Office of Undergraduate Research and Creative Scholarship

Events & Activities

Student Research Symposium

Saturday, October 20, 2012

8:00am – 12:00pm
Ahmanson Science Center

The California Lutheran University Student Research Symposium began in 2004 and serves to showcase the work of CLU's top students. Most of these students have spent their entire summer working full-time side-by-side with a faculty mentor on their project. The original results that are shared at this venue are often also presented at discipline-specific professional conferences throughout the region and country.

Last year, we had 21 presentations involving students and faculty from Biology, Religion, Chemistry, Economics, Exercise Science, Global Studies, Bioengineering and Applied Physics, Art, Mathematics, Biochemistry and Computer Science. This year we will have 28 presentations that include English and Psychology as well. Presentation formats include 15-minute oral presentations as well as interactive poster presentations.

The community-at-large is welcome to attend - all events are free!  Come and support the hard work of these quality students.


8:00 - 8:10
Free Registration
8:10 - 8:15
Welcoming comments Dean Joan Griffin
8:15 - 9:30
Oral Presentation Session I - Richter Hall
8:15 - 8:30
Mapping a complex mutation in Drosophila: a Large Scale Deficiency Screen for Non-Complementation of the extra eye Mutation James Hougen
8:30 - 8:45
Site-Specific Relationships between Muscle and Bone in Younger and Older Women Tracy White
8:45 - 9:00
Identification of genes in B cells and T Cells that Change Expression After Hepatitis C Virus Infection Luis Jimenez
9:00 - 9:15
Liberation, Resistance, & Rap: A Redefinition of Religion Aminah Hassoun
9:15 - 9:30
Laser-Induced Dissociation of O2+ Travis Severt
9:30 - 10:30
Interactive Poster Session - Ahmanson Science Atrium
A Comparison of Coastal Sage Scrub Communities in California and the Effect of Environmental Aspects on Plant Adaptations Danielle Amoroso
Refugees and Access to Higher Education: A Case Study of Iraqis in Los Angeles Erin Boettcher
A Comparison of Three Methods to Determine Critical Running Velocity in Healthy Adults Neika Maryn
High Resolution Atomic Force Microscopy Images of Porous Hydroxyapatite Kao Tang Ying Moua
Identification and Characterization of Xenobiotic Metabolites using Gas Chromatography - Mass Spectrometry and Capillary Electrophoresis Huong (Ivy) Nguyen
Correlation between Grain Dislocation Density and Orientation for Naturally Deformed Mantle Xenolith from the Jagersfontein Mine Quinlan Smith
Applying Cubic Curves to Path Planning in a Gantry Robot Randee Smith
Quantitative Structure-Activity Relationship Studies of Humic Acid Substances via Multiplexed Capillary Electrophoresis and Related Techniques Tracey Thompson
Prevalence and Association of Sarcopenia and Osteopenia Sam Van Gorder
The Use of Inexpensive Natural Organic Materials in Dye-Sensitized Solar Cells Jacklyn Whitehead
10:30 - 12:00
Oral Presentation Session II - Richter Hall
10:30 - 10:45 Association of Nutrition and Physical Activity on Sarcopenia and Osteopenia in the Elderly Emily Hnath
10:45 - 11:00 Pre-Raphaelite Painting Technique Joseph Clarkson
11:00 - 11:15 Economic Impact of CLU Student-Athletes Rachel Heagy
11:15 - 11:30
Synthesizing Organic Electronic Materials by Direct Arylation Polymerization Calvin Wiley
11:30 - 11:45
Development of Neuroscience Lab Exercises Utilizing the SpikerBox and Biopac Data Acquisition System Joseph Crump
11:45 - 12:00
Isolation, Culturing, and Sequence Analysis of Feline Leukemia Virus Courtney Burch
Closing Comments
Michele LeBlanc

Student Biographies

Danielle Amoroso is from the local area of Simi Valley. She is a senior at Cal Lutheran and is studying Environmental Science. She plans to attend graduate school, earn a Ph. D. and teach the Environmental Sciences at the collegiate level. She loves hiking, cooking, learning new things and enjoys time with family and friends.

Erin Boettcher is an International Studies major with a minor in Sociology. Her hometown is Littleton, Colorado and she is a senior at CLU. Her current plans are to enroll in graduate school and study International Development or participate in a fellowship in Africa. Erin’s hobbies include running, travel and film.

Courtney Burch is from Fullerton, California. Her major is in Biology. She is a senior and has plans to apply for medical school. Her hobbies include playing the piano and going out with friends.

Joseph Clarkson is a third year Art major. He switched coasts coming to California from his hometown of Virginia Beach, Virginia. On campus, Clarkson has been involved in intercollegiate sports, committing two years to the Kingsmen Lacrosse Team. His plan is to pursue a master’s degree in Fine Arts, specifically in figurative painting at The New York Academy of Art, and hopes to one day becoming a framer.

