April 23, 2020
Kenyon has temporarily adjusted its operations due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more here.
Select a department, office or subject to view related abstracts. Participating students are listed along with their faculty mentor.
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Casey Cook '17, Phoebe Roe '16 | Professor of American Studies Peter Rutkoff
Cook and Roe spent a week at an arts-focused magnet school, the Cleveland School of the Arts, to examine the education reform taking place there. This study capped a semester analyzing prevalent socioeconomic trends in the United States education system for Rutkoff’s course, The Sankofa Project: Theory and Practice of Urban Education. In this presentation, Cook and Roe will discuss their findings and open a larger conversation about education in metropolitan areas.
Laura Marques-Jackson '16 | Associate Professor of Anthropology Kimmarie Murphy
Last summer, Marques-Jackson did archaeology with the Skagafjöður Church and Settlement Survey (SCASS) in Skagafjöður, Iceland. SCASS is a project funded by the National Science Foundation with principal investigators at University of Massachusetts Boston and the Skagafjöður Heritage Museum. Professor Kimmarie Murphy, the senior investigator of human remains on SCASS, provided Marques-Jackson with the opportunity to travel to Iceland and to examine early 11th-century Christian mortuary practices in Northern Iceland. While working in Iceland, Marques-Jackson learned to excavate human burials and how to wash and prepare them for analysis in the lab. Upon returning to Kenyon, she completed an independent study, Digital Storytelling in Anthropology, and produced three different digital stories aimed at separate audiences to share her Icelandic experience. The first version is for children, the second is for a general audience and the third specifically addresses the burial she excavated so she could reflect on her own actions in the context of past human experiences.
Madeleine Manly '18 | Associate Professor of Anthropology Kimmarie Murphy
Manly investigated when a listener’s speech-based social judgments are formed, using reactions to progressive verbs such as “running.” While <-ing> is standard, the form <-in> is socially marked and conveys informality. This variation is processed by the sociolinguistic monitor, which forms social judgments about speakers based on their language. Participants in Manly’s study heard a recording of a 27-year-old male’s speech in a news broadcast which had been digitally manipulated so that all, the first half, the second half or none of the instances of the <-ing> token were pronounced <-in>. While this recording played, listeners moved a cursor on a magnitude estimation scale between the markers “perfectly professional” and “try some other line of work.” A visual examination of the average endpoints of the wholly <-in> and <-ing> conditions indicated, unexpectedly, that they were both rated as professional. The second phase of the study investigated this incongruity. The scale was changed to “formal” and “informal,” and then the visual examination of average endpoints showed the expected results: the <-in> condition was evaluated as the least formal and <-ing> as the most. This may indicate changing standards for professionalism in news broadcast, where formality is not necessary.
Oscar Dow '19, Jessica Ferrer '17 | Professor of Art Claudia Esslinger
Visitors to Ferrer and Dow’s presentation will be able to view their projects made in the class Experimental Video Art: Stop Motion Animation. They will also be able to try the process themselves, using elements explored in the class. Styles of video/film art that are not possible in live-motion, such as time lapse, replacement and manipulation of elements without evident human control, are aspects of stop-motion animation. A long history from Melies to Aardman and zoetropes to cellphones undergird this practice.
Sam Clougher '17, Shannon Hart '18 | Assistant Director of Athletics/Director of the KAC Justin Newell
The Athletic Department will showcase the impact of participation in athletics on the academic experience. The presentation will be made by students who have excelled at athletics and performed at a high level in the classroom.
John O'Brien '17 | Head Football Coach Chris Monfiletto
This joint effort by CDO, the Alumni Office and the Kenyon football program has taught football students real-world interview and resume practices. Pairing them with mentors to help team members find a profession has led to many internships and careers.
Alex Schaal '17 | Robert A. Oden, Jr. Professor of Biology Joan Slonczewski
Harmful algal blooms contaminate drinking water and lead to other health hazards. Schaal worked with professors Siobhan Fennessy and Joan Slonczewski to collect samples from 26 unique ponds, wetlands and lakes on both public and private property in Knox County to measure levels of nutrients, microcystin and other factors. Her testing found significant microcystin contamination of a recreational site. Some sites with agricultural runoff showed significant algal blooms.
