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Eleven Undergrads Selected to Present at National Conference

Eleven Lubbock Christian University undergraduate students were recently accepted to present their research at the National Conference for Undergraduate Research (NCUR) 2014 in Lexington, Kentucky.

These students were selected from more than 4,000 submissions for having abstracts that demonstrate a unique contribution to their field of study. The submissions came from students attending universities all over the nation.

“Our students will be on the ‘stage’ with students from universities like Harvard, Yale, Stanford, and many others,” says Dr. Rod Blackwood, Provost and Chief Academic Officer. “What a wonderful statement about the quality of our students, faculty, and education that exist here at Lubbock Christian University.”

The selected students are in various areas of study at LCU, including psychology, chemistry, and youth and family ministry, resulting in a range of research topics. The acceptance to present at NCUR is a result of hard work to achieve academic excellence not only from the students, but also from their faculty mentors.

“In the five years that LCU students have been submitting proposals for presentation at NCUR, we have seen steady growth in the number of students and faculty participating and in the quality of their work,” comments Dr. Susan Blassingame, Dean of the Hancock College of Liberal Arts and Education. “This year we have eleven students who had work accepted, more than doubling the number of the first year. Five faculty mentors have been working with these students, showing remarkable dedication to their students and their scholarly growth.”

Dr. Blassingame later went on to explain that in addition to their academic achievements, LCU students are known at NCUR as good colleagues.

“They attend all the sessions and ask good questions of the presenters. They get to know students and faculty from other schools,” says Dr. Blassingame on the excellence of LCU’s undergraduate researchers.

LCU offers students who are involved with undergraduate research, particularly in the sciences, the opportunity to participate in research that would typically only be available to graduate level students at other universities. This gives LCU students an advantage after graduation when looking to further their education. Not only that, but when their faculty mentors publish research, their undergraduate students have the opportunity to be listed as co-authors.

“It’s not about us, it’s about our students taking the theories and research, then working them out in practice,” says Dr. Steve Bonner, Chair for the Council of Undergraduate Research (CUR) at LCU.

Undergraduate research is high impact at LCU, meaning there is a high level of faculty-student mentoring taking place, and the faculty mentors are undoubtedly dedicated to the LCU mission to be student centered.

The national conference will be held at the University of Kentucky on April 3-5. Visit the NCUR 2014 website for more information. 

Below is a list of the students who were selected along with their project titles and their faculty mentors.

Markese Bohanon – Psychology – Honors Scholar— "Optimal Growth Parameters of Pycnoporous sanguineus for Enzymatic Breakdown of Peanut Hulls"

Faculty Mentors: Dr. Julie Marshall and Lucy Porter

Winter Chambers – Nursing – "Emotional Eating and Visual Food Records"

Faculty Mentor: Dr. JoAnn Long

Taylor Cockrell – Youth and Family Ministry – Honors Scholar – "How We've Met Our Father: The Sitcom of Spirituality"

Faculty Mentor: Steve Bonner

Scott Hall – Youth and Family Ministry – "Contemporary Eucharist"

Faculty Mentor: Dr. Steve Bonner

Bryan Hettick – Chemistry – Honors Scholar – "Quality and Stability of Peanut Oils in Raw Nuts Treated with Ultraviolet Light to Reduce Bacterial Loads"

Faculty Mentor: Dr. Julie Marshall

James Masterson – Youth and Family Ministry – "The Effectiveness of Short-Term Intensive Youth & Family Ministry Internships"

Faculty Mentor: Dr. Steve Bonner

Sara McBride – Biology – "Antibiotic Resistance of Escherichia coli Isolated from the Feces of Playa Lake Resident Waterfowl"

Faculty Mentors: Lucy Porter and Dr. Bart Durham

Jordan Putman – Biology and Chemistry – "Using DNA Profiles to Determine the Commonality of Escherichia coli Isolated from Canada Geese Feces and Urban Playa Lake Water"

Faculty Mentor: Dr. Julie Marshall and Lucy Porter

Michael Sa-Id – Exercise and Health Promotion – "Genetic Profiles of Escherichia coli Isolated from the Fecal Matter of Resident Water Fowl of Urban Playa Lakes"

Faculty Mentors: Lucy Porter and Dr. Julie Marshall

Tyler Sams – Chemistry – Honors Scholar – "Survival of Escherichia coli in Relation to the Disaccharide Trehalose"

Faculty Mentor: Dr. Amanda Boston

Joshua Thomas – Biology – "Preparation of a Recombinant Enzyme of the Fungus Phanerochaete chrysosporium for the Breakdown of Agricultural Waste for Biofuel Production"

Faculty Mentors: Dr. Julie Marshall and Lucy Porter