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The 2023 Celebration of Scholarship
will be a one-day event:

Tuesday, April 25, 2023

The event will include:

Oral Presentation Sessions 

Poster Session and Competition on the Symposium online platform

Arts at Night spoken-word & musical performances

Art Show and Competition



Join us at the 22nd annual Celebration of Scholarship  on Tuesday, April 25, 2023.

Held each spring, this campus-wide event showcases the scholarship, creative activity, and intellectual achievement of the John Carroll community with a particular emphasis on research.  

The tabs on this page are updated as events are scheduled and applications are processed.  Please check back often for updated information on this year's Celebration.  

CLICK HERE for the detailed Schedule of Events

All of the posters and video presentations are viewable on the Symposium Presentations page. Use the filter categories or search bar to look for specific topics or presenters.

PC = Poster Competitor


Writing Centers in PrisonsEmma Arrighi ‘25; Megan Connor, The Writing Center, JCU Education for incarcerated people has proven to be an effective deterrent to recidivism after release. Writing particularly has proven a key skill for incarcerated learners, helping them write to parole boards, apply for jobs, and express their emotions. Given that writing centers are collaborative and build community, they should be a good way to facilitate learning for both consultants and students in the prison environment. This poster aims to provide an overview of the existing literature about prison writing centers, including the different methods of implementation and the strategies that have initially proven effective in a prison setting. The two primary modes of implementation have been 1) to have consultants come from universities outside the prison and 2) to have incarcerated learners trained to help their fellow students. Both strategies provide growth opportunities for consultants and students alike. Given that the prison environment is different from a typical university, more research must be done to create a specific writing center pedagogy for prisons. The few American prisons that have implemented writing centers have found collaboration and targeted, non-directive feedback to be effective thus far. In addition to further research about effective strategies for incarcerated learners, more research is needed about the effectiveness of informal sessions and whether writing center involvement has any impact on recidivism. in Data AnalyticsJoseph Backus ‘23; Dr. Kyle O’Dell, Office of Student Engagement, JCU The presentation goes into detail about a series of interviews I conducted with leaders at the local, regional, and national levels. For me to be the best leader I could be after graduation, I examined my own leadership style, servant leadership, and applied what I learned from these interviews to my career. the Role of NF-kB Inhibition on Müller Glia Proliferation Following Injury in the Zebrafish Retina (PC)Danielle Baffa ‘23; Dr. Brian Perkins, Ophthalmic Research, The Cleveland Clinic Foundation, Dr. Helen Murphy and Dr. Cyrilla Wideman, Neuroscience Program, JCU Although the mammalian species possess a limited capacity for regeneration of retinal cells after cell ablation, understanding the underlying mechanisms of photoreceptor regeneration in model organisms may provide a therapeutic link for the future. Previous research has shown that teleosts such as Danio rerio (zebrafish) are able to reprogram their Müller glia after injury to acquire characteristics similar to stem cells that allow them to regenerate their photoreceptors. Studies have suggested that the nuclear factor kappa B pathway (NF-κB) may influence this regeneration process by increasing the number of proliferating cells after injury to the retina. To determine if the NF-κB pathway plays a role in Müller glia progenitor cell production, proliferating cells in the inner nuclear layer were quantified. A control group treated with DMSO was compared to a group treated with metronidazole and NF-κB Activation Inhibitor (NAI), a group treated with only metronidazole, and a group only treated with NAI to see if inflammation would impact the amount of proliferating Müller glia cells. Quantification results of the inner nuclear layer indicate that inhibiting the NF-κB pathway has no statistically significant effect on the number of proliferating cells in the zebrafish retina. Modern Worker Displacement ProblemChandler Bankey ‘23; Dr. Andrew Welki, Department of Economics and Finance, JCU In a world of constant innovation, it should come as no surprise that automation in many industries is becoming a cornerstone of the changing labor force. Capital and Labor as the two major components of economic growth and progress show that capital has been outpacing labor for several years, and the development of COVID-19 didn’t help. Society saw many industries advance in ways one could never imagine, whereas others saw complete folds under pressure. Those who did not have good fortune joined a growing number of citizens who have become displaced in society, whether it be due to an inability to provide quality work, advancements in technology that can achieve the same amount of work at a one-time investment cost in comparison to a laborer who will always require compensation, or due to the pandemic. The goal of this research was to explore the various industries with large amounts of displaced workers, the causes, and symptoms, and to explore potential solutions for a stronger labor force and an economy that works for everyone. Transformational Leadership in Public PolicyAbby Birch ‘24; Dr. Kyle O’Dell, Office of Student Engagement, JCU Every field allows for different styles of leadership to flourish. One successful style, transformational leadership, emphasizes intrinsic motivation and follower development. This style is fitting the growing needs of organizations today by inspiring and empowering members to continue to strive for success in times of uncertainty. To explore transformational leadership’s presence in different fields of public policy, five leaders were interviewed, and their responses were analyzed thoroughly. The results of these interviews found that the transformational leadership style is found throughout numerous fields of public policy, showing the important impact this style can have on organizations and the greater good they serve. Drosophila melanogaster as a Model Organism for Nervous System Development (PC)Kyle Boehm ‘24; Dr. Pamela Vanderzalm, Department of Biology, JCUDrosophila melanogaster is an excellent model organism for studying nervous system development. During larval development muscle surface area grows 100-fold in about 4 days, meaning the nervous system must also grow 100-fold. To measure nervous system growth, synaptic boutons are counted, which are button-like structures that house glutamatergic synapses. These neuromuscular junction (NMJ) synapses are structurally and functionally similar to those within the human central nervous system. One mechanism for accomplishing this growth is through signaling from the muscle to the neuron through the evolutionarily conserved Bone Morphogenetic Pathway (BMP). We previously found that the kinase Tao inhibits the BMP pathway, negatively regulating growth. By removing Tao there is a loss of a BMP inhibitor, causing an overgrowth phenotype. To determine where Tao is required, we performed tissue-specific RNA interference (RNAi) of Tao, causing a loss of Tao function in either the muscle or neuron. We also identified the kinases GCKIII and Tricornered as Tao’s partners in BMP inhibition At the NMJ, loss of GCKIII and Trc by RNAi both exhibit an overgrowth phenotype like loss of Tao. We determined the order of the kinase cascade to be Tao, then GCKIII, then Tricornered through an epistasis experiment. Sex-specific responses to heart failure in a hypertensive stress model (PC)Madison Bohacek ‘23; Dr. Sarah M. Schumacher, Dr. Kamila M. Bledzka, Dr. Iyad Manaserh, Jessica Grondolsky, The Cleveland Clinic Foundation Heart failure is the inability of the heart to appropriately deliver oxygen to the body. This condition is clinically well-known and understood in males, but data lacks for female responses to heart failure. In order to explore the mechanisms behind female responses to heart failure, we used a transgenic mouse model expressing the fragment, βARKnt (NT), of G-protein coupled receptor kinase 2 (GRK2), a protein highly upregulated during cardiac stress. Additionally, these mice were also subject to transverse aortic constriction (TAC) in order to create hypertensive stress on their hearts. Together, these conditions lead to the rise of maladaptive features of heart failure. We examined differences in gene expression of female and male hearts along with changes in female heart muscle tissue. The results revealed female-specific differences for both maladaptive and remodeling-related gene expression in control and stressed hearts. Female-specific changes in control and stressed heart muscle tissue also arose. The data suggest a sex-specific approach is needed to treat female heart failure. What Leadership Looks Like in Chiropractic Compared to Other Healthcare Fields Grace Bressoud ‘23; Dr. Kyle O’Dell, Office of Student Engagement, JCU  As chiropractic is a more up in coming field, we must look at what being a leader means in a field with many more questions than traditional healthcare fields. In order to do this, we looked at what leadership has been effective for other healthcare careers and how that translates into chiropractic. With the help of several practicing chiropractors, leadership was proven to be incredibly important. From leading patients through a process they may be unfamiliar with, to leading other doctors when starting a business, chiropractors, like other healthcare workers, must lead by example. As many of them started as patients themselves, the chiropractors spoken to found it helpful that they are able to put themselves in the patient's shoes and really explain the importance of chiropractic care. This style most closely resembles transformational leadership. The doctors are able to inspire patients through their own stories and lived experiences. Arrupe Foster Care Bag DriveSarah Brown ‘23, Erin Kipp ‘23, Courtney Heller ‘23, Annie Walsh ‘23; Sadie Hackett, Arrupe Social Justice Scholars As Arrupe Scholars, we create and implement an advocacy project to educate the John Carroll community and provide services to the greater Cleveland community. The focus of our project was on the humanization of children in the foster care system. One way to ensure this human aspect in the foster care system, we hosted a bag drive that for children who are placed from home to home for extended periods of time. Often times children only have trash bags to carry their things in whenever they move. Placing their items in a bag that they own, allows them the feeling of ownership and that their stuff is important. We hosted the bag drive from January 2023 to March 2023 and were