IMPORTANT NOTE: These are the archived stories for Belmont News & Achievements prior to June 26, 2023. To see current stories, click here.

HomeAcademicsCollege of Sciences and MathematicsStudents Present Research at Undergraduate Symposium

Students Present Research at Undergraduate Symposium

Belmont recently hosted its Science Undergraduate Research Symposium (SURS), an opportunity for students to present their research from the fall semester. Held each fall for the last 12 years, this year’s event featured a Keynote Address from Dr. Stephen Carlson, a Belmont alumni, medical writer and consultant for Whitsell Innovations. Carlson delivered “Molluscs to Mice: What Model Organisms Can Tell Us About The Brain and Behavior.”

 This year’s event saw more than 80 student entries with posters and oral presentations given in eight categories including biology, biology & molecular biology, neuroscience, chemistry and physics, environmental science, honors, mathematics & computer science and psychological science.
Presented research included:
  • “Decomposition Rates of Acer Saccharum and Lonicera Macckii in Mixed Litter Bags,” Anna Anderson
  • “Convallatoxin induces apoptosis in HCT116 colorectal cancer cells,” Sarah Anderson
  • “Seeking Behaviors of Nicotine,” AJ Arnold
  • “The effects of isoflurane on spatial learning and short-term memory in Danio rerio,” Curtis Brown
  • “Disinhibition by Ethanol on C. elegans Towards Bacillus thuringiensis,” Samantha Bush
  • “The Response of a Native and Exotic Snails to a Native Crayfish Predator,” Jasmine Conyers
  • “The Effect of Piracetam on Danio rerio with Ethanol-Induced Memory Impairment,” Mohamed Darwish
  • “Effect of Sodium Chloride Levels on Anxiety in Zebrafish (Danio rerio),” Austin DeMaagd
  • “The effect of a trophic cascade and intraguild predation on the survival rate of the Southern Oyster, Crassostrea virginica,” Kristen Estes
  • “Occurrence and Relative Abundance of Parasitic Leeches (Hirudinea) on Aquatic Turtles in a Wetland Environment in Tennessee,” Laura Horton, Nicole Witzel, Jeronimo Silva
  • “The effect of caffeine on motor movement of Caenorhabditis elegans,” Madeline Johnson
  • “The response of naive and experienced snails to a predator cue,” Shirley Kyere
  • “Increased mortality and reduced seizure threshold in SCN1A knockout mouse model,” Crystal Lemus
  • “Effects of Epigallocatechin-gallate and Enoxacin on HeLa cells,” Anna Margaret McDonnell
  • “Treatment effects of emetine on HCT-116 cells,” Kerry Sommers
  • “Examining behavior syndromes in Orconectes durelli crayfish,” W. Kody Muhic
  • “The Effects of Fertilizer on Decomposition of Native and Invasive Exotic Plant Species,” Gary W. Noel
  • “Detection of Respiration in C. elegens and the Effects of Different Sugars and E. Coli,” Prisha Patel
  • “Differences in Plant, Microinvertebrate, and Microbiota Diversity on a Well-Established Green Roof and a New Green Roof,” Sargoel Rezanejed
  • “Comparison Between EStablished Versus Newly Created Green Roofs Focusing on Microbiology, Macroinvertebrates and Green Roof Flora,” Kelsey Saint Clair
  • “Caffeine’s Effect on Chemotaxis of C. elegans at Various Stages of Life,” Emily Shearon
  • “Expansion on the Nematode Scent Detection Test: Evaluating C. elegans Attraction to Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer,” Brian Song
  • “Behavioral syndromes of Elimia snails in response to Crayfish predation threat,” Ryan Tapley
  • “Effect of Sedum rupestre on Non-Sedum Dianthus kakori When Planted Together on an Extensive Green Roof,” Laura Horton, Caroline Glover, Dylan Adler
  • “The Mostt-terious Effect of Herbs on a Green Roof,” Sandra Bojic, Kerra Gaona, Kelsey Saint Clair
  • “Mosses and Sedum Affect Green Roof Substrate Temperature,” Bethany Strother, Kylie Lawrence, Sara Haney

Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

  • “Insight Into the Chemotaxis of Caenorhabditis Elegans Toward Pathogenic Bacillus Thuringiensis Strain 4A4 Using Chemosensory Deficient Nematodes,” Stacey Crockett
  • “Catechin Isolation of Rosa damascena Implies Novel Melanoma Prevention,” Nick Orji
  • “Isolation of Catechins from Granny Smith Apples for Analysis of Inhibition of Tyrosinase,” Sarah Maxwell


  • “The Relationship Between Acute Stress and Behavioral Sensitization in Apomorphine Treated Danio rerio,” John Longenecker
  • “Chemotaxis of Caenorhabditis elegans with Bacillus thuringiensis 4A4 in vegetative and sporulated growth stages,” Meghan McGrath
  • “Investigation of p53 activation in HCT116 with the sesquiterpene Beta-Caryophyllene,” Diana Neculcea
  • “The Effect of Anandamide on Working Memory in Danio rerio,” Sam Zacovic
  • “The Effects of Dopamine on Learning and Certainty in Zebrafish,” Stephanie Morin

Environmental Science

  • The impact of a reduced tree canopy cover on the composition of stream macro invertebrate communities,” Sandra Bojic
  • “The effect of size on the antipredator of the snail, Elimia laqueta in response to predator cues,” Joanna Sorrell

Chemistry and Physics

  • “Comparison of Baseball Helmets Padding Using Force Sensors,” Nicholas W. Egli
  • “Physics in Tennis: Analyzing and Modeling Tennis Shots,” Cedric Dujacquier
  • “Computer Simulations and Best Practices for College Physics,” Jonathan Rankin
  • “Cost-Efficient Microfluidic Devices to Determine Growth Rate of Yeast Cells and Sort Microbeads by Size,” Hannah Burnette, Kara Garrett
  • “Development of a Model Metal Amine Complex and Projections of Physical Properties viz Density Functional Theory Algorithms,” Emily Cottingham
  • “Synthesis, characterization, and unusual solvation and luminescent propertise of terbium amine complexes,” Libby Ligon
  • “Symmetry breaking in nanorod synthesis using metal salts,” Sarah A. Cannavino
  • “Greening the Synthesis of Virstatin: Finding an Alternative Solvent to Dimethylformamide,” Morgan MaCauley


  • “Effects of Creativity on Stimuli Recognition in Clouds,” Shannon Kelley, Suzanna Stapler, Meredith Edwards, Taylor Brown
  • “The Effects of Sound Perception on Shape Identification,” Dora Mae Geving, Sean Grossnickle, Mackinna Hart, Alex Lachmandas
  • “Effects of Visual, Auditory, and Visual-Auditory Semantic Satiation on Perceived Relatedness of Word Pairings,” Dlyan Arndt, Allison Kurtz, Koby Langer, Riley Wallace
  • “Effects of Speech Speed on the McGurk Effect,” Clara Leonard, Tristan Kinnett, Sarah Everett, Chloe Garbe
  • “Effects of Fear-Inducing Stimuli on Perception of Ambiguous Figures,” Cole Fuller, Katie Wynn, Randy Westergaard

Mathematics and Computer Science

  • “The NFL Combine from 1999-2016: A View Through Data Analysis,” Grant VanderKallen
  • “DeepDSP,” Corey Sery, John Ottenlips
  • “Connect 4,” Simeon Fritz, Whitt Kinley
  • “An Interactive Sudoku Game and Problem Solver,” Sean Conklin, Andy Porter
  • “Alphametric Problem Solver,” Zayne Anderson, Joe LaMartina, Grant VanderKellen
  • “Teeko: An implementation of Alpha Beta Pruning in Python,” W. Hess, N. Karman, K. McLean
  • “Pente,” Amber Blue, Abbey Miles
  • “A Comparison of Heuristic Functions for the Game ‘Mancala’,” Chandler Capps, Luke Johnson
  • “Linearization and Solution Approximations for Nonlinear Differential Equations,” Allison Hardee
  • “Creating a Model for the Dissemination of Ideas Using a System of Linear ODEs,” Tucker Dowell
  • “Using and Analyzing Random Graphs to Simulate Social Networks,” Tucker Dowell
  • “An Algebraic Model of Musical Symmetry,” Brandon Stephens, Peter Eigel
  • “Algebraic Combinations in Basic Groups,” Tucker Dowell

