More than 700 students submitted over 300 individual and team research projects to present at the annual Stander Symposium on April 22, 2021. Students chose to share their research in a variety of ways: downloadable posters and papers; live presentations on Zoom; recorded presentations; and safe-distance live presentations from front porches and other locations on campus. Browse the gallery below or search for specific research projects using the search function at the top left of the screen.
This gallery contains projects from the 2021 Stander Symposium that address issues raised in the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.
Tyler J. Delahanty, Emily Melissa Foppe, Benjamin M. Grawe, Emily Eileen Nugent
Many individuals believe that religion and science oppose each other, one working for morality and the other supporting the rejection of God and practice of actions that are immoral. This study investigates specifically how religious groups interact with technology. The literature review explored whether religious groups utilize technology as a tool that can help them achieve their goal, or if they view technology as the enemy that they are opposing. Seeing how different religious groups interact with technology is an extremely interesting subject. Our article analysis explored the interactions of various religious groups with technology and found that specific religious groups interact with specific technological advancements differently. Groups utilize and oppose specific technological advancements based on their own beliefs and contexts.
Resolving the gene regulatory network for a fruit fly pigmentation trait whose modification underlies climate-driven phenotypic variation
Jenna Rose Rock
Species are in the midst of surviving changing climates that require ancestral trait phenotypes to convert to derived states better adapted to the present conditions. Adaptations can occur through genetic differences, raising questions how such differences translate into phenotypic change. A prerequisite to answering these evolutionary questions is to understand the genetic basis for trait development. In animals, traits are made by developmental programs known as gene regulatory networks (GRNs) that are hardwired in genomic DNA sequence. Each GRN includes a fraction of the genes within an organism’s genome, notably some that encode transcription factors that regulate the expression of the trait-making differentiation genes. This regulation occurs by certain transcription factors interacting with short DNA sequences, called binding sites, in gene regions known as cis-regulatory elements (CREs). For any CRE, its ability to activate gene expression in specific cell types and developmental times is due to the binding sites it possesses for a particular combination of transcription factors. To date, a GRN for a climate adapted trait has not been resolved. Thus, understanding how GRNs and their genes and CRE constituents facilitate or stymie adaptation remains speculative. For the Berry Summer Thesis Institute research, I propose to resolve the GRN responsible for a pigmentation pattern on the abdomen of Drosophila melanogaster fruit flies. Preliminary work has revealed many of the genes for this GRN, though the connections between transcription factors and CRE binding sites remain largely unknown. By using genetic, bioinformatic, and microscopy approaches, I will resolve the important connections that orchestrate this GRN’s operation. Success here will enable future efforts to reveal how this GRN has been reformulated to deal with differing climates, findings that bear upon the genetic underpinnings of animal adaptations more broadly.
Mary Kathryn Caserta
My practicum Capstone will provide an analysis of Joseph Campbell’s work to understand why Campbell’s model has been commonly employed in the classroom and involve a unit plan that modernizes the hero’s journey. The overarching goal of my proposed research will allow young, secondary school readers to more deeply connect with the hero’s journey and, through their narrative work and literary analyses, more deeply consider the importance of literature in their personal lives when the protagonists are more diverse. An updated model that accounts for these discriminatory practices that heroes face allows for contemporary discourse about the various steps of the hero’s journey; therefore, allowing the heroes in question to be critiqued and analyzed through a modern lens. In secondary education, the hero’s journey can allow for deeper engagement with texts when students are able to broaden their view as to who a hero truly is- is the hero always the muscled Hercules, or can it also be a scrawny girl from a novel who rises above the expectations set before her? Joseph Campbell’s hero’s journey is missing elements that should be included to update his seventeen-step model for contemporary audiences; in this practicum, I combine Campbell’s framework with some missing elements and stages that modern readers face on their personal hero’s journeys. An updated model of the hero’s journey will include a variety of heroic protagonists, specifically protagonists that further align with contemporary views regarding intersectional texts which explore gender, race, age, and preconceived abilities.