able to collect 40 bags. These bags include suitcases, backpacks, tote bags, and duffel bags that are both in gently used and brand new condition. The bags were then donated to Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Cleveland. The Relationship Between Mobility and Measure of Fitness in Firefighters Aramis Castano ‘23; Dr. Jacquelyn Zera, Exercise Science and Sports Leadership, JCU Firefighting is a demanding profession, requiring a high level of physical fitness. The Functional Movement Screen (FMS) is an assessment used to evaluate basic movement patterns and assess mobility. Previous research has shown a relationship between physical fitness and job performance, while few have included measures of mobility. Purpose: The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between FMS and fitness variables in firefighters. Methods: Fifty- six healthy firefighters (age= 31.7 ± 1.6; Body Mass Index= 28.3 ± 0.5; Percent Body Fat=  21.8 ± 0.8; VO2 max= 38.5 ± 0.9) completed a fitness assessment including 1) a graded exercise test, 2) measures of body composition (height, weight, bioelectrical impedance analysis, circumferences), 3) muscular fitness (pushup, plank hold, hand grip strength), and 4) flexibility (sit and reach, back scratch). Subjects also completed the FMS, including 7 tests (deep squat, hurdle step, inline lunge, shoulder mobility, active straight-leg raise, trunk stability pushup, rotary stability) scored from 0-3. Spearman Rho correlations were used to determine associations between FMS and fitness variables. Results: Data revealed significant moderate correlations between FMS and Systolic Blood Pressure (ρ = -0.325, p= 0.014), Waist and Hip Circumference (ρ = -0.540, pConclusions: Results of the current investigation demonstrate that mobility is negatively correlated with blood pressure and measures of body composition and positively correlated with cardiorespiratory endurance, muscular fitness, and flexibility. While little research has been done, this study demonstrates a relationship between mobility and physical fitness. Given the well established relationship between fitness and job performance in firefighters, future research should seek to investigate the relationship between mobility and job performance and injury risk on duty. Investigating the glycogen binding ability of the mutated PP1 regulatory subunit 3F in association with neurodevelopmental disordersZach Cattron ‘23; Dr. Bin Zhang, Genomic Medicine Institute, The Cleveland Clinic Foundation Protein phosphatase 1 (PP1) is a holoenzyme that regulates several cellular processes including protein synthesis, muscle contraction, carbohydrate metabolism, and many others 1. There are over 200 regulatory subunits2 that contribute to the diverse functions of PP1, including seven glycogen targeting subunits (GTSs) that regulate glycogen synthesis by stimulating PP1 to dephosphorylate and activate glycogen synthase (GS) 3. RF3, encoded by the PPP1R3F gene, is a GTS that is primarily expressed in the brain and has been suggested to regulate GS in astrocytoma cells 4. R3F has binding motifs for glycogen, PP1, and GS, and through these motifs, glycogen functions as a substrate to activate PP1. Recent research has shown that mutations in PPP1R3F are associated with a disorder characterized by a wide range of neurodevelopmental issues, such as autism spectrum disorder, speech and developmental delay, and neuromuscular abnormalities. Effect of eys Mutation on Retinal Degeneration in Zebrafish Karen Chu ‘23; Dr. Helen Murphy and Dr. Cyrilla Wideman, Neuroscience Program, JCU Retinitis pigmentosa is a vision disorder that affects approximately 1 in 4,000 people. One of the mutations that can result in this retinal degenerative disease is the eyes shut (EYS) knockout in humans. Few vertebrate animals possess this gene, so little is known regarding how this mutation operates. Zebrafish (Danio rerio) have the eys gene in their genome and their retina shares many similarities with the human retina. These animals also can regenerate damaged photoreceptors in the eye. Zebrafish were used in this experiment to characterize the mutation based on the similarities in morphology and regenerative abilities. Eyes from 12 months post fertilization (mpf) and 6 mpf were used to demonstrate degeneration over time. The mutations, bbs2 and cep290 have been previously characterized in zebrafish. When compared to subjects with an eys mutation, they have been shown to elicit similar responses in the retina. Based on this information, it was hypothesized that the effects of an eys mutation would be very similar to those caused by a bbs2 or a cep290 mutation. Results indicate zebrafish with an eys knockout mutation have progressive retinal degeneration, increased proliferation among photoreceptors, and activated inflammation response in retinal cells. Role of N-Phosphonacetyl-L-Aspartate in Enhancement of Transcription Governed by Interferon-Stimulated Response Elements and Interferon-g-Activated Sites (PC) Jacob Clark, ‘24; Katie Vasiliauskas ‘25; Dr. Erin Johnson, Department of Biology, JCU Interferons (IFNs) are cytokines that stimulate the expression of antiviral and proinflammatory genes during infection.  IFN-b is a predominant type I IFN made upon exposure to viruses.  IFN-b binds to cell surface receptors and activates the Janus kinase-signal transducer and activator of transcription signaling (JAK-STAT) pathway.  STAT1 and STAT2 are phosphorylated and bind to interferon regulatory factor 9 (IRF9) forming the complex known as interferon-stimulated gene factor 3 (ISGF3).  ISGF3 is a transcription factor that enhances expression of genes with interferon-stimulated response elements (ISREs).  These IFN-stimulated genes (ISGs) play various roles in suppressing viral replication.  Recent work from the McDonald lab has demonstrated that treating cells with IFN-b and N-phosphonacetyl-L-aspartate (PALA) enhances expression of STAT1, STAT2, and IRF9.  Additionally, there is a significant increase in ISRE-mediated transcription in the presence of IFN-band PALA when compared to IFN-b alone.  Although canonically linked to type II IFN, reports suggest that phosphorylated STAT1 homodimers form in response to type I IFNs as well.  This transcription factor regulates expression of genes with IFN-g-activated site (GAS) elements that enhance the killing response in macrophages.  The present study aimed to determine if PALA also enhanced GAS-mediated transcription in combination with IFN-b through developing a GAS-GFP reporter cell line. Effect of Blue Light on Spatial Working Memory in Rats in the T-maze Jacqueline Clinger ‘23 and Adam Diefendorf ‘23; Dr. Helen Murphy and Dr. Cyrilla Wideman, Neuroscience Program, JCU Blue light plays a critical role in eliciting physiological effects independent of visual perception. Pineal secretion of melatonin is responsible for inducing sleep and the entrainment of circadian rhythms. Previous studies have demonstrated that blue light inhibits melatonin secretion, and therefore enhances alertness and cognitive function. Additionally, the photopigment melanopsin is triggered by blue light exposure, which has been observed to modulate attention and working memory. The current study aims to explore the impact of blue light exposure on spatial working memory utilizing a T maze. Twelve male Long Evans Rats were evenly distributed by weight to either the control or the experimental group. The six rats in the experimental group were exposed to blue light prior to completing the maze and the six rats in the control group were exposed to ambient light prior to completing the maze. Results showed no significant effects between the two groups and light exposure and there were no significant differences in the other measured variables. Additionally, no significant effects were present among other variables considered including body weight, food and water consumption, activity, and adiposity. These results are inconsistent with prior research, which suggested that blue light enhances cognitive ability, alertness, and memory. Future animal studies replicating these methods and alternative tests evaluating spatial working memory are needed to investigate the effects of blue light exposure. Determined Mechanism for the Formation of 2-bromo-3-methylbutane from Neopentyl Alcohol (PC) Gabriele Cross ‘24; Dr. Michael Nichols, Department of Chemistry, JCU  The reaction of neopentyl alcohol with sodium bromide and sulfuric acid forms both 2-bromo-2-methylbutane and 2-bromo-3-methylbutane. The mechanism for the formation of 2-bromo-3-methylbutane is unknown. This poster outlines the process of determining and confirming that 2-bromo-3-methylbutane is formed through double bond intermediates. Neurobehavioral Evaluation Tool (NET) Ethan Crowley, ‘25; Dr. Thomas Frazier, Department of Psychology, JCU The Neurobehavioral Evaluation Tool (NET) is a set of instruments used to screen for and track skills and psychological symptoms in people with autism spectrum disorder and related developmental conditions, including people with neurogenetic syndromes. The NET includes 11 parent-report questionnaires measuring a variety of different domains, including anxiety, ADHD symptoms, mood problems, daily living skills, and 7 other neurobehavioral domains. My Cleveland Clinic Internship Experience Carrie Cuva ‘23; McKinsey Muir, Emergency Services Institute, The Cleveland Clinic Foundation, Dr. Daniel Palmer, Emeritus Faculty, Department of Math, Computer Science & Data Science, JCU  In this presentation, I discuss my internship experience with the Cleveland Clinic from my junior year at John Carroll. I describe the interview process and the internship setup, as well as detail the project I was working on for the 2022 spring semester. I end the presentation with what I learned from the internship experience. Participative Leadership in the Data Field (PC) Drezdan Dale ‘23; Dr. Kyle O’Dell, Office of Student Engagement, JCU I interviewed five professionals in the Data Professions who hold some sort of leadership role. These interviews focused on the leadership journey of each individual and insight into their own leadership styles. From my own research, I connected that never intentionally setting out to lead goes hand in hand with a participative leadership style. Servant Leadership in EducationMiranda Day ‘23; Dr. Kyle O’Dell, Office of Student Engagement, JCU Teachers and educators at all levels work as leaders and followers on a daily basis, but is one style of leadership more conducive to the art of teaching than others? I have investigated the way educators at differing levels in the education system use servant leadership. Servant leadership is characterized by addressing the needs of followers and teammates with a heavy emphasis on learning and growth. I have witnessed many teachers use the servant style of leadership in the classroom, but in order to find out if administrators or other leaders in the education field also use this style, I have conducted interviews with educational leaders on varying levels. My investigation into this subject is driven by my curiosity about