Spring 2014 Poster Session
Western Celebration of Scholarship Undergraduate Research Symposium
Thursday, April 24, 2014 12:15 – 2 pm
University Center Ballroom
12:30 Opening Remarks Dr. Lance Dalleck, Associate Professor of Exercise and Sports Science and Ali Wolpern, Senior student in Exercise and Sports Science.
1. Alexander Alleman. Chemistry. Faculty Mentors: Zachary Via, Jarral Ryter, and Kevin Alexander. Truncation of Brewers Yeast’s Enzyme ILV5 to Lower the Concentration of Diacetyl in Beer.
Fermentation of beer is a process that results in a delicate balance of natural flavor compounds produced by the brewing yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. In order to make a beer that is consistent in taste and also economical, brewers need to have the most efficient yeast. We have used molecular biology techniques to alter the amount of diacetyl by genetically truncate the ILV5 gene in the brewing strain Essex. We demonstrated successful insertion of the truncated gene using phenotypic and genotypic techniques. We then analyzed the diacetyl concentration of beer brewed with modified yeast using high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) analysis. We have successfully genetically altered the Essex brewer’s yeast, but a statistically significant decrease in the diacetyl level as a result of the ILV5 truncation could not be detected. Further research is required in order to determine how the truncated ILV5 gene is affecting the taste quality of the beer. CHEM 497
2. Allbritton, Amy, Erin Twaddell, Ashley Waterman, Laura Willis, Alex Bahro, Scott Bird, Emma Bridge, Rachel Francis, Frances Ivers, Kevin Mccall, Karlie Schultz, Jason Smith, Will Sustercich. Honors. Faculty Mentor: Shelley Read. Time and Time Again.
Every culture that has ever existed has sought to define time. This interdisciplinary research project investigated the question of how time and culture influence each other. Researching this question yielded great insight into ancient cultures across the world, their perceptions of time, and how these two concepts have interacted. The cultures of Egypt, Rome, the Anasazi, the Maya, and the Polynesian Islands were studied, and their concepts of time were analyzed through four lenses: natural science, social science, arts, and math with respect to each culture. The findings from this research also enhanced student understanding of how time and culture interrelate in a contemporary context. HNRS 200
3. Belknap, Zack and Matt Dunham. Exercise and Sport Science. Faculty Mentor: Christina Buchanan. Physiological Effects of Competition on Exercise Testing in Fit College Aged Males.
Norman Triplett studied competition and discovered that cyclists improved race times when racing against others versus when racing against the clock. He also found children reeled in fishing line faster when in the presence of another child. The purpose of this quasi-experimental study was to observe the impact of competition on a sub-maximal exercise test in fit college aged males in the Rocky Mountains. Methods: The study involved 4 college-aged male participants. All participants ran a solo VO2max test, which was used to gather a percentage for the submaximal tests that were run later. Each participant then ran a solo submaximal test for as long as they could, followed later by the same test but with another subject present, also running the test. Data from both submaximal tests was compared using a t-test (p<.05) to see whether time to fatigue changed with competition present. ESS 495
4. Calabrese, D., L. Schaller, V. Spiller, T. Sua, K. Thompson, K. Depalma, S. Doyle, L. Freeburn, K. Howe, R. Ingram, K. Justice, K. Krawczak, J. Maag, L. Newell, R. Nierenberg, M. Oconnor. Honors. Shelley Read. The Contemporary American Citizen: Community and the Role of Self-Actualization.
Citizenship is multi-faceted and ever evolving. Citizenship takes on new meaning through experience, place, and time, making it difficult to discern what citizenry means to the individual. Due to the complexity of this topic, our class divided into three focus groups to explore the characteristics of citizenry: historical, community service, and active campus involvement. The historical aspect of our research contributed contextual scaffolding for our analysis of the nature of citizenship and the self-actualized individual. The community service component put theory into action through self-actualization via participation in the community. Through partnership with the ICE project, the third group looked at how current involvement in the community can ignite future engagement. This pursuit has helped highlight the value of self-actualization in the creation of meaningful citizenship. HNRS 200
5. Cantril, Scott and Kayla Porter. Exercise and Sport Science. Faculty Mentor: Christina Buchanan. Effects of Exercise and Overall Workload on Perceived Levels of Stress in Freshmen College Students at Western State Colorado University.
