Students and mentors recognized for Show Me Research Week accomplishments

April 17, 2024
Contact: Brian Consiglio, 573-882-9144,  

Last week, more than 500 University of Missouri students and postdoctoral fellows presented their research and creative activity during Show Me Research Week April 8-12. The week, which celebrates Mizzou students as creators, innovators, problem solvers and thinkers, culminated with an Award and Recognition Ceremony held at the Bond Life Sciences Center.

The following students were recognized for their work during the ceremony, which also praised Mizzou faculty for serving as mentors.

Advanced Light Microscopy Core Image Contest

The Advanced Light Microscopy Core announced its annual light microscopy image contest winners. Images taken on any core instrument in the last two years were eligible for the contest.

  • People’s Choice Award: Donielle Brottlund, Felix Fritschi’s Lab
  • Expert’s Choice Award: Lydia Phillips, Soyon Park’s Lab
  • Best Technically Challenging Image: Varun Dwivedi, Craig Schenck’s Lab
Forum Presentation Awards

For the 2024 Symposium, 398 presenters were selected to have their presentations critiqued.

Applied Design


  • First Place, Toni Reynolds, “LGBTQIA+ Inclusive Apparel”/Mentor: Kerri McBee-Black


  • First Place: Md Obidul Haque, “Computational Compliance Checking to Improve Accessibility in Healthcare Facilities”/Mentor: Jong Bum Kim

Artistic Expression


  • First Place: Reese Betts, “Traces”/Mentor: Katina Bitsicas
  • Second Place: Ever Cole, “Traces”/Mentor: Katina Bitsicas
  • Third Place: Robin Crouch, “Light and Shadow”/Mentor: Katina Bitsicas

Behavioral and Social Sciences


  • First Place: Ahmed Ebada, “Air Pollution, Asthma, and Educational Outcomes: a Reflection of Systemic Racism in St. Louis”/Mentor: Ahmed Balboula
  • Second Place: Alicen Dietrich, “Camelot in Crisis: Examining President Kennedy’s Foreign Policy Advisory System”/Mentor: Heather-Leigh Ba
  • Third Place: Samantha Mackley, “The Effect of School Lunch Funding on Student Educational Outcomes in Missouri”/Mentor: Brittany Street


  • First Place: Christa Torrisi, “Decision-making for Risk-reducing Mastectomy for Increased Lifetime Breast Cancer Risk: A Qualitative Metasynthesis”/Mentor: Jane Armer
  • Second Place: Desmond Spann, “A Theoretical Model for Racism Creating Disparities Within Negative Symptoms of Schizophrenia-spectrum Disorders”/Mentor: John Kerns
  • Third Place: Jacob Moore, “Rooted Stream Plants Modify Subsurface Nitrogen in an Urban Watershed”/Mentor: Alba Argerich



  • First Place: William Andel, “Jammed Agar Microgels as a Transparent Soil Surrogate for Plant Studies”/Mentor: Christopher O’Bryan
  • Second Place: Marissa Moore, “Designing Neuroprotective Biomaterials for Spinal Cord Injury Mitigation”/Mentor: Bret Ulery
  • Third Place: Emma McDougal, “Tuning Lipid Content to Modulate Peptide Amphiphile Micelles for Drug Delivery Applications”/Mentor: Bret Ulery


  • First Place: Meftah Uddin, “Occupancy-based HVAC Operation and Energy Forecasting Using Neural Network”/Mentor: Sanjeev Khanna
  • Second Place: Mustahsin Reasad, “Calibration of Nortek Signature 1000 Echosounder Using Tungsten Carbide Spheres in Controlled Laboratory Conditions”/Mentor: Binbin Wang
  • Third Place: Sumit, “Development of a Novel, Small Scale Cold Screw Press Protocol for Rapid Soybean processing”/Mentor: Pavel Somavat



  • First Place: Emerald Darby, “Slavic Witchcraft and Horror: A Creative Mapping of Gogol's ‘Viy’”/Mentor: Soren Larsen
  • Second Place: Amos Tramel and Reza Alvi, “Sound Changes in Teke Languages (Congo)”/Mentor: Rebecca Grollemund
  • Third Place: Nyiah Hopkins, “The Relationship Between Maternal Sensitivity and Inhibitory Function”/Mentor: Kristy vanMarle


  • First Place: Huda Alqader and Caitlyn Pallas, “Testing the ‘Secrets’ of Roman Concrete: Replicating Ancient Fabrication Methods to Characterize Roman Mortar Properties”/Mentor: Sarah Orton
  • Second Place: Stephen Czujko, “Assessing the Origin of Wares from Sardis Through Sr-Pb Isotopic Analysis”/Mentor: Virginie Renson



  • First Place: Deshawn Sutton, “Clustering COVID-19 Patient’s Genomic Variants Using a Transformer Model”/Mentor: Praveen Rao


  • First Place: Oscar Mendoza Andrade, “Transition and Transformation: Gene Expression Profiles Across Four Developmental/Morphological States in MDCK Cells”/Mentor: Daniel Bergstralh
  • Second Place: Sabin Dahal, “Enhancing Data Visualization and Analytics for Multi-Omics Data In KBCommons - v1.2”/Mentor: Trupti Joshi
  • Third Place: Ajay Karera, “Unemployment Insurance Claims Equity Analysis”/Mentor: Timothy Haithcoat