how servant leadership guides teaching at all levels, and how leadership styles can influence teamwork in an education system. The Effect of Different Masks on Oxygen Consumption at Rest (PC) Ethan Domitrovich ‘24; Dr. Gregory Farnell, Department of Exercise Science and Sports Leadership, JCU Masks have been used to reduce the spread of COVID-19 through the capture of particulate matter. While masks have been shown to be effective at reducing the spread of COVID-19, it is important to ensure that masks are physiologically safe to wear. A limitation to previous research that has looked at oxygen consumption in individuals wearing masks while exercising is that VO2 max testing had been utilized, where a rubber mask must be worn over the mask being studied, which alters the natural function of the mask. In order to determine the effect that mask-wearing has on oxygen consumption in individuals at rest, participants were subject to indirect calorimetry measures with the Parvo Medics TrueOne 2400 metabolic cart with its canopy system. Three consecutive 10-minute trials were conducted on each experimental condition for the same participant of resting VO2 values while maskless, wearing a 3M KN95 mask, and while wearing a nonwoven polypropylene Insta-Gard Procedure mask. Participants were required to be fasted and rested prior to data collection. Both absolute and relative values of O2, as well as absolute values of CO2, and total minute ventilation, were analyzed for each subject. Resting VO2 was found to be statistically significant when comparing the maskless trials (3.76 ± 0.46 ml·kg·min) to both the KN95 (3.61 ± 0.43 ml·kg·min, p=.003) and Insta-Gard mask (3.59 ± 0.48 ml·kg·min, p=.003). The strength of utilizing the canopy system is that it does not contact the mask, thus allowing it to function in a way that most closely resembles that of daily use. While the data shows statistical significance, future research will need to be conducted to determine if the difference in oxygen consumption at rest is physiologically significant. The current data does not indicate any reason to stray from current CDC mask-wearing guidelines. Alkaloid-based Chemical Defenses in Six Species of Australian Poison Frogs in the genus Pseudophryne (PC) Vilma Dudaitis ‘24; Dr. Ralph Saporito, Department of Biology, JCU  Poison frogs are well known for their ability to sequester alkaloids from their diet of leaf-litter arthropods for use in defense against predators and pathogens. Australian frogs in the genus Pseudophryne represent an understudied lineage of poison frogs, which have the unique ability to both sequester dietary alkaloids and synthesize pseudophrynamine alkaloids. Herein, we describe the alkaloid profiles of six species of Pseudophryne (P. guentheri, P. occidentalis, P. coriacea, P. dendyi, P. semimarmorata, and P. bibronii) to gain a better understanding of the relationship between dietary derived and synthesized alkaloids. We characterized and quantified alkaloids using Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry (GC-MS), and our results found that alkaloid profiles varied significantly among species, with pumiliotoxins (dietary derived) and pseudophrynamines (synthesized) being the most abundant alkaloids. P. dendyi contained mostly dietary derived alkaloids, whereas P. coriacea, P. guentheri, and P. occidentalis possessed mostly synthesized alkaloids. P. bibronii and P. semimarmorata possessed a mixture of sequestered and synthesized alkaloids. Our data suggest that the decrease in dietary alkaloids is therefore compensated by the biosynthesized pseudophrynamines, which allows these poison frogs to remain defended in the absence of dietary alkaloids. The Effect Of Sleep Environment On Sleep Quality And Behavior In Firefighters (PC) Erica Esper ‘23; Dr. Jacquelyn Zera and Dr. Anna Simonson, Department of Exercise Science and Sports Leadership, JCU Firefighting is a demanding profession with high physical and psychological demands. Additionally, shift work results in abnormal working hours, decreased work-life balance, and poor recovery, impacting sleep behaviors. Poor sleep has been associated with health issues such as increased cardiometabolic risk, mental health disorders, and reduced cognitive function. While this population is prone to disrupted sleep while on shift, little research exists describing the effect of the on-duty sleeping environment on sleep quality in firefighters. The purpose was to examine the effect of the sleep environment on sleep quality by enrolling sixty-six firefighters in a wellness program that included a health history questionnaire. Sleep quality was assessed using the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI). Subjects completed the questionnaire twice (On-Duty and Off-Duty), and each version was scored using the PSQI scoring manual. A Wilcoxon Signed Ranks Test was used to examine differences in PSQI scores On-Duty vs. Off-Duty. A Mann-Whitney U test was used to determine differences in PSQI scores in Bunk vs. Dorm style sleeping quarters on-duty. Data revealed a significant difference in PSQI variables between On-Duty and Off-Duty, with Sleep Duration, Sleep Efficiency, Sleep Quality, and the Total PSQI scoring significantly better Off-Duty compared to On-Duty. Additionally, no significant differences exist in PSQI variables or the Total PSQI score between Bunk and Dorm style sleeping quarters. Results of the current investigation indicate no significant differences in sleeping quality between different styles of fire station sleeping quarters but demonstrate significant differences in the place of sleep (Off-Duty vs. On-Duty). Specifically, Sleep Duration, Efficiency, Quality, and Total PSQI values were greater, resulting in better sleep, when sleeping off-duty. Future research should be done examining the relationships between call volume and sleep quality, as well as the effects of sleep-related interventions for improving on-duty sleep, as well as off-duty to aid in recovery from the acute sleep deprivation experienced on-duty. Educational Leadership Mary Evankovich ‘23; Dr. Kyle O’Dell, Office of Student Engagement, JCU The field of education is constantly evolving to keep up with the changes and demands of society and real-world skills. The advancement of technology has greatly impacted education in the classroom and influenced the way students think and learn. Professional development opportunities are critical to equip educators with the necessary resources and tools to best serve their students. To explore current school systems and the field of education, five interviews were conducted in diverse roles of educational leadership. These interviews demonstrate the power of learning and the overwhelming presence of servant leadership in education. On the Frontier of American Cultures: Catholic Missionaries Among Native Americans and the Emergence of Catholic American Identity Anthony Falbo ‘24; Dr. Paul V. Murphy and Dr. Rodney Hessinger, Department of History, JCU  Despite being present from the earliest English colonial origins of the country, a reinvigorated form of American anti-Catholicism emerged during the early 19th century that focused on preventing Catholicism from taking hold in the West, which was viewed as the future of the fledgling republic. For many American Protestants, missionary work and promoting education among Native Americans were seen as opportunities to spread both their religion and their understanding of American culture in order to avoid losing the West to Catholicism. However, Catholics also ministered to the Native Americans, with some of their activities being sponsored by the federal government. This raises the question of how these Catholics understood their involvement in an enterprise that many of their fellow missionaries viewed as a means to stop the spread of Catholicism throughout the nation and to propagate a culture that condemned their faith as a threat to the nation’s most cherished liberties. I argue that through their ministry to Native Americans during the 19th century, American Catholic missionaries advanced a sense of American Catholic identity that viewed itself as being centered on toleration and inclusion towards both American and Native American culture yet remained distinctive from these cultures as well. Philosophy4Kids (PC) Matthew Fischer ‘24 and Jeremy Bravard ‘24; Dr. Sharon Kaye, Department of Philosophy, JCU  Our goal was to reach out to schools, specifically middle school and below, and introduce kids to philosophy. We wanted to see how they reacted to complex ideas that they had not previously encountered. We wanted to challenge their critical thinking skills as well and see if they were capable of thinking outside of the literal, which is often necessary for philosophy. The most interesting thing we got to observe was how much they progressed from the beginning to the end of the program. They went from very surface level answers to basic questions to really engaging in these complex ideas, which was great to see. Anatomy and Development of the Cranium of the Diamondback Water Snake, Nerodia rhombifer Alexander Gata ‘23; Dr. Christopher Sheil, Department of Biology, JCU  This study describes the cranial anatomy of Nerodia rhombifer and analyzes the sequence of ossification. The results are compared to literature describing the ossification sequence for N. rhombifer and three other Nerodia species. It was found that in all species, the bones of the dermatocranium begin ossification first, followed by those of the chondrocranium. Furthermore, compared to the literature, this study found that ossification in N. rhombifer is more extensive in the earlier stages of development rather than the late stages of development. in the Marketing Industry Anna Glass ‘24; Dr. Kyle O’Dell, Office of Student Engagement, JCU Effective Leadership in the marketing industry is constantly evolving and is a key aspect of organizational and personal success. Many leadership philosophies have been researched, with one being Transformational Leadership. This type of leadership is centered around change and inspiring others. In addition, my leadership style most closely aligns with this style. To further research different leadership styles, five successful leaders in marketing were interviewed. Based on the results of these interviews, marketing leaders use a wide variety of leadership tactics and styles. Each of the leaders that were interviewed mentioned these skills when describing the most crucial leadership skills to have in the marketing industry: communication, empathy, flexibility, and relationship building. The two most common types of leadership out of the individuals who were interviewed included situational leadership and servant leadership, both of which have a heavy focus on knowing the individuals you are working with. Each of the leaders interviewed has established their leadership style throughout their career based on lived experiences, which has allowed them to positively influence the companies they are working for. Fighting Food Insecurity: Bringing Rise Against Hunger to Campus Claire Greenlees ‘23, Nathan Aloi ‘23, Vice Rizzo ‘23, and Jared Flitt ‘23; Sadie Hackett, Arrupe Social Justice Scholars As part of the Arrupe Scholars Program, all seniors have the opportunity to formulate and execute an advocacy project based on their particular passions. The social justice topic that has been of the utmost inspiration for all of our group members is food insecurity. Hence, the goals of our project included increasing awareness of food insecurity on both a local and global scale, partnering with a nonprofit to execute a meal packaging event, and emphasizing the importance of sustainability in efforts used to combat food insecurity. After obtaining funding from Campus Ministry, Rise Against Hunger was contacted and a date was picked to hold an event on campus. The service opportunity was broadcast to all students on campus and scheduled in the evening so there would be minimal conflicts with students attending night classes. On the day of the event, over forty volunteers assisted in the packaging of meals to be distributed across the globe. In total over 10,000 meals were packaged and all volunteers were thanked with a pizza dinner to follow the event. As a result, John Carroll University students and staff alike contributed to Rise Against Hunger’s initiative to end world hunger. The Effect of S-glutathionylation of KEAP-1/NRF-2 and Caspase 3 (PC) Claire Greenlees ‘23; Dr. Yuh-Cherng Chai, Department of Chemistry, JCU S-glutathionylation is a form of post-translational modification where glutathione forms disulfide bonds with protein cysteine residues under oxidative conditions. The process of S-glutathionylation is important because it is a reversible process, regulates enzyme activity, and may link to disease development. In this work, under physiological conditions, KEAP-1 and NRF-2 bind together as a complex. Upon oxidative stress, NRF-2 dissociates from KEAP-1 and triggers an antioxidant response. However, the dissociation mechanism was not well studied. S-glutathionylation of KEAP-1 causes dissociation of NRF-2. This result demonstrates a possible dissociation mechanism of NRF-2. Caspase 3 is a cysteine containing protein and a key enzyme in executing apoptosis in cells. The cysteine residue is required for its activity. Our results show that S-glutathionylation of the cysteine inhibits caspase 3 activity and that inhibition can be reversed by the addition of dithiothreitol (DTT). The inhibition of caspase 3 activity with GSSG and reactivation of caspase 3 activity with DTT showed a concentration dependent manner. Our work shows that the process of protein S-glutathionylation can affect cellular protein physiological functions under oxidative stress. Servant Leadership within the Sports Industry Rachel Halapchuk ‘23; Dr. Kyle O’Dell, Office of Student Engagement, JCU Across the sports industry professionals use many different styles of leadership. However, Servant Leadership is very common among individuals working within the sports industry in positions focused on community impact. To discover the impact of this leadership style, I interviewed six leaders within the sports industry that work in different community impact positions. Although these individuals’ positions possess different task requirements, all of them displayed characteristics of a servant leader. Crucial Leadership in NursingSarah Hanlon ‘23; Dr. Kyle O’Dell, Office of Student Engagement, JCU  In every profession, there are a variety of leaders who prefer different styles or find that certain ones are more relevant to their specific areas. Recognizing and adapting to different leadership styles can greatly affect the success of an individual or the goal overall. After these interviews, it is very apparent that leadership is a huge aspect of nursing and can vary depending on the individual focus or specialty. Two crucial styles of leadership that were widely agreed upon in the vast field of nursing were transformational and servant leadership. Each individual interviewed had some differing ideas about these styles based on their own unique experiences and what was found to work best within their environments. This shows that knowing and catering to the styles that are found to work well in each circumstance can have very positive impacts on the way an organization operates or succeeds. Exploring Advanced Methods to Enhance the Bioactivity and Health Benefits of Curcumin Luke Henrich ‘23; Dr. David Mascotti, Department of Chemistry, JCU  Curcumin is a widely studied biological molecule known to have many health benefits. Multiple studies have been published on curcumin revealing the positive impacts it can have such as improving cardiovascular health, skin healing, and brain function. The bioactivity of curcumin, however, is severely limited due to the inherent properties of the curcumin molecule. Specifically, curcumin has low water solubility, is quickly metabolized, and has difficulty passing through biological barriers. In response to these difficulties, much research has been performed which attempts to enhance the limited bioavailability of curcumin. A thorough review and breakdown of the existing research on this subject, therefore, would contribute to a better understanding of the current methodologies that exist to increase the effectiveness of curcumin. In the video, I discuss research that utilizes nanoparticles to improve the bioactivity of curcumin. Disruption of Minor Intron Splicing by Disease-associated Mutations in U12 snRNA (PC) Kyra Jancik ‘23; Dr. Elizabeth DeLaney and Dr. Richard A. Padgett, Cellular and Molecular Medicine, The Cleveland Clinic Foundation  In eukaryotic gene expression, the removal of introns from pre-mRNA is an essential function carried out by spliceosomes. Human cells have two distinct spliceosomes: U2-dependent and U12-dependent. U2-dependent spliceosomes, or major spliceosomes, remove over 99% of introns, whereas U-12 dependent spliceosomes remove less than 0.5% of introns. Mutations in spliceosome machinery are a notable cause of human disease. In particular, mutations to components unique to the minor spliceosome demonstrate that it plays a vital role in human development. Mutations in the gene encoding the minor spliceosomal small nuclear RNA (snRNA) U12, RNU12, are associated with two rare developmental disorders: 1) CDAGS syndrome and 2) early onset cerebellar ataxia. Recent work identified rare biallelic variants in RNU12 as the likely cause of CDAGS syndrome, while a single homozygous mutation was identified as the likely cause of early-onset cerebellar ataxia. Mutations associated with these diseases are clustered in or near the stem-loop III of U12 snRNA, with three of the mutations located in the Sm protein binding site. Further investigation of the mutation associated with early onset cerebellar ataxia suggests that mutations in RNU12 disrupt U12 snRNA function through the destabilization of the 3’ stem-loop, which precedes overall destabilization of the U12 snRNA. Using our in vivo orthogonal splicing assay, we quantified the effects of pathogenic RNU12 mutations on U12-dependent splicing. Splicing activity varies depending on the location of the mutation. Further work remains to fully define the mechanisms of splicing impairment that are the result of disease-associated mutations in U12 snRNA. Carboxylation of Vitamin-K Dependent Proteins and their response to CRISPR-Cas9 Gene Editing Mia Knupke ‘23; Dr. Kathleen L. Berkner and Kevin Hallgren, Molecular Cardiology, The Cleveland Clinic Foundation This analysis is a part of an extensive research project that focuses on the carboxylation of vitamin-K dependent proteins and how they respond to gene knock outs in the vitamin-K cycle via CRISPR-Cas9. This specific analysis focuses on Factor IX as the vitamin-K dependent protein of interest, and how its expression is affected in response to certain gene knock outs. Democratic Leadership Style and Its Importance in a Successful Career in Communications Alara Koprulu ‘23; Dr. Kyle O’Dell, Office of Student Engagement, JCU  Democratic leadership is a style of leadership that encourages open communication, collaboration, and participation from all members of a team, leading to increased job satisfaction, motivation, and productivity. It is especially effective in communications due to the collaborative and creative nature of the work. An example of the democratic leadership style in action is in the development of a marketing campaign, where team members are encouraged to contribute ideas, suggestions, and feedback. The democratic leadership style is essential for a successful career in communications, as it encourages open communication, collaboration, and participation from all team members, creating a supportive work environment that fosters creativity and innovation. It also leads to increased job satisfaction and motivation among team members, which can lead to increased productivity and success. Servant Leadership in the Wine Industry: Ohio and Beyond Emma Kosicek ‘23; Dr. Kyle O’Dell, Office of Student Engagement, JCU Servant Leadership is characterized by its follower-centered, authority-over-power approach. Servant leaders often interact with consumers in many scenarios and can utilize their leadership style to make better consumer-centered decisions in terms of making changes to better serve their current consumers, in addition to acquiring new ones. Additionally, winemaking, especially in growing wine regions, is a team effort by all neighboring wineries to bring tourists to the area. Servant leadership and a general communal view are essential in these efforts as well. Prior to pursuing a career in the wine industry, interviews were conducted to analyze the leadership styles of top leaders in the wine industry locally in the Grand River Valley Region and Lake Erie Shores and Islands Region, the broader state of Ohio, and the Nation as a whole to determine commonalities between these successful individuals. The Relationship Between Digitalization, CO2 Emissions, and Financial Development in Developing and Developed Countries (PC) Morgan Larick ‘23; Dr. Ficawoyi Donou-Adonsou. Department of Economics & Finance, JCU This paper first examines the relationship between digitalization and CO2 emissions to test the inverted U-shaped relationship predicted by the Environmental Kuznets Hypothesis. The results using the fixed effects, two-stage least squares, and generalized method of moments estimation coincide with this inverted U-shaped relationship suggesting that increases in digitalization increase CO2 emissions up to a certain threshold of digitalization and then decrease it. An interaction term with financial development was then included in the model to determine the role that it plays in this inverted U-shaped relationship. Overall, results indicated that there is no strong evidence that financial development plays a role in the relationship between digitalization and CO2 emissions. Since the nature of the relationship depends on the level of digital development of a country, this suggests that countries should have different policies when attempting to reduce emissions as they continue to digitalize. 