The purpose of this research was to determine the relationship between exercise and overall work load on first year students’ stress levels at a small state university in Colorado. For the purpose of this study, workload was defined as hours devoted to classes, course work, on- and off-campus jobs, volunteer work, club work, religion related activities, school related athletics, intramural sports, and/or other personal obligations.A pre-post survey containing open and close ended questions regarding exercise patterns, preferred forms of physical activity, average work load, and average daily stress levels were distributed via email to approximately 400 first year students. Data results was analyzed by coding themes and using a Pearson’s r correlation coefficient (p < .05). ESS 495
6. Cool, Kallee, and Kelsie Dardis. Exercise and Sport Science. Christina Buchanan. Extracurricular Activities at Colleges in Correlation to SpringFest.
Extracurricular involvement within the college environment has been shown to have a positive effect on academic performance, personality characteristics, career development skills and goals, and psychological health. These activities may help enhance students’ educational experiences (Baker, 2008). Purpose: The purpose of this applied project was to provide extracurricular activities during the 2014 SpringFest event at a small university in the Rocky Mountains. These activities were designed to keep students at the event beforehand and reduce the number of people intoxicated at show time. Methods: The project involved planning before the event and meeting with Program Council to update them on ideas, financial needs, and to obtain necessary equipment for the activities (ring toss, pie-eating contest, balloon darts, bean bag toss, corn hole, water balloon toss, kick ball, and ultimate Frisbee). ESS 495
7. Cull, Taylor, Andrew Carlson, Amber Leal, Olivia Rapisand. Politics and Government. Maria Struble. Coffee production in Latin America.
This project seeks to explore the production and exportation of coffee products from the Latin American region by evaluating accounts from coffee producers, the regional co-operatives, the "middle-men" or importers, and the consumer. By looking at prices of sale of the finished product compared to the wages earned by the producer, we perform an analysis of income distribution in the economic value chain. We focus our research on the cost of production versus the final profit. This project also seeks to verify or negate the marketing claims made by companies selling FairTrade products that the producers receive a larger share of the retail price than in the conventional coffee markets. Coffee is the second most traded product in the global economy and the larges in the Brazilian economy, with one of the poorest forces, begging the questions where does the money go? POLS 260
8. Dailey, Sara and Andrew Carlson. Politics and Government. Maria Struble. Want a cuppa? Ethiopia and the global coffee industry.
This presentations addresses the effects that economic globalization has had on the world economy and, more specifically, on the coffee producing sector in Ethiopia. The project will do this by exploring the working conditions on the coffee farms, Starbucks' ability to manipulate their consuming audience and fair trade as well as the real-life repercussions that coffee production has for the lives of workers. POLS 260
9. Doering, Jaclyn, Burrows, Laura and Ludwick, Kasdon. Anthropology. David Hyde. The Role of Dwarfs in Maya Society and Cosmology.
Based on iconographic evidence as well as written and oral histories, it is apparent that dwarfs held an important and specialized role in Maya religion and mythology, and probably played a significant, role in Maya society. The dwarf is a widespread motif in Classic Maya art, found in nearly every medium, i.e. jades, murals, and eccentrics, and a variety of contexts across the Maya area, from highland Guatemala to the northern Yucatan. They are presented in mythological contexts as well as in scenes from everyday life. Dwarfs are also present in many Maya creation myths as well as in modern Maya oral histories. We believe that a combination of mythological and real life dwarf figures contributed to the important role that these individuals played in Maya society and cosmology. ANTH 397
10. Engle, Jake, Forrest Wetterstrom, Micaela Poe, and Thalia Garcia. Biology. Robin Bingham. Examining the Fitness Effects of Herbicide Resistance on Brassica Rapa.
