was obtained through websites such as the Texas Department of State Health Services and Healthy People 2020. According to the secondary data, a large percent of the population was below average of higher educational attainment when compared to the state. In addition, the county had high unemployment rates (8.6%), and almost half the per capita income ($27,196) compared to Texas ($42,638). The data results showed a high rate of Pertussis in the county (27.2) when compared to that of Texas (15.2). In addition, there was a high percentage of low birth weights among mothers aged 20 to 29 (10.87%) , and high rates of gonorrhea (413) and AIDS (13.8). Utilizing the prioritization matrix, it was concluded that Pertussis was chosen as the priority health issue. The progression of such health issues within Willacy can be reduced if the community had more affordable access to health care and were educated on maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

Sghari, Mohamed Zaid Almusaied
Alec Chamberlain Thermoacoustic Refrigerator Project Modern refrigeration technologies are using vapor compression refrigeration (VCR) systems to achieve cooling. Recently, it has been discovered that VCR technology has a negative environmental impact due to the use of the HCFC gas.To protect our world, it is necessary to develop a cleaner, more environmentally-friendly refrigerator as an alternative solution.

In this research, the thermoacoustic refrigerator (TAR) is introduced as a novel solution that uses acoustic power to provide cooling without causing environmental hazards. Major technologies and equipment used in this investigation include additive manufacturing, abrasive waterjet, audio amplifier, thin films, and thermocouple and microphone sensors. An Average temperature difference of 30°F across the stack was achieved.
Skubal , Noelle

Marian Anderson: the Rosa Parks of the Music Industry Marian Anderson made important contributions to the civil rights movement. She was one of the first professional black opera singers. Her race denied her the opportunity to perform at a Daughters of the American Revolution meeting in 1939; only white artists were allowed. First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt, amongst thousands of others, withdrew her membership to show her discontent. Known for her progressive views, Roosevelt took her protest further: she organized a concert at the Lincoln memorial, with Anderson as the premier performer. The presidential acknowledgement of Anderson, and rejection of the racist decision of the DAR, shows an important point in the the civil rights movement timeline. While many prior government officials ignored the black community’s calls for change, the Roosevelts acknowledged it. The actions taken by the Roosevelts legitimized Anderson’s talents, and the talents of all black musicians. Their presidential recognition provided validation for the civil rights movement and furthered the conversation regarding racism in America. My contribution to this topic is the acknowledgement perspective: how did the Roosevelts provide legitimization to the civil rights movement using Marian Anderson’s concert? From initial findings, most research focuses on the general racism of the time, and how it affected Anderson’s performance. There is little on the Roosevelts’ acknowledgement of Anderson, and their deliberate rejection of a white organization’s authority. My poster would focus on the domino effect that Anderson’s rejection had, documenting every point where a decision was made within the government, providing the black music industry with further legitimization.

Brief Bibliography

Anderson, Marian. My Lord, What a Morning. New York: Vail-Ballou Press, Inc., 1956.

Arsenault, Raymond. The Sound of Freedom: Marian Anderson, the Lincoln Memorial, and the Concert That Awakened America. New York: Bloomsbury Press, New York, 2009.

Winston, Andrew. Defining Difference: Race and Racism in the History of Psychology. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association, 2004.

Slusher, Elizabeth

A Lockean Account of Man in the State of Nature in "Robinson Crusoe" In this essay I will be comparing the description of man in the state of nature as described by John Locke in The Second Treatise of Government to the Lockean account of man in the state in nature as expressed by Daniel Defoe in Robinson Crusoe. Locke describes the state of nature as a state of freedom in which to do things as you see fit, within the law of nature which is morally governing. The law of nature according to Locke is to preserve mankind and not commit suicide, because God is the one that has the right to your life. This idea is paralleled is Robinson Crusoe when he initially shipwrecks and does not give into the force of the sea, and finds items that would benefit his survival in an effort to preserve his own life, which he profusely thanks God for. Robinson not only preserves himself as Locke notes in the state on nature, but mankind as well, when he decides against the killing of the savages on the island since they had done no wrong to him. Though there are elements of Robinson Crusoe that could be viewed as more Hobbesian, Defoe overall depicts man in the state of nature as more Lockean.
Soehnge, Josie