Hypoxia-inducible factor 1 alpha mediated regulation of mitochondrial function and homeostasis in normoxia (PC) Mathew Luknis ‘23; Dr. Nicole Welch and Dr. Srinivasan Dasarathy, Gastroenterology, Hepatology & Nutrition, The Cleveland Clinic Foundation During normal levels of oxygenation, also known as normoxia, the transcription factor hypoxia-inducible factor (HIF) 1α is produced and broken down in a continuous manner. Previous studies of HIF1α function(s) in hypoxia demonstrate restricted oxygen uptake and decreased protein synthesis but data regarding this transcription factor in normoxia is limited. We determined the functional aspects of HIF1α in normoxia in differentiated myotubes and with transgenic mice. Higher expression of sirtuin 3 along with higher concentrations of many TCA cycle intermediates were identified in multiple studies. Additionally, phenotypic and morphological implications of HIF1α in normoxia were identified. Arrupe Fundraiser for Journey Center for Safety and Healing Madison Maselko ‘23, Jana Abulaban ‘23, Cassidy Barnett ‘23, Sophia Filipiak ‘23, and Victoria Szep ‘23; Sadie Hackett, Arrupe Social Justice Scholars This project fundraised money and collected items for the Journey Center for Safety and Healing as a part of the Arrupe Signature Scholars program. Authentic Leadership in Marketing Sarah McAllister ‘24; Dr. Kyle O’Dell, Office of Student Engagement, JCU Within the ever changing world that is marketing, leaders have to stay on top of trends in creative and innovative ways. Authentic Leadership has proven that in order to achieve this successfully, marketing leaders have to establish open communication and foster meaningful connections. Authentic Leaders hold true to their values and acknowledge their employees as the humans that they are. Marketing employees strive to feel heard and seen in order to create their best work. Leadership in this field encapsulates what it means to lead morally, by example, and showcase an understood purpose and passion for the work that they do. Leaders today should set a genuine example for employees to feel motivated to continuously grow and improve. Investigating the Mechanism of Neuromuscular Junction Growth Control in Drosophila melanogaster (PC) Patrick McGraw ‘23; Dr. Pamela Vanderzalm, Department of Biology, JCU  The neuromuscular junction (NMJ) of Drosophila melanogaster serves as an excellent model system for synapses, or connection points, in the human central nervous system as both are glutamatergic receptors. Moreover, by studying the size and resulting quality of these connection points in Drosophila we may gain valuable information about human neurological diseases such as schizophrenia and autism. At least two signaling pathways regulate the size of the NMJ in Drosophila melanogaster. First, the Bone Morphogenetic Pathway (BMP) acts in a pro-growth manner, stimulating synaptic development. However, our lab identified a kinase cascade made of three proteins (called Tao, GCKIII, and Tricornered, or TGT for short) that inhibits BMP signaling, which negatively regulates NMJ growth. I used a CRISPR/Cas9 strategy to investigate how TGT inhibits BMP signaling by exploring our hypothesis that the last kinase in the TGT pathway, Tricornered, phosphorylates a receptor in the BMP pathway called Wit to inactivate it. By understanding how BMP and the TGT cascade interact we can better understand how the size of NMJs in Drosophila is regulated. Since these proteins and pathways are evolutionarily conserved, we may also better understand how proper synaptic strength is achieved in humans. Servant Leadership in Media and Public Service (PC) Nora McKee ‘23; Dr. Kyle O’Dell, Office of Student Engagement, JCU Leaders are vital to every industry. Whether in finance or law, sports management or theatrical arts, leaders are what make progress possible. Different types of leaders are proficient in different kinds of things. Your style or approach to leadership is most likely linked to what you do in some way. Servant leaders put the group and cause before themselves, focusing their energy on those participating and the job at hand. Servant leadership can be found in any industry, however, five interviews were conducted and analyzed with professionals in the media or public service fields. Based on these interviews, qualities of servant leadership showed prevalent in these industries. This shows that servant leadership is a successful approach and philosophy toward leading a professional group in search of public service. Exploring the Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic on the Accounting Profession Ellyse Noon ‘23; Dr. Mark Sheldon, Department of Accountancy, JCU I conducted a survey on the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the accounting profession. The survey covered a variety of areas related to the experience of working during the pandemic using open-ended and selection questions. I chose to explore this topic due to how unprecedented it is in recent history. I hope that through this research I can shine a light on the humanistic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on accounting professionals. Internship with Case Western Reserve University Prevention Research Center for Healthy Neighborhoods (PC) Madeline Panus ‘23; Jean L. Frank, MPH, Case Western Reserve University, and Dr. Margaret Farrar, Department of Political Science, JCU The Prevention Research Center for Healthy Neighborhoods (PRCHN) at Case Western Reserve University aims to bridge university researchers with community partners across Cleveland to establish, test, and implement viable strategies to improve health in underserved communities. PRCHN recognizes and finds value in the experiences of those who face constant health disparities in the historically under-invested communities in the Greater Cleveland area. Through surveillance, evaluation, and research studies PRCHN aims to challenge systemically racist norms in research and establish equity in their work to improve the health of underserved communities. The Youth Risk Behavior Survey (YRBS), developed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, tracks adolescent risk behavior, morbidity, and mortality over time. Since 1991, the YRBS has been conducted every two years in order to compare risk behaviors of local teens with those in other communities across the United States. This poster provides an overview of my internship experience with PRCHN, including my work administering the YRBS in Cuyahoga County schools, analyzing the data, and creating dissemination pieces. Penalties and Race Relations in The National Football League (PC) Kaeleigh Patriski ‘24; Dr. Brooke Turner, Department of Exercise Science & Sports Leadership, JCU The purpose of this study is to look at if penalties in the National Football League (NFL) were skewed based on racial group. The data was collected from several databases on the internet available to the public. All of the data was organized into Excel sheets to be analyzed. The racial groups in this study have been broken into white and non-white. The research showed that there was no significant difference in the proportion of white to non-white players in the National Football League and the proportion of penalties called on these groups. The NFL referees called over one thousand penalties per season over the past five years (2018-2022). It was shown that the proportion of penalties that were given to each racial group was 25% white players and 75% non-white players. The racial breakdown of the league almost exactly mirrors the proportion of the penalties. Over the years studied, the balance of the penalties fluctuated but with very small amounts of fluctuation. The largest deviation from the 25/75% split was in 2018 when the breakdown was 27% white and 73% non-white. This 2% deviation being the largest shows that the trend is fairly stable. Transformational Leadership in Law Enforcement Caylin Perryman ‘23; Dr. Kyle O’Dell, Office of Student Engagement, JCU Transformational leadership is crucial to fostering a work environment that encourages commitment and motivation. It invites and encourages change by focusing on building relationships between leaders and followers. These relationships are built on the basis of trust, respect, and responsibility. Transformational leaders focus on creating a culture of excellence through modeling collaboration. Transformational leadership is an approach that causes change within individuals and social systems. In doing so, it creates valuable and positive change in the followers with the end goal of developing them into leaders. Transformational leadership enhances the motivation, morale, and performance of followers through a variety of mechanisms. These include connecting the followers' sense of identity and self to the organizational mission, being a role model for followers, challenging followers to take greater ownership of their work, and understanding the strengths and weaknesses of followers so the leader can better align them with tasks that will optimize their performance and increase their success. Servant Leadership in Applied Behavioral Analysis Hannah Pollack ‘23; Dr. Kyle O’Dell, Office of Student Engagement, JCU Applied Behavioral Analysis is a therapy based on both the science of learning and behavior. The goal of ABA therapy is to increase behaviors that are helpful and decrease behaviors that may affect learning or are harmful. I interviewed five individuals that have been involved in ABA work and have demonstrated the importance of leadership in their careers. Their insights have supported the theory that servant leadership is essential in ABA therapy because prioritizing the child and providing the best care is the most important role. of monoclonal antibody to human high molecular weight kininogen Brandon Preda ‘23; Dr. Young Jun Shim and Dr. Keith McCrae, Cardiovascular and Metabolic Sciences, The Cleveland Clinic Foundation  Blood clotting is a very important function of the body in order to prevent blood loss. One of the cofactors involved in the coagulation cascade is high molecular weight kininogen (HK). Monoclonal antibodies produced from hybridoma cells from mice immunized with a peptide corresponding to domain 6, where FXI binds to HK, were established to identify a specific