Psychological Science

  • “The Effect of Social Media Content on Mood,” Kara Garrett, Kendyl Matthews, Hannah Johnson, Dallas Mattern
  • “You Are What You Eat: Gustatory Disgust and Pleasure Influence Moral Judgment,” Marie Boutard, Christian Candler, Bailee Ficzere, Daniel Mata
  • “Effects of Social Media on Self Preservation,” Emilee Filspart, Mary Ellen Manor, Hayden Tucker
  • “Emotional Response to Color,” Sielo M. Coleman, Ashtin Faulkner, Andrew Dudey, Kaitlyn Bayus
  • “Emotional Response to Sound Frequency Manipulation,” Mekenzie Meadows, Gabby Gonzalez, Darby Maggard
  • “Acknowledgement of One’s Own Racial Baises Effect on Group Selection,” Candace Hearn, Maeve Fitzpatrick, Allison Ramsey, Ellyn Webster
  • “The Art of Kindness: The effects of interpersonal compassion on self-compassion,” Kathryn Dickerson, Paige Robinson, Rachel Holloway, Monica Anis, Alejandra Cota
  • “The Impact of Gender Stereotypes on Empathic Accuracy,” Amber Lowe, Ragan Wilson, Marie Holzer, Janai Todd
  • “Social Desirability and Maladaptive Humor,” Brittany Lebhar, Kyle McLean, Stephane Morin, Rosaline Prophete, Michael Rasille
  • “Virtual Reality and Narrative,” Sydne Richardson, Thomas Diez, Kyle Bailey, David Vogel
  • “Conformity: Private Attitudes and Public Intentions,” Piper Cleveland, Quinn Forrer, Eric Patterons, Cille Taylor
  • “Interpersonal Attraction and Biographical Memory Recall,” Hannah Branthwaite, Reed Priest
  • “Belmont University Maladaptive Perfectionism Scale,” Reed Preist, Kathryn Graeff, Florence Matthews, Hannah Branthwaite
  • “Confidence and Method of Viewing Faces on Facial Recognition Accuracy,” Carmey Davisson, Marily Lauterback, Meghan McGath, Reed Priest
  • “Shame and Nonconscious Behavioral Mimicry,” Brittany Yeager, Kathryn Graeff, Faith Pollard, Carleigh Schuman, Martina Kenner
  • “The Effects of Music Congruity on a Lexical Learning Task,” Benjamin Burdalic, Daisha Cane, Martina Keener, Diana Neculcea
  • “The Effect of Facial Affect on Situational Empathy,” Isabelle Fauchet, Liz Hughes, Denisha Morris, Diana Neculcea
  • “The Effects of Classical Music on Y-Maze Learning in Lab Rats,” Ty Vogel, Carolyn Stewart, Skirley Kyere, Isabelle Fauchet, Faith Gibson, Liz Markelova
  • “Validating the Situationally-Oriented Survey of Delay of Gratification,” Ragan Wilson, Conor Kelly, Carleigh Schuman, Carmen Davisson, David Tronsrue
  • “Gender Stereotypes and Speech Perception,” Emy Gildea, Abigail Smith, Yasmin Telwar, Conor Kelly
  • “The Development and Evaluation of the Academic, Relational, Occupational Entitlement Scale,” Benjamin Burdalic, Seth Schrader, Abigail Smith, Lizzie Weintraub
  • “Mind-Body Dualism and Driving Behavior,” Seth Schrader, Andrea Franjic, Austin Townsend, Jazmine Niazi
  • “The Development of a Measure of Interpersonal Dependency,” Allison Holmes, Marilyn Lauterbach, Seth Strobel, Krista Tice, Matthew Williams
  • “Stress and Sleep Correlational Study,” Andrea Franjic, Meghan McGrath, Mikayla O’Malley, Florence Matthews, Seth Strobel
  • “The Relationship Between the Quality of Sleep, Moringness and Eveningness, and Performance on a Visual-Motor Task,” Jessica Andree, Chelsey Deloney, Sally McCabe, John Longenecker

Related Articles