What Do the Lyrics Say About Women and Sexuality: Analyzing the Works of The Weeknd, Lil Wayne, and Drake. Today, people throughout the United States listen to artists such as The Weeknd, Lil Wayne, and Drake regularly. These artists have become a large and growing part of popular culture. These artists are listened to at parties, in cars, and on headphones throughout the day and night. However, the majority of the songs produced by these artists contain lyrics with very little moral grounding, lyrics that are overly sexual and demeaning towards women. This poster will present analyses of the graphic and sexualized content of music produced by these artists. Thus this poster will attempt to analyze how these lyrics are describing our culture and teaching our society how to think about and treat women and sexuality.

Furthermore, this research is based on a study conducted by the Department of Psychology at the University of Iowa, which examined the influence of manipulated and naturalistic exposure to sexually degrading music on young men’s perceptions of women’s dating-relevant affective cues. Based on that, I have conducted my own research to provide supporting evidence that sexually derogative music has an effect on the way that humans feel and understand women and sexuality. The results of a survey – by the author of this poster proposal – with open-ended questions designed to understand the way that undergraduate students feel and think after listening to the choruses of songs from the three artists will provide an illustration of the effects of the music.


Treat, Teresa A., et al. “Influence of Sexually Degrading Music on Men's Perceptions of Women's Dating-Relevant Cues.” Applied Cognitive Psychology 29/1 (2015): 135-141.

Soza, Marisol
Eric Wendt
Adding Value to Hydroponic Production with Oyster Mushrooms Specialty mushrooms, such as shiitakes and oysters, are a high value crop which totaled $96 million in sales in 2017. Oyster mushrooms are sold at $3.10/pound, illustrating their economic value (USDA, 2017). To produce these specialty mushrooms, specific environmental conditions are required, including high humidity and warmth. Indoor hydroponic systems are a specific type of closed operation system, which utilizes a controlled environment with moderate to high humidity and temperature to produce agricultural crops with faster turnover rates. This project explores vertically integrating a layer of high value mushroom crops into a hydroponic plant-production system to increase the economic return per area. Specifically, we will compare the viability, compatibility, and competitiveness of traditional mushroom farming to conjunctive hydroponic/mushroom production. The experimental design will have three plots, the first two of which will mimic traditional mushroom production: 1) HVAC controlled environment with no light, 2) no HVAC with no light, and 3) a Buddha Box hydroponic unit that is a controlled environment with high humidity and is lit by LEDs.
Stephens, David
Corey Wright
Using Molecular Techniques to Determine Protein Binding Partners Multidrug resistance protein 4 (MRP4) is a common transmembrane transporter associated, for example, with ejection of chemotherapeutic agents from cancer cells. MRP4 has also been implicated in export of native chemicals used in cell-to-cell signaling in several organisms; however, it has yet to be fully characterized in zebrafish. A polyclonal anti-MRP4 antibody was used to detect MRP4 in zebrafish retina in earlier experiments. However, because several proteins have similar structural features to the part of the protein recognized by the antibody we are testing whether the antibody can distinguish between MRP4 and these other proteins. To do this, we genetically engineered bacteria to make the various proteins, specifically the antigenic sequence from human (HsMRP4) and zebrafish (DrMrp4), along with similar sequences found in zebrafish apolipoprotein B (DrApoB) and Danio rerio neurexin 3a (DrNeu3A). We also probed human embryonic kidney cells (HEK293) with HsMRP4 and mouse kidney. Our studies of MRP4 as a non-canonical efflux transporter will provide unique insight into intercellular signaling pathways.
Suniga, Marshall
Graciela De Leon
Effects of Different Light Sources and Substrates on Sweet Basil (Ocimum basilicum) Microgreens The average American does not meet their dietary demands for nutrient rich vegetables. Microgreens are an emerging alternative that offer a unique and lucrative solution to traditional vegetable farming and consumption methods. As the edible cotyledons of flowers, herbs and vegetables, microgreens require less agricultural inputs (land, water, fertilizer, equipment, energy, pesticides) when compared to their fully-grown vegetable counterparts, and mature at a much faster rate, usually harvested 7-14 days after sown. Additionally, microgreens can contain 4 to 40 times the nutritional value of their corresponding mature vegetables. Furthermore, their small stature and ability to grow indoors with dense spacing allow microgreen cultivation to occur in almost all locations and environments. This study will examine the effects of different light sources and substrates on time (from planting to harvest), yield, and flavor for sweet basil (Ocimum basilicum) microgreens. The different experimental groups will consist of microgreens grown on a commercial potting mix under incandescent, fluorescent and LED lights; microgreens grown on compost under incandescent, fluorescent and LED lights; and microgreens grown on interwoven coconut coir saturated with liquid fertilizer solution under incandescent, fluorescent and LED lights. These treatment groups will be compared with the control group consisting of microgreens grown on potting soil under ambient light.
Thompson, Tucker

