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Undergraduate Research

Recent Student Projects

Carthage College students have performed undergraduate research not only on campus, but at institutions around the world. Here is a look at just some of the research projects, fellowships, and internships awarded to Carthage undergraduates in recent years:

National Science Foundation REUs and Similar Summer Programs

  • Spencer Bingham ’19Chemistry major. University of Wisconsin-Madison, Materials Chemistry for Renewable Energy REU.
  • Stephanie Bradshaw ’17Geography/earth science and physics major. Oregon State University, College of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Science REU.
  • Kendall Craig ’17Chemistry major. Medical College of Wisconsin, Summer Program for Undergraduate Research, Pharmacology Department.
  • Alissa Fischer ’17Chemistry major, chemical engineering. San Jose State University, Nuclear Chemistry and Radiochemistry Summer School.
  • Arielle Hay ’17Neuroscience and biology major. University of Minnesota, Life Science Summer Undergraduate Research Program, Heart, Lung, and Blood Program.
  • Stephen Janke ’16Physics and mathematics major. U.S. Department of Energy, Argonne Laboratory, Summer Undergraduate Laboratory Internship.
  • Laura Krings ’17Chemistry and biology major. Washington University in St. Louis, Danforth Plant Science Center REU.
  • Brad Krueger ’18Chemistry and physics major. Southern Illinois University, Carbondale, Interdisciplinary Materials Research REU.
  • Sabrina Lato ’17Mathematics and French major. Fairfield University, Mathematics and Computational Science REU program.
  • Amanda Rico ’18Computer science major. Carnegie Mellon University, Software Engineering REU.
  • Gerardo Rojas ’17Neuroscience major. University of Vermont, Summer Neuroscience Undergraduate Research Fellowship.
  • Racquel Sohasky ’17Biology major. Vanderbilt University, Department of Anesthesiology, B.A. Rudolph Foundation Scholarship.
  • Taylor Tibbs ’16Biology major. DAAD-RISE, Institute of Microbiology, University of Greifswald, Germany.

Nonprofit and Government Internships

  • Beth Klein ’16Biology, Chinese, and Asian Studies major. Wisconsin Area Health Education Centers, Port Washington, Wisconsin, Community Health Internship Program.
  • John Larsen ’19Environmental science major. South Dakota Game, Fish, and Parks Department, Fisheries Management Internship.

