Past SROP Scholars

Jorge Agudo-Ruiz

University of Puerto Rico at Aguadilla
Participation year
2010
Mentor
Dr. Bradley Jones
Project title
Development of a Genetic Screen to Identify Inhibitors of Salmonella Adherence and Colonization
Abstract
Salmonellosis continues to be an important health concern in the United States and throughout the world.  Salmonella is a genus of rod-shaped, Gram-negative, non-spore forming, predominantly motile enterobacteria.  Some pathogenic species commonly grow in the intestines of chickens and other warm blooded animals, including humans.  Several factors allowing Salmonella to colonize the intestines of chickens have been identified, such as type 1 fimbriae (hair ike projections that surround the cell).  To this end, we have devised a genetic strategy to identify small biologically-

Barbara Alvarez

University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign
Participation year
2010
Mentor
Dr. Omar Valerio-Jimenez
Project title
True Americanos: Education, Politics, and Activism of Mexican Americans in Iowa
Abstract
TBD

Ricardo Auguste

Prairie View A & M University
Participation year
2010
Mentor
Dr. Juan Hourcade
Project title
Improving the Quality of Communication and Social Interactions for Children With Autism Spectrum Disorders Through Multi-touch Tablet Applications
Abstract
Children diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) have limited social skills which threaten their chances of living independent lives as adults.  Computer-based interventions have shown some positive results, but they tend not to support face-to-face interactions with other people.  The purpose of this research is to create and modify multi-touch display applications to encourage communication, collaboration and creativity for children with ASD.  These applications take advantage of the interest many children with ASD have in using computers to have them participate in activities where t

Tabia Augustin

Oakwood University
Participation year
2010
Mentor
Dr. Prabhat Goswami
Project title
MnSOD activity inversely correlates with percent S-phase
Abstract
TBD

Elliott Beenk

University of Iowa
Participation year
2010
Mentor
Dr. Jerald Schnoor
Project title
  Reconnaissance of Louisiana salt marshes and impacts of crude oil on Spartina alterniflora
Abstract

On April 20th 2010, the Deep Water Horizon Well in the Gulf of Mexico exploded.  Resulting is the worst environmental disaster in the United States' history.  The environmental impacts are wide reaching but for my research I focused on the salt marshes in Louisiana.

Juan Benabe Vidal

University of Puerto Rico at Rio Piedras
Participation year
2010
Mentor
Dr. Melissa Duff
Project title
Hippocampal Pattern Separation: A Bird's Eye View of Common Ground Development in Amnesia
Abstract
 

Individuals with damage to the hippocampus show marked memory impairments for learning new declarative information in everyday life and on standardized memory tests. However, previous work by Duff and colleagues (2006) has shown that participants with hippocampal amnesia display robust learning for labels used to describe twelve abstract Chinese tangrams in a Barrier Task setting.

Veronica Bonilla Pacheco

Pontifical Catholic University
Participation year
2010
Mentor
Dr. Julie Gros-Louis
Project title
  Are infants' prelinguistic vocalization related to the simplicity or complexity of motor skills during object exploration?
Abstract
TBD

Fernando Bonilla Valentin

University of Puerto Rico at Aguadilla
Participation year
2010
Mentor
Dr. Craig Ellermeier
Project title
  Identification of regulators of the ECF sigma factor, SigV, in Bacillus subtilis
Abstract
 

It was recently found that one ECF sigma factor, SigV, in Bacillus subtilis is induced by lysozyme stress. Activity of SigV is inhibited by a membrane bound anti-sigma factor RsiV. Many ECF sigma factors are activated by two successive proteolytic events known as site 1 and site 2 cleavage of the anti-sigma factor in response to antimicrobial peptides and other agents that damage the cell envelope. These two sites are cleaved by specific proteases that function to destroy the anti-sigma factor.

