Five Shockers featured at Kansas Undergraduate Research Days


Five Wichita State students’ projects are being highlighted as a part of the Kansas Undergraduate Research Day at the Kansas State Capitol March 2-4.

“We know that students engaged in faculty-mentored research and creative activity are better prepared for professional success. We are grateful for the opportunity to showcase the high quality of undergraduate work across Kansas to state legislators and other guests visiting Undergraduate Research Day at the Capitol,” said Dr. Kimberly Engber, dean of the Dorothy and Bill Cohen Honors College, who is traveling with the students.

Students, faculty, Kansas Board of Regents members, state lawmakers and members of the public are invited to visit to view the video presentations, comment and post questions for the approximately 40 student presenters from across the state on these dates.

The three-day long event is typically held in the capitol rotunda, but this year’s virtual event is an opportunity to showcase technology has part of the research experience.

“Even though we are unable to gather in the capitol rotunda as we have in the past, hosting this event using technology allows more Kansans to see and hear how learning through research positively affects undergraduate students and how higher education strengthens the Kansas economy and workforce,” said Leslie Paige, research and scholarship coordinator for Fort Hays State University’s Office of Scholarship and Sponsored Projects and the coordinator of this year’s event.

The following Wichita State University Students are presenting their research at the event:

  • Barrett Houchen, senior in biological sciences, will present “Investigating the Spatial Structure of Macrophomina phaseolina and its Correlation with Biotic and Abiotic Factors in a Native Tallgrass Prairie Community.” Barrett’s faculty mentor is Dr. Gregory Houseman, associate professor of biological sciences.
  • Shamir Khan, senior in chemistry and biochemistry, will present “Improving Personalized Medicine Through Systematic Protein Engineering of LDH.” Shamir’s faculty mentor is Dr. Moriah Beck, associate professor of chemistry.
  • Cameron McGinley, senior in computer science, will present “Deep Learning Detection of Phishing Emails.” Cameron’s faculty mentor is Dr. Sergio Salinas, assistant professor of electrical engineering and computer science.
  • Rupert Nunez, junior in Industrial engineering, will present “Spatiotemporal Access to Healthy Food in Sedgwick County.” Rupert’s faculty mentor is Dr. Laila Cure, assistant professor of industrial, systems and manufacturing engineering
  • Alexandra Olmstead, senior in physics, will present “Computerized Sentence Building as a Therapy Tool for People with Aphasia.” Alexandra’s faculty mentors are Dr. Erin O’Bryan, assistant professor of communication sciences and disorders, and Dr. Huabo Lu, assistant professor of electrical engineering and computer science.

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