Throughout the experiment, we set out to analyze the fitness effects of herbicide resistance on the plant Brassica rapa. Over time, the measure of the plants heights was recorded and at the end of the three week period we measured the number of flowers on the plants as well as the overall biomass. We hypothesized that the herbicide resistant Brassica rapa plants would be smaller, have less flowers, and have a smaller overall biomass. After the study was conducted, the herbicide resistant Brassica rapa were smaller in height, however they had an overall larger biomass and produced more flowers. BIOL 151
11. Espinoza, Roger. Environmental Studies. Jonathan Coop, Jeffrey Sellen and John Hausdoerffer. Changes in River Ecosystem Due to the Discharge From Waste Water Treatment Plants.
River ecosystem health differs dramatically in different parts of any river. Many of these differences are due to changes in dissolved oxygen levels, water temperature, water salinity, and many other factors along the course of the river. Due to the rich mineral water coming out from the water treatment plant, fish and other types of species love this window of change in dissolved oxygen, salinity, and temperature for small to large stretches of water after the treatment plant. In this study I propose to test for differences in dissolved oxygen levels, pH content, and temperature upstream of the discharge, the discharge area, and downstream of the discharge at two different treatment plants: Gunnison and Crested Butte treatment facilities. I think I’m going to find statistical differences in dissolved oxygen levels, pH, temperature, and species richness downstream from the discharge area compared to upstream. ENVS 390
12. Hall, Zack, Amanda Schwaninger, and Tyla Scoggins. Anthropology. Faculty Mentor: David Hyde. An Objective Approach to the Maya E-Group.
The Maya E-Group Complex is an architectural style consisting a large pyramid facing west towards three smaller connected buildings in the east. To date, the E-Group Complex has been shrouded in controversy. Due to its unique architectural morphology, many archaeologists have speculated on the possibility of the E-Groups being used in cosmological rituals, celestial observation, or both. The heart of the debate lies in the subjective nature of evidence being offered to support this theory. Through the statistical analysis of material remains documented at E-Group sites, we may be able to gather a clearer understanding of how the area was being used and put the architectural alignments into a more complete context. By considering the evidence objectively, it becomes possible to draw sound conclusions about the purpose and propagation of the E-Group throughout Maya society. ANTH 397
13. Hartner, Joshua. Exercise and Sport Science. Faculty Mentor: Christina Buchanan. How Healthy is Juice Fasting?
According to a study in 2013, obesity and poor dieting has now passed smoking, drinking, and drug use as the number one killer. Rather than change their diet to a more balanced diet, most people are looking for the quick fix that will change their lives overnight. The purpose of the study was to decide whether or not all natural juice fasting had any added health benefits related to juice fasting other than the weight loss. Two subjects; one 44 year old male weighing 118.6 kilograms and one 44 year old female weighing 72.72 kilograms participated in fruit and vegetable fasting in the form of juicing. The program lasted 15 days in which every day’s diet was planned out. Data was analyzed descriptively. ESS 495
14. Hemenway, Brian and Preston Feiler. Biology. Faculty Mentor: Amy Honan. Unique Tradeoffs in Atrazine Resistant and Susceptible Brassica rapa.
This study set out to determine the comparison of fitness cost in Atrazine resistant and susceptible Brassica rapa plants. We hypothesized that the Atrazine resistant plants would grow taller and produce more buds and flowers, but that the Atrazine susceptible plants would have a higher rate of herbivory. We planted 18 Atrazine susceptible Brassica rapa plants and 18 Atrazine resistant Brassica rapa plants. With adequate water and light sources, we let the plants grow for 3 weeks, measuring height each Thursday, and counting the flowers and conducting the herbivory test on the final day of the experiment. We found there was statistically no significant difference in height (except for week one), but there was a significant difference in number of flowers produced and the rate of herbivory, leading to a negative fitness cost. BIOL 151
15. Henry, Ty. Exercise and Sport Science. Faculty Mentor: Christina Buchanan. Self-report versus Actual in Exercise Testing.
