Campbell teams shine as both competitor and host in BigSURS

Photo by Bennett Scarborough
BUIES CREEK — Campbell University’s first foray into hosting the Big South Undergraduate Research Symposium was an indisputable success with 16 students or teams receiving first-place honors and one Camel taking home the top honor for best overall presentation.
Megan Lenaghan, a junior mathematics major from Norwell, Mass., and her oral presentation on the historic chain of events that led to what we know today as modern statistics was named the top overall presentation for the 7th annual BigSURS event, a two-day event showcasing the best and brightest student researchers from the Big South and other regional schools.
Lenaghan, who switched from biochemistry to math her sophomore year because she enjoyed her calculus courses so much, said modern statistics goes all the way back to early Romans, who used methods to collect a census of their citizens. That knowledge, she said, was lost during the Dark Ages, and later rediscovered by Europeans in the 1500s.
“It begs the question — we’re working with statistics now in such an innovative way, ways that I’m sure could not have been understood even 50 years ago — what could possibly happen to reshape the field now?” she said.
In their comments, judges liked Lenaghan’s “informative and detailed” presentation, with one commenting it, “motivated me to possibly take a course called History of Math.” Her prize for the win was a free Nook donated by Campbell’s Barnes & Noble book store.
“I was a little overwhelmed when I heard that I had won,” Lenaghan said, “because it’s such an honor. I’m very pleased with getting the recognition, though.”
More than 260 students from 19 schools took part in this year’s symposium, showcasing their work through oral and poster presentations, as well as an intercollegiate juried art exhibit held in the Fine Arts Building during the Friday evening dessert reception. Campbell history professor and BigSURS Undergraduate Research Committee Co-Chairman Salvatore Mercogliano said Campbell’s efforts to host its first large-scale symposium was two years in the making after the 2013 event at High Point University. He said the University’s goal, aside from making it a success, was to promote the “scope and scale of undergraduate research” at Campbell.
“While many departments support their students’ research, there is little visibility outside their own subject areas,” Mercogliano said. “BigSURS promotes an interdisciplinary and intercollegiate approach to promoting undergraduate research. As Campbell continues to grow and develop, undergraduate research is an area that we will need to promote and facilitate in the years to come as our graduate programs continue to grow and develop.”
BigSURS was also Campbell’s time to shine for many first-time visitors from rival schools. Oral sessions were held in both D. Rich and the Lundy-Fetterman School of Business, poster presentations took place in the Pope Convocation Center and Taylor Bott Rogers hosted the art show, forcing guests to see entire campus during their two-day stay. Even during down time on Friday, students had their choice of catching a lacrosse game at Barker-Lane Stadium, touring Campbell’s new Levine Hall of Medical Sciences or seeing other parts of campus that appealed to them.
“Overall, the students were very impressed with the setup and loved the campus,” Mercogliano said. “The previous hosts, from Winthrop and High Point, all commented on the good showing that Campbell provided and it is hoped that this conference could serve as a template for future symposiums and conferences.”
Haley Frazier — a senior communications and sociology double major from Radford University who co-authored an oral presentation on whether or not increased technology in the classroom leads to better outcomes — called Campbell a “beautiful campus,” though a little difficult to navigate at first. She credited Campbell’s preparation and said taking part in a large symposium with other like-minded students gave her the confidence to continue her research, even beyond graduation.
“The reactions we got from our session did that for me,” Frazier said. “We didn’t have a full house, but those who were there asked a lot of questions and really took an interest in what we were talking about. That is always flattering.”
BigSURS 2015 Award Recipients
BigSURS 2015 organizers recognized about 50 of the oral and poster presentations that were presented during the undergraduate research symposium held this past weekend at Campbell University. Of those awards, more than two-dozen of the recipients were students who attend Campbell, including Megan Lenaghan. She took home the top prize for best presentation of the entire symposium.
All winners are listed below:
Overall winner
Megan Lenaghan, Campbell University: “Modern Statistics”
Oral presentations
Cathryn E. Smith, Winthrop University: “Baroque and Rococo Medical Art”
Mary Elizabeth Pruitt and Taylor Carlton Daniel, High Pint University: “Apiary Microcosm: Bees through the Lens of Art”
Joseph Girgenti, Wingate University: “Music and Education in the Five Top-Performing Countries”
Rodrigo Catalan-Hurtado, High Point University: “The Detection of the Transcription Regulator GerE in Geobacillus stearothermophilus”
Devan Conley, Sara Boltinhouse, and Kaylyn Thompson, Campbell University: “Do clinical trial advertisements have undue influence associated with them, according to FDA guidelines?”
Nicholas Carrara, Katharine Settell, Blake Andrews, and David W. Buckalew, Longwood University: “Using Indicator Bacteria as A Novel Approach To Assess Survivorship And Development Of Aquatic Vertebrates In Impaired Waters”
John Winalski, Virginia Military Institute: “The Effects of Dantrolene On Nitric Oxide And Aromatase Inhibition In The Embryonic Zebrafish (Danio Rerio)”
Criminal Justice
Matthew Jaramillo, Campbell University: “Constitutional Issues of Law Enforcement Sobriety Checkpoints”
Sonya Phannouvong, Campbell University: “Dangerous Women”
Colin Kroll, Campbell University: “Larchet among The Ashes: A Biblically Inspired Critique of ‘The Theology of Illness’”
Health and Exercise Science
Claire Doherty, Caitlin Gerig, and Haley Shotwell, Radford University: “My College Athletic Team Has Been Discontinued: What Do I Do Now?”
