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2021 Undergraduate research colloquium brings together high caliber research from across the college

In lieu of meeting in person, students presented their research via an online platform that allowed visitors to walk an avatar from poster to poster, hearing research from across Mason.

Congratulations to the 2021 winners of the 10th Annual Undergraduate Research Colloquium (URC). Hosted by the College of Science and STEM Accelerator, the event showcases the variety of undergraduate research projects in the College to the Mason community and highlights the caliber of Mason Science students. Posters were judged in three categories: Life Sciences, Physical Sciences, and Earth Sciences.

“This year, we took a giant leap to celebrate 21st century undergraduate research in the College of Science,” said Rebecca Jones, event organizer and Associate Professor in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry. “I have organized over 20 research poster sessions in my career, but this was the first fully virtual event. The platform offered an incredibly interactive and fun platform for our colloquium space station. And despite the challenges of conducting research during a mostly virtual year at Mason, the student research posters were truly out of this world.”

Below are the 2021 award winners:

Environmental and Earth Sciences (Geology, Geography, GIS, Environmental Sciences)
Analyzing Change in US Mobility Trends In Response to COVID-19 
Presenter: Justin Elarde, Geography and Geoinformation Science 
Mentors: Taylor Anderson, Joon-Seok Kim, Andreas Züfle, Hamdi Kavak

Latent Dirichlet Allocation for Data-Driven Mobility Behavior in Models of COVID-19 Spread
Presenter: Cecelia O'Neill, Geography and Geoinformation Science

Mentors: Taylor Anderson, Joon-Seok Kim, Andreas Züfle, Hamdi Kavak

The Impacts of Forest Fragmentation on Avian Age Structure 
Presenter: Jacquelyn Batchelor, Environmental Science
Mentor: David Luther

Life Sciences  (Biology, Neuroscience, Forensic Science)
Evaluation of Growth Rate and Hormonal Trends in Rehabilitating Kemp's Ridley Sea Turtles
Presenter: Teagan Rogers, Smithsonian-Mason School of Conservation
Mentor: Kathleen Hunt

Geospatial Mapping of Human Tissues to Advance Precision Medicine for Cancer Patients 
Presenter: Oliver Yu, Computational and Data Sciences
Mentor: Mariaelena Pierobon

Quantification of avian egg coloration : A closer look at variation in egg coloration between species in relation to their latitude
Presenter: Sela Cooper, Biology
Mentor: Daniel Hanley

Physical Sciences and Mathematics (Physics, Chemistry, Astronomy, Mathematics, Computer Science)
Star formation in Blue Compact Dwarf Galaxies 
Presenters: Blake Vogel and Miguel Rodriguez, Physics 
Mentor: Jessica Rosenberg

A Recommendation System for e-Learning Videos on YouTube 
Presenter: Steven Hoang, Computational and Data Science
Mentors: Ron Mahabir and Olga Gkountouna

Machine Learning for the forecasting of Alzheimer's Disease clinical status
Presenter: Kamryn Cullen, Computational and Data Science

Mentors: Ron Mahabir and Olga Gkountouna

Thank you to all across the Mason Science community who took time to visit this event and ask thought-provoking questions, especially the judges and volunteers.  Experiences like this build strong research foundations and many Mason memories for our students.

2021 Colloquium Judges
Andrea Cobb
Karen Lee    
Ben Dreyfus    
Andre Claybourne
Tina Bell     
Valerie Olmo    
Matt Holzer  
Kathryn Fernandez
Hao Jing

2021 Colloquium Volunteers
Frannie Dove
Greg Craft
Annie McCalister
Archi Segal
Alex Gray
Taanya Puthran