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CCU students win cash prizes for research presentations

April 17, 2018
The Undergraduate Research Competition at Coastal Carolina University awards students for oral or poster presentations that share and explain research across a range of programs and disciplines.The Undergraduate Research Competition at Coastal Carolina University awards students for oral or poster presentations that share and explain research across a range of programs and disciplines.

Students at Coastal Carolina University have wide-ranging interests, and those interests often translate into meaningful and impactful research. That research was on display April 11-12 at CCU, and more than a dozen students have been awarded first-, second- or third-place cash prizes for their work.

The Undergraduate Research Competition is an annual event at CCU that provides an avenue for students to share and promote the work they’ve done. Often, their presentations are the culmination of years of work and research within their field of study. All undergraduate students are eligible to enter the competition and submit abstracts for consideration.

This year, nearly 120 student presentations representing 30 academic majors from all five colleges illustrated the outstanding quality of student research at the University, according to Rob Young, director of undergraduate research. “Together,” he said, “these students illustrate the considerable research talents of our students and the wealth of experiential learning opportunities at CCU.”

Nearly 80 faculty judged the student presentations. Prizes were awarded for first ($150), second ($100), and third ($50) place in four award categories. The first-place awards will be presented at Honors Convocation on Thursday, May 3, at 6 p.m. in the HTC Student Recreation and Convocation Center.

Oral Presentations: Natural and Applied Sciences

First Place: Ashley Lynch and Sydney Brown, “Quantifying perceptions of substance abuse: Promoting positive change” (biology major and exercise and sport science major, respectively, faculty mentor: Sharon Thompson)

Second Place: Rebecca Polaski, “Effects of Regional Hypoxia on Cognitive Ability in Juvenile Leopard Geckos (Eublepharis macularius)” (biochemistry major, faculty mentors: Scott Parker and Matthew Murphy)

Third Place: Krystina Millar, “The Value of Water: Gender and Desired Outcomes in Volunteer Water Quality Monitoring” (sociology major, faculty mentor: Jaime McCauley)

Oral Presentations: Humanities and Fine Arts, Business, and Education

First Place: Sydney James, “Using Experimental Archaeology as a Tool for Education” (anthropology major, faculty mentors: Aneilya Barnes and Carolyn Dillian)

Second Place: Ramsey Diven, “In a State of Serenity” (art studio major, faculty mentors: Aneilya Barnes and Charles Clary)

Third Place: Allie Sheets, “Cash Bail and African American Inequalities” (political science major, faculty mentors: Jonathan Trerise and Jacqueline Kurlowski)

Poster Presentations: Physical and Biological Sciences

First Place: Hannah Weinberg, “Skin lesion prevalence on bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) from coastal waters near Murrells Inlet, SC” (marine science major, faculty mentor: Rob Young)

Second Place: Josh Dusci, “Comparing High and Low-Density Stocking Rates of Goldfish in an Aquaponics System” (marine science major, faculty mentor: Erin Burge)

Third Place: Tyler McKee, “SharkCam video observation of marine fishes associated with hard bottom habitat” (marine science major, faculty mentor: Erin Burge)

Poster Presentations: Health and Behavioral Sciences and Humanities

First Place: Tavia Sturgill, “Implications of Racial Tensions on Implicit Biases in Processing Information about Different Races” (psychology major, faculty mentor: Andrew Terranova)

Second Place: Diazia Torres, “Are There Flaws in Forensic Identification?” (psychology major, faculty mentor: Melissa Paiva-Salisbury)

Abstracts from the 2018 competition can be viewed here. Previous winners (2013-2017) can be viewed here.