University of Central Missouri Scholars Present Research

Posted by on Saturday, October 8, 2016 1:52 - 0 Comments

UcentralMOUndergraduate McNair scholars shared independent research with their peers during the 23rd annual McNair Research Symposium Wednesday, Sept. 21 in the Elliott Student Union.

The Ronald E. McNair post-baccalaureate achievement program prepares undergraduate students for graduate school by conducting individual research and gaining knowledge on graduate programs, according to the University of Central Missouri website. McNair scholars are first generation college students who conduct research starting in the summer and continuing through the academic year. Sixteen scholars belonging to 11 different majors presented at the symposium.

Casey Adkins, senior biology major, presented her research on the behavioral changes in rats infected with a certain parasite and the resulting correlation to mental illness in humans. Adkins said she hopes to get her findings published in scientific journals, and is continuing her research.

“I designed the entire project from start to finish,” Adkins said. “It’s nice to be able to share that and people can learn from it. It’s really nice to have that feeling.”

Adkins said the McNair program not only funds her research, but gives her knowledge and advice on how to conduct it properly.

“I would absolutely recommend McNair to other students,” Adkins said. “It takes a lot of hard work and a lot of late nights but you do it because it is grooming you for the future you want.”

Cassandra Pauling, McNair research mentor and adjunct instructor at UCM, said she helped Adkins design the project and assisted her with some of the steps.

“Casey is going to succeed within this career,” Pauling said. “She’s looking at going to graduate school for her next step and I have total confidence in her.”

Aaron Henson, a senior double majoring in English and sociology, presented his research based on the novel “Return of the Soldier.”

Henson said his research showed him the cycle of fashion creates classes in society.

“I read the novel itself about twice spending most of my time on the theory,” Henson said. “I read two or three sociology books and a few on fashion. It was time consuming because I made it time consuming.”

Henson said gaining insight on his research came with the help of his McNair mentors.

“I’ve always worked with my mentors closely,” he said. “McNair has definitely put me in a more formal and direct relationship with both of them.”

McNair scholars are students who plan to receive doctorates and continue research within their field. Recruitment for the next group of scholars is underway now.

~ Story originally posted on 10/7/16 by Brooke Parker, Reporter at UCM Digitalburg.com.