Skip to main content

SSRD 2023 Schedule

Room 2 Schedule: Eaton 209

ZOOM link for off-campus community members
  • 9:00 a.m. | ZANDER HOUSTON | Environmentalism and Timber Workers: Lessons from Southern Oregon in the 1980s and 1990s

    This presentation will explore the history of the “timber wars” and its contemporary relevance, drawing on archival research and interviews. Fierce hostility defined the relationships between timber workers and the environmental movement in Southern Oregon, but this was not inevitable. Workers were often critical of the corporations that exploited labor and forests. But the environmental movement alienated them, resulting in workers’ political abstention and alignment with capitalists to oppose environmentalists. These dynamics remain influential in Oregon. Historical failures reveal the importance of a working-class movement that can meaningfully address the ecological crisis, uniting the interests of workers and the environment.

    Faculty Sponsor: Jeanne Clark

  • 9:20 a.m. | KC FEJERAN | Telling the Tale of a Territory: what you don’t know and should about Guahan

    In this grant project, Fejeran explores the history and ongoing activism from their home. Through 5 distinct chapters in a video essay, Fejeran discusses the eras of the history of Guahan and the island's continued journey to decolonization. The video contains footage from the island, history lessons summarized by Fejeran, and interviews with major names in the island’s decolonization effort.

    Faculty Sponsor: Rebecca Dobkins

  • 9:40 a.m. | ELLA ASHFORD & RILEY FORTH | Reclaiming the Forgotten Ghost Crab Pots of the Salish Sea

    Lost, discarded, and abandoned crab pots create a cycle of marine habitat destruction through ghost fishing. The current solutions are often expensive and inaccessible to many coastal communities. This research focuses on using remotely operated vehicles and geospatial analysis in Puget Sound, Washington State to create a cost effective, community-based solution. Through collaborations with local project partners, this ocean stewardship strategy was successfully demonstrated by recovering several “ghost” crab pots as well as identifying marine succession of sea anemones on derelict fishing gear.

    Faculty Sponsor: Scott Pike
    Discipline: Environmental Science

  • 10:00 a.m. | ELISE FASHIMPAUR | Improving Course Structure for Student Satisfaction: The Course Demand-Resource Model

    This study looked at the Job Demand-Resource model and its potential to assess student satisfaction with college courses. This study had a global sample of current postsecondary students that were asked a series of survey questions. The results indicate that there is a linkage between having more perceived resources than demands within a course and satisfaction. Based on these results, a Course Demand-Resource model could be utilized to help provide practical solutions to demanding courses, and institutions should look at ways to provide clearer instructions and feedback, as well as provide accurate information about the course’s structure prior to registration.

    Faculty Sponsor: Jeremy Miller
    Discipline: Psychology

  • 10:30 a.m. | JUAN VARGAS | Undocumented Immigrants and the Pursuit of Education

    Approximately 11.5 million immigrants reside in the United States, most of them Latinos and undocumented, who often arrive in the country at a young age. Teenage Latinos were brought by their parents to fulfill the “American Dream.” The majority of these young adults struggle immensely to reach their dream as they face discrimination, education disparity, cultural setbacks, and language adaptation. The purpose of this study is to create a vision plan for an accessible and inclusive program that serves as a bridge between current students and graduates in order to help the former achieve their pursuit for higher education.

    Faculty Sponsor: Latin American Studies
    Discipline: Ana Montero

  • 10:50 a.m. | WILLIAM NORDHORN | Weather-Man: an Exploration into the Climate Fiction of Superheroes

    n a culture that seems to worship superheroes in the media, heroes have become symbols of hope and positive change. The Avengers save the planet time and again, but in the real world with climate catastrophe looming over the future, there are no heroes to save the planet. While researching the relationship between heroes and large-scale climate change within satirical and non-satirical narratives, I will produce a graphic novel centered around these themes to ask the questions “how does reliance on heroes affect how change can be made?” and “how does the failure of a hero change the theme of a narrative?