Emily M. Anteau, Jared Michael Beach, Benjamin McKiernan Blincoe, Maya Elizabeth Gerker, Laura J. Harris
Internal Material Logistics Optimization
Nathan R. Kravchuk, Benjamin David Michaud, Edward Flint Warda, Nolan Patrick Yager
Dir (Special Order) Process Optimization
Samantha Jean Berkley, Jonathan M. Colwell, Madeline E. Filiatraut, Maleia Mae Hartman, Kayte Lynn Jackson, Victoria Marie Jason, Emily I. Johnson, Gretchen M. Lozowski, Michael Josef Mueller, Melissa M. Padera, Cailyn A. Spedding, Shannon Marie Stanforth, Claire C. Sullivan
The aim of the River Stewards Cohort of 2021 Senior Capstone project is to develop a storm drain mural wayfinding path that will create awareness surrounding the storm drains and their drainage to the river. In addition, the project serves to connect the University of Dayton campus and Dayton community to the Great Miami River. The path begins in the University of Dayton Student Neighborhood, continuing across Main Street on Old River Drive, and concluding at the Great Miami River. The collaborative efforts of the Fitz Center for Leadership in Community, City of Dayton Engineering and Water Department, Dayton community members, and University of Dayton faculty, staff, and students were instrumental in the success of this project.
Role of Motif 1 Binding Protein (M1BP), a transcriptional pausing transcription factor in JNK-mediated cell death during eye development
Anuradha Chimata Venkatakrishnan, Hannah Paige Darnell
In all multicellular organisms, transcriptional regulation is crucial to regulate differential gene expression, which is important during development and growth. Transcriptional pausing is one such mechanism used to control gene expression. Recently, we have shown that M1BP, a transcriptional pausing transcription factor, promotes eye development by suppressing wingless (wg) expression. We also showed that M1BP regulates caspase-mediated cell death that is triggered by wg induction. M1BP is a functional homolog of ZKSCAN3, an autophagy repressor in humans. Jun-amino-terminal-(NH2)-Kinase (JNK) signaling is a pro-death pathway that is known to activate caspase-mediated cell death. We hypothesize that M1BP could have a role in mediating cell death via JNK signaling during eye development. In our studies, we explore the modulation of JNK signaling and its effect on M1BP mediated cell death by using the GAL4-UAS system. We present preliminary data that shows that the absence of M1BP function results in activation of autophagic cell death markers and JNK signaling.
Searching for Antimicrobial Activities in Soil Bacteria: The Biochemical Test Results For My Isolates
Ibrahim Khaleel Alsulaimani
In the BIO 411L course, I participated in a research project to look for bacteria from soil that have antimicrobial activities. To characterize the bacterial isolates, I performed identification experiments based on their biochemical abilities. These experiments include Gram staining to distinguish between Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria. Additional experiments include differentiation on the basis of (1) their metabolic activities through protein, carbohydrate and enzyme production and utilization; (2) erythrocyte lysis analysis; and (3) catalase test. In addition to learning about these biochemical assays, I also learned about how common contamination was in microbiology lab and how contamination could interfere with our experimental results.
Spectrum of Inclusion: How attitudes towards women’s leadership in Christian religious communities affect their autonomy and approach in ministry
Emma K. Merryman, Kevin O'Gorman, Olivia Brooke Parson, Natalie Marie Yersavich
The roles and levels of autonomy given to women in religious leadership cannot be seen solely as a theological or even denominational split. Rather, the different levels of inclusion fall along a spectrum that is truly unique to each religious community. The spectrum ranges from a strictly traditional attitude that places women in more limited roles with less organizational autonomy to a liberal interpretation which understands the inclusion of women as a broader ideological mission. Traditional communities, especially within certain Catholic parishes, heavily identify organizational direction and leadership with male priests or pastors, with women working in service-oriented roles. Women have a particularly maternal focus in their ministries and are actively discouraged when taking on approaches outside of expectations. Conversely, liberal communities do not confine female leadership roles to specific ministries, but instead, promote inclusion in all aspects of church culture. Female involvement is supported and promoted both structurally and theologically by all faith communities researched in this project. However, the specific ways in which they identify along the spectrum fundamentally alters the amount of autonomy given to women and how they approach their ministries. Discussion ranges from Catholic religious sisters to Evangelical pastors and volunteers, respecting their individual faith traditions while critically analyzing their placement along our spectrum. By comparing these examples from a variety of sociological, anthropological, and psychological perspectives, this presentation aims to provide insight into how the broader Christian faith communities affect the work of women in ministry.
