Professor Lee Alan Dugatkin discussed his book, Mr. Jefferson and the Giant Moose.
Click on the
photo to view a
slideshow from the event.
The SURF Symposium allows students to present their
research and findings.
The thirteenth annual Schapiro Undergraduate Research Fellowship (SURF)
Symposium was held on Thursday, August 5, 2010. The symposium was the culmination
of cutting-edge research conducted this summer by 34 R-MC students in the fields
of psychology, chemistry, biology, mathematics, business/economics, environmental
science, history, philosophy, literature and drama. The Symposium is held so that
students can formally present the results of their research to faculty, staff and
Interim Provost Bill Franz told the SURF students how proud they’ve made everyone
at R-MC and added, “You are the story we like to tell because of what you have achieved.
Your work has been exemplary.”
The Symposium, held in R-MC’s Copley Science Building, allowed students to choose
between giving an oral or poster presentation. Students described their research
methodology and how they determined the end results. Their findings, although preliminary,
demonstrated the intense nature of each student’s research experience. Some of the
research and findings include:
Blair Ringley’s ’11 research, titled Is Red Wine Good for You?
Determination of the Antioxidant Capacity of Red Grape Varietals, examined
which wines produce the highest antioxidant capacities and whether region and grape
variety impacts those levels. Ringley’s research was supervised by
Chemistry Professor Serge Schreiner.
Michael True’s ’12 research, titled The Value of Working Hard for
a Living: Behavioral and Neurobiological Effects of Effort-driven Reward
Training in Long-Evans Rats, studied two groups of animals. One group was
trained to search for a reward while the second group was given rewards regardless
of effort. The animals were evaluated to determine if hard work builds resilience
against depression. True’s research was supervised by
Psychology Professor Kelly Lambert.
Kimberly Potter’s ’11 research, titled The Synthesis of Heterocyclic
Inhibitors of the Dengue Virus NS3 Protese, investigated a possible treatment
for the Dengue virus, which is currently an epidemic in several countries. Potter’s
research was supervised by Chemistry Professor Nora Green.
Anna Perritt’s ’11 research, titled The Directorial Undertaking
of Indoor/Outdoor by Kenny Finkle, followed the process and challenges
of staging a drama production. The project concluded with a public viewing of the
stage play. Perritt’s research was supervised by Drama
Professor Joe Mattys.
Sara Smith’s ’12 research, titled Teaching the History of Singing
to Young Musicians: Effectiveness and Attitudes, involved the development
of an educational workshop designed to teach the history of singing to high school
students. Smith’s research was supervised by Music
Professor Christopher Ryder.
The students and their supervising instructors were treated to a luncheon and a
presentation by a guest speaker who shared his academic research experience. Distinguished
Biology Professor Lee Alan Dugatkin, from the University of Louisville, discussed
his research in the evolution of social behavior. His lecture focused on his latest
book, Mr. Jefferson and the Giant Moose (University of Chicago Press, 2009).
Dugatkin is the author of over 125 articles on evolution and behavior; he has also
published three books on the evolution of cooperation and is the author of a textbook
on animal behavior.
The Schapiro Undergraduate Research Fellowship was introduced in 1995 as an endowment
to support scholarly undergraduate research by Randolph-Macon College students in
all disciplines. The continued generous support of Benjamin Schapiro ’64 and his
wife Peggy allows R-MC students the opportunity to conduct original research, under
the guidance of a faculty member, and be paid a stipend.
Many students continue the projects beyond the summer and present their findings
at academic and national and international professional conferences both nationally
and internationally. This level of in-depth research is usually reserved for graduate
students at other colleges and universities. SURF projects have helped set R-MC
students apart when applying for graduate school and finding work in a chosen career
field. The program is co-directed by Professors Kelly Lambert and Serge Schreiner.
To read the 2010 SURF students' blogs, click here.