Erick Ditmars '18 | Robert A. Oden, Jr. Professor of Biology Joan Slonczewski
Ditmars worked with Kaitlin Creamer and other students in Joan Slonczewski’s lab to culture 2,000 generations of Escherichia coli bacteria in the presence of benzoate, an aspirin analog. Clones of benzoate-adapted bacteria were found to be sensitive to an antibiotic (chloramphenicol). From these clones, DNA was isolated, and the sequence of their genomes was obtained. The evolved genomes showed mutations that suggest stress under aspirin-related compounds could result in a reduction in antibiotic resistance.
Jiayu Chen '17, Alec McQuiston '16 | Professor of Biology Chris Gillen
Aedes aegypti mosquitoes are vectors for diseases such as dengue fever and yellow fever but develop resistance to pesticides meant to control them. At different stages of development, mosquitoes face stresses to their salt and water balance. Larvae must absorb ions, so Chen and McQuiston exposed them to double-stranded RNA to decrease levels of an ion transport protein involved in that absorption. Though the precise function of the targeted ion transporter is not clear, the findings suggest a physiological role in potassium and ammonia balance of mosquito larvae.
Tehya Boswell '16 | Director of the Center for Global Engagement/Affiliated Scholar in Anthropology Marne Ausec
In the summer of 2015, Boswell spent three months working on an advocacy program designed to combat substance abuse among high school students in Worcester, Western Cape, South Africa, and learned valuable lessons about work in community engagement.
Rachel Dragos '16, Daniel Jurgens '16, Maria Sorkin '16 | Visiting Assistant Professor of Chemistry Matt Rouhier
The food we eat is composed of molecules, each with specific properties that combine to give our food taste, texture and nutritive value. This presentation will use chocolate chip cookies to demonstrate how changes in the chemicals used in the cookie affect taste, texture and the baking process.
Matt Milstead '19, Percy Gates '16, Eva Warren '19, John Wilhelm '18 | Professor of Chemistry Mo Hunsen
Kenyon’s Organic Chemistry Laboratory students are developing methods for the isolation of natural products from a lichen. After appropriate characterization of the extracts, the antibacterial activities will be investigated. This process will be highlighted by demonstrations at the showcase.
Haley Gabrielle '17 | Assistant Professor of Classics Micah Myers
This presentation will discuss the methods by which the project team is developing a web-based geospatial interface that visualizes ancient Mediterranean travel narratives. Users can filter the narratives using language, genre, date and method of travel. The interface shows the results as a series of points and journey segments. Users can not only read an individual travel narrative but also investigate how a given narrative engages with other texts that also mention a particular place or journey segment.
Sam Clougher '17, Madeline Maldonado '18, Elizabeth Siphron '17 | Pamela Faust, executive assistant to the president and provost
For 10 years, Pamela Faust has trained student managers to assist with Kenyon ceremonies and programs. Students have learned to manage significant aspects of graduation weekend, recommend and train the incoming managers, build and maintain relationships with the faculty, administrators and staff who collaborate on Commencement each year, and communicate effectively with vendors and service providers. Faust has also trained students to maintain event storage and stock, work on advertising and communication (including visual design of materials) for the Grad Fair and run front- and back-of-house areas during ceremonies throughout the year.
Santi Acero '18, Kay Burrows '18 | Robert A. Oden, Jr. Professor of Biology Joan Slonczewski
For some time, Kenyon students have had the opportunity of volunteering in the emergency department of the Knox Community Hospital (KCH). Previously, the availability of this opportunity has been hindered by communication and logistics, limiting the amount of students who volunteer to about three each session. Through the special topics course Health Services and Biomedical Analysis taught by Professor Joan Slonczewski, students considering a career in health services were able to find a place in the emergency department of KCH. Students who volunteer as firefighters in the College Township Fire Department were able to obtain credit for their service while studying prevalent issues in the healthcare community.
From this course stemmed a group of volunteers who come together once a week to discuss their experiences at the emergency department of KCH and share their concerns and questions in preparation for future health-related careers, extending beyond just medical school. These student volunteers raise the question of how their knowledge of community-based health issues can be brought to light to the Kenyon student body in order to strengthen our relationship with the surrounding Knox County community.