Elizabeth Jean House
This research project discusses gender inequality in sports. It identifies the intersection between law and sports and investigates how the law fosters unequal treatment of women. The research question is addressed through a compilation of case studies and supporting legal research. The findings of this research support the conclusion that women experience gross dissimilarities in both treatment and pay in sports. This study raises relevant questions about discrimination in the legal system on a broader scale.
Niani Brown, Grace Elizabeth Roberts Huff, Taylor Mackenzie Tomco
Leaf phenology, the study of patterns in leaf emergence, serves as crucial evidence for changes in climate and habitats. Invasive plant species tend to leaf out first in the spring and often out compete native species, changing the landscape. Thus the importance of understanding what conditions drive leaf out in invasive species. We determined how the timing of leaf out in the spring was predicted by abiotic characteristics like temperature, photoperiodic changes, and moisture. The buds of two invasive species were examined in this experiment in order to determine the average leaf out time for each species, as well as the soil composition to better understand what conditions affect their leaf out rates. We predicted that bush honeysuckle (Lonicera tatarica) and Callery Pear (Pyrus calleryana) growing in more moist soils with more open canopy will leaf out earlier than those in drier soils with more canopy cover and that leaf out rates will increase with an increase in temperature. For each species, five individuals at Old River Park were randomly selected as the focus of the study. The length of ten buds per individual were measured a total of six times over the course of three weeks for a total of 600 leaf measurements. Canopy cover, daily temperature, day length, and humidity were also recorded. A soil sample was collected once for each individual plant and analyzed for pH, conductivity, and amount of moisture present. From our findings, we hope to gain a better understanding of when invasive species like honeysuckle and Callery pear at Old River Park’s Ecological Research Area in Dayton, Ohio come out of dormancy and whether soil characteristics have an influence on this process.
Sarah Elizabeth Angeloff, Matthew D. Brenneman, Nathan J. Campbell, Kevin Padraic Cavanaugh
Development Scheduling System of sTEM Kids, Teaching Resources, and Facilities
Fouad O. Saleh
Stock Returns and Safe Interest Rates: An Empirical Analysis, 2001 – 2019Modern Finance Theory postulates that the intrinsic value of a firm's publicly traded common stock is equal to the discounted value of future cash flows or dividends. Holding cash flows constant, the intrinsic value depends on the interest rate at which the cash flows are discounted. A rise in the discount rate lowers the intrinsic value while a decrease in the discount rate increases the intrinsic value.In this study, I looked at the empirical relationship between intermediate and long-term treasury rates and the stock market as measured by the S&P 500 index. The period of analysis is 2001 – 2019 with a special focus on the empirical relationship pre and post 2008 recession. I use univariate regression analysis with the S&P 500 Index, or SPY, (in logs) as the Y variable and the intermediate (Treasury Notes) and Long-term (Treasury Bonds), also in logs, as the x variables. The hypothesis tested:1.The regression slope coefficients are statistically significant at the 95% confidence levels2.There is a recession effect i.e., the pre and post 2008 recession, slope coefficients are significantly different3.Since the long-term trend in treasury rates is downward sloping, the slope coefficients are positive i.e., lowering the discount rate results in rising stock prices.