What is the difference between how people self-report their height, weight, strength, speed and jumping ability versus their actual abilities? Many people and studies have found that people overestimate their own abilities. This is true when people are asked to approximate their gpa. As found in many studies such as study of predicted versus actual gpa (Edwards). Methods: The study involved 100 participants from the Gunnison Valley, more specifically Western State Colorado University. They completed a survey assessing their traits. Their results indicated that many people were not good assessors at their own talents. In women they lied at a very high rate about their weight but not in any other of the catagories. While men lied about how much they could bench press and run the 40 yard dash. Conclusion: This may be attributed to woman being self conscious about their actual weight and having an idea in their head that they are required to weigh less than they do. The opposite may be true about men who seem to need to be strong and fast. This shows what our society views itself at physically at some of the most fundamental levels. ESS 495
16. Hren, Ethan,Gale, Jade Parker, Jameson . Environmental Studies. Faculty Mentor: Jonathan Coop. Stream Bank Erosion and Water Quality Along the Lower Tomichi River.
Tomichi Creek in recent years has seen extensive stream bank erosion and diminishing water quality. The purpose of this study is to better understand how erosion effects water quality in the lower Tomichi River. Due to unknown sources, the water quality in the Tomichi is deteriorating as it approaches the Gunnison River: this trend is becoming taxing on the river’s riparian zones and wildlife habitat. Much of the sediment load in streams from is thought to come from stream bank erosion. Since the Tomichi is a major source of water for agricultural purposes in the Gunnison Valley and eventually into Blue mesa Reservoir, it is imperative that the source of the Tomichi water quality deterioration is found to spare downstream habitats from negative consequences. ENVS 390
17. Joaquin, Alysha and Roberts, Sam. Anthropology. Faculty Mentor: David Hyde. Interpreting Archaeology: The Perpetuation of False Ideas about the Maya through Time.
2012, the year the world will end! Foretold by the Maya people and their incredibly complex system of calendars, or was it? The fact that the calendar ended in 2012 caused many people to interpret that as the Maya foretelling the end of the world by a variety of forces ranging from solar flares to a magnetic pole reversal to rouge planets with a collision course aimed at Earth. The Maya never predicted any of those and this is just one example of a misconception about these ancient people. There are many others including the crystal skull myth and the numerous egregious misrepresentations by the popular movie Apocolypto. Using the Maya people as a case study, this study is an attempt to record how archaeological data is misinterpreted and how incorrect ideas resonate through different cultures over time. ANTH 397
18. Kechter, Ashley, Jones, Christa. Anthropology. Faculty Mentor: David Hyde. A Statistical Analysis of Cranial and Dental Modification Throughout the Maya area with an Emphasis on Time Period and Geographical Region.
For our research question we will draw on previous studies completed on Maya body modification and perform our own statistical analysis on various cranial data provided by David M. Hyde. Through a comparative approach we hope to answer current questions in Maya cranial and dental modification, as well as peak interests of other anthropologists to encourage further research on this topic. Through our statistical analysis of various forms of cranial data around the Maya area, patterns may be revealed between time periods, geographical regions, and cranial shaping. Our goal is to uncover the motivations behind cranial and dental alteration among the ancient Maya and identify correlations between political, social, and religious roles. ANTH 397
19. Keith, Taylor. Exercise and Sport Science. Faculty Mentor: Christina Buchanan. The Socio-cultural Relationship of Head Related Injuries and Return to Play Amongst Divisional II Football Players of Western State Colorado University.
