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2003-04 Academy

2003-04 URA Scholars

Members of the 2003-04 Undergraduate Research Academy at their symposium. Front row, from left: Susanne Harmon, Jennifer Wilkey, Zach Heeren, Mandy Zbinden and Stacey Taft. Back row: Sarah Borgstede, Chad Burns, Philip Huling, Jerry Morgan and Matt Warren. Not pictured: Andrew Ravanelli, Christopher Rivera, Steve Sommer and Angela Winkeler.

Members of the 2003-2004 Academy, their projects and mentors are as follows:

Sarah Borgstede, Art and Design (Metalsmithing)
Project: "Silver Granulation and its Application to Hollowware"
Mentor: Paulette Myers

Chad Burns, Mechanical Engineering
Project: "Personal Pre-heater: Breathing Easy When it's Cold"
Mentor: X. Terry Yan

Special Note: Chad is pursuing a PhD in Mechanical Engineering at the University of Illinois

Susanne Harmon, Art and Design (Ceramics)
Project: "Terra Sigillata Development Under Varied Firing Techniques"
Mentor: Matt Wilt

Zachary Heeren, Biological Sciences
Project: "Sex Determination in Arisaema tryphyl"
Mentor: Betsy Esselman

Philip Huling, Mathematical Studies
Project: "Derivation of the Lagrangian for a Suspension Bridge"
Mentor: John Bryden

Special Note: Phil presented his findings at BMC 2004 (Joint Meeting of the 56th British Mathematical Colloquium & the 17th Annual Meeting of the Irish Mathematical Society) at Queen's University Belfast, Ireland in April 2004. He was the only undergraduate student in attendance and one of only four Americans to participate

Jerry Morgan, Physics
Project: "Determination of Photon Yields of Scintillating Optical Fibers Prototypes for Use in Cosmic Ray Astrophysics Experiments"
Mentor: David Kaplan

Special Notes: Jerry presented his research at the National Conference on Undergraduate Research 2004 in Indianapolis. He is pursuing a PhD in Physics at Oklahoma State University

Andrew Ravanelli, Biological Sciences
Project: "Morphological and Molecular Analysis of Two Species of Killifish (genus Fundulus) in a Hybrid Zone"
Mentor: David Duvernell

Special Notes: Andy presented his research at the Evolution 2004 Conference at Colorodo State University in June 2004. He was also a URA Scholar in the previous academy, with a different project. He is pursuing his PhD in Developmental Biology at Duke University

Christopher Rivera, Chemistry
Project: "A Practical Method to Synthesize 2-Substituted Imidazoles"
Mentor: James McClure

Special Note: Chris is pursuing a Doctor of Medicine degree at Southern Illinois University School of Medicine in Springfield, IL

Steve Sommer, Physics and Mathematics
Project: "Investigating How Errors Affect an Eigenanalysis"
Mentors: Rebecca Lindell and George Pelekanos

Stacey Taft, Biological Sciences
Project: "Production of Recombinant Mast Cell Degranulating Peptide"
Mentor: Mark Bolyard

Special Notes: Stacey presented her research at the Illinois State Academy of Science Annual Meeting, April, 2004. She is pursuing a PhD in Microbiology at Southern Illinois University Carbondale

Matt Warren, Philosophy
Project: "The Evolution of Ethics"
Mentor: Rachel Singpurwalla

Special Notes: Matt presented his paper "How Moral Systems Evolved" at the Eighth Annual Pacific University Undergraduate Philosophy Conference in April, 2004. He is attending law school at the University of Arizona, Tuscon

Jennifer Wilkey, Anthropology and Art and Design (Ceramics)
Project: "Determining the Function of Stumpware in the American Bottom through Experimental Archaeology"
Mentors: Julie Holt and Matt Wilt

Angela Winkeler, Biological Sciences
Project: "Inhibition of Canine Distemper Virus Binding to Vero Cells by Anti-CD150(SLAM)"
Mentor: Paul Wanda

Special Note: Angela presented her research at the Illinois State Academy of Science Annual Meeting, April, 2004. She won best poster presentation at the meeting

Mandy Zbinden, Biological Sciences
Project: "Non-Invasive Detection of Trematode Infection in Freshwater Snails"
Mentors: Mark Bolyard and Paul Brunkow

Key Line

For more information on the Undergraduate Research Academy, contact Dr. Victoria G. Scott at (618) 650-2640 or

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