Honors students present — and wow — on national stage

Augusta University was well represented at the 2018 National Collegiate Honors Council Annual Conference, which took place in Boston in November.

The National Collegiate Honors Council, founded in 1966, works to support and promote undergraduate honors education and to “support and enhance the community of educational institutions, professionals and students who participate in collegiate honors education around the world.”

Ten students in the honors program from the College of Science and Mathematics and Pamplin College of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences traveled to Boston to present their individual theses on a national stage. Their participation was made possible through  cooperation among the honors program, the Center for Undergraduate Research and Scholarship and the Pamplin Student Research Travel fund,

Two students took home a Sloan Prize for Undergraduate Research, including Cynthia Panzella’s first place award in Art and Visual Media for her original screenplay Seventeen-Year Cicada, and the College of Science and Mathematics’ Kikelomo Ogunsemore, who won second place in Environmental Sciences, Conservation and Green Technology for her project “The Sublethal Effects and Bioaccumulation of 17-Ethinyl Estradiol in Lumbriculus Variegatus.”

Additionally, Allyson Smith was awarded a Portz Interdisciplinary Research Fellowship for her project titled, “The Relationship Between Christianity and PTSD Illustrated Through 19th- and 20th-Century Literature.”

The students submitted their work, which was essentially their thesis research, to the conference last spring.

“All of these students really have been working on their projects for probably about a year and a half when you consider where they started through now,” said Dr. Tim Sadenwasser, director of the honors program. “It’s not been easy for them, but we hope it’s been very much worthwhile and they’ve learned a lot about their subjects, and this is our way of saying good job and let’s go someplace fun and educational.”

But the honors program does more than help students go to conferences. According to Abhiram Srivatsa, a student in the College of Science and Mathematics, there are several other opportunities and advantages that come from being in the honors program.

“Within all these classes you’re not only just with people of your own sub-specialty or with people who are in anthropology or in humanities, arts and sciences — you get amazing exposure to all the forward thinkers in each respective discipline. I think that’s incredible,” said Srivatsa. “It’s not just four years of you just figuring out what you’re doing; it’s four years of also figuring out what other people are doing with their lives. I think that’s really cool.”

A full list of students who presented at the conference include these students from Pamplin College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences:

Cynthia Panzella, Communication
Seventeen-Year Cicada: An Original Screenplay

Allyson Smith, English
The Relationship Between Christianity and PTSD Illustrated Through 19th- and 20th-Century Literature

Rachel Young, History & Anthropology
I’ll Take My Artifacts with Tea: Nineteenth-and Early Twentieth-Century British Archaeology in Mesopotamia

From the College of Science and Mathematics:

Mina Momtahan, Ecology
Investigation of the Effects of Leptin Treatment Toward Alpha-Adrenergic Receptor Expression in Mouse Aortic, Renal, and Mesenteric Arteries and Adrenal Glands

Shubhra Rajpurohit, Cell & Molecular Biology
Small and Dangerous: MicroRNA-21 and Blindness

Simran Mehrotra, Cell & Molecular Biology
Structural Affinity of CAP1 and AC Isoforms

Hitesh Honkanadavar, Chemistry
Design and Synthesis of Potential NSAID Hybrid Conjugates

Kikelomo Ogunsemore, Cell & Molecular Biology
The Sublethal Effects and Bioaccumulation of 17-Ethinyl Estradiol in Lumbriculus Variegatus

Deanna Doughty, Cell & Molecular Biology
Isolation of Primary Microglia and Co-Culture with Glioblastoma

Abhiram Srivatsa, Cell & Molecular Biology
The Role of Neddylation in Cardiac Fibrosis

For more information about the Honors Program email honorsprogram@augusta.edu or call  (706) 729-2083.

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Emily Lacey

Emily Lacey is a writer in the Division of Communications & Marketing at Augusta University. Contact her to schedule an interview on this topic or with one of our experts at 706-721-6144 elacey@augusta.edu.

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Written by Emily Lacey

Jagwire is your source for news and stories from Augusta University. Daily updates highlight the many ways students, faculty, staff, researchers and clinicians "bring their A games" in classrooms and clinics on four campuses in Augusta and locations across the state of Georgia.

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