antibody that blocks FXI binding, thereby inhibiting the coagulation cascade. It may give us the potential use of these antibodies to treat certain pathological conditions such as thrombosis, stroke, and Alzheimer's disease. Two monoclonal antibodies, 2D5 and 5G5, were identified as antibodies that could bind to HK. 7A8 showed very little sensitivity to HK. Through western blotting and protein staining, 2D5 and 5G5 showed promise. However, it is suggested that additional testing is needed in order to fully verify 2D5 and 5G5 as potential antibodies that can inhibit blood clotting. Opportunities for Economic Majors; Law School Jack Pusloskie ‘24; Dr. Lindsay Calkins, Department of Economics, JCU The skills developed by being an economics major are similar to those of law school students. Economics emphasizes its assumption of rational decision-making, while law school is founded based on objective and sensible arbitration. This paper hopes to discover if economic majors perform on the LSAT, what the market for lawyers is, if there is any salary evidence indicating that economic majors pursuing a legal career make more than other majors, and if there is any evidence that suggests if a Juris Doctorate is worth it. in the Middle: Finding Opportunities for Upper Elementary Teachers to Use Play in the Classroom through Disciplinary Literacy (PC) Monica Ritchey ‘24 and Angela Kalina ‘24; Dr. Daniel Reynolds, Department of Education, JCU Under the guidance of Dr. Daniel Reynolds, we researched the decline in play used in the upper levels of elementary education. After second grade, play becomes much less frequent in elementary classrooms, and we wanted to know why. So we dissected the history of play in education, the causes of this decline, and various solutions by intricately examining previous studies and scholarly articles. We mainly focused on the work of Karen Wohlwend since she discusses play in the classroom in a multitude of her articles, providing us with a foundation for our research and conclusion. We found that the main issue with using play in upper elementary classrooms was that teachers, leaders, and even parents believe it lacked structure and did not implement standards. With this in mind, we decided to mix play with disciplinary literacy in order to fulfill the standards and keep play in the classroom after second grade. We summarized our findings in a paper and will be submitting it to Language Arts, a national journal published by the National Council of Teachers of English, which reaches thousands of elementary literacy teachers nationwide with fresh research findings and pedagogical improvements. Role of the Endothelin-1 Pathway in Experimental Autoimmune Encephalomyelitis (PC) Mark Rizk ‘23; Dr. Dimitrios Davalos and Dr. Evangelia Paouri, Neurosciences, The Cleveland Clinic Foundation  Multiple Sclerosis (MS) and other neuroinflammatory diseases are a major problem for the central nervous system. A wide spectrum of pathologies occurs because of MS disease. Endothelin-1 (ET-1) has recently become established as a possible biomarker for inflammatory pathologies in neural diseases and has been linked to the pathology of MS and experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE). ET-1 has been found to be released to the cerebral circulation in greater levels in patients suffering from MS compared to healthy individuals. However, it is not clear how the ET-1 pathway affects the demyelination progression in MS. To examine the effects of ET-1 in demyelination, EAE mice were treated with the ET-1 receptor antagonist Tracleer (bosentan), an FDA-approved drug for hypertension implicated in studies of neuroinflammation, and their outcomes were compared to control, EAE, and healthy mice in the current study by examining the spinal cord sections from all mice. It was found that EAE mice treated with bosentan had significantly less spinal cord white matter demyelination compared to vehicle treated EAE mice. The vehicle EAE mice also had significantly greater demyelination compared to healthy mice. The bosentan treated EAE mice showed reduced demyelination, suggesting that bosentan protects against EAE. in Healthcare Sam Rodgers ‘23; Dr. Kyle O’Dell, Office of Student Engagement, JCU  The healthcare field is always evolving. Just as healthcare professionals must adapt to the new innovations in medicine, leaders must also adapt to the environment around them. Leaders must be open to new ways of thinking and shifting to different leadership styles as they encounter different obstacles. This is essential in order to provide the best care possible to the patients they serve. Allylsilane Synthesis from Enolizable Aryl Ketones (PC) Sarah Roehrs ‘24 and Aidan Rodriguez ‘24; Dr. Desmond Kwan, Department of Chemistry, JCU A method for the one-pot synthesis of allylsilanes from enolizable methyl aryl ketones has been developed. The Ishihara method, which uses zinc chloride and lithium chloride, works well to yield the allylsilane product from para-substituted methyl aryl ketones. This method failed to yield the β-silylalkoxide intermediate from ortho-substituted methyl aryl ketones. A new method is being developed using cerium trichloride rather than the Ishihara method to yield the β-silylalkoxide intermediate for the first step of the synthesis. The second step entails the addition of diisobutylaluminum chloride as a bulky base and heating the reaction vessel to about 130℃ overnight to synthesize the allylsilane final product. There have been successful trials using the ortho-substituted methyl aryl ketones with the cerium trichloride to yield the β-silylalkoxide intermediate. The full reaction synthesizing the allylsilane product using the cerium-trichloride in the first step is currently being investigated. Streaming Services: A Study on Consumer Attitudes toward Advertising Morgan Rogers ‘23; Dr. Saman Zehra, Department of Management, Marketing, and Supply Chain, JCU With streaming services gaining more and more users as time passes, many companies are looking at ways to better advertise their products to consumers. Despite being so prominent over the last decade, very little research has been done into the topic, and thus, this study was conducted as a way to add to the ongoing research. Using surveys on Qualtrics and Amazon MTurk, this study looks at consumer platform preferences of advertising based or subscription based services as well as attitudes towards placement of such advertisements. Results have shown user preferences to advertising based streaming sites and digital print advertisements, as well as more engagement and lower intrusion levels to advertisements placed on the side rather than on the video. Role of mtDNA Sensing by the Innate Immune Sensor Nucleotide-binding Oligomerization Domain 2 (NOD2) (PC) Jacob Rumelfanger ‘23; Dr. Christine McDonald, Inflammation and Immunity, The Cleveland Clinic Foundation, Dr. Erin Johnson, Department of Biology, JCU  Type I interferon (IFN-I) induction of interferon-stimulated genes (ISGs) is critical in the innate immune response to infection. Nucleotide-binding oligomerization domain 2 (NOD2), an immune receptor protein, classically—an antibacterial sensor—has also been shown to mediate antiviral immunity. N-phosphonacetyl-L-aspartate (PALA), a small molecule inhibitor of pyrimidine synthesis known to activate NOD2, has been shown to enhance IFN-I-mediated immune responses. A non-canonical NOD2-dependent antiviral signaling pathway is thought to enhance ISG expression in cells treated with PALA and IFN-I. This non-canonical pathway was shown to be mediated by mitochondrial antiviral-signaling protein (MAVS) and interferon response factor 1 (IRF1). This study aims to uncover the molecular trigger of the pathway. Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA), a known activator of the innate immune system, was shown in higher levels following co-treatment with IFN-I and PALA. We hypothesized that PALA enhances IFN-I production by stimulating mtDNA release and activating the non-canonical NOD2 signaling. Co-treatment with mtDNA and IFN-I was shown to potently enhance IFN-responsive reporter gene expression and upregulated the ISG STAT1 protein levels. This enhancement of IFN-I signaling by mtDNA also required NOD2 expression. These findings suggest a novel function of NOD2, expanding its role from a microbial sensor to include sensing mitochondrial stress and damage. in Children and Cleveland Clinic’s Summer Treatment Program Sydney Ryan ‘23; Dr. Daniel Kilbride, Department of History, JCU This past summer 2022 I participated in an internship with Cleveland Clinic Children’s Hospital. I was inspired by this internship to do further research into childhood ADHD and reflect on how this experience has impacted me as a future physician. Every summer the Cleveland Clinic Children's Hospital funds a Summer Treatment Program for children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). The program was founded and then published by William E. Pelham Jr., Andrew R. Greiner and Elizabeth M. Gnagy, and has been updated every few years. STP has a few main functions; treatment of disruptive ADHD behaviors, research about the disorder through collected data, and training of interns for further work in the field (Pelham et al., 2018). Data collected from STP over the years has produced studies that aid in the understanding of ADHD and its treatment. I thoroughly enjoyed my involvement in this program. Throughout the internship, I learned about the symptoms of ADHD and how they impact a child’s social behavior. I learned about the importance of collaboration and communication to maintain a healthy work environment. Finally, I learned more about myself and how I work through adversity and challenging situations. I hope to carry what I have learned past graduation and apply it to my future medical career. Correlation Between COVID-19 Vaccination Rates and U.S. Political Affiliation Nicholas Schuler ‘23; Dr. Wendy A. Wiedenhoft Murphy, Department of Sociology and Criminology, JCU The United States’ political sphere has undoubtedly played a role in many Americans’ stances regarding the COVID-19 vaccine. This work indicates political sentiment is not a primary factor in impacting COVID-19 vaccination status in college-aged Americans (19-23 years old). According to a