Awareness and education about concussions continues to improve due to amount of concussions that athletes sustain in high physical contact sports. However, athletes today still continue to play through the injury without letting athletic trainers know. The purpose of this qualitative research was to identify some of the underlying reasons why male DII football players continue to play through head related injuries. Methods: A self-administered questionnaire was emailed out to a total of 25 participants. Data were analyzed and coded for themes. ESS 495
20. Keller, Shayna and Waller, Bethany . Biology. Faculty Mentor: Robin Bingham and Cassandra Osborne. The effects of three environmentally persistent hormone disrupting chemicals on Ceratopteris richardii sex ratios and morphology.
Hormone disrupting chemicals bio-accumulate and have proven to be developmentally hazardous for numerous aquatic and terrestrial species (Kumar et al. 2011, Crews et al. 2000, Forrest et al. 1989, Reinert 1968).We hypothesized that nonyphenol (NON), methoxychlor (MET), and bisphenol-S (BPS) will effect sex ratios and gross morphology of Ceratopteris richardii, because they use antheridiogen for sex determination, which induces maleness in gametophytes (Raven 2013). BPS, NON, and MET, were diluted to three concentrations, with five replicates of each treatment, including two control treatments (DMSO and water) (11 treatments x 5 replicates = 55 plates). Ceratopteris richardii spores were inoculated onto the petri dishes containing agar on days zero, four, and ten. One milliliter aliquots of each chemical treatment was pipetted onto the agar on day 6. Sex ratio, tissue death, contamination level, as well as gross morphological abnormalities were assessed under a dissecting microscope and compared using ANOVA in Excel.
21. Kreis, E.J. Exercise and Sport Science. Faculty Mentor: Christina Buchanan. The Use of Cyto Max Sports Performance on Blood Lactate Levels.
According to a study in 2012, pre-workout supplementation is currently one of the fastest growing interests in the sports nutrition industry (A, Gonzalez). Constantly trying to optimize the body’s performance, athletes often turn to ergogenic aids in order to find a way to produce an advantageous physiological affect. The purpose of this study was to examine blood lactate effects during and after exercise after consuming the pre-workout supplement “Cyto Max”. Two subjects; 23 year old male weighing 217.6 pounds and one 22 year old male weighing 245.3 pounds participated in the Bruce protocol graded exercise test to voluntary fatigue. The experiment was conducted twice for each subject over a two week period. Data was analyzed descriptively and using a T-test (p=.05). ESS 495
22. Larson, Sara. Exercise and Sport Science. Faculty Mentors: Christina Buchanan and Lance Dalleck. Physical Activity Patterns in Former College Athletes.
The purpose of this study was to examine how various physical, psychological, environmental, and social factors may relate to former collegiate athlete’s continued participation in physical activity (PA). A secondary purpose of this study was to compare athlete type and current levels of PA. Methods: 160 men and women participated in the study, with ages ranging from 18 to over 60 years old. Athletes received a link to the study’s survey from their former collegiate coaches via email or their personal Facebook pages. The survey consisted of 20 quantitative, close-ended questions and was created using the website Survey Monkey. Results: Data were analyzed using frequencies, an ANOVA, and a Pearsons r (p < .05). ESS 495
23. Lemmon, Devani, Justin Ortega, Frederick Slyter, and Sophia Koop.Politics and Government. Faculty Mentor: Maria Struble. Labor in Cambodia.
Because of the rise of globalization, factory workers' every-day lives are changed and, some argue, continually turned into commodities and exploited. On the other hand, the process of economic globalization has had a positive impact on the lives of people in the developed world. Through the analysis of research and local/international newspapers and academic sources, we will attempt to learn the effects that economic globalization and outsourcing have had on factory workers in Cambodia. More precisely, we look at the majority of factory workers being women, forced to support their families and thus, forced to accept sub-human employment. This project will examine the effects that overseas factories have had on the working lives of women, on their domestic lives as exemplified by the disparity between profit made and wage distributed. POLS 260
24. Lohr, Emma, Nicholson, Dylan, Kreis, E.J., and Kinney, Cody. Biology. Faculty Mentor: Liesl Erb. An Analysis of Trade-Offs in Fitness of Herbicide Resistant Brassica rapa.