SURE Projects at Carthage

  • Paul Salsieder ’18Art. Hedberg Library Mural: Domains of Knowledge with Prof. Diane Levesque.
  • Sarah Robinson ’18Biology. Variations in the Morphology of the Wrist Bones of Species in the Order Chiroptera with Prof. Deanna Byrnes.
  • Benjamin Boren ’18, Samuel De Cero ’17, and Michael Poplawski ’17 — Biology. An Investigation of Cell Signaling in a Transgenic Zebrafish Model of Uveal Melanoma with Prof. Andrea Henle.
  • Tristan Grams ’18 — Biology. Isolation and Analysis of Bacteriophages Aboard the International Space Station with Prof. Andrea Henle and Prof. Deborah Tobiason (project funded through the Wisconsin Space Grant Consortium).
  • Zachary Erickson ’19, Brett Grimes ’17, and Ryan Mahoney ’18Computer Science. A Statistical Analysis of Bias in Film with Prof. Sara Jensen.
  • Mary Weir ’17 and Logen Bartz ’17 — Education. An Investigation of Cell Phone Use in College Classrooms with Prof. Dennis Munk.
  • Amanda Ostrem ’17Education. Content Analysis of Omnilibros.com with Prof. Marilyn Ward
  • Michael Leazer ’17 — Mathematics. Magic Squares with Prof. Erlan Wheeler.
  • Elizabeth Casey ’19Neuroscience. Characterization of Reactive Astrocytosis in Axon Growth Permissive and Inhibitory Astrocyte Cell Lines with Prof. Denise Cook-Synder.
  • Sarah Ciombor ’19 — Neuroscience. Characterization of Chondroitin Sulfate Proteoglycan NG2 Knockout in Axon Growth Permissive and Inhibitory Astrocyte Cell Lines with Prof. Denise Cook-Snyder.
  • Maya Murzello ’18 — Neuroscience. Characterization of a Neuron-Astrocyte Cell Line Co-culture System for Investigating Neurite Growth with Prof. Denise Cook-Synder.
  • Kelsey Nilles ’17 — Neuroscience. Confocal Microscopy and Structural Plasticity in the Hippocampus and Amygdala in a Rat Model for Anxiety and Stress Disorder with Prof. Denise Cook-Synder and Prof. Daniel Miller (project funded through the Stress and Motivated Behavior Institute, Syracuse VA Medical Center).
  • Argie Claro ’18 and Ryan Yont ’19Nursing. Effects of Photobiomodulation in Osteoclast Formation in Vitro with Prof. Lisa Anderson-Antle.
  • Jedidiah Barnes ’19, Daniel Gerloff ’18, Laura Hammock ’19, Michael Huff ’19, Brendan Krull ’16, Ashley Marquette ’17, Jeremiah Munson ’19, Michael Omohundro ’17, Ariana Raya ’19, Benjamin Tillema ’18, Nycole Wenner ’19, and Joseph Wonsil ’19Physics. CaNOP: Carthage CubeSat Project with Prof. Kevin Crosby (project funded through the Wisconsin Space Grant Consortium University Student Instrument Project, or USIP).
  • Kevin LeCaptain ’16 and Ethan Woller — Physics. Modal Propellant Gauging with Prof. Kevin Crosby  (project funded through the Wisconsin Space Grant Consortium University Student Instrument Project, or USIP).
  • Max Becher ’19, Ariane Boissonnas ’18, Michael Hernandez ’18, Nathaniel Lee ’18, Breonna McMahon ’18, and Thomas Shannon ’19 — Physics. RockSat with Prof. Brant Carlson (project funded in part through the Wisconsin Space Grant Consortium).
  • Ryeshia Farmer ’17Political Science. Political Theory of Protests, Rebellion, and other Reactions to Government with Insufficient Functionality with Prof. Chris Lynch.
  • Shelby Wilson ’18 — Psychology. Crafty or Quiet? Perceptions of Talk Time in Mixed-sex Dyads with Prof. Emily Leskinen.
  • Samara Hull ’17Sociology. Human Diversity at Carthage with Prof. Wayne Thompson.
  • Conor O’Brien ’17Theatre. Developing Dramaturgy at Carthage with Prof. Neil Scharnick.
  • Sharai Jacob ’19 — Western Heritage. Humanities Citizenship Initiative: Evaluation of a Humanities Outreach Program with Prof. Katharine Keenan.
  • Magdalena Rocha ’19, Daniela Rodriguez ’19, and Anna Ptacek ’18Western Heritage. Humanities Citizenship Initiative with Prof. Katharine Keenan, Prof. Ben DeSmidt, and Prof. Eric Pullin.
  • Quick Facts

    • Carthage is named a Best Midwestern College by The Princeton Review (2017), a designation given to only 25 percent of four-year schools.

    • Scheduled to open in fall 2018, a new residential tower will offer suite-style housing and two floors of shared campus spaces for gaming, cooking, group meetings, or quiet studying. Learn more about The Tower

    • You’re going to need brain fuel. Grab a morning coffee and a snack and Starbucks or Einstein Bros. Bagels. Later, meet friends at “The Caf,” where the specials change daily but the staples are constant, or swing through “The Stu” for wins, a burrito, or a sub. A new option, Carthage Cash, even covers some off-campus meals.

    • Beyond the campus boundaries, dinosaur fossils are prepared at the Carthage Institute of Paleontolgoy in Kenosha. A lengthy pterodactyl flight away, Finca Esperanza serves as a base camp for J-Term medical and water quality missions to Nicaragua. 

    • Since 2008, Carthage athletic training students have used the newest diagnostic tools to study concussions. Overseen by a leading brain trauma expert from the Medical College of Wisconsin, the research helps doctors determine when athletes are healthy enough to return.

    • 96% of Carthage alumni report that they have secured a job or are continuing their studies six months after graduation. Visit Career Services.

    • 91% of employers say critical thinking, communication, and problem-solving skills matter more than your major when it comes to career success. Learn more about how the liberal arts prepare you for a successful career.

    • Lots of schools wear the four-year label. Carthage stands behind it. 95% of Carthage graduates earn their degrees in four years. Learn more

    • Oscars. Emmys. Tonys. Golden Globes. The playwrights we’ve brought in have them. Each year, the Carthage Theatre Department commissions an original script by a renowned playwright for its New Play Initiative. Carthage students then work with the writer to stage it. 

