CSU, Chico News

Students Excel in Statewide Research Contest

Date: 05-12-2014

Sarah Langford
Public Affairs
Sharon Barrios, Associate Dean
Office of Undergraduate Studies

Three California State University, Chico students took first-place prizes home from the statewide CSU Student Research Competition at CSU, East Bay May 2-3.

Mitchel Davidovitz, Audrey Denney and Katherine Moore were among 10 CSU, Chico students who presented their research proposals in the annual competition. Approximately 220 graduates and undergraduates from across the CSU presented original research in 22 different sessions.

Davidovitz, an undergraduate studying music with an option in recording arts, presented “Window of Normalization: A Musical and Photographic Exposition Created Solely With Sounds and Images Captured From Live Television.” He was mentored by music professor David Dvorin.

Denney, a graduate student in agricultural education, presented “Perceptions of Agricultural Sustainability Held by California Secondary Agriculture Teachers.” Her research also addressed teachers’ self-perceived knowledge of sustainable agriculture practices. She was mentored by agriculture professor Mollie Aschenbrener.

Moore, an undergraduate studying animal science, presented “Effects of Brewer’s Yeast on Growth, Feed Efficiency, and Carcass Traits of Angus-Influence Steers.” Her research suggests that yeast supplementation can be beneficial in a feedlot ration. She was mentored by agriculture professors Kasey Deatley and Celina Phillips.

The three wins represent CSU, Chico’s best showing at the event. Only CSU, Fullerton had more first-place finishers, with five receiving top honors. Winners received $500 cash prizes.

The 10 CSU, Chico presenters were selected earlier in the spring from the CSU, Chico Student Research Competition, held on campus March 5. At that competition, 43 graduate and undergraduate students from all disciplines presented original research before a jury and an audience. Winners received an expenses-paid trip to the statewide contest at CSU, East Bay, underwritten by Instructionally Related Activities (IRA) Fees and the Office of Graduate Studies.

Sharon Barrios, associate dean of Graduate Studies, said the caliber of this year’s proposals was unprecedented.

“All of our students’ proposals and presentations had a chance to win,” she said. “This was our most well-prepared and competitive group yet. All of their written proposals and presentations were focused and practiced and showcased the innovative research conducted by our students.”

The other CSU, Chico presenters and their proposals were

  • Bryan Ervin, MS, Biology: “Investigating Hot Springs Fungi for Applications to Biofuel Production” (Faculty Mentor: Gordon Wolfe)
  • Masaki Hamada, MS, Environmental Science: “Critical Evaluation of the Cross-Correlation Algorithm Using Synthetic Backscatter Images and Synthetic Wind Velocity Fields” (Faculty Mentor: Shane Mayor)
  • Chaz Kelley, MA, Communication Studies: “Storm Censors” (Faculty Mentor: Zachary Justus)
  • Katlyn Perugini, BA, Political Science: “Rethinking the Causes of Routine Gun Violence” (Faculty Mentor: Paul Viotti)
  • Lindsey Rein, MS, Psychological Science: “‘What’s on Your Mind?’ A Review of Facebook, Extraversion, Narcissism, Loneliness, Empathy, Internet Addiction and Self-Disclosure” (Faculty Mentor: Eddie Vela)
  • Martin Salgado, MA, English/Creative Writing: “Mexican-American Dreams” (Faculty mentor: Robert Davidson)
  • Catherine Yasuda, MS, Biological Sciences: “Assessment of Non-Invasive Technique to Identify Individual Lizards” (Faculty mentor: Tag Engstrom)

Learn more about the Office of Graduate Studies at http://www.csuchico.edu/graduatestudies.