Scientists are aware that some plants evolved to be resistant to herbicides. From the research that has been done, the overarching theme is that B. rapa, including other species, that are resistant to herbicides take a fitness trade-off that causes them to be less sufficient than those non-resistant plants. In a paper by Gassman et. al, they came to conclude that plants that are herbicide resistant reduce their photosynthetic rate by 360% (2005). Specifically we dealt with herbicide resistant and non herbicide resistant Brassica rapa. Our hypothesis was that herbicide resistant B. rapa undergo a fitness trade-off, and their photosynthetic rate, overall weight, and growth rate/overall height will be significantly less (p<0.05) than that of the non herbicide resistant B. rapa. BIOL 151
25. Mahoney, Sean. Exercise and Sport Science. Faculty Mentors: Christina Buchanan and Lance Dalleck. The Cardio-protective Effects of Altitude-Induced Hypoxia.
Heart disease is a modern epidemic that claims more lives per year than any other disease, including cancer. Research into cardio-protective methods is necessary in order to improve the general health of the Western world. Altitude has been extensively studied as a method for improving the performance of athletes. However, very little research has been conducted on the effects of altitude on non-athletic populations. Moderate to high altitude creates a hypoxic state within the body’s tissues and may contribute to improved cholesterol levels in altitude adapted populations. This study examines the relationship between altitude and the levels of HDL, LDL, triglycerides, and glucose of an altitude-adapted population. ESS 495
26. Mansfield, Alison. Politics and Government. Faculty Mentor: Jacob Wobig. Why the Democratic of the Republic is Failing.
The Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) is one of the poorest countries in the entire world, yet in terms in natural resources it is one of the richest. Many would even claim the DRC to be a failed state. The DRC is constantly troubled with war, corruption, looting and pillaging of villages and heinous crimes to innocent citizens. In my research I will argue why the DRC is so poor, despite its natural richness. I will do this by studying the history of the DRC to help better understand the current situation that is preventing them from developing. My findings concludes that at the root of the problem lies a variation of smaller problems that together form a failed state. POLS 355
27. McGlothlen, Gwendolyn, Jessie Dodge, Lance Kittel, and Maurissa Kasunic. Biology. Faculty Mentor: Robin A. Bingham. Transgenerational defense induction in Brassica rapa.
Evidence indicates that defensive phenotypes in plants induced by herbivore attack are transmitted across generations. This phenomenon, epigenetic inheritance, has been described in few plant species and important questions remain as to how widespread is the phenomenon, whether it is important in natural populations, and how it mediates species interactions. We are investigating transgenerational defense induction in Brassica rapa (Brassicaceae). At the first true leaf stage 15-20% of the leaf tissue of experimental plants was damaged by Pieris rapae caterpillars. Control plants were undamaged. We used a bioassay to assess whether the damage treatment induced a plant response in the parental generation. We expect that if a defensive phenotype is induced, then caterpillars will develop more slowly on damaged as compared to control plants. We have successfully completed three trials, but have not yet documented the induction of a defense phenotype in the parental generation.
28. Plagens, Andrew, Diana De Los Santos, Emily Talbot . Politics and Government. Faculty Mentor: Maria Struble. The real Vietnamese garment industry.
Have you ever wondered where your clothes or shoes come from? Many people see the tag on their shirt that may read Vietnam or Cambodia or China and think nothing more of it. However, there is much more to the garment industry than one would think. This presentation seems to explore the garment industry in one of the biggest exporters of garments to the United States, Vietnam. Four areas of the garment industry will be examined: first, the conditions that workers face while working in factories; second, the way the current Communist government affects the industry and its regulation; third, an examination of workers' resistance in Vietnam and their ability to advocate for themselves and their families and finally, the future of the garment industry both in Vietnam and around the world. POLS 260 .
29. Jaspir Pool, Nathaniel Ley, Natalie Kuenzi, Elizabeth Clay. Computer Science and Art. Faculty Mentors: John Peterson, Al Caniff. A Union of Art and Technology.