    • As a freshman in the highly selective Honors Program, learn how to gain expertise in anything from music to forest ecology. After that, tackle a contemporary social, economic, or political problem. If you like, you can live on an Honors-only floor of a Carthage residence hall. 

    • In 2016 and 2017, Carthage was named a top producer of Fulbright Scholars by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.

    • Things look new at Carthage because they are. Our athletic and recreation center, student union, computer labs, audiovisual production suite, and numerous residence halls have all been constructed or newly renovated in the last 10 years. Our new science center caps it off.

    • Carthage offers majors, minors and concentrations in more than 50 areas of study, from archaeology to athletic training, neuroscience to music theatre.

    • Our Summer Undergraduate Research Experience offers select students a research budget, one-on-one mentoring with a professor, and 10 weeks of analyzing, deciphering — and getting paid.

    • So the lake is kind of a focal point, but there’s a lot more to love about our campus — like the fact that our 80-acre campus is also an arboretum and wildlife sanctuary. Focused on keeping campus lush forever, we plant between 50 and 75 new trees every year from a variety of species.

    • Carthage was founded in 1847. That’s more than 170 years of leaders, makers, and go-getters going out and going forth. Read more about Carthage’s rich history.

    • More than 90 percent of our students receive financial aid, a hefty chunk of which is scholarships and grants — including $1.25 million annually from the Presidential Scholarship Competition and numerous Merit Scholarships. Learn what’s available.

    • Abraham Lincoln was an early Trustee of the College, and U.S. Secretary of State John Hay was a Carthage alum. The two still have a proud place on our campus. Spend some time with them in our Sesquicentennial Plaza. On warm days you’ll find professors leading their classes here.

    • Come to Carthage; hear yourself think — think … think …
      Legend has it that Sesquicentennial Plaza holds a perfect echo. Just stand with both your feet on the “1847,” face Straz, and start talking. “You’re the only one who can hear you, but you’ll be crystal clear,” promises English and theatre alumna Mikaley Osley.

    • Our Great Lake provides Carthage students with some amazing views. Think classes on the beach, lake views from the lab, and sunrises from your dorm room. “I love waking up in the morning with the sun shining off the lake. Nothing compares to the view in the morning,” says biology and neuroscience major Ann O’Leary.

    • Carthage awards up to 30 Presidential Scholarships each year, which range from 75% tuition up to full tuition, room, and board. Learn more.

    • For a full decade, NASA has selected Carthage students to conduct research aboard its zero-gravity aircraft. Lately, the stakes have risen. A team of underclassmen is grinding to prepare a tiny but powerful Earth-imaging satellite for launch to the International Space Station. Learn more about the space sciences at Carthage

    • Carthage is the only college or university in the Midwest where every freshman takes a full-year sequence of foundational texts of the Western intellectual tradition. Learn about the Carthage core.

    • With a student-faculty ratio of 12:1, your professors will know who you are. They will also know who you want to be — and how to get you there. Meet our faculty.

    • There are more than 120 student organizations on campus, from Amnesty International to Chemistry Club, to Frisbee and Latin Belly Dancing. See how easy it is to get involved.

    • True story: There are more than 27 art galleries, a dozen museums, and nine theatres within 25 miles of Carthage. Some highlights: The nationally recognized Racine Art Museum, the world-renowned Art Institute of Chicago, and the Milwaukee Art Museum. Learn more about our location.

    • What’s better than one professor? Two professors. What’s better than two professors? Two professors from totally different fields teaching a single class. There’s debate. Discussion. Differing perspectives. This is where the magic happens. That’s why every student takes a Carthage Symposium.

    • Imagine presenting your original research at an international conference — as an undergraduate. Carthage is dedicated to undergraduate research. Learn more about current opportunities.

    • You can’t hide here — not with only 17 other students in the classroom with you. That’s going to be rough some mornings. But later, when you’re able to argue your point of view thoughtfully, express your opinions succinctly, and meet challenges head-on, without fear … Yep, you’ll thank us.

    • Carthage is ranked No. 11 in the country for student participation in short-term study abroad. Every J-Term, hundreds of students travel all over the world on faculty-led study tours. Imagine a month in Sweden, Rome, Cuba, Senegal, India, Japan …

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