Understanding the Songs of the Underground Railroad Extensive research has been done on songs that were used by slaves to be used as code for ways to escape. Many songs have been decoded and have let people know the routes that were used. For example: the existing research on the song “Follow the Drinking Gourd” which is suggesting an escape in the spring; the drinking gourd is a dipper for water, which is a code for the Big Dipper, which points to the Pole Star towards the North. My research will be similar to this style of showing songs with their true meanings through the de-coding, but also try and trace how songs such as this (as well as “Wade in the Water” and “Go Down Moses”) have played a part through history more than just the Underground Railroad, but how the style of music has evolved into today’s music industry, this being my original contribution to the research. The poster will answer questions having to do with any misunderstanding of the music’s true meaning and enlighten people’s understanding of how this style of music has progressed. The meaning of these songs and their influence on the music industry and its different subgenres is significant.
Thornton, Nicholas
Philip Agnello,
Eduardo Murillo,
William Sutton

A PRECEDE-PROCEED assessment of community health needs in Grayson County, Texas Abstract

Introduction. This project presents an assessment of Grayson County, Texas, utilizing PRECEDE-PROCEED program planning framework as a guide. Phase 1, the social assessment, examined demographic, socioeconomic, and quality of life indicators. Phase 2, the epidemiological assessment, measured natality, mortality, morbidity, and trauma variables. The purpose of this research was to identify and prioritize community health issues to inform the development of a community-based health intervention. Method. Secondary data were retrieved from state and federal government agency databases, organized into tables, and analyzed descriptively with comparisons to the community of Texas to identify potential health disparities. Results. Grayson County residents had a disproportionately higher percentage of adults aged 65 years and older (17.1%), which plays a role in specific disparities (crime, preventable hospitalization, unintentional falls, diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease, malignant neoplasms). Heart disease death rates in Grayson County was proportionately greater than the United States by 9% and proportionately greater than Texas by 8%. Traumatic unintentional falls occurred at disproportionately higher percentages of 33.6 % in men and 62.2% in women. The mortality rate of malignant neoplasms among non-Hispanic White residents in Grayson County was proportionately lower than their Texas counterparts, with a 2.5% difference. Discussion. Results of this community health needs assessment indicated trauma due to unintentional falls as the health issue prioritized for a community-based health intervention. Educational and ecological assessments are recommended to determine the best way to implement the health program to decrease unintentional falls among the elderly residing in Grayson County, Texas.

Tidwell, Bryanna
Shelby Alleman,
Hailee Higgins,
Kerilyn Wendel

Quality of Life in Jefferson County Introduction: Jefferson County is located in PHR 6/5S. The Southeast wetland is bordered by Louisiana and the Gulf of Mexico. It has a population of 254,679 with a high percentage of individuals aged 45 and above (38.8%) and of African American descent (33.5%).