Alexander Gant Van Vliet '17, Katja Shimkin '17 | Robert A. Oden, Jr. Professor of Biology Joan Slonczewski
The College Township Fire Department provides emergency fire and medical services not only to the Kenyon community but also to the residents of the surrounding area of College and Monroe townships. Kenyon students have had a rich history of volunteering for the fire department, and today there are currently 20 student members, both men and women.
The Kenyon students who make the decision to volunteer their time to the College Township Fire Department take on a large responsibility. They are signing up to become representatives of Kenyon and to provide a level of care on par with the rest of the county, despite having the added responsibility of being full-time students. When they are not volunteering, they enrich themselves in a variety of studies at Kenyon, from humanities to biology as well as taking EMT classes at Knox County Career Center and firefighting classes at the Ohio Fire Academy.
Last semester six student firefighters participated in the College’s Health Service and Biomedical Analysis course (BIOL 291), where they shared their experiences and learned from other Kenyon students who were volunteering their time at the emergency department of the Knox Community Hospital. From this course, student firefighters learned the variety of ways the students interact with the community and how they can continue to positively impact the community they serve. They also participated in class discussions centered around scientific literature and applied the conclusions of the pieces to observations the students had made of the Kenyon and Gambier communities.
Sonia Prabhu '16, Jonathan Urrea-Espinoza '19 | Professor of Spanish Clara Román-Odio
Through the Latinos in Rural America (LiRA) project, students learned how Latinos in Knox County have navigated multiculturalism and how celebration of multiculturalism by the broader community can empower both Latinos and non-Latinos. The creation of a primer demonstrated the indispensable role of oral narratives in establishing collective identities, cultural norms, a recorded history and political or social demands. This research centered on the voices of a local community showed that further support and cultural outlets enhance the well-being of the communities and imbue the academic research with purpose.
Lucy Bhuyan '18, Devon Chodzin '19, Nathan Durham '17, Brea Fearon '18, Matti Freiberg '16, Amanda Goodman '18, Will Hunsaker ’19, Lindsay McLaughlin '18, Yasmin Nesbat '18, Aubrianna Osorio '17, Ali Pratt '17, Sam Roschewsk '18, Julia Waldow '17, Lauren Wheeler ’18 | Associate Professor of Political Science Abbie Erler
The class Gender, Power and Knowledge is evaluating the effectiveness of the Crunch Out Obesity program, an exercise and healthy-habits curriculum for fourth grade classrooms in Knox County schools. Kenyon students are conducting this community-based research in collaboration with the United Way of Knox County, the Knox County Health Department and the YMCA of Mount Vernon. At the end of the research, the class will recommend ways that the community partners can improve the health program.
Olivia Frey '16 | Associate Professor of Comparative Literature and Humanities Kate Elkins
Frey has used CWL 333 and her senior capstone to create a website that visualizes the global novel. Her presentation will describe the taxonomies developed to form the architecture of the site and will present a sample visualization map.
Gabrielle Bing '19, Ines Forjaz de Lacerda '17 | Associate Professor of Comparative Literature and Humanities Kate Elkins
Bing and de Lacerda will present the process and results of the first Kenyon Writes contest, co-sponsored with the Kenyon Review. Explore the winning essays that describe the United States in one word and try your hand at picking one word to define Kenyon.
Pankti Dalal '17 | Professor of Dance Julie Brodie, Professor of Dance Balinda Craig-Quijada
This dance class for students ages four to nine targets each age in an inclusive way by exploring gross motor proficiency to develop complex patterns of logic. The warm-up follows Anne Green-Gilbert’s BrainDance sequence to “re-map” the student’s brain to improve behavior, attention and memory. After introducing dance concepts such as levels, speed, weight and shapes, the instructors encourage students to use problem-solving approaches to work with a dance concept. After students synthesize the lesson, they create their own work while the teachers become the observers, giving feedback when needed. This creative movement class was initiated and developed by Kenyon students who had taken Directed Teaching.
