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Supporting Undergraduate Research at Abilene Christian University since 2009

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Priscilla Clayton – Nutrition

Posted by on Aug 26, 2014 in Feature, STEM, Student Researcher, Summer Research Opportunities | 0 comments

Priscilla Clayton

Name: Priscilla Clayton

Major: Nutrition

Classification: Junior

Hometown: Arlington, TX

Mentor: Dr. Patricia Hernandez

What I Study: My research is observing fruit and vegetable consumption in children of low and high-income.

Why I do research: I do research for the experience for not just myself but for graduate school and the challenge it brings me.

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Summer 2014 Research Roundup

Posted by on Aug 19, 2014 in Announcement, Feature, Humanities, Social Sciences, STEM, Student Researcher | 0 comments

ACU Undergraduate Researchers have been busy this summer working on a variety of projects. Over 50 students from more than 15 departments have participated in research this summer. Seventeen students participated in research through the McNair Scholars program. Other students and faculty were supported by Pursuit Research Grants and Office of Undergraduate Research Summer Stipend Grants.

Here are some of the things we know about (let us know what we are missing):

McNair Scholars: The McNair Scholars Program had a successful Summer Research Internship! 17 students participated and completed research on various projects in their disciplines. They will be presenting their work at national McNair conferences in the coming months.

Biblical Studies: Victoria Sun and Houston Heflin studied Student Engagement.

Biology: In the Huddleston lab 3 students have been working on knocking out genes they think to be essential to horizontal gene transfer in the bacterial genus Aeromonas.  They have also been looking for Aeromonas in rainwater.

Chemistry and Biochemistry: Ten students and 5 faculty members participated in on-going research projects in biochemistry, organic/medicinal chemistry, polymer science and organometallic synthesis.

Education: Ashley Towe, Kaitlin Sehres, and Jake Hall worked with Dr. Andrew Huddleston on a project entitled “Thou Read’st Black Where I Read White”: Understanding Pervasive Interpretive Pluralism of Biblical Texts through Louise Rosenblatt’s Transactional Theory of Reading.

Engineering and Physics: Hannah Hamilton, Ryan Pinson, Ramsey Towell, and Cecily Towell spent their summer at Brookhaven National Laboratory on Long Island, NY working with the PHENIX experiment along side Drs Michael Daugherity and Rusty Towell.  They helped operate a $200 million dollar detector and built a test stand for detector development.

Dr. Darby Hewitt and several students worked on optics, laser science, and spectroscopy research.

ACU Library Maker Lab:  Student Amy Carnagey worked with Dr. John Weaver to researchthe theory and practice of constructionist pedagogy (“inventing to learn”), and its present/potential impact on the design of learning experiences in the Maker Lab and elsewhere at ACU. They presented their research results at the 2014 Annual Conference of the American Theological Library Association (ATLA).

Language and Literature and Communications and Sociology: McNair Scholar Kendra Oregon (Dr. Ron Morgan’s student in Global Studies) worked with Drs. Cindy Roper and Paul Roggendorff on researching the interaction of Muslim, Jewish and Christian cultures in medieval Spain in her paper: “Tolerance in Toledo, Spain, Between Muslims, Christians and Jews, between 711 and 1031.” In her research, Kendra Oregon finds a valuable example for our times of peaceful coexistence in a radically pluralistic society.

Management Sciences: Levi Ritchie and Dr. Ryan Jessup were studying the effect of too much choice.

Check out some of the Summer Researchers




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Cliff Pruett – Chemistry and Biochemistry

Posted by on May 13, 2014 in Feature, STEM, Student Researcher | 0 comments


Name: Cliff Pruett

Major: Biochemistry

Classification: Senior

Hometown: Abilene, TX

Mentor: Dr. Bruce Hopkins, Chemistry and Biochemistry

What I Study: We are part of a collaborative project known as “Distributed Drug Discovery” that was begun at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis. The primary goal of this project is to develop treatments for Third World diseases. Specifically, our research lab is interested in the synthesis and characterization of potential anti-malarial compounds. We hope also to integrate this research into the Organic Chemistry curriculum at ACU. By integrating the program into undergraduate teaching labs, this project can increase the volume of potential drug-like molecules synthesized while simultaneously teaching applicable chemistry to students.