survey designed to investigate the relationship between COVID-19 vaccination status and political affiliation in this demographic, less than 20% of respondents regardless of vaccination status or political affiliation are interested in or follow U.S. politics closely, and only 16% of respondents vote based primarily on a candidate’s party affiliation. Instead, perception of one’s own immune response to the virus appears to be the primary factor in influencing COVID-19 vaccination rates. This inference is corroborated by patterns identified in CDC guideline adherence, such as mask-wearing and social distancing, before COVID-19 vaccines were publicly available, as well as influenza vaccination frequency. These findings suggest experience with COVID-19 infection, whether that be personal infection or infection of a relative or friend, and specifically, the severity of the illness, or concerns over potential serious infection in the future, are the main drivers for COVID-19 vaccination in college-aged Americans, and that political affiliation is a downstream effect of an individual’s stance. Leadership in Neuropsychology Keeley Scullin ‘24; Dr. Kyle O’Dell, Office of Student Engagement, JCU  Each industry consists of leaders who work to accomplish a predetermined goal. In order to do so, they adopt a certain leadership style. Prior research has supported that leadership styles will vary based on the field. One leadership style, transformational leadership, attempts to link leadership and followership. To explore the effect of transformational leadership in the field of neuropsychology, five interviews with successful neuropsychologists were conducted and analyzed. Aspects of transformational leadership were prevalent throughout the interviews of neuropsychologists, including having concern for the motivation of their followers, being visionary leaders, and treating each follower as a full human being. These findings provide evidence that transformational leadership can have a positive impact on the field of neuropsychology ranging from practicum students to fellows to neuropsychologists, themselves. Talk and BeyondSara Sfeir ‘24; Dr. Kyle O’Dell and Katie Jansen, Office of Student Engagement, JCU Leadership comes in different sizes and forms. Variations in leadership styles have proven to be successful across the years and have stood the test of time.. A leader is a human with a vision and a road map! A successful leader invites others to buy into the vision so that the team embarks to achieve the goal. In the process, a symbiotic process is created where the leader and team members grow and change by feeding off of each other. Many obstacles are faced along the way and these test the team’s commitment and resilience as well as that of the leader. Whether in medicine, management, or social work, leaders embrace their challenges differently. Yet, one common denominator is left behind. The world is a better place because of them! of taxonomic placement of falsely-branched taxa in soils of San Nicolas Island and reassessment of the Tolypothrichaceae (PC) Natalie Soliman ‘24; Dr. Jeffrey Johansen, Department of Biology, JCU This study was conducted to determine the taxonomic placement of falsely-branched taxa in the soil crusts of San Nicolas Island, which is the largest of the Channel Islands lying off the coast of California. After microscopic analysis of the strains collected from the island, a phylogenetic analysis of 16S rRNA genes, and an analysis of the 16S-23S ITS region, we have identified that these strains belong to the soil genus Spirirestis, which is in the Tolypothrichaceae family. The Tolypothrichaceae is a well-characterized monophyletic lineage of non-attenuated, false-branching heteropolar types containing the genera Spirirestis, Hassallia, Tolypothrix, Coleodesmium, and Rexia. The strains analyzed specifically belonged to the genus Spirirestis, which is characterized by having heterocyte formation, false branching, presence of sheath, and tightly spiraled trichomes. In addition to determining the taxonomic placement of the falsely-branched taxa in the soils of San Nicolas Island, we reassessed the Tolypothichaceae family. Based on our results, there was a clear distinction between the soil and the aquatic clades in the family. However, the family should not be split into two families due to high similarity of the 16S rRNA genes. The Tolypothrichaceae needs revision based on the presence of many polyphyletic genera. different gap statistic clustering methods for data with outliers (PC) Aidan Stone ‘25; Dr. Paromita Banerjee, Department of Math, Computer Science & Data Science, JCU Gap statistics is a popular method for finding an optimal number of clusters in machine learning algorithms. In our work, we compare three iterative clustering methods. Kmeans, Kmedoids, and Kmedians on datasets with extreme values or outliers while using gap statistics to predetermine the best possible number of clusters for the dataset. Human Side of Business: How Transformational Leadership Contributes to Success in Supply Chain (PC) Brooke Talbot ‘23;  Dr. Kyle O’Dell, Office of Student Engagement, JCU Research included interviews with five leaders in the supply chain field. Further analysis of their responses to a series of questions showed a common theme of transformational leadership as one of the dominant leadership styles. Their experiences and leadership beliefs are compared to three key transformational leadership characteristics. Leaders in Math EducationKatelyn Testa ‘24; Dr. Kyle O’Dell, Office of Student Engagement, JCU As many people know, mathematics is not always a favorite subject in schools. However, mathematics is so important for students to learn because it is the foundation of life on earth and truly what makes the world go round. Thus, it is crucial that math teachers find a way to make math more enjoyable for students, as they are future leaders of our world. Displayed on this poster are methods and strategies professional leaders use in the classroom to keep their students engaged in math class. Geography and Public Perception of Climate Change Leaha Viscounte ‘24; Dr. Mindy Peden, Department of Political Science, JCU  This is an analysis of the role geography plays in the public’s perception of climate change, while also considering other predominant factors, such as political ideology, economics, and media. The higher the liberal ideology, the more likely the individual is to believe in climate change and its harms. On the other spectrum, the higher the conservative ideology, the less likely the individual is to believe in climate change and its harms. However, personal experience with climate change regardless of political ideology reported in higher numbers of individuals with belied in climate change and indication of worry. This suggests that geography does play a role in public perception of climate change and can influence preconceived notions on the topic. States that have a heavier reliance on fossil fuels for their economies were less likely to indicate worry about climate change, which also speaks to geography and its impact on perception. Lastly, media often generates more polarized views surrounding climate change, which is influenced by elites. This issue is important not only to understand but also further develop due to the social justice issues surrounding climate change and its disproportionate impact on vulnerable communities. Mothering and the Needs-Focus Approach of Writing Centers: A Literature Review (PC) Sophia Wohlwend ‘25; Megan Connor, The Writing Center, JCU Many of the negative attitudes held about Writing Centers taking a needs-focused approach to their work often stem from English studies becoming female-dominated as the decades have gone on and academia’s preference for rigidity over care for students. This literature review seeks to counteract these negative attitudes through highlighting corrective theories and encouraging the development of practical applications of those theories. of exercise on stress in healthcare workers Mia Zivkovic ‘24; Dr. Gregory Farnell, Exercise Science and Sports Leadership, JCU Stress has a substantial impact on overall health because it increases inflammatory responses within the body. Stress is also linked to mental health problems, such as depression and anxiety. Since stress plays a major role in the development of chronic diseases and mental health issues, it is important to learn effective strategies to cope with it. In this study, the effects of mild, moderate, and vigorous exercise on stress in various types of healthcare workers were investigated. Physical activity was assessed by the International Physical Activity Questionnaire (IPAQ) and Godin-Shephard leisure-time physical activity questionnaire and compared to stress levels, which were measured through the Perceived Stress Scale (PSS) and the Beck Anxiety Inventory (BAI), using statistical analysis. Females had significantly higher anxiety levels (p=0.003) and perceived stress levels (p=0.018) than males. There was a statistically significant difference in stress levels with a role in healthcare (p=0.031) as well. Results showed a significant decrease in perceived stress with an increasing number of daily steps (p=0.043), and there was also a negative correlation between frequency of moderate physical activity and anxiety level (r2=-0.340, p=0.006). These results suggest that moderate exercise, specifically walking, can be a useful mechanism by which to decrease stress and anxiety levels. Leadership in Entrepreneurship Katy Zoller ‘23; Dr. Kyle O’Dell, Office of Student Engagement, JCU Adaptive leadership has become more relevant since the pandemic because it emphasizes adjusting to changing conditions. This leadership style lends itself well to success within entrepreneurship because change is the only constant in this field. There are many benefits to this leadership style, especially for entrepreneurs, because it provides an effective framework for working with change which is inevitable. In order to learn more about the relationship between adaptive leadership and entrepreneurship, I have interviewed five successful entrepreneurs in various stages. All individuals had purposefully used adaptive leadership during various stretches of their career and would use it again.