Brianne Presley '16 | Professor of Dance Julie Brodie
Labanotation is a written system for recording and analyzing human movement. The system creates a “score” through which a dance piece may be restaged. Presley collaborated with Brodie to restage Prey, choreographed by Bebe Miller in 2000. The 15 minute piece includes a cast of nine and was performed at the 2015 Fall Dance Concert at Kenyon and again at the American College Dance Association Conference in March 2016. During the rehearsal process, Presley was able to work with Miller to clarify nuances and coach dancers regarding performance intentions. Presley and Brodie (along with Miller) will continue the project as they update and correct the score. The restaging of Prey has led to an internship for Presley at the Dance Notation Bureau in New York City in the summer of 2016.
Yoobin Han '18, Gibson Oakley '16, Meg Thornbury '16 | Visiting Assistant Professor of Drama Tatjana Longerot, Associate Professor of Drama Rebecca Wolf
These students taking an independent study in advanced design for theater are presenting their costume, scene and lighting designs for the play Medea. Although their work will not be realized in an onstage production, they have collaborated to develop a shared design approach to the play. Then, each student has taken on the role of one of the designers. The students will present their work through sketches, renderings, a model, research images and design statements.
John Zito '16 | Assistant Professor of Economics PJ Glandon
Most models of the macro economy build in some price rigidity. But wouldn’t more competition result in more flexible prices? Using scanner data from hundreds of grocery stores, students checked to see if the entry of a Wal-Mart into an economy changed the frequency of price changes. The data showed that the presence of a Wal-Mart increases the probability of a price change in a given week by two percentage points.
Megan Remillard '16, Sarah Schnebly '16 | William P. Rice Professor of English and Literature Jesse Matz
Every year, the Kenyon-Exeter Program visits the Wordsworth archive in Grasmere, England. The 2014-15 group learned the essential skills of analyzing a historic document by working with the manuscript of William Wordsworth’s “Home at Grasmere,” which dates from 1806. The session took place in the Jerwood Centre at the Wordsworth Trust, as part of the trust’s program of immersive courses for students.
Advisor: Charles P. McIlvaine Professor of English Adele Davidson
Students from the Class of 2016 in the newly implemented senior seminar will present material from their independent research projects. A panel of short presentations will outline the research projects and explain how they culminate the student's English major:
• Eileen Cartter: Race, Sexuality, Ghosts, and Regeneration within the Southern-American Gothic in Sterling Brown's Southern Road and Jean Toomer's Cane
• Kip Clark: Holding Smoke and Toppling Titans: The Individual in Dystopian Society
• Payton Cuddy: The Gothic and Aporia: Understanding Narration in Brat Pack Literature
• Will Dawson: Commoditization, Gender and Moral Bankruptcy in The House of Mirth and The Great Gatsby
• Reed Dickerson: To Will Evil and Do Good: Marlowe's Contribution to the Faustian Myth
• Henri Gendreau: 'Fall, Staff!': Shakespeare’s Radical Subversion of Kingship in Henry I
• Liam Griffin: 10:04 and Ben Lerner's Poetics of Political Possibility
• Katie Knowlton: Haunted by the Horrors of Slavery: Adaptations of the Gothic in Wide Sargasso Sea and Absalom, Absalom!
• Phoebe Lewis: 'Complex relations': Darwin’s Origin and Dickens' Self-Assembled Families in David Copperfield and Great Expectations
• Manny Loley: 'Voices telling the antidote to lies': Reconstructing the Native American Woman in Deborah Miranda's Bad Indians and Leslie Marmon Silko's Storyteller
• Jack Washburn: 'Where is the place that men call hell?': Powerlessness in Doctor Faustus
• Noah Williams: Letting the Cat out of the Bag: The Effects of Patriarchal Oppression in Paula Fox's Desperate Characters
Jacob Hilmes ’18, Jordan Meier '16, John Nahra '16 and Zachary Sawicki '16 | Assistant Professor of Physics and Scientific Computer Eric Holdener, Affiliated Scholar in American Studies Jerry Kelly
This presentation will describe the collaborative efforts between students, faculty and the greater Kenyon community in the recent installation of 18kW solar photovoltaic panels at the Kenyon Farm. It will describe broadly how solar energy fits into structure on the electric grid. It will explain the solar energy independent study at Kenyon and will outline prospects for solar energy at Kenyon as a progress toward a smarter energy grid.