As an art form, kinetic sculpture employs aspects of computer and mechanical engineering with the creative value of visual arts design to create sculptures that come to life with reactive behaviors. Our project seeks to explore the union between art and technological / computer engineering through sculptures that combine visual aesthetics with the mechanical and computational ingenuity required to put each piece into motion. Our novel software based on the Python programming language allows students who are otherwise unfamiliar with software engineering to get involved with functionally reactive programming (FRP) and understand the process behind making each sculpture come to life. Art students provide the
aesthetic composition and conceptual insights into each piece and computer science students provide the engineering skill required to realize the creative vision through the use of FRP, which exhibits programming in a minimal way that can be easily understood by non-programmers. CIS 392.
30. Prins, Bobbi and Julia Atwood. Exercise and Sport Science. Faculty Mentors: Lance Dalleck, Cassandra Osborne, and Ashwin Patel. The optimal exercise order for aerobic, flexibility, neuromotor, and resistance training.
The occurrence of chronic disease has become common in today’s society and can even be considered an epidemic. Fortunately, this epidemic can be combated through exercise. The American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) provides exercise program guidelines for aerobic, flexibility, neuromotor and resistance training based on current scientific research in exercise science. The ACSM guidelines are for the ideal frequency, intensity and duration of each exercise mode separately; therefore, this study aimed to determine the optimal exercise order for aerobic, flexibility, neuromotor and resistance exercises in a concurrent program. Twenty subjects were assessed for baseline values prior to performing the four exercise modes in all possible sequences (24 combinations). Each individual’s heart rate, rating of perceived exertion and performance were measured during each sequence and the data was analyzed using ANOVA with a significance level of P<0.05. ESS 495
31. Prize, Andrew, Ashley Woolman, and Julie Watson. Environmental Studies. Faculty Mentor: Jonathan Coop. Aspen regeneration factors.
Quaking aspen (Populus tremuloides) is Colorado's only native deciduous tree. The deciduous nature of the aspen makes it the most productive tree in Colorado and accounts for much of the carbon sink in the forests of the Rocky Mountains. Sudden aspen decline (SAD) has become a concern for forest management in Colorado (Colorado State Forest Service 2008). Sudden aspen decline is the largely unexplored occurrence of increased death rates of aspens as well as the rapid decline in aspen stand health and regeneration. Since aspen are a keystone species facing decline, it is important to understand what factors affect their regeneration (Campbell 2000). Our study will measure the significance of wildfire induced regeneration following SAD and the effect of browsing pressure on new stand regeneration. ENVS 390.
32. Rapisand, Olivia, Madi Howard and Karlie Schultz. Anthropology. Faculty Mentor: David Hyde. Estimate Populations of Tikal: How Many People Was This Site Able to Sustain?
The site of Tikal is located in the central lowlands of the Maya region (Guatemala) and is thought to have sustained a large population with no bodies of water near it. Tikal was one of the most powerful Maya civilizations known in history; therefore we want to understand how Tikal was able to provide a sustainable living environment with the lack of natural resources. There are many estimates of population size, though we will only pick three to determine which one was the most practical. Based off of the crop resources, land utilization, labor output, and agricultural strategy, we will be able to determine which of the three populations was able to sustain the access to limited resources. ANTH 397
33. Reycraft, Holly. Biology. Faculty Mentor: Robin Bingham. Implications of Frequent Marijuana Use.
Marijuana is the most commonly used drug in the United States. As it is becoming legal in more states, marijuana is becoming more frequently used. I reviewed multiple primary journal articles in order to discover any implications or positive outcomes from constant recreational use of the drug. Through my research, the main conclusion from the papers reviewed is that epithelial cells in the lungs are damaged through marijuana smoke condensate. Other health issues, such as cardiovascular problems, worsen with frequent THC consumption. Though some studies have been done, it was more difficult to find specific problems that may occur to one's health with frequent marijuana use than anticipated. Marijuana is gaining popularity, therefore more research will be done in order to discover possible effects on human health. BIOL 392
34. Shaw, Shannon. Biology. Faculty Mentors: Cassandra Osborne and Christina Buchanan. Possible Effects of Hormone Levels on Postural Sway.