Why I do research: Research feeds not only an interest in science, but also curiosity and creativity. Plus, it is a great way to learn a lot more about one of the many scientific fields that exist in the world today and is an excellent tool to enhance my learning while at ACU.

Conference Presentations: University of Kansas Summer Research Symposium (July ’12)
MGE@MSA/WAESO Undergraduate Research Conference at Arizona State Univeristy (March ’13)
ACU Undergraduate Research Festival (April ’13)

Awards: 2013 Undergraduate Researcher of the Year Finalist

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Spring Conferences

Posted by on Apr 15, 2014 in Conferences, Feature, Student Researcher | 0 comments

ACU undergraduate Researchers have been participating in conferences all over the United States this spring.  Some of these include the Alpha Chi Honor Society National Meeting, National Conference on Undergraduate Research,  Southwestern Psychological Association Meeting, the Baccalaureate Social Work Program Directors Annual Conference, the 247th National Meeting of the American Chemical Society, and the Texas Branch American Society for Microbiology Spring Meeting.

Our students have had a great showing at the conferences. Levi Ritchie won the CUR Psychology Division Outstanding Presentation Award.

At  Alpha Chi National Conference, ACU received many honors:

Scholarship Winners:  
(The Chapter and Regional Scholarships were competitive and based on the student’s application and convention presentations.)
Katie Cukrowski:  - Chapter Scholarship – Chapter President 13-14
Parker Gordon:  Regional Scholarship – Chapter Treasurer 13-14
Jacob Woods:   Regional Scholarship – Chapter Treasurer 14-15
National Convention Prize Winners  
Elisa Wyrick: British Literature  (Chapter Publicist 13-14)
Tina Johnson: Organismal/Ecological Biology (Chapter Secretary 14-15
Region 1 Student Delegate to the Alpha Chi National Council 
Colton McCoy (Chapter President 14-15)  Colton is one of seven student delegates nationwide elected to serve with faculty on the national council.
Other presenters included,
Daniel Archer – Chapter Vice President 13-14
Travis Chura – Chapter Vice President 14-15
Lydia Brown – Chapter Historian 14-15

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2014 Undergraduate Research Festival

Posted by on Apr 8, 2014 in Activities, Announcement, Conferences, Feature, Student Researcher | 0 comments

The 6th Annual Undergraduate Research Festival was held April 1, 2014. Approximately 160 students gave 125 presentations.

At the Awards dinner, awards for Outstanding Presentations were given in 5 categories. Click here for the complete list of winners.

Undergraduate Research Mentor of the Year was announced at the dinner as well. The awards this year went to Dr. Mikee Delony for Arts & Humanities, Dr. Suzie Macaluso for Social Sciences, and Dr. Greg Powell for STEM.

Check out photos from the day.

The 7th Undergraduate Research Festival will be held on March 31, 2015.

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Arts and Humanities Opportunities – Jan 2014

Posted by on Jan 28, 2014 in Arts, Humanities, Student Researcher, Summer Research Opportunities | 0 comments

The Smithsonian has a number of internship opportunities. Check them out at their webpage.

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Social Science External Summer Research Opportunities Jan 2013

Posted by on Jan 23, 2014 in Student Researcher, Summer Research Opportunities | 0 comments

University of Virginia Curry School of Education Summer Undergraduate Research Program is an 8 week program with a $3000 stipend.  ”The Summer Undergraduate Research Program (SURP) is an 8-week internship that will provide undergraduates from underrepresented groups with valuable research and professional development experience under the guidance of UVA Faculty. This internship program is designed to encourage students from groups traditionally underrepresented in the field of education research to consider careers in academic, policy, or research organizations. Interns will work on research focusing on schools, classrooms, and other youth settings as contexts critical to child and adolescent development. They will also participate in meetings and workshops, and attend a research conference.” For more information visit their websiteApps are due Feb 1.


The Smithsonian has a number of internship opportunities. Check them out at their webpage.

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