Jess Alperin '18, Rose Bishop '17, Hannah Celli '17, Harrison Curley '15, Chloe Friedman '16, Schuyler Krogh '15, Charlotte Lee '18, Virginia McBride '15, Sarah Stahl '18, Emily Sussman '16, Jenna Wendler ’17, Amy Young '16 | Director of the Gund Gallery Natalie Marsh
In the fall and spring of 2014-15, a pair of student curatorial intern teams from the Graham Gund Gallery at Kenyon College embarked on the process of creating two dynamic exhibitions: one from a new collection of 20th-21st century art and the other made up of works borrowed from private collectors, galleries, other academic museums and artists. Guided by museum staff, the teams participated in all aspects of the curatorial process from conceptualization and research to the final exhibition design. The two exhibitions were successfully presented April 23-July 12, 2015:
Color II: Identity and Society explored the historic and social coding of color in terms of how we see, process and understand identity. Artists in the show offered broad perspectives on race, gender and history. Robert Colescott and Ellen Gallagher complicate the black-white dichotomy by challenging associations ascribed to color. Aminah Robinson discovered and reconciled African sources and "family treasure" from her Columbus, Ohio, home. Mickalene Thomas' Bearden-inspired "self-possessed woman," Jordan Casteel's blue-skinned “"Jerome,”" and Titus Kaphar's "whitewashed" African-American Civil War soldier knowingly gazed back at us, insisting on reconsideration. Yinka Shonibare's globe-headed figure, clad in faux-African Dutch fabrics, climbs a ladder of knowledge. JeongMee Yoon's child portraits overwhelmed us with the pink and blue gendering of color and Larry McNeil's American Indians sardonically undermine stereotypes. Each artist exposed previous or prevailing conceptions of identity and examined the implications of color as a force of cultural classification, historical fact and instrument of critique. Gund associates on the curatorial team: Jess Alperin '18, Rose Bishop '17, Hannah Celli '17, Schuyler Krogh '15, Charlotte Lee, '18, Emily Sussman '15, Jenna Wendler '17.
Intervention: Expose, Disguise, Distort, Refine consisted of works from the Gund Gallery Collection presented in oppositional pairs. The curatorial intent of the exhibition was to intervene in ways of seeing. Pairings include Robert Mapplethorpe's photogravure Irises with Pablo Picasso's ceramic vase Woman-Faced Wood Owl; Christo & Jeanne-Claude's charcoal drawing Wrapped Reichstag, Project for West Berlin, 1977 with Bernd & Hilla Becher's silver gelatin photograph Blast Furnace Plant, Mingo Junction, Ohio USA 1979; Robert Rauschenberg’s intaglio Intermission (from Ground Rules) with Laura McPhee’s chromogenic print Quartered Rocky Mountain Elk, Milky Creek, White Cloud Mountains, Idaho; and Kenneth Noland's painting Inner Way with Ingrid Calame's drawing #224 Drawing (Tracings up to the L.A. River placed in the Clark Telescope Dome, Lowell Observatory, Flagstaff, AZ). Gund associates on the curatorial team: Harrison Curley '15, Chloe Friedman '16, Virginia McBride '15, Sara Stahl '18, Amy Young '16.
The Gund associate-curated exhibitions are scheduled to be featured as part of a student-organized panel at the upcoming Spring 2016 conference of the Association of Academic Museums and Galleries (AAMG), May 24-25, at the American University, Washington, D.C. The theme of the conference is Communities in Dialog: Models of Best Practices for Academic Museums, Galleries, and Collections. The successful student proposal is entitled "Grappling with the Global: Student Curation of Modern Identities" and will be presented by Schuyler Krogh '15, Jenna Wendler '17 and Amy Young '16.
Stewart Pollock '16, Bradley Raynor '16, Haley Townsend '16, Nina Whittaker '16 | R.Todd Ruppert Associate Professor of International Studies/Associate Professor of History Stephen Volz
During the semester abroad taken by all students who major in International Studies, the students conduct independent study projects, join local community organizations and serve as volunteers in schools and other agencies. This display will show some of the research projects and educational experiences completed by International Studies majors from the Class of 2016 during their semesters abroad.
Kyle Fisher '16 | Associate Professor of Comparative Literature and Humanities Kate Elkins
Fisher set out to create his own card game for a market that became robust with the 1993 launch of Magic: The Gathering. He will discuss the revisions he made after multiple trials and the goals he set for crowd-funding production. Visitors to his table will be encouraged to try his game.
