2017 IDEA Grant Recipients

Garnet and Gold Scholar Society IDEA Grant

David Balbuena

High Speed Turning for Dynamic Legged Quadrupedal Robot

Supervising Professor: Dr. Jonathan Clark

Legged robots are bene cial because they can move e ectively in areas where wheeled robots struggle. This is due to the fact that wheeled robots require a continuous path of support, whereas legged robots need only periodic support. This fundamental di erence in locomotion allows legged robots to be better suited for maneuvering through rough terrain. For autonomous navigation of unknown terrain, a high speed turning maneuver is necessary. A turning strategy can be categorized into either a kinematic or dynamic approach. Kinematic turns involve controlling leg speed or foot placement, whereas dynamic turns involve controlling the momentum of the robot to execute the turn. In this work, I evaluate the performance of high- speed kinematic and dynamic turning methods on Minitaur, a quadrupedal robot.

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Rebecca Barton and Grace Hayes

History on Stage: Incorporating History into Theatre and Music Research

Supervising Professor: Dr Nathan Stoltzfus

From 1933 to 1945, the Holocaust took the lives of approximately six million Jewish people and an additional ve million minorities and political dissidents in Europe. This project is an original musical titled “Shadow of Darkness,” which is an adaptation of the Greek myth of Orpheus and Eurydice set in Germany in 1942. “Shadow of Darkness” follows the romantic relationship between an Aryan man and a Jewish woman in Germany against the backdrop of World War II and the Holocaust. Using the knowledge we gained from preliminary research conducted in the musical’s early stages, we strive to sensitively and accurately portray the events that took place at the Sobibor concentration camp and to share the perspectives and experiences of those involved. After completing our preliminary research, we wrote the script and composed the music and lyrics over the span of six months. Following a brief casting session and two-week rehearsal period, we held a workshop concert of the rst draft of the musical in April 2017, at which the audience o ered their feedback, comments, and suggestions for the creative team. After further editing and rewriting that will be done this semester, we expect to put on another performance of the musical with costumes, blocking, and a small pit orchestra. “Shadow of Darkness” is being produced through White Mouse Productions, a student-run grassroots theatre company focused on “theatre for social change.” The plays and musicals sponsored by White Mouse Productions are intended to educate, entertain, and empower audiences. This musical in particular seeks to give a voice to victims of the Holocaust and bring further awareness to its social and cultural impact, past and present.

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Scott and Ina McNichols Undergraduate Research Award

Will Boose

Modernity meets Mythology: How Capitalism and the Anaconda Intertwined in the Peruvian Amazon.

Supervising Professor: Dr Robinson Herrera

In the summer of 2016, I went to Iquitos, Peru, through FSU’s International Programs to teach English and conduct natural history eldwork. That eldwork resulted in a paper about anaconda myths and their cultural importance, which served as the inspiration for my current Honors in the Major research. As the rainforest is destroyed via illegal logging and its rivers are polluted with oil; the anaconda and other animals central to indigenous cosmologies are losing their territories. These processes of environmental degradation have also directly impacted indigenous communities by dirtying their drinking water and decreasing populations of sh and wildlife that they depend upon for protein. Neoliberal models of economic development have thus imposed violent cultural disruptions and shifts upon the indigenous peoples of the Peruvian Amazon. To investigate those disruptions, I conducted archival research and eldwork in Peru during the summer of 2017. In Lima I gathered primary and secondary sources in El Museo Larco, one of the world’s largest collections of pre-Colombian art, and in La Universidad Nacional de San Marcos, the oldest university in the Americas. In Iquitos and the surrounding communities I continued to collect written sources and also interviewed eleven people, some in indigenous communities and others in Iquitos. While in Iquitos I consulted sources at El Museo de las Culturas Indígenas, El Museo del Barco Ayapua, La Biblioteca Amazónica, and El Instituto de Investigaciones de la Amazonia Peruana. Since my return I have compiled this research, and now I am incorporating my ndings into my Honors in the Major thesis project under the guidance of Dr. Robinson Herrera

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Scott and Ina McNichols Undergraduate Research Award

Brandon Dinh

Traditional Art in a Modern Era: Influences of the Vietnam War on Southern Vietnamese Reformed Theater