Joe Crump is a senior from Fillmore, California majoring in Bioengineering and Biology. His plan is to attend graduate school to study Biomedicine. Joe’s hobbies include playing soccer, reading history and classic literature, watching Frasier reruns, driving, listening to music and writing.

Aminah Hassoun is a senior from Oxnard, California, pursuing degrees in Religion and Political Science, and a minor in Philosophy. After graduation she plans to combine her academic interests with her personal convictions for social justice and service through work at a non-profit organization. Her dream is to become a farmer. She enjoys reading, gardening, coffee, and raising her backyard chickens.

Rachel Heagy is in her junior year at CLU and is from San Mateo, CA. Her major is in Computer Information Systems with a minor in Economics. Rachel’s professional plan includes applying for graduate school to obtain an MBA, in hopes of becoming a successful business woman. Her hobbies include watching movies, hanging out with friends and playing basketball.

Emily Hnath is from a small town called Rogers, Minnesota. She will graduate from in May 2012 and is majoring in Exercise Science and Sports Medicine with an emphasis in Health Professions. Currently, she is in the process of applying for graduate studies in a physical therapy program, in hopes of beginning in the fall of 2012. Emily is the proud founder of the first ever women’s golf team at CLU. In her spare time, research, golf, or work, she enjoys painting and outdoor activities.

James Hougen is from Bell Canyon, CA. His educational path is to graduate in the spring 2012 in Biology as a major with minors in Chemistry and Business. James believes that obtaining clinical experience will benefit him when applying to medical school.  During his spare time his hobbies include hiking, biking rock-climbing. 

Luis Jimenez is a senior, majoring in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. He has applied to graduate school and hopes to earn a master’s degree in a Biological Science. His hobbies include having romantic conversations over a candle light dinner and long walks on the beach.

Neika Maryn is a junior majoring in Exercise Science with an emphasis in Human Performance. Her professional plan is to attend graduate school for Occupational Therapy. Neika’s hobbies include working out, swimming, hanging out with friends and reading.

Kao Tang Ying Moua is a junior from Anaheim, California who is majoring in Bioengineering. She is currently studying the pore structure, size and density of hydroxyapatite scaffolds. Upon graduation, Tang hopes to attend pharmacy or medical school. She enjoys morning hikes, beaches, playing outdoor volleyball, volunteering at the local hospital and is the Asian Club and Friends Publicist.

Huong (Ivy) Thi Huynh Nguyen is a Chemistry/Math major at CLU. Her hometown is Long An, Vietnam and is currently a sophomore. Her future plan is to attend graduate school to study Environmental Chemistry. Ivy’s hobbies include drawing, singing, and reading.      

Travis Severt is a junior from Moorpark, California, who is currently pursuing a double major in Math and Physics. Upon graduation from CLU, he hopes to earn a Ph.D. in either Applied Physics or Mechanical Engineering. 

Randee Smith is a senior at majoring in Mathematics with a minor in Physics from Santa Clarita, California. She is currently working as the Department Assistant for the Math Department as well as tutoring high school and college students in Mathematics.  Randee will graduate in 2012 and plans on applying her math major to good use in either an internship or a full time job.

Quinlan Smith is from University Place, Washington. He is a senior at CLU, majoring in Physics. His plan is to earn a Ph.D. in Physics, work in the industry, and become a professor of Physics. Quinlan has competed for the CLU swim team for 4 years, and likes aquatic sports and helping others.

Tracey Thompson is majoring in Biochemistry, French and Mathematics minor. Her hometown is Centennial, CO and is currently a senior. Her professional plan is to attend medical school. Her hobbies include volleyball and studying for the MCAT.

Samantha Van Gorder is a senior majoring in Exercise Science, from Ramona, California. Her plan is to attend a Physical Therapy graduate program in the near future. Sam enjoys competing for the Cal Lutheran Women’s soccer team and hopes to take part in her first triathlon when she finishes her final season of soccer.

Tracy White is a senior from Ventura, CA.  Tracy plans to attend a Master’s program in nursing next fall to obtain a job in the medical field as a Nurse Practitioner. In her free time, Tracy enjoys running, playing basketball, and hanging out with friends and family. 

Jacklyn Whitehead is a junior Bioengineering major and Chemistry minor from Hollister, California. She is a Departmental Assistant for Bioengineering and a student worker at the Study Abroad Center. After graduation she plans to attend graduate school to pursue her master’s degree in Biomedical Engineering.

Calvin Wiley is a senior chemistry major, and his hometown is Thousand Oaks. His plan is to undertake a doctorate in Chemistry after graduation, preferably researching novel synthetic methodology. During his spare time, Calvin enjoys hiking and biking, and he also participates in various vocal ensembles.

Keenan Woods is sophomore working to complete a chemistry major. He is from Poway, California, and serves as a Departmental Assistant and gives weekly review lectures for the Organic Chemistry class. Keenan expects to pursue a doctorate in Chemistry and hopes to become a university professor.

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