Elissa Reiskind '16 | Associate Professor of Comparative Literature and Humanities Kate Elkins
In Shakespeare’s play The Tempest, Prospero’s magical book is repeatedly referenced but neither described nor required to appear on stage. Combining modern scholarship on the play with magical texts and literature that predated The Tempest, Reiskind is trying to create a book that offers a third way of experiencing the play by filling the gap where the text of the play and many of its modern stagings diverge.
Lanise Beavers '18, Sebastián Chávez '18, Kye Duren '16, Jonah Edwards '18, Amanda He '16, Keegan James '19, Karen Salas '18, Amy Shirer '18, Eric Sutton III '18 | Associate Professor of Political Science Abbie Erler, Associate Professor of English Ivonne García, Associate Professor of Chemistry Simon Garcia, Assistant Professor of English Thomas Hawks, Associate Professor of English Sarah Heidt, Professor of English Ted Mason, Associate Professor of Mathematics Marie Snipes, Professor of Physics Paula Turner
The Kenyon Education Enrichment Program (KEEP) builds a community around academic excellence, intellectual leadership and mutual support. Each year, 24 underrepresented first-year students join KEEP. Prior to their first year, they enroll in two summer courses that reflect a number of high-impact practices, including a common intellectual experience, a learning community, writing-intensive courses and collaborative projects. As a result of the faculty connections made over the summer, many KEEP scholars are selected to begin undergraduate research opportunities in various labs. Outside the classroom, students engage in both curricular and co-curricular collaborative activities (during the summer and throughout the year). Each summer, KEEP recruits veteran cohort members to serve as teaching assistants and community advisors for new cohort members and provides professional training for each position.
Patricia Mota '16 | Professor of Spanish Clara Román-Odio
Latinos in Rural America (LiRA) is an oral history project conducted in summer 2015 to research the lives, origins and aspirations of Latinos in Knox County. Students recorded video and audio interviews of members of the community with diverse economic conditions, stages of life and aspirations. This content was the basis for Latinos in Rural America: Stories of Cultural Heritage, Values and Aspirations, a bilingual exhibition that is traveling throughout Ohio between December 2015 and April 2016.
Maggie Stohlman '16 | Professor of Spanish Clara Román-Odio
This honors project seeks to reorient public rhetoric about immigration by highlighting oral histories of Latinos in Summit County who have immigrated to the U.S. or who have grown up with immigrant parents and have close ties to their country of origin. The interviews were conducted with people in Proyecto Raices, a program that provides bilingual and bicultural education to Latino students in Akron. This community-based learning experience was paired with library and media research to produce a look at the tangible effects of public policy and rhetoric about immigration.
Faith Masterson '16, Alayne Wegner '17, Emma Welsh-Huggins '17 | Professor of Sociology and Legal Studies Ric Sheffield
The John Adams Summer Legal Scholars come to a new appreciation for sleuthing. Research and scholarship in socio-legal studies comes about as a consequence of systematic, multi-method investigation. The type of detective work required of a summer legal scholar stems from the ability to think both creatively as well as comprehensively about how law is manifested and operates in a given setting. Just as there is no single conceptualization of law, there is no one way to come to know law and its place in society. Law is many things to different people in, and depending upon, a variety of social contexts. It is clear that law is more than the sum of its parts, usually impacting society far beyond the parameters of its official functions. The reach and meaning of law is discernible and observable in ways that transcend the limits of textual analysis. In other words, socio-legal scholars look beyond the codes and case decisions to the institutions and behaviors that are promoted or constrained, and they seek to identify the societal values that are reflected in the “stuff” of law. Summer legal scholars come to understand and appreciate law through hands-on investigation, whether their concentrated summer of sleuthing is the consequence of a self-designed research project, serving as a research assistant to a faculty mentor who is examining a socio-legal issue or undertaking an internship with a nonprofit agency or organization. A panel comprised of three 2015 summer legal scholars will discuss their experiences investigating the operation of law in society.