Tancia Bradshaw

University of Virgin Islands
Participation year
2010
Mentor
Dr. Jeff Murray
Project title
  An Association Study of Candidate Genes and Preterm Infants with Patent Ductus Arteriosus (PDA)
Abstract
 

OBJECTIVE. Patent ductus arteriosus is a congenital heart defect that leads to abnormal blood flow between the aorta and the pulmonary artery. The incidence of patent ductus arteriosus increases with decreasing gestational age where up to 76.9% of preterm infants are born at 24 weeks gestation. Our goal was to determine if genetic risk factors play a role in patent ductus arteriosus. METHODOLOGY.

Danielle Caldwell

University of Iowa
Participation year
2010
Mentor
Dr. Kathryn Gerken
Project title
A Qualitative and Quantitative Analysis of the Mental Health Needs of Alternative High School Youth in Iowa
Abstract
TBD

Limaris Chaparro

University of Puerto Rico at Aguadilla
Participation year
2010
Mentor
Dr. Apollina Goel
Project title
Parameters of governing metabolic oxidative stress in multiple myeloma
Abstract

Multiple Myeloma is a malignant plasma cell proliferative disorder. Plasma cells are white blood cells that produce large volume of antibodies and they are originating in the lymphatic tissue. Multiple myeloma is incurable with existing therapies. Chemotherapeutic drugs and radiation therapy provide some benefit but all patients relapse with fatal outcome. It is therefore very important to understand how best to eliminate the tumor cells in their normal microenvironment. Malignant cells, in general, are under oxidative stress due to their aberrant metabolic regulations.

Jordan Conwell

Bates College
Participation year
2010
Mentor
Dr. Jennifer Glanville
Project title
Does Community Diversity Reduce or Enhance Interpersonal Trust?
Abstract
 

This research study sought to determine whether previous findings regarding the effect of diversity on in-group and out-group trust were influenced by social desirability bias. It also sought to uncover the role of community diversity on interpretations of questions on trust, as another potential explanation for the often-reported negative relationship between community diversity and generalized trust.

Jarrett David

Morehouse College
Participation year
2010
Mentor
Dr. Jose Assouline
Project title
Mesenchymal Stem Cell Viability and Imaging with Fluorescent Nanoparticles
Abstract
 

A challenge with stem cell therapy is identifying where the injected cells will travel; one potential solution is the use of fluorescent biomarkers. In vivo they would give their target a fluorescent color which can be identified using a microscope equipped with a fluorescent filter, this would allow researchers to see if the cells have reached the targeted area, from there they will be able to modify the procedure, making it more effective. Fluorescein isothiocyanate or (FITC) has proven to be a potential biomarker because of its low toxicity [1].

Jarline Encarnacion Medina

University of Puerto Rico at Aguadilla
Participation year
2010
Mentor
Dr. Hans-Joachim Lehmler
Project title
TBP
Abstract
TBP

Morgan Fassett

University of North Texas
Participation year
2010
Mentor
Dr. Bob McMurray
Project title
  When words collide: Learning similar sounding words enhances speech perception
Abstract
 

A classic problem in speech perception is the information listeners use to distinguish words.  This must be solved by every child over development as they determine constellation of acoustic cues used by their language. Classic approaches posit that people learn to perceive individual sounds first and then assemble them to acquire words. We asked the converse question: does learning words help acquire individual sounds, more specifically whether learning highly similar words improves speech perception.

Marisa Franco

New York University
Participation year
2010
Mentor
Dr. Mary Campbell
Project title
Complications of Privilege: The Effects of Stereotype Threat on Black/White Biracial People
Abstract
Stereotype threat has repeatedly been proven to effect African Americans in the academic domain, but it has not been examined for Black/white biracial individuals (Steele & Aronson, 1995). The present study assessed the effect of stereotype threat on black/white biracial individuals.