William Edward Bronsil, John Richard Coffey, Mary Bliss Stitzel
In mid-February 2020, the stock market declined sharply due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In late March 2020, many stocks bottomed out and the market started a first stage rebound that ended in August 2020. In this study we selected the top ten stocks (by market value) in the S&P 500 consumer discretionary sector to measure their rate of decline and rebound for the above period of time. Using time trend regressions we take the regression slope coefficients as the rates of growth measure and then develop an uptrend/downtrend growth ratio which acts as a portfolio weight for each of the ten stocks. We then test the following hypotheses: (1) The higher the growth ratio the higher the return for a given stock thru the end of 2020. (2) As a portfolio of stocks with the growth ratio as the principal factor loading, the portfolio return out performs the market return thru 2020. (3) The ten stock portfolio shows persistence in returns throughout 2020.
Structure-function analysis of Defective proventriculus (Dve) in Drosophila melanogaster eye growth and development
Anuradha Chimata Venkatakrishnan
During development, axial patterning is required to establish Antero-posterior (AP), Dorso-Ventral (DV), and Proximo-Distal (PD) axes, which is crucial for the generation of a 3-dimensional organ from a monolayer organ primordium. Of the three axes, DV axis is the first lineage restriction event during eye development and any deviation results in developmental birth defects. In our study, we have used Drosophila melanogaster (Fruit fly) eye as a model system to understand the role of different domains of a new dorsal eye fate selector gene, defective proventriculus (dve, an ortholog of SATB1) in growth and development. In humans, SATB1, functions as a transcriptional regulator and chromatin organizer and requires tetramerization by the ULD domain. In Drosophila eye, dve regulates expression of wingless (wg), a negative regulator of eye. In the genetic hierarchy, dve acts downstream of GATA-1 transcription factor pannier (pnr) and upstream of wg. Loss-of-function of dve results in dorsal eye enlargement while gain-of-function results in eye suppression. We performed structure function analysis of Dve protein to elucidate the role of various domains in patterning, growth and development. We have developed several transgenic lines, which will allow us to induce expression of the specific domains of Dve protein and assay their effect on Drosophila eye growth and development. Dve has a ULD domain for tetramerization, HOX domains for DNA binding and PPP4R2 domain for H2AFX dephosphorylation. Here we present our results on ectopic induction of these domains and their effect on eye phenotype and wg expression in the developing eye.
Studying the Interaction between Dorsal Patterning Gene Defective Proventriculus (dve) and Hedgehog Morphogen Signaling in Drosophila Eye Development
Anuradha Chimata Venkatakrishnan, Summer Hope Jento
Organogenesis is a fundamental process required to form organs. It requires axial patterning for the transition of monolayer of cells to an adult organ and involves the delineation of Anterior-Posterior (AP), Dorso-Ventral (DV), Proximo-Distal (PD) axes. Drosophila melanogaster is a great model to study this process because the genes and pathways are highly conserved in humans. During eye development, the DV axis is the first to form, and deviations during this process result in developmental birth defects. We have previously identified defective proventriculus (dve), a transcription factor as a dorsal selector gene that regulates wingless during eye development. Morphogens like wingless (wg), hedgehog (hh), and decapentaplegic (dpp) have important roles during eye development. The Hh pathway is highly conserved in mammals and has a role in growth and development. According to our hypothesis, dve interacts with Hedgehog signaling pathway during eye development and may have a role in eye vs. head fate specification. Using the Drosophila eye as a model, we study the interaction between dve and hh to understand the role of Hh signaling. We have used the GAL4-UAS bipartite system to modulate Hh signaling in the dve domain. We will be presenting the results from our initial studies. This study will further our understanding of patterning defects and the basis of genetic birth defects in the eye.
Shannon Marie Stanforth
Sustainability encompasses the three spheres of the environment, society and the economy—demonstrating its interconnected complexities and multifaceted applications. Similarly, graphic design can be used as a tool to illuminate issues and highlight the importance of a wide variety of themes which necessitate the attention of the current public. In pursuing my thesis, I aimed to develop a project which would reflect the ideals of sustainability while simultaneously serving to educate about the importance of caring for the natural world. Furthermore, my research explores how the disciplines of sustainability and design overlap and interact, searching to discover ways in which they may be linked for the purpose of education and inspiration. The medium of a children’s book introduced me to one creative avenue for combining the fields and realizing this aspiration.