Sesily Maness, Charlotte Schaar, Megan Valtin, and Bridget Way, Campbell University: “Can Depression Be Managed By Exercise?”
Elizabeth Wells, Campbell University: “Heart Rate Recovery”
Kayleigh Dolphin, Campbell University: “Case Report: Complext Knee Pathology Resulting from a Minimal Mechanism of Injury in a High School Football Player”
Erika Rape, Wingate University: “Teaching Shakespeare with And Through Digital Resources In The Classroom”
Christopher Byrd, Presbyterian College: “‘Now begin the terrors; now begin the marvels’: The Sacred and Secular Grail in the Twentieth Century”
Brierly Harris, Winthrop University: “Adam Pinkhurt and the Consequ3ences of ‘Chaucer’s Scribe’”
Christina Burchette, High Point University: “Joe Christmas and Racial Hierarchy in Faulkner’s ‘Light in August’”
Courtney McGrath, Winthrop University: “Britomart’s Overcoming of the Gender Binary at the House of Busirane”
Chelsea Bergmann, Winthrop University: “John Donne’s ‘The Ecstasy’”
Bailey, Campbell University*
Carson Futch, Campbell University: “Study of Home Court Advantage in Campbell Sports Teams”
Minghanbo Hunter Liu, Virginia Military Institute: “Thickness Studies Of Ionic Self-Assembled Monolayers Thin Films for Acidity Detection”
Leslie Sigmon, UNC-Asheville: “Filtration of Atrazine-Contaminated Drinking Water with Titanium Dioxide Nanoparticles”
Lindsey Anuzis, High Point University: “The Effect of Hippotherapy on Self-Esteem in Girls Who Have Been Bullied”
Jensen, DeLander, and Harrleson, Columbus State*
Brierly Harris, Winthrop University: “Congressman Lincoln and the Expansion of Slavery”
Social Work/Social Science
Kelli Karl, Campbell University: “The Impact of Animal-Assisted Activities In Patients With Dementia”
Justin Cummings, High Pint University: “D. Samuel Badford: An Exploration Into Faculty-Student Relationships at William Penn High School”
Anna Snyder, Liberty University: “A Comparative Study of Compounding and Noun Incorporation”
Alex Mills, High Point University: “Hot Media, Hot Theories: Revealing The Popularity Of Intersection Ideologies In Lost”
Jon Bateman, Liberty University: “‘A One-In-A-Billion Chance’: The Transformative Effect of Stan Lee and Spider-Man on American Popular Culture”
John Flores, Liberty University: “Founding Terror”
Foreign Language
Trey Stokes, Winthrop University: “Factors Affecting Second-Dialect Acquisition Among English-Speaking Spanish Majors Studying Abroad”
Poster presentations
Matthew R. Dalton, Liberty University: “Significant Up-regulation of Mir-17 in an Alzheimer’s Disease Mouse Model”
Claudia Flink, Longwood University: “Molecular Fingerprinting of Species within the Family Pilobolacea”
Nicholas Carrara, Katharine Settell, Blake Andrews, and David W. Buckalew, Longwood University: “Using Indicator Bacteria as a Novel Approach to Assess Survivorship And Development of Aquatic Vertebrates In Impaired Waters”
Jubilee Ajiboye, Campbell University: “Isolation and Molecular Analysis of Unidentified Bacteria”
Bryan McQuween, Kelsey Trace, Emily Whitmas, and Dr. Amorette Barber, Longwood University: “Costimulatory receptors NKG2D and CD28 show different methods of activation through mTOR pathway in murine CD8 T cells”
Julia Oakley, Campbell University: “Chanes in Blood Vessel Diameter in the Tail of the Goldfish (Carassius auratis) Caused by Methlyamine Hydrochloride”
Chelsea Lawson, Campbell University: “Isolation and identification of bacteria from Pilot Mountain, NC”
Exercise Science
Courtney Rivers and Jennifer Dilger, Winthrop University: “The Effects of Exercise on Self-Esteem, General Happiness, And Body Image”
Mariel Celina Po, Coast Carolina University: “College Student Perceptions Of A Health Course Textbook”
Lorianne Tant, Campbell University: “Uncommon Sign and Symptoms Lead to Misdiagnosis for ACL”
Morgan Timiney, Campbell University: “Effects of Acute Dha, Choline and Uridine Supplementation on Power Output, Work Capacity and Neural Cognition”
Human Development/Family Development
Yvonne Chimenge and Oyediya Akaronu, UNC-Greensboro: “Developing and Refining Family Relationship Measures for Southeast Asian Groups”
Matthew A. Tate, Virginia Military Institute: “Broad and Narrow Band Polarization Measurements Of NGC 7380”
Dylan Williams, UNC-Asheville: “Modeling E&M Fields within Periodically Poled Ferroelectric Templates”
Rebecca Hughes and Cameron Howell, Campbell University: “Microexpression Detection in Undergraduate College Students”
Britnee Goldman and Jonathan Mitchell, Presbyterian College: “A Longitudinal Study of Self-Concept in CHAMPS Students”
Sarah Luca, Ellio Nauert, and Alex Schaefer, UNC-Asheville: “Effects of Cognitive Training Games on Flexibility and Fluid Intelligence”
Bailey Hill and Hannah Fulenwider, Presbyterian College: “Effects of Submissive Behavior on Learned Avoidance in Male Syrian Hamsters”
*only information available at time of publication.