Supervising Professor: Dr Robinson Herrera

In the summer of 2016, I went to Iquitos, Peru, through FSU’s International Programs to teach English and conduct natural history eldwork. That eldwork resulted in a paper about anaconda myths and their cultural importance, which served as the inspiration for my current Honors in the Major research. As the rainforest is destroyed via illegal logging and its rivers are polluted with oil; the anaconda and other animals central to indigenous cosmologies are losing their territories. These processes of environmental degradation have also directly impacted indigenous communities by dirtying their drinking water and decreasing populations of sh and wildlife that they depend upon for protein. Neoliberal models of economic development have thus imposed violent cultural disruptions and shifts upon the indigenous peoples of the Peruvian Amazon. To investigate those disruptions, I conducted archival research and eldwork in Peru during the summer of 2017. In Lima I gathered primary and secondary sources in El Museo Larco, one of the world’s largest collections of pre-Colombian art, and in La Universidad Nacional de San Marcos, the oldest university in the Americas. In Iquitos and the surrounding communities I continued to collect written sources and also interviewed eleven people, some in indigenous communities and others in Iquitos. While in Iquitos I consulted sources at El Museo de las Culturas Indígenas, El Museo del Barco Ayapua, La Biblioteca Amazónica, and El Instituto de Investigaciones de la Amazonia Peruana. Since my return I have compiled this research, and now I am incorporating my ndings into my Honors in the Major thesis project under the guidance of Dr. Robinson Herrera

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David B. Ford Undergraduate Research and Creative Activity Award

Kirsten Christensen

Lifetime and Past Month Suicidality in an Acute Psychiatric Sample

Supervising Professor: Dr. Thomas Joiner

Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the United States, accounting for over 40,000 deaths and an additional more than one million suicide attempts annually. Although a wealth of data exists describing suicidality in psychiatric samples, existing studies overwhelmingly rely on self-report methodologies. Self-reported suicidality is fraught with limitations, such as the possibility for misclassi cation. By contrast, interview-based measures allow for clari cations regarding ambiguities (e.g., in the case of distinguishing between suicide attempts and non-suicidal self-injury). However, few studies have used comprehensive, interview- based measures to di erentiate among types of ideation and behaviors. Moreover, few studies have examined suicidality in partial hospital settings. A Partial Hospital Program (PHP) is an acute treatment setting that serves as a bridge between inpatient and outpatient psychiatric care, and many patients in a PHP are at elevated risk for suicide. This study aimed to describe the prevalence and characteristics of suicidal thoughts and behaviors in an acute psychiatric sample at the Behavioral Health Partial Hospital Program at McLean Hospital in Belmont, MA. We used the Columbia—Suicide Severity Rating Scale, a comprehensive interview-based measure, to assess lifetime and past month suicidal thoughts, behaviors, and attempts and examined the relationships between suicidality and various demographic and clinical variables.

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ACC Creativity and Innovation Fellowship

Sarah Dodamead

Coastal People

Supervising Professor: Dr. Andrew Opel

Since we discovered how to use carbon as a source of energy, we have exploited fossil fuel resources to the extent of altering the Earth’s climate. This changing climate will have a butter y e ect of catastrophic events imposed upon the lives of all people on Earth, and some areas are victimized more than others. Bangladesh, in particular, has some of the lowest per capita greenhouse gas emissions in the world, yet, due to their geographical situation, are at the front lines of the impacts. I went to Bangladesh, worked as a visiting researcher at the International Center for Climate Change and Development, and collaborated with the organization to lm a documentary to convey our social responsibility to drastically reduce our greenhouse gas emissions and to support those who will be most adversely a ected. This documentary will aim to create solidarity around the issue, so everyone mutually understands the cause of the problem and our ability to address the issue and mitigate the e ect.

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Scott and Ina McNichols Undergraduate Research Award

Joan Joseph

Sa’k Te Pase Ayiti? Postcolonial Development, the Black State, and Democratic Consolidation

Supervising Professor: Dr. Amanda Driscoll

In 1804, Haiti became the rst independent black republic as a result of the largest and most successful slave rebellion in the Western Hemisphere, a fact that remains a major source of national pride. Yet, two centuries later, the persistent e ects of colonialism color the political landscape of Haiti today. As a daughter of Haitian immigrants, I am motivated to understand what accounts for Haiti’s persistent economic and political stagnation, and the causes of underdevelopment in postcolonial states. From any perspective, however, to understand the causes of Haiti’s underdevelopment and inability to consolidate democracy or authoritarian rule, an analysis of its colonial history is necessary. This research project aims to explore the ways in which colonialism a ects democratization and to test the hypothesis that institutionalized racism introduced during the colonial period is persistent and hinders democratic consolidation. My analysis also addresses a set of questions about the relationship between Spanish and French institutions and their contribution to Haiti’s economic and political stagnation. To answer these questions, I conducted ve weeks of archival research in Aix-en- Provence, France, and Sevilla, Spain where I analyzed codes such as Le Code Noir and Estatutos de Limpieza de Sangre to conceptualize how institutions strengthened by the codi cation of race hinder democratic consolidation. I have also compiled archival documents from the rst French and Spanish colonial empires that trace the progression of these codes and highlights the administrative and political decisions of colonial governors, which contribute toward a broader understanding how remnants of colonial governance exist in contemporary institutions. Insights from these analyses will inform quantitative analyses to test my hypothesis cross-nationally and overtime. This archival approach is my deliberate attempt to analyze the institutional persistence of colonialism and is important in developing the literature at intersection of comparative political development and postcolonial thought.