Maymuna Abdi '18, Kalkidan Aseged '17, Paige Ballard '18, Kirsti Buss '18, Anna Cohen '16, Elna McIntosh '16, Amanda He '16, Maggie Griffin '17, Jessica Randall '16 | Natural Sciences Librarian Aimee Jenkins
The library intern program allows the research and reference desk to stay open late at night and on weekends to meet the needs of student researchers. The peer-to-peer consultations put a familiar face to the library’s resources. Interns also help with library outreach, including the development of programming and the communication of library news through social media. Through these efforts, interns learn about the diversity of research opportunities in postgraduate careers.
Robin Belton '16 | Jim Chen, assistant professor in the Departments of Biomedical Informatics and Internal Medicine at OSU
Belton worked with Jim Chen M.D. at the James Cancer Center through the Pelotonia research program in summer 2015. She studied a cancer metastasis that occurs via spheroid structures, which are associated with harder-to-treat cancers. Belton used a Gaussian mixture statistical model to analyze data and collaborated with others in the clinic to ensure correct interpretation of her results. Her work highlighted the potential significance of a gene called TXNIP in the formation and spread of spheroid structures, and the group Belton worked with expects to publish a paper on the findings in the near future.
Robin Dunn '16 | Bill Eddy, John C. Warner Professor of Statistics (Emeritus) at Carnegie Mellon University
In summer 2015, Dunn worked at Carnegie Mellon University’s statistics department to match different census records on the same individual, a process called record linkage. Record linkage is an active research field that uses statistical methods to unify data in the face of imperfect records. Dunn implemented the Sadinle-Fienberg method, which performs record linkage across two or more lists of data. Her project made extensive use of R programming, for which she is a tutor for Kenyon’s Data Analysis course.
Ghada Bakbouk '19, Sewar Quran '17, Schuyler Stupica '19 | Professor of Religious Studies Miriam Dean-Otting
This presentation will be a comprehensive briefing on key aspects of the civil war in Syria and the Syrian refugee crisis. This teach-in will begin with data on the war and refugees and follow with a 10-minute video by John Green on the issue. Then a discussion will consider possible causes of the fear among some U.S. citizens about admitting some Syrian refugees to the U.S. There will be a detailed look at five common anti-refugee arguments used in the U.S. The presentation will end with stories of specific Syrian refugees that have been featured in the popular blog Humans of New York.
Alexa McElroy '16, Mary Sturgis '16 | Professor of Spanish Clara Román-Odio
This collaborative effort empowers first-generation students and their families to navigate the complicated college admissions process. As a community-engaged learning project, Kenyon students applied their academic research on education inequalities, the Latino/a civil rights movement and standardized testing strategies to develop a sustainable partnership with the Salvation Army unit in Mount Vernon. Kenyon students work weekly with sixth through 12th graders to improve their critical reading, math, vocabulary, science and test-taking skills in preparation for taking the SAT and ACT. The Kenyon students get experience toward future careers in bilingual education, nonprofit collaboration and minority rights activism.
Hannah De Lucia '19 | Associate Professor of Italian Patricia Lyn Richards
De Lucia’s sequence analysis of a key segment of Vittorio De Sica’s 1943 film The Children Are Watching Us achieved a notable goal for a first-year student. She related the visual evidence, logically arranged, to Carl Jung’s concept of the dream’s function as a guide to hidden parts of the soul. By selecting adroitly-sequenced screen shots representing the child’s mental state, De Lucia developed an interpretation from the visual clues that revealed the complexity of human affection and behavior, as shown from a child’s point of view. De Lucia used her own creativity to make a case for the child’s deep understanding of the family’s dysfunctional dynamics.
Lin Miao '17, Anu Muppirala '19, Henry Quillian '17, Anxu Wang '18 | Assistant Professor of Psychology Andrew Engell
Electrodermal activity is a non-invasive and objective measure of autonomic nervous system activation, which is related to changes in cognition, emotion and arousal. A 0.5V charge is passed between two electrodes connected to the skin; as activation of the sweat glands increases, so does conductance between the electrodes. Changes in conductivity can be interpreted as an objective measure of an individual’s arousal. For instance, viewing unpleasant images will increase conductivity more than viewing pleasant images.