Karishma Sanjay Gangwani
Glioblastoma Multiforme (GBM) is the most common form of malignant brain tumor with a poor prognosis. Amplification of Epidermal Growth Factor Receptor (EGFR), and mutations leading to activation of Phosphatidyl-Inositol-3 Kinase (PI3K) pathway are commonly associated with GBM. Using a previously published Drosophila glioma model generated by coactivation of PI3K and EGFR pathways [by downregulation of Pten and overexpression of oncogenic Ras] in glial cells, we showed that the Drosophila Tep1 gene (ortholog of human CD109) regulates Yki (the Drosophila ortholog of human YAP/TAZ) via an evolutionarily conserved mechanism. Oncogenic signaling by the YAP/TAZ pathway occurs in cells that acquire CD109 expression in response to the inflammatory environment induced by radiation in clinically relevant models. Further, downregulation of Tep1 caused a reduction in Yki activity and reduced glioma growth. A key function of Yki in larval CNS is stem cell renewal and formation of neuroblasts. Other reports suggest different upstream regulators of Yki activity in the optic lobe versus the central brain regions of the larval CNS. We hypothesized that Tep1 interacts with the Hippo pathway effector Yki to regulate neuroblast numbers. We tested if Tep1 acts through Yki to affect glioma growth and if in normal cells Tep1 affects neuroblast number and proliferation. Our data suggest that Tep1 affects Yki mediated stem cell renewal in glioma, as reduction of Tep significantly decreases the number of neuroblasts in glioma. Thus, we identify Tep1-Yki interaction in the larval CNS that plays a key role in gliomagrowth and progression.
The adaptation of a youth nutrition and cooking-skill program to a virtual, online format: Development, implementation and evaluation
Holly Faith Nusser, Emilia Jelski Porter
Skill-based factors such as food preparation contribute to dietary intake and behavior. Studies show introducing nutrition and cooking skills early in life can positively impact dietary intake. However, due to COVID-19, in-person nutrition and cooking-skill classes within schools and afterschool programs became challenging. Therefore, in partnership with East End Community Center, the Wright Brother’s Middle School Pilot’s program, and the University of Dayton’s dietetics and Hanley Sustainability Institute, two UD dietetic students developed and piloted a six-week virtual cooking and nutrition class for 7-8th graders attending the after school Pilots program at Wright Brothers Middle School. Thirteen middle school students participated in the program. Since Dayton Public School moved to entirely remote learning from March of 2020 to March 2021, a nutrition and cooking curriculum was adapted for a virtual platform and the middle school students attended the cooking class from within the kitchen of their home. From the Produce 1 Food Lab on the UD campus, the dietetic students used the zoom platform to implement one-hour weekly nutrition and cooking class to the students. Further, a representative from East End Community Center delivered ingredients needed for the weekly recipe(s) as well as extra supplies such as measuring cups to the middle school students. Data was collected to measure the process and impact of the virtual classes including attendance and nutrition and cooking knowledge pre- and post-test scores. For this presentation, the program procedures and evaluation will be presented.
Margaret Mary Cahill
This study investigates the practices that professional book editors use when evaluating manuscripts for publication. Specifically, I ask: 1) Which edits are the most essential to the overall development of a text? and 2) How does the editor serve as the bridge between writer and reader? In seeking answers to these questions, I apply the editorial practices for reading and manuscript development reported by book editors to my work as an editor of one writer’s memoir manuscript currently in the process of revision. Drawing on interviews with the author, recordings of our editorial meetings, and changes in the manuscript itself, I examine the role of the editor in shaping both the author’s work and the author’s memories included in the manuscript. As the author seeks publication of her memoir, I employ the knowledge from working editors to assist her in preparing the manuscript for submission.