Method: The MAP-IT framework was used to assess and create a health intervention for Jefferson County. Coordination with key-informants, knowledgeable professionals, and local businesses were vital for this framework. Key informants included; city council board members, mayor, physicians, dietitians, local recreation centers, and transportation services. Focus was placed on local grocery stores and access to healthy foods.

Results: Rates of heart disease (213.5) and stroke (55.0) are the most prevalent diseases within Jefferson County. According to The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (2016), Jefferson County had a higher percentage for ischemic heart disease and stroke when compared to Texas in 2014. These severe conditions were more prevalent in African Americans aged 45 and older on national average (CDC, 2013-2015). Healthy People 2020 has a national target goals for such diseases. In 2015, Texas met the target goal for deaths from coronary heart disease but did not meet the target goal for stroke deaths (Healthy People 2020, 2017).

Recommendations: Early detection of hypertension can reduce the chances of developing a wider range of cardiovascular issues such as stroke and heart disease. Health assessments directed toward primary prevention will be beneficial in recognizing future risk factors of hypertension.

Turner, Amy Haylee Muehlbrad
Philip Bush Studying Effects of Social Media and Voter Participation On February 14th, 2018, a mass shooting occurred at Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. This sparked much debate on social media about gun control, with a majority of the high schoolers involved reaching out and sharing their experiences. With social media providing a higher involvement and the ease of giving one's own opinion, more arguments arise, making the involvement in state and local politics crucial. We are going to find out if the discussion on Twitter affects voter participation. For the purpose of this project, we are defining voter participation as people registering to vote. To collect voter registration data, we will be tracking the totals by age groups of certain states from month to month. We will employ text mining to track certain words and phrases on Twitter using the R TwitteR package and use sentiment analysis to describe the data. With this we can see if there is a relationship between outbursts on Twitter and new voter registration within various age groups. We will also be tracking Google trends to see if there has been an increase in searches about gun control and voting. From our data of Tweets, Google Trends, and voter registration we believe there will be a trend between Tweets and voter registration. This analysis will hopefully show that more people are turning their words into actions.
Tyler, Robert

Effects of Vertical Differentiation in Detector Location on Bat Acoustics The local species of order Chiroptera occupy critical roles in the maintenance of numerous ecosystems across North America yet are faced today with significant threats such as white-nose syndrome and wind farms. It is vital to continue the development and refinement of techniques for studying bats, notoriously elusive and vagile animals. One such technique is the recording and analysis of the ultra-high frequency calls produced by echolocating bats, from which measurements of species presence and activity can be extrapolated from. However, there are many factors in acoustic analysis that affect the accuracy and reliability of the collected data, and a more optimized protocol for research needs to be established. Using Pettersson D500x bat detectors wired with external microphones, I will compare the difference in detection between two detectors at the same geographic location in a paired sample t-test. One detector will record at 2 m above the ground and the other at 7m above the ground. I expect the detector at 7m above the ground to collect more bat passes than the detector placed at 2m. This study is taking place at the Freeman Center, with detectors setup along fence posts throughout the property. The data gathered will be used to supplement the index of bats species presence at the ranch, and as research continues, will investigate activity patterns over a temporal gradient. This research will provide direction for other researchers studying bat acoustics at the Freeman Center.
Vargas, Samantha

Head to Head: Kanye West versus 50 Cent: The Album Battle that Ended In 2007, rappers Kanye West and 50 Cent both released an album on September 11th. Both albums were highly anticipated produces in two very different styles of hip-hop/rap. The showdown between “the preppy fashion maven versus the scowling firearm fetishist” was publicized as a rivalry (Kanye West and 50 Cent). Both rappers respectfully defended each album to why it’s the best, but the clash was completely friendly competition. In the end, “West’s Graduation sold 957K copies, easily beating 50’s Curtis “at 619K copies (And the Winner Is…). This album release week was a turning point for rap history. Although there are short magazine articles about the feud, there has been no scholarly research done on this topic. This research uses the comparative research method to compare each album to the other, specifically analyze the lyrics and musical characteristics. My poster will summarize the difference between the two hip-hop/rap albums and how this event created a turning point for rap.