Margaret Athol '19, Emma Klug '18, Sophia Letcher '18, Nikki Scheman '18 | Associate Professor of Neuroscience Andy Niemiec
Male mice sing to attract mates, but humans cannot hear these ultrasonic vocalizations because they are outside the range of our hearing. Students in this lab group studied whether autism model mice produce courtship songs different from those of control mice because autism is associated with difficulty in communicating and interacting with other conspecifics. This presentation will play some of the mouse calls and explain how they may be analyzed to determine if they differ from those of the control group mice.
Trevor Kirby '16 | Professor of Philosophy Yang Xiao
Today the educational and punitive institutions of the U.S. overemphasize a radically asocial and non-cognitivist conception of agency that reduces the individual into a pure will, isolated from social or institutional contexts and emptied of any cognitive content. In his thesis, Kirby argues for a social and cognitivist account of moral and intellectual virtue, which takes virtue to be a kind of internalized social knowledge that enables a person to see others accurately and justly, and which is first and foremost learned in an institutional setting. One implication of Kirby’s argument is that institutions and individuals share the responsibility for the acquisition of moral and intellectual virtues. Kirby also explores the practical implications of moral education and institutional reform in K-12 education in the U.S. and relates his thesis to his future work as a member of Teach for America in North Carolina. He concludes his thesis with an outline of specific practices to incorporate the cultivation of virtue into a classroom of institutionally disadvantaged students.
Ben Bassett '19, Will Brewer '19, Justin Clark '19, George Costanzo '19, Daniel De Andrade '19, Emma Easley '19, Jessica Gerber '19, Jessica Gorovitz '19, Nate Grosh '19, Gabriel Jimenez-Ekman '19, Catherine Kelly '19, Armaan Maharaj '19, Josh McClain '19, Pranav Mulpur '19, Eva Neuwirth '19, Claire Oleson '19, Noah Solomon '19, Max Wellington '19 | Assistant Professor of Political Science Lisa Leibowitz
What makes Quest for Justice a high-impact practice are lively debates that begin in the classroom, continue at lunch and dinner, and often extend late into the night with friends from inside and outside the course. The aim of Quest is not to supply people with answers to life’s great questions, but to help them begin thinking about them more rigorously and profoundly. At the argument clinic, students will share this experience with the larger Kenyon community. People can pick a topic to debate with the Quest students and discover why the class serves as an introduction, not only to political science but to liberal education generally — education that frees the mind, in part by focusing it on the handful of questions that matter most.
Abi Cooper '16 | Associate Professor of Psychology Tabitha Payne
This research project aimed to design a computerized visual perception measure for preschool children using a game-like appeal to attract and maintain their attention. There is only one other measure like this, but it has been shown to be too difficult for some four-year-old children. Of the children who completed the original design, scores were predictive of a child’s reading performance in elementary school. Cooper and her faculty mentor designed a version using emoticon face stimuli which starts out very easy and gradually becomes more difficult. This makes it possible to see when the tasks become difficult for each child, as their accuracy for detecting and identifying the target face drops.
Martha Freiberg '16 | Associate Professor of Psychology
Students in the Research Methods in Learning and Motivation lab course tried to train rats to play basketball using the principles of operant conditioning, a form of associative learning in nearly all human and non-human animals. Five rats learned to play hoops with varying degrees of success. Students had to make adjustments as they applied their knowledge of both the rats’ capabilities and the principles studied in the corresponding classroom to elicit this unnatural and complex behavioral sequence. This demonstration will showcase a video of the rats’ performance.
Maddie Farr '18, Simone Holzer '16, Liam Leonard-Solis '16, Jenna Rochelle '18 | Professor of Religious Studies Miriam Dean-Otting
The class Prophecy focuses on social justice and has a community-engaged learning segment during which students volunteer twice a week for 90 minutes, working in teams of two or three at the food pantry, thrift shop or business office. All students keep journals about their volunteer experiences.
Aubrianna Osorio '17 | Associate Professor of Sociology Jennifer Johnson
This presentation addresses the uniquely experiential learning process of Borders and Border Crossings (SOCY 237). Osorio will look at the intersection of the academic, intellectual, classroom understanding and the much more human, emotional understanding of seeing and experiencing the U.S.-Mexico borderlands. She shows how this class opened her eyes to what it means to be a Latino, to be a Latino in America, and how to honor both of those stories in her understanding of her own Mexican-American identity.