There is a large gender disparity in many sports in the incidence of ACL injuries. Female rate of injuries has been recorded as being two to eight times higher than the rate of male injuries in similar sports. The mechanism for the increase in female injury has been proposed to be multifactorial though has not yet been accurately identified. This study used a PASCO PS-2142 PASPort 2-axis Force Platform to study the changes in postural sway throughout the menstrual cycle and whether or not controlling the hormone variation throughout the cycle changes the amount of postural sway observed. These hormones were controlled through the use of monophastic, 28-day oral contraceptive pills. The difference in postural sway was compared with women not using any form of hormone treatment and also to men to see if any statistically significant changes were apparent. BIOL 496
35. Shepherd, Travis. Environmental Studies. Faculty Mentor: Jonathan Coop. West Fork Complex Fire and Beetle Activity.
The West Fork Complex was a series of wildfires near Wolf Creek Pass, Colorado, in June, 2013. More than 100,000 acres of forest were burned during the wildfires, giving firefighters all they could handle. Much of the fire burned in an area largely affected by spruce beetle. Spruce beetle activity in southern Colorado is becoming ever more prominent. The goal of this project is to explore the relationship between spruce beetle activity and burn intensity. Does dead timber provide more fuel for fires, or does an empty canopy keep fires from crowning and spreading easier? GIS analysis of beetle activity and burn intensity will hopefully show a correlation. ENVS 390
36. Swatek, James and Sexton, Matt. Exercise and Sport Science. Faculty Mentor: Christina Buchanan. Event Planning and Marketing of the Southwest Cup Hockey Tournament
The Southwest Cup is a hockey tournament that takes place annually in the Gunnison Valley. The purpose of this applied project was to experience and gain insight in the field of event planning. This project was completed in conjunction with the Crested Butte Parks & Recreation Department and the Gunnison Valley Hockey Association. The event was marketed throughout the state of Colorado via social media. In addition to this, contact lists were developed; scheduling was completed, and sponsors were established. Responses from the advertising was received and contacts were created for future years to come. The Women's tournament had six teams compete, while the Men's tournament had four teams. There is much work to be done in successfully planning and hosting a hockey tournament. ESS 495
37. Vandenbergh , Lucas, Thomas Kutzner, Luke Gallagher, Parker Grant. Computer Science. Faculty Mentor: John Peterson. Map making robots.
This semester in robotics we expanded on our use of the Neato robot. Using its 360 degree laser data we were able to get the Neato to autonomously create maps of buildings and hallways on campus. This gives us the ability to create maps of any building we want, and then use that map for navigation with the Neato. Being able to create the maps with the robot saves time because we no longer to need hand create the maps. In the future we can use the skills we learned from this improve the navigation of the robot.
38. Velez, Dante, Allen Tran, and Andrew Dunlap. Politics and Government. Faculty Mentor: Maria Struble. Mechanization and the Future of Labor.
In order to stay globally competitive, developed nations look to mechanized labor as a solution. The manufacturing industry in developed nations tends to create specialty goods, namely, spacecraft modules. Can developed nations with their technology reverse the labor domination of China and Mexico? By investing and developing workers that need no pay, rest, health benefits, or training, can the developed north create a utopian labor force that beats the Global South in every way? If a mechanized candy factory can produce enough product to feed a nation, can a mechanized factory producing everyday goods to the same? POLS 260
39. Washka, Cody. Environmental Studies. Faculty Mentor: Jonathan Coop. Snowpack Data Survey on Monarch.
Over 6 weeks I am digging snow pits at the same elevation to assess snowpack changes and melting patterns. Purpose is to track snowpack changes at high elevation and show snow to water equivalent. ENVS 390