WMU News

Undergraduates get awards for research, creative activities

June 6, 2003

KALAMAZOO -- South African non-governmental organizations, college women with bulimia, turbojet engines and the role of sanctuaries in chimpanzee rehabilitation are among the topics that will be studied next fall by budding researchers at Western Michigan University.

Seventeen WMU students (listed below) will work on research projects in fall 2003 with faculty mentors. Each student is a recipient of a 2003 fall Undergraduate Research and Creative Activities Award, which includes a $1,200 stipend to undertake a research or creative project. The awardees, selected by a faculty review committee, hail from 15 academic majors.

Established in 1998 and administered by the Lee Honors College, the awards program is designed to "encourage and nurture research and creative activities by outstanding students." WMU undergraduates who have completed at least 60 credit hours and have a grade point average of 3.25 or above are eligible for the grants. Interested students must submit a joint proposal with a faculty mentor. Research projects can reflect any academic area of study and may be renewed for one additional semester with approval from the review committee. During the research semester, students must carry at least 12 credit hours of coursework in addition to the estimated 10 hours per week necessary to complete the project.

Award-winning researchers include the following.

Tristan Brown of Franklin, Mich., is a junior majoring in environmental studies. He received a grant to study "An Environmental Video-Graphic Exploration of the Kuala Lumpur Region." His faculty mentor is Dr. Lynne Heasley, assistant professor of environmental studies. A Franklin resident, Brown is a member of the Lee Honors College.

Stacey M. Cherup of Gaylord, Mich, is a senior majoring in psychology. She received a grant to perform "An Evaluation of the Utility of Choice Assessments in Increasing Activity Engagement and Indices of Happiness in Elders With Dementia." Her mentor is Dr. Linda LeBlanc, associate professor of psychology. Cherup is a member of the Lee Honors College and the daughter of William and Linda Cherup of Gaylord.

Marie Chick of Troy, Mich., is a senior majoring in art teaching. She received a grant to write and illustrate the "London Children's Picture Storybook." Her mentor is Elizabeth Amidon, assistant professor of English. Chick is a member of the Lee Honors College and the daughter of Douglas and Karen Chick of Troy.

Sonya Datta-Sandhu of Kalamazoo is a senior majoring in anthropology. She received a grant to perform a "Political and Cultural Analysis of Three South African HIV/AIDS Non-Governmental Organizations." Her mentor is Dr. Ann Miles, associate professor of anthropology. A Kalamazoo resident, Dattta-Sandhu is a member of the Lee Honors College.

Susan Diepen of Muskegon, Mich., is a senior anthropology major. She received a grant to study "The Role of Sanctuaries in the Rehabilitation of Captive Chimp-anzees." Her mentor is Dr. Judi Corr of Grand Valley State Univer-sity. She is the daughter of John and Kathleen Diepen of Muskegon.

Kristine Farabaugh of Menominee, Mich., is a senior majoring in marketing. She received a grant to study "College Consumption Patterns." Her mentor is Dr. Ann Veeck, assistant professor of marketing. A native of Menominee, Farabaugh is a member of the Lee Honors College.

Lindsay E. Gwyther of Rutland, Mass., is a senior majoring in Spanish and geography. She received a grant to study "Long Live Finnish!: A Flourishing Oasis of Finnic Languages on an Indo-European Continent." Her faculty mentor is Dr. David Lemberg, assistant professor geography. A member of the Lee Honors College, she is the daughter of John and Ann Gwythe of Rutland.

Bethany Huot of Kalamazoo is a junior majoring in biology. She received a grant to study the "Characterization of Salicyclic Acid, Salicylic Acid Methyl Transferase Gene Expression and Pathogen Resistance in bglA Transformed vs. Non-Transformed Tobacco." Her mentor is Dr. Alex Enyedi, chairperson of the Department of Biological Sciences. A member of the Lee Honors College, she is the daughter of Patrick and Christine Huot of Kalamazoo.

Jerry Jacob of Kalamazoo is a senior majoring in aeronautical engineering. He received a grant to study the "MW-54 Miniature Turbojet Engine." His mentor is Dr. Frank L. Severance, associate professor of electrical and computer engineering. A native of Kottayam, Kerala, India, he is a resident of Kalamazoo. Jacob is a member of the Lee Honors College.

Katherine A. Kennedy of Valparaiso, Ind., is a senior majoring in psychology. She received a grant to study "Self-Management, Procrastination and the GRE." Her mentor is Dr. Richard Malott, professor of psychology. A member of the Lee Honors College, she is the daughter of Daniel and Loretta Kennedy of Valparaiso.

May Ping Zarraz Lee of Kalamazoo is a senior majoring in biomedical sciences. She received a grant to study "Green Flourescent Protein as a Tool to Analyze Metal Regulated Gene Expression in Sinorhizobiom meliloti." Her mentor is Dr. Sylvia Rossbach, associate professor of biological sciences. She is a Kalamazoo resident.

Lynn Piaseck of Lansing, Mich., is a senior majoring in accountancy, received a grant to study "Accounting for Stock Based Compensation." Her mentor is Dr. Jerry Krueze, professor accountancy. A member of the Lee Honors College, she is the daughter of John and Judy Piaseck of Lansing.

Leisl M. Seitz of Stephenson, Mich., is a senior majoring in art. She received a grant to research "The History of Fastenings." Her mentor is Gwendolyn Nagle, professor of theatre. Seitz is a member of the Lee Honors College and the daughter of Henry Seitz and Barbara Sautter-Seitz of Stephenson.

Heather Tubbs of Sandusky, Mich., is a senior majoring in nursing and Spanish. She received a grant to study "International Immersion as a Determinant of Increased Cultural Competence Among Undergraduate Nursing Students: A Comparative Study." Her mentor is Dr. Mary Ann Stark, assistant professor of nursing. A member of the Lee Honors College, Tubbs is the daughter of Gary and Jacqueline Tubbs of Sandusky.

Elizabeth Weiss-DeBoer of Lawton, Mich., is a senior majoring in psychology. She received a grant to study "Emotion Recognition Among College Women With Bulimia." Her faculty mentor is Dr. Amy Naugle, assistant professor of psychology. A member of the Lee Honors College, Weiss-DeBoer is a resident of Lawton.

Stephanie Erin Willibey of Ypsilanti, Mich., is a senior majoring in food marketing. She received a grant to study "Food Marketing to a Growing Hispanic-American Population." Her mentor is Dr. Frank Gambino, associate professor of marketing and director of WMU's Food Marketing Program. Willibey is a member of the Lee Honors College and the daughter of Lanny and Patricia Willibey of Ypsilanti.

Angela M. Wolak of Vassar, Mich., is a senior majoring in graphic design. She received a grant to create a magazine called "Designation." Her faculty mentor is Keith Jones, associate professor of art. Wolak is a member of the Lee Honors College and the daughter of Thomas and Mary Wolak.

Media contact: Jessica English, 269 387-8400, jessica.english@wmich.edu


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