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Science Research Projects to be presented

posted Apr 18, 2007 in ACADEMICS

The McPherson College Science Department will be showcasing the research work of eight students through individual senior research projects presented in the 24th Annual Science Research Forum on Friday, April 20. These projects serve as a culmination of skills that are applied in one research project that aims to test a hypothesis. The forum will begin at 2:00 p.m. in Melhorn Science Hall, room 112. The public is invited to attend.

These seniors developed a proposal in their junior year that set up the hypothesis for their research. The students were given flexibility in choosing a research topic, but followed structured methods for collecting and putting together their research information.

“This is a valuable experience for students to have,” Al Dutrow, natural science department chair said. “This is hands-on independently designed research that is a valuable learning experience as well as being beneficial for future job and graduate school applications.”

Matt Herber and Callie Crist were given the opportunity to complete their senior projects in an undergraduate research program within the Internal Medicine Department at the University of Nebraska during the summer of 2006. “The title of my research project is “The Interaction of Alcohol and Iron-Overload in the In-vivo Regulation of Iron Responsive Genes,” Callie Crist, sr. said. “Through having this opportunity at the University of Nebraska I was able to complete my senior research and gain a better knowledge of Bio-medical research. I am looking forward to my senior presentation and, overall, it has been a good experience.”

Rhonda Hoffert, sr., said, “What has putting the project together taught me? Well, for one, that research takes longer than you think is going to! It was really hard to fit my research into my class schedule for first semester. So I had to work hard on time management. I knew that if I got behind in the research process, I would be behind until the presentation day came, so I made sure that I started as soon as I could.”

The following research projects will be presented: "Tracking Patient Habits: Gender, Age, Financial State, and Health Education," by Laura DeAnn Engquist, McPherson; "Benzo(a)pyrene Induced Mutagenesis of Saccharomyces cerevisiae ," by Hannah Fisher, McPherson; "Development of a Novel Assay to Determine Nanoparticle Protection of Complexed dsDNA," by Matthew W. Herber, Wood River, Neb.; "Hershey Diamond Synthesis: an attempt at verifying methods," by Rhonda Hoffert, Golden, Colo.; "Aerobic Methane Production by Banana Plant," by Jamie Rodriguez, Oklahoma City, Okla.; "Carbon Fiber Electrode as an Electron Acceptor for a Microbial Fuel Cell Using Geobacter," by Alicia R Schoen, McPherson; "Comparison of Effort for High-Velocity and Low-Velocity Bench Press," by Jamie Schropp, Assaria, Kan.; “The Interaction of Alcohol and Iron-Overload in the in-vivo Regulation of Iron Responsive Genes,” by Callie Crist, Elizabeth Klein, John Gollan, Jonathan Frye and Dee Harrison-Findik.

The student research program was originally funded in 1981 with a grant from the National Science Foundation and continues to be supported primarily by alumni donations. One hundred percent of all science majors have completed a senior research project since 1983, distinguishing McPherson College’s program as one of the few and longest running undergraduate research requirements in the country.


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