"**This Just In** Titans Kanye West & 50 Cent Go Head to Head on BET's 106 & Park." PR

Newswire 12 Sept. 2007: n. pag. Biography in Context. Web. 11 Feb. 2018.

Vozick-Levinson, Simon. "And the Winner Is..." Entertainment Weekly 956 (2007): 13. Film &

Television Literature Index with Full Text. Web. 11 Feb. 2018.

Vozick-Levinson, Simon. "Kanye West and 50 Cent." Entertainment Weekly 971/972 (2007):

78. Film & Television Literature Index with Full Text. Web. 11 Feb. 2018.

Westerberg, Kaitlyn
Jordan Mazik
The Practicality of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Pediatric Depression Depression affects 3.2 million American youth. Nearly 60% of adolescents who experienced a major depressive episode in 2016 did not receive treatment that year (National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 2016). Depression is very burdensome to society, with annual overall costs estimated at $210.5 billion dollars (Greenberg et al., 2015). Although cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is an efficacious treatment for pediatric depression, its dissemination has been limited (Chu et al., 2015). One major barrier to treatment dissemination is lack of cost effectiveness estimates, which would inform consumers and third-party payers about which treatments yield the greatest and most sustainable long-term impact for their investment.

In response, we will present CBT-specific findings from an ongoing meta-analysis of the cost effectiveness of multiple treatments for pediatric depression (De Nadai et al., in preparation). Cognitive behavioral therapy for pediatric depression was associated with 0.93 additional quality adjusted life years (QALYs), with an average cost of treatment delivery of $3,663 per QALY. Considering that treatment provides nearly an extra year of functional life, each treated patient could gain an additional $28,859 of income on average (Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2017), providing a 788% return on investment (ROI) for patients. When applying the same intervention costs to patients of lower socioeconomic status (at the 10th percentile of income), CBT remained a strong investment, resulting in additional estimated $5,568 of income on average (a 52% ROI). Implications of this research will be discussed in the context of ongoing treatment dissemination efforts.

Wetmore, Trixie

Effects of plant extracts on Caenorhabditis elegans mortality Parasitic infections are one of the costliest concerns in the animal agriculture industry, with over ten billion dollars spent annually worldwide. In small ruminants, Haemonchus contortus infection contributes to substantial economic losses, due to few clinical signs before death. Additionally, H. contortus is developing resistance to commercial anthelmintics, further increasing the economic impact of infections from livestock death. As H. contortus continues developing resistance, it is imperative to investigate alternative anthelmintic treatments. As H. contortus is difficult to maintain in a laboratory setting, utilization of a model organism that survives well in vitro to screen for alternative anthelmintic substances is necessary. Caenorhabditis elegans has demonstrated potential to serve as such a model, as it belongs to the order Rhabditida, which is closely related to the order of H. contortus, Strongylida. Therefore, it is hypothesized that C. elegans can serve as an in vitro model for testing plant-based anthelmintics. The objective of this study is to evaluate the effect of plant extracts on C. elegans mortality in vitro. Three substances that will be evaluated for anthelmintic activity are pumpkin seed oil, allicin, and artemisinin. The survivability of C. elegans after exposure to plant extracts will be determined using an MTT-formazan assay. Living C. elegans metabolize tetrazolium dye to formazan crystals, a dark blue insoluble product that can be quantified via absorbance at 575 nm. It is anticipated that the selected plant products will decrease survivability of C. elegans in vitro, at levels similar to positive controls.
Zapata, Anakaren

Exploring the indirect impact of children of cancer patients A parental cancer diagnosis and treatment has a significant impact on the lives of their children. The purpose of this research is to look into the difference in children’s reaction to parent’s diagnosis and treatment of cancer, and different techniques that could be used to help children during that difficult time. This paper was conducted mainly using research form the Texas state library database done in the past five years, as well as other general reliable databases were also used. After much research was done, it was seen that children will react differently depending on their age, and parents should be informed in how to explain their diagnosis and treatment depending on their age, and the different resources available to help children during this time.