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ACC Creativity and Innovation Fellowship

Ambar G. Martin

Asylum in the United States: Legal Obstacles and Immigration Detention

Supervising Professor: Terrance Coonan, J.D.

It is fairly safe to assume that at least one point during an American’s primary education, there will be some mention of the May ower and of those who boarded the now legendary ship for North America so as to ee religious persecution. The refugee experience is woven into the very fabric of the United States, and while our political climate has not always re ected this reality, the Statue of Liberty still stands tall and continues to call to the tired masses who are “yearning to breath free”. Today, the world is facing another massive refugee crisis, one that is so severe that it is testing the strength of the current global refugee resettlement apparatus. The United States, an admittedly awed country built in part by refugees, is confronting several problems within its asylum system, which is failing to meet the needs of those seeking protection in the United States. The current apparatus used to process asylum seekers, those who arrive on U.S soil and claim to meet the international criteria of a refugee, has a number of problematic elements. The primary three addressed here are (1) the lack of legal representation accessible to asylum seekers, (2) immigration detention, and (3) the massive backlog of asylum claims. The purpose of this project is to provide an understanding of how the current asylum apparatus fails to address the needs of asylum seekers, what current policy structures are aiding this problem, and what recommendations can be made to address these issues.

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Helen Louise Lee Undergraduate Research Award

Matthew Martinez

Investigating the Biochemical Interactions Between a Key Initiation Factor, MCM10, and the Single-Stranded DNA-Binding Protein, RPA, and their Roles in DNA Replication Initiation

Supervising Professor: Dr. Daniel Kaplan

DNA replication is an essential process in every living organism that involves many tightly regulated steps. Among the many regulatory steps of this process is the initiation of DNA replication. The initiation of DNA replication is used as a target for anti-cancer drugs, and many of these proteins are used as diagnostic markers for cancer. This process begins with origin melting, or the unwinding of the rst few base pairs of DNA, at a location known as the origin. DNA unwinding proteins are known as helicases, and require many other initiation factors to begin the DNA unwinding process. I have been investigating a speci c role of the replication factor Mcm10 in a species of yeast, “Saccharomyces cerevisiae.” Mcm10 is essential for replication initiation, and it is believed to stimulate the activation of the helicase. After the helicase melts the DNA, the single-stranded DNA (ssDNA) becomes bound by Replication Protein A (RPA). RPA speci cally binds to single-stranded DNA and serves to protect the ssDNA from DNA damage during DNA replication, a critical process in the prevention of cancer and other genetic diseases. I hypothesize that loading of RPA onto ssDNA is facilitated by Mcm10. In this model, RPA will bind Mcm10 and then bind and capture the ssDNA as it is melted by the CMG helicase (the eukaryotic replicative helicase, Cdc45 - Mcm2-7 - GINS), forming RPA laments on ssDNA. Here, the interactions between Mcm10 and RPA have been determined in vitro and the Mcm10-binding region of RPA has been identi ed. The e ects of mutating these regions will be observed in live yeast cells to determine if Mcm10 is necessary for RPA binding to ssDNA during DNA replication initiation. This research will provide important implications for the elds of DNA replication initiation and cancer research.

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Garnet and Gold Scholar Society IDEA Grant

Olivia Rose

Neural Correlates of Tourette's Syndrome in Mu Oscillations of the Sensorimotor Cortex

Supervising Professor: Dr. Wen Li

In a healthy population, mu-frequency oscillations in the sensorimotor cortex desynchronize during motor movement; as movement ceases, mu synchrony resumes. In patients with Tourette’s syndrome (TS), a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by involuntary, repetitive motor and verbal tics, movement can be virtually incessant. Tics are generally preceded by a premonitory urge, akin to the sensation of needing to scratch an itch, though the tics are irrepressible. Recent developments in TS literature have implicated de cits in sensory gating as a possible mechanism through which premonitory urges arise. This current study aims to observe oscillatory activity in the brains of people with a TS diagnosis, establishing neural correlates of the disorder, while further elucidating the role these rhythmic neural networks play in the etiology of various neurodevelopmental disorders. Additionally, sensory gating will be assessed using a paired click task and subsequent P50 response, thus allowing us to observe a correlation between sensory gating de cits and motor tic severity. Preliminary data suggest that patients with TS have lower peak mu frequencies while at rest. During active tic suppression tasks, preliminary data show peak mu frequencies typical of those seen during rest in healthy controls. After substantiating this neural correlate, future implications include directly manipulating the mu oscillations; transcranial alternating current stimulation (tACS), a non-invasive electrical current passed over the skull, would be utilized to increase mu synchrony to typical levels. I believe that normalizing this biomarker through tACS will lead to a decrease in objective motor tics and an increase in subjective feelings of tic control during stimulation. The establishment of a neural correlate of TS in sensorimotor mu may help pave the way for innovative, non-invasive, electrically-based treatments. Stimulation at peak mu could compliment pharmacological and behavioral therapies, and perhaps eventually lead to re nements in Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) interventions.