The Big 10 Conference College Recreation Websites: Evaluating effectiveness through understanding the Generation Z student.
Julia S. Morris, Zackary G. Ziegler
The Big 10 Conference College Recreation Websites: Evaluating effectiveness through understanding the Gen Z student.The purpose of this presentation is to share our study that analyzed college recreation webpages and their effectiveness in engagement of prospective students. We examined the webpages of the 14 colleges that belong to the Big 10 Conference. The rubric compares each webpage against its competitors. In this presentation, we will educate the audience on what attracts prospective students to a college recreation page. We will share best practice as examples for each category. In addition, we will highlight components that are crucial to any college recreation webpage in order to best market themselves to their target audience of prospective college students who are now considered “Generation Z”.
Maleah Aujenae Wells
This presentation will explore the Black Studies Movement of the 60-70s, analyzing the grassroots activism of Black students in higher education. Although the movement was a national phenomenon, this research will put its focus on the University of Dayton during 1965-1975, using the Black Studies Movement as a lens to look at UD through. Black students on campus organized protests and issued a list of demands to the UD administration in 1969. This list of demands included the establishment of a Black Studies Institute, better recruitment of Black students and professors, and etc. We will be able to better analyze the events that took place on the University of Dayton’s campus by looking into the importance of Black Studies and the impact of the Black Power Era.
The Communal Integration of Nutrition-Related Cultural Assets of the Latinx Population in the Greater Dayton Area
Hannah G. Waters
East Dayton non-profit organizations, Mission of Mary Farms and East End Community Services, have both expressed their inability to engage the Latinx population within their nutrition community programming. While the East Dayton area is disproportionately affected by poverty and food insecurity, the Latinx population is possibly more affected as they are detached from key community resources due to distinct cultural barriers. The goal of this project is to work with community partners to adopt an asset and needs-based analysis that identifies the specific nutritional needs of East Dayton's Latinx population. The collected data will then be used to develop a culturally-tailored intervention that addresses these identified needs.
Anh Q. Pham
This project seeks to define what social support is, analyze the reasons as to why it is necessary—especially for emergent bilinguals—and elaborate on the role that various members of a school community play in helping to foster it. Social support is a multifaceted term that encompasses a number of other types of support, including, but not limited to, emotional, informational, and instrumental support. It is essentially rooted in the idea of connection, whether that be to other individuals, resources, or opportunities. For adolescent emergent bilinguals—students who are improving their English proficiency in addition to strengthening their own primary language—social support is intricately interconnected to their academic development; it serves to be an entry point to various communal and institutionalized resources, such as the formation of relationships, engagement in extracurriculars, and subject-focused discussions that otherwise would not be attainable. In relation to the topic of social support, the following presentation will further discuss how pulling emergent bilinguals out of the mainstream classroom environment and placing them into entirely separate learning communities ultimately hinders them from accessing the aforementioned resources that are imperative to progressing academically.Thus, school administration, teachers, and students have a collective responsibility to be culturally responsive and inclusive; and to emphasize that the diverse backgrounds of emergent bilinguals are an asset to classroom enrichment.
Addy Ruth Nichols, Abigail Lynn Sibley
Chronic pancreatitis develops insidiously over many years and is defined as recurrent attacks of epigastric pain of long duration as a result of inflammation of the pancreas. The common etiologies are chronic alcohol consumption, hypertriglyceridemia, biliary tract disease, genetic conditions, gallstones, trauma, or certain drugs or viral infections. Micronutrients such as vitamin C and vitamin E often play a role in attenuating oxidative stress that may contribute to chronic pancreatitis. Additionally, patients with chronic pancreatitis tend to be deficient in vitamins A, D, E, and K, and therefore may require supplementation. Therefore, using a concept map technique, the purpose of this presentation is to explain the relationship between micronutrients and their role in the prevention and treatment of chronic pancreatitis.