    Faculty Sponsor: Scott Nadelson
    Discipline: English

  • 11:10 a.m. | CAMERON COLE | A Rhetorical History of Queer Student Activism at Willamette University

    This zine utilizes interviews with alums and archival research to present a detailed history of intersectional queer student activism at Willamette University.

    Faculty Sponsor: 

  • 11:30 a.m. | GWYN FRITZ | Transforming a Landscape Through Stories; Engaging with Nature Through Ethnobotany

    This project explores the fascinating discipline of ethnobotany, which is the study of how human culture and the botanical landscape impact each other on various levels. Throughout history, relationships between plants and people have been formed and interpreted through various pedagogies. During my summer, I studied various methods of teaching ethnobotanical information and used that knowledge to design my own ethnobotany walk through Zena Forest for the Willamette community. I taught attendees about local plants’ chemical, historical, and cultural significance to us through individual stories, and importantly how those stories inform us to interact with plants courteously.

    Faculty Sponsor: Joyce Millen

  • 2:00 p.m. | MATTHEW MAHONEY | Matthew Mythology: Stories by an Autistic Art Historian

    I am an Autistic scholar and an art history major and for my Carson Research Grant, I created a public-facing podcast with episodes exploring these topics and then delving into the symbol of the labyrinth, exploring its genealogy in art and literature, and then using it as a metaphor to explain my experience as an Autistic person. I plan to discuss some of my findings from the podcast.

    Faculty Sponsor: Ricardo de Mambro Santos
    Discipline: Art History

  • 2:20 p.m. | HARRIET SIQUELAND | A Guide to Restorative Justice For Willamette's Campus

    A Guide to Restorative Justice for Willamette’s campus is an informative guide that details the Restorative Justice process and how it differs from other harm prevention and healing process used within the United States. The guide goes on to explore methods of implantation of the restorative process at Willamette.

    Faculty Sponsor: Melissa Buis
    Discipline: Sociology

  • 2:40 p.m. | IAN LYNCH | How Oregon's Liberal Republicans Helped Radicalize the GOP

    Mark Hatfield, Tom McCall, and Bob Packwood were three very different personalities united in their identity as liberal Republicans who opposed the rise of conservatism as the dominant ideological strain of their party. They failed in this endeavor; today liberal Republicans are all but extinct and the Oregon GOP is reputed for its right-wing extremism. My presentation will explore how those very same liberals contributed to the downfall of Republican liberalism and the rise of right-wing radicalism in the state.

    Faculty Sponsor: Seth Cotlar
    Discipline: History

  • 3:30 p.m. | LANI SOUTHERN | PCT Diary of a Poet: Essays on Wilderness and Wonder

    In the summer of 2022 I hiked 500 miles along the Pacific Crest Trail from Northern California to the Columbia River. Thus I began a yearlong project of writing a collection of lyric essays that meditate on fire, water, and wilderness in the American West, and my own experiences of grief and wonder as I explored the state I have made my home these last four years. In this presentation I will read excerpts from the collection and discuss the ways that reading prose and poetry have shaped my writing craft.

    Faculty Sponsor: Scott Nadelson
    Discipline: English

  • 4:00 p.m. | MICHAEL BIHRLE | Sticking an Ant to an Elephant: Determining the Antioxidant Capabilities of Poly-(Acetyl, Arginyl)-Glucosamine (PAAG) Conjugates

    Unstable oxygen free radicals in the body can harm cells and disrupt physiological processes, causing long term harm. Antioxidants “quench” these free radicals, neutralizing them and reducing overall oxidative stress. This project investigates the novel, chitosan derived polymer, Poly-(Acetyl, Arginyl)-Glucosamine (PAAG), as a vehicle for use in targeted delivery of potential antioxidant-based therapeutics. Using NMR spectroscopy and in vitro DPPH free-radical quenching assays, we have shown that Caffeic Acid and Ferulic Acid can effectively be covalently attached to the polymer and that the resulting conjugates exhibit promising antioxidant quenching abilities greater than those of unmodified PAAG.

    Faculty Sponsor: Andrew Duncan
    Discipline: Chemistry

Willamette University

Student Scholarship Recognition Day

Willamette University
900 State Street
Salem Oregon 97301 U.S.A.