Asha Gipson

Pomona College
Participation year
2010
Mentor
Dr. Michael Lovaglia
Project title
  The Difference at the Top: Examining the Achievement Gap Between White and Minority Students
Abstract
 

Existing research on the achievement gap between Whites and minorities has suggested that the underachievement of minority students can be partially attributed to the psychologically threatening stereotype threat which is the fear of confirming or being evaluated by negative stereotypes (Steele, 1995). The related theory of differential expected consequences (Lovaglia, 2004) proposes that minority students also anticipate a variety of negative consequences to ensue for academic performance that is lower or higher than expected.

Jon Goodwin

Dillard University
Participation year
2010
Mentor
Dr. Michael Lovaglia
Project title
The Difference at the Top:  Examining the Achievement Gap Between White and Minority Students
Abstract

The compendium of existing research that focuses on the gap in achievement between White and minority students has supplied compelling psychosocial explanations with empirical support.  Stereotype threat, the disruptive concern of confirming or being evaluated by a negative stereotype (Steele, 1997), has been extensively investigated as a factor that undermines the academic performance of stigmatized minorities.  The related theory of differential expected consequences (Lovaglia, 2004) proposes that minority students expect variegated aversive consequences for academic performance that may

Jasmyn Harrington

University of Iowa
Participation year
2010
Mentor
Dr. Katrina Sanders
Project title
Lowering High School Drop-Out Rates:  Does Teacher's Race Matter
Abstract
This study examines student drop-out rates and teacher's race in four Iowa school districts.  Numbers show that African American and Latino students drop-out at higher rates than white and other minority students.  This study explores why non-white students are dropping out at alarming numbers and how school districts can address this issue.  This exploration suggests that the extant literature about the importance of non-white teachers for non-white students is applicable to Iowa.  This study supports previous scholarship demonstrating the importance of non-white teachers for non-white studen

Justin Hayes

University of Iowa
Participation year
2010
Mentor
Dr. Elizabeth Altmaier
Project title
Programming for At-Risk Children:  The Roles of Public Perception and Organizations on Delivery and Evaluation
Abstract
I research the role of public perception in determining funding for aid institutions serving at-risk children, with specific interest in the Grant Wood neighborhood in Iowa City.  There is a discrepancy in funding based on who aid organizations help.  Grant Wood suffers from very poor public perception and low amounts of aid.  This research aims to determine what goes into determining public perception and funding for aid organizations.  "At-risk children" were defined using the U.S.

Isaiah Iboko

Grinnell College
Participation year
2010
Mentor
Dr. Tarrell Portman
Project title
American Perception of African-American men Between the Years 1950-2010
Abstract

The purpose of this research was to examine whether, and if so, how mainstream American perceptions of Black men have changed between the years 1950 and 2010. I hypothesized that although progress has been made in positively portraying some affluent Black men, the majority of American society appears to still cling to negative stereotypes and images of Black men created prior to 1950, primarily surrounding slavery.

Sasha Levons

North Carolina @ Charlotte
Participation year
2010
Mentor
Dr. Daniel Tranel
Project title
Are There Racial Differences Between Blacks and Whites in their Experience and Expression of Emotion?
Abstract

Emotion, feelings and mood are fundamental factors driving human behavior. Very little is known about whether there are racial differences in response to film-induced emotional stimuli and virtually nothing is known about their psychophysiological manifestations. One's threshold for stress is due in large part to how they process emotion. There are ethnic differences in cardiovascular arousal during stressful situations. In comparison to Caucasians, African Americans encounter higher resting levels of blood pressure, blood pressure reactivity, and mortality from hypertension.

Zulay Martinez

Interamerican University of Puerto Rico
Participation year
2010
Mentor
Dr. Christina Johnson
Project title
Life is Not a Spectator Sport:  Narratives of Physical Activity, Health and Strength
Abstract

"Physical activity is defined as any bodily movement produced by skeletal muscles that require energy expenditure" World Health Organization, 2010).  Many people benefit by having healthier lifestyles if they increase their physical activity (http://www.nlm.nih.gov/, 2010).  When many individuals think about physical activity, exercise or structured activity may come to mind.  If exercise is coming to mind, it is hard to be physically active if there is no place to exercise or participate in planned physical activity.  If people define physical activity