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Garnet and Gold Scholar Society IDEA Grant

Inam Sakinah

Traversing Traditions: Perspectives on "Alternative" Childbirth Methods and Prenatal Care from Black Mothers in North Florida

Supervising Professor: Dr. George Rust

Given that infant mortality rates (IMR) are an e ective proxy for maternal and child health, persistent racial disparities in IMR represent a dire public health concern in the United States. While the literature has quantitatively substantiated the enduring existence of disparities between the Black and White IMR, it o ers little qualitative context into the potentially di erential birth experiences of Black birth mothers. Most studies pinpoint prenatal care and maternal behaviors as key IMR predictors and explain the disparity as partially a consequence of Black mothers failing to engage in them at adequate levels. However, few studies have assumed an asset-based outlook, focusing on strategies Black women are possibly adopting to take a more active role in their prenatal care and birthing decisions. This study attempts to address these gaps by examining the ways in which Black women in an urban county of North Florida prepare for childbirth. It undertakes a qualitative approach and relies on semi-structured interviews with Black women in Leon County who have given birth in the last 5 years or are currently pregnant. Initial ndings from our study suggest that Black mothers are increasingly working together to support each other’s decisions to incorporate “alternative” methods of childbirth such as midwives, birthing centers, and doulas into their birthing plans. This insight contains important implications for health care professionals to assist them in elevating their cultural competency and capacity to empower Black mothers, and in improving pregnancy outcomes for Black mothers, overall.

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ACC Creativity and Innovation Fellowship

Mackenzie G. Teek

Fried Yuca E, Dores

Supervising Professor: Dr. Peggy Sharpe

“Fried Yuca e, Dores,” is a research and poetry creation project that explores constitutive literary gures in transnational black poetry, speci cally in Brazil and the United States. Constitutive gures are historically noteworthy events, symbols, and individuals that marginalized people invoke and memorialize in the construction of their group identity. My goal for the project was to identify, compare, and apply constitutive gures that appeared in Afro-Brazilian and African American poetic works. My application of the constitutive gures that I examined are manifest in the poems of my chapbook “Fried Yuca e, Dores.” I began this project in April, with an extensive reading of transnational black poetry that continued throughout the duration of my research, and still continues to inform the editing and transformation of my poetry. I started drafting poems in April and May, towards the end of the spring semester, in preparation for my trip to Brazil, where I would write most of my poems. At the end of June, I traveled to São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, in Brazil, where I visited black cultural and historic sites, and met with museum curators, researchers, professors, and poets, to ask questions about race, and blackness. While traveling, I composed at least two dozen poems. After returning to the U.S., I sent select poems to literary magazines, and began work on my chapbook layout and design. At the end of August, I carved into linoleum the cover of my chapbook, which is modeled to look like a traditional, Northeast-Brazilian, cordel book. I painted and then stamped the image to weighted paper, and edited and bound the chapbook, and now, “Fried Yuca e, Dores,” is a complete series.

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Michael J. Shaara Undergraduate Research and Creative Activity Award

Sidney Turner

The Many Faces of Kate: Exploring Performance in Oliver Goldsmith's "She Stoops to Conquer", 1773-2017

Supervising Professor: Dr. Helen Burke

In this thesis I explore the performances associated with Kate Hardcastle, one of the key characters in Oliver Goldsmith’s celebrated 1773 comedy, “She Stoops to Conquer”. This play has entertained readers and audiences throughout the centuries. Its humor remains applicable today despite the shifts in culture and modes of entertainment that have occurred with the passing of time. However, each production of “She Stoops to Conquer” o ers us a slightly di erent Kate. As I demonstrate in this thesis, actress choice, time period, and method of presentation all in uence the audience’s experience of Goldsmith’s central character, Kate Hardcastle. I analyze the impact of these shifts in the representation of Kate from the original performance of 1773 to the current day, focusing on selected stage and lm productions.

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