Life Sciences


  • First Place: Madison Ross, “Toxicological Analysis Assessing Ovarian Reserve Impact From Four Prevalent Chemotherapy Drugs”/Mentor: Lei Lei
  • Second Place: Sterling Trawick, “A Molecular Chaperone Plays a Role in Meiotic Silencing”/Mentor: Patrick Shiu
  • Third Place: Andrew Apostol, “Autonomic Dysfunction After Spinal Cord Injury”/Mentor: Bradley Ferguson


  • First Place: James F. McNew, “Role of Nanos2 in Rat Gamete Production”/Mentor: Elizabeth Bryda
  • Second Place: Roxanne Muchow, “Examination of Early Respiratory Pathology of SMA and SMARD1 Mouse Models”/Mentor: Monique Lorson
  • Third Place: Gabrielle Rupp, “Local PTI Stimulation Induces Rapid, Systemic Changes in the Plasma Membrane Proteome Throughout the Plant”/Mentor: Scott Peck

Physical and Mathematical Sciences


  • First Place: Jayden Francois, “Tidal Disruption Event Host Galaxies: Correlating Factors”/Mentor: Yicheng Guo
  • Second Place: Nora Pryor, “Synthesis and Labeling of TACN-Derived FAPI Ligands with Re-186 and Tc-99m Tricarbonyl Cores”/Mentor: Heather Hennkens
  • Third Place: Eric Fritschi, “Role of VESICULAR TRAFFICKING5 (VES5) Protein in Iron Accumulation and Photosynthetic Compounds in Arabidopsis Thaliana”/Mentor: Antje Heese


  • First Place: Olivia Bongiovi, “Examining the Dynamics of Stream Dissolved Organic Matter Across Land-Use”/Mentor: Alba Argerich
  • Second Place: Ruichen Xu, “Synthetic Jet-induced Turbulence and Suspension Dynamics for Simulated Carp Eggs Within a Grid-modul”/Mentor: Binbin Wang
  • Third Place: Victoria Kuhn, “JWST Reveals A Surprisingly High Fraction of Spiral-like Galaxies at 0.5 ≤z≤4”/Mentor: Yicheng Guo
Visual Art and Design Showcase

The 2024 Visual Art and Design Showcase (VADS) was a venue for Mizzou undergraduate students to display and discuss their scholarly work. The works of more than 40 students were displayed and featured a variety of artistic expressions and applied designs.

2024 Community Awards

  • Museum of Art and Archaeology Award: Tyler Thomas, MANifest Destiny
  • MU Libraries Award: Jae Cowen, Our Amazing Planet
  • Columbia Art League Award: Hannah Gundlach, Ancestry Revived
  • Sager Reeves Gallery Award: Avery Dixon, The Hardest Part

2024 Applied Design Awards

  • Grand Prize: Jae Cowen, Our Amazing Planet
  • Runner-Up: Christian Zarrick, Gas City Night Crime
  • Awards of Merit: Laila Al-Kharabsheh, Hawthorn Architectural University; and Will Funderburg, Ginger Rogers X 1970 Wearable Décor

2024 Artistic Expression Awards

  • Grand Prize: Reese Betts, All That Remains (and That Which Does Not)
  • Runner-Up: Avery Dixon, The Hardest Part
  • Awards of Merit: Esra Jackson, The Opacity of Grief; and Sofía Ortega, Sigo Rezando

VADS Faculty Mentor Award

  • Ric Wilson, graphic design, mentor to Jae Cowen, grand prize for applied design
  • Katina Bitsicas, digital storytelling, mentor to Reese Betts, grand prize for artistic expression

People’s Choice Award

  • Emily Wilson, We Are Not Just A Day (video)
Undergraduate Mentor of the Year

Any regular MU faculty member, postdoctoral fellow, graduate student or research staff whose undergraduate mentee presented their research at the 2024 Symposium or at the Visual Art and Design Showcase is eligible for consideration.

2024 Nominees

  • Doctoral student Jack Andrews, Psychological Sciences/Medicine
  • Associate Professor Medeia Csoba DeHass, Geography
  • Professor Lisa Flores, Psychological Sciences
  • Assistant Professor Rebecca Grollemund, English/Linguistics
  • Associate Professor Antje Heese, Biochemistry
  • Doctoral student August Hemmerla, Chemical and Biomedical Engineering
  • Doctoral student Tionna Hough, Psychological Sciences
  • Assistant Professor Caroline Kopot, Textile and Apparel Management
  • Assistant Professor Bradley Nichols, History
  • Associate Professor Julius Riles, Communication
  • Assistant Professor Jessica Rodrigues, Special Education
  • Assistant Teaching Professor Cheyenne Staib, Textile and Apparel Management
  • Research Professor Aaron Stoker, Orthopaedic Surgery
  • Assistant Professor Brittany Street, Economics

Undergraduate Mentors of the Year

  • Rebecca Grollemund, assistant professor in the Department of English
  • Caroline Kopot, assistant professor in the Department of Textile and Apparel Management

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