2023 Poster Abstracts


Poster guidelines, instructions, and examples: 2022 Celebration of Scholarship

2021 Celebration of Scholarship

Students who present posters have the option of entering the poster competition. Cash prizes will be awarded. A panel of judges from JCU and the local community will evaluate posters.  To enter the competition, please submit your Poster Application and indicate that you wish to be entered into the Poster Competition.


Check out past winners on the 2022 and 2021 Celebration sites:

2022 Celebration of Scholarship

2021 Celebration of Scholarship

Poster Judges from the JCU Community

Dr. Saba Adana, Assist. Professor, Management, Marketing, and Supply Chain

Dr. Lisa Brown Cornelius, Senior Director, Residence Life

Tainne Dallas, Assistant Director, Career Services

Dr. Carlo DeMarchi, Assist. Dean Academic Success

Dr. Charles Donou-Adonsou, Assist. Professor, Economics 

Dr. Gregory Farnell, Professor, Exercise Science and Sports Leadership

Dr. Anna Iacovetta, Adjunct Professor, Education & School Psychology

Erica Kennedy, Director of Sponsored Programs

Dr. Jim Krukones, Vice Provost for Academic Affairs

Carole Moran Krus, Research Compliance Administrator

Dr. Peter Kvidera, Assoc. Professor, English

Dr. Kathleen Lee, Asst. Dean, Pre-Health Professions

Mary Jo Levand, Post-Award Coordinator

Dr. Megan Lowes-Bolin, Part-Time Instructor

Lauren Marshall, Collections Analyst, Grasselli Library & Breen Learning Center

Sage McMillan, Administrative Assistant for Licensure, Education & School Psychology

Ed Mish, Academic Success Advisor, Academic Success Center

Dr. Sara Parrish, Assist. Professor, Education & School Psychology

Dr. Ralph Saporito, Assoc. Professor, Biology

Dr. Cary Seidman, Adjunct Instructor, Education & School Psychology/Physics

Kathleen Sardon, Assistant Director, Campus Ministry

Dr. Jillian Stupiansky, Assoc. Professor, Mathematics, Computer Science, and Data Science

Dr. Pamela Vanderzalm, Assoc, Professor, Biology

Gabriela Wanless, Assistant Registrar for Catalog and Scheduling, Office of Registrar

Dr. James Watling, Assoc. Professor, Biology

Claudia Wenzel, Assistant Vice President, Student Enrollment & Financial Services

Q Williams, Administrative Assistant, Biology



Students can present their work during the conference-style live sessions scheduled throughout the afternoon of April 25th in one of three presentation rooms in the Lombardo Student Center. Each session will be 75 minutes long and organized around a central theme. Students can present scholarly papers or participate in panel discussions on a given topic.  Detailed Schedule of Presentations


Schedule of 2023 Celebration of Scholarship Oral Sessions


Live Session A, 12:30 - 1:45 pm, O’Dea

Honors Program Presentations

Moderated by Daniel Kilbride, PhD


  1. Alex Gata (Undergrad), ‘23, Anatomy and Development of the Cranium of the Natricine Snake: Nerodia rhombifer
  2. Maxwell Loeb (Undergrad), ‘23, Create Your Own Reality
  3. Dominic Roschival (Undergrad), ‘23, Religiosity and Social Connectedness: Potential Mediators for the Mental Health of John Carroll Students
  4. Peter Wangechi (Undergrad), ‘27, Drought, Wildfires and Climate Change


Live Session D, 2:00 - 3:15 pm, O’Dea

Teach Like Me Fellowships and Ignite Scholars

This session will focus on the Teach Like Me Fellowship which is centered around creating a pipeline of diverse educators in the education community. There will also be information about Ignite Scholars, an opt-in cohort model to support first-generation scholars beginning in Fall 2023.

Moderated by Margaret Schauer, PhD


  1. Kenneth Jordan (Undergrad), ‘26, Read Like Me and Mentorship
  2. Jaheim Peake (Undergrad), ‘24, Mentorship and Teach Like Me
  3. Alison Brown (Undergrad), ‘25, Teach Like Me
  4. Daniel Devera (Undergrad), ‘25, Teach Like Me


Live Session E, 2:00 - 3:15 pm, Murphy

Arrupe Scholars Have You Ever Felt Othered at JCU?

This session will focus on the Arrupe senior advocacy project completed by the three students listed below. We will share insights from the panel discussion surrounding diversity and inclusion that was held on March 20, 2023 in Donahue Auditorium.

Moderated by Sadie Hackett, Director, Arrupe Social Justice Scholars


Have You Ever Felt Othered at JCU?

  1. Georgia Lattas (Undergrad), ‘23
  2. Anna Vitale (Undergrad), ‘23
  3. Paul Raglow-DeFranco (Undergrad), ‘23


Mass Incarceration Advocacy

  1. Annika Timm (Undergrad), ‘23
  2. Melissa Canfora (Undergrad), ‘23
  3. Leanna Nasrallah (Undergrad), ‘23  
  4. Sydney Jenko (Undergrad), ‘23  


Live Session F, 2:00 - 3:15 pm, Jardine

Exploring Cutting-Edge Research in Communication & Media Theories: Students’ Current and Ongoing Inquiry

Dive into the world of cutting-edge research and uncover the latest developments in communication and digital media theories at our Russert COM panel, presented by Digital Media Track Seniors (COM 455). Join fellow college students in exploring groundbreaking topics in areas such as VR, frame theory, digital storytelling, narrative persuasion theory, critical cultural theories, social media theories, and more. Witness the future of media as Russert COM Department students present their ongoing research, engage in stimulating discussions, and connect with peers who share your passion for all things communication and media. The first part (45 minutes) covers research on "Journalism, Frame Analysis, Propaganda, Representation, Cultivation, and Mediated Narrative Persuasion in Activists Movements". The second part (30 minutes) is on research on "Social Media, TikTok, “The Unusual” in Reality TV, Media Aesthetics in Wildlife and Color Preferences, Digital Storytelling, and Pink Tax Social Media Marketing Perception." Don't miss out on this captivating experience that will expand your mind and ignite your curiosity!

Moderated by Maurice Emelu, PhD

Part 1- Journalism, Frame Analysis, Propaganda, Representation, Cultivation, and Mediated Narrative Persuasion in Activists Movements


  1. Taylor Anthony (Undergrad), ‘23, Online Harassment of Female Broadcast Journalists in the Age of Digital Journalism: An Objectification Theory Review
  2. Logan Potosky (Undergrad), ‘23, How Game Recaps Frame the 2022-23 Cleveland Cavaliers on Local and National Websites
  3. Georgia Lattas (Undergrad), ‘23, How Violence Portrayed on TV Leads to Aggression and Antisocial Behaviors in Young Adolescents
  4. Nora McKee (Undergrad), ‘23, Comparison of Narrative Theory in the Black Lives Matter Movement and the Students for a Democratic Society Movement
  5. Paul Raglow-DeFranco (Undergrad), ‘23, Content Analysis and Comparison of Narrative Theory in the Civil Rights Movement and Black Lives Matter Movement  

Part 2 - Social Media, TikTok, “The Unusual” in Reality TV, Media Aesthetics in Wildlife and Color Preferences, Digital Storytelling, and Pink Tax Social Media Marketing Perception


  1. Henry Clarisey (Undergrad), ‘23, TikTok Effects on Self-confidence Among College Students
  2. Sophia Filipiak (Undergrad), ‘23, Do human beings crave the ability to visually experience “the unusual”?: Comparing exploitive reality TV shows featuring people with unusual circumstances or disabilities to circus “freak shows” of the 19th century
  3. Corinne McDevitt (Undergrad), ‘23, Greyscale Minimalism or Colorful Maximalism: What is the preference of The Carroll News Readers?
  4. Justin Vetrano (Undergrad), ‘23, Wildlife Depictions in the National Geographic and Cabela's Photography: A Study in Media Aesthetics Theory
  5. Carly Beam (Undergrad), ‘23, Pink Tax Awareness and Social Media Marketing: A Study of College Students’ Perception


Live Session G, 3:30 - 4:45 pm, O’Dea

Peace, Justice, and Human Rights: From Ireland to the U.S.

Moderated by Philip Metres, PhD


  1. Ashtyn Kahler (Undergrad), ‘23, The Ongoing Mental Health Impact of the Northern Ireland Troubles
  2. Amanda Kray (Undergrad), ‘23, The Hidden Victims of COVID-19
  3. Gabby Lambesis (Undergrad), ‘23 and Caitlin Larkin (Undergrad), ‘25, The Funding Dilemma: Policing in Northern Ireland and Cleveland


Live Session J, 5:00 - 6:15 pm, O’Dea

Fake News and Fact-Checking: Crafting a Production Treatment for a Documentary

The "Fake News and Fact-Checking" session, led by the Russert Student Research Team in the Tim Russert Department of Communication, under the supervision of the Reverend Dr. Maurice Emelu, dives deeper into the heart of The Tim Russert Story. The session is a part of the National Endowment for Humanities project proposal research and sheds light on the influence of Russert's background in liberal arts and humanities on his journalistic approach. Participants in this session will engage in a stimulating discussion centered around the importance of considering diverse perspectives, fostering cultural understanding, and recognizing the intricate nuances in the field of journalism. As a part of the session, students present research on crafting the production treatment for Part 2 of the documentary's series.

Moderated by Maurice Emelu, PhD


  1. Veronique Nlendu (Undergrad), ‘23, A couple of scenes in the Fake News & Fact-Checking Production Treatment
  2. Lydia Bennett (Undergrad), ‘26, A couple of scenes in the Fake News & Fact-Checking Production Treatment
  3. Shaina Kuper (Undergrad), ‘24, A couple of scenes in the Fake News & Fact-Checking Production Treatment
  4. Vic Jackson (Undergrad), ‘26, A couple of scenes in the Fake News & Fact-Checking Production Treatment


Live Session K, 5:00 - 6:15 pm, Murphy

Ancient Texts/Modern Approaches: Current Student Work in Classics

This session features the capstone and scholarship projects of four classics majors.

Moderated by Kristen Ehrhardt, PhD


  1. Madeline Clair (Undergrad), ‘23, Bacchants, Cowards, or Soothsayers: The Etruscan Identity in Images
  2. Peter Foote (Undergrad), ‘25, My Experiences Digging with the Despotiko Field School
  3. Allison Horner (Undergrad), ‘24, Untangling the Female Voice: An Analysis of Female Speech in Latin Literature
  4. Veronica McDowell (Undergrad), ‘24, Weaving Her Narrative: Penelope in an Active Role



The popular Arts at Night event is an evening of spoken word and musical performances.

The event will be held in the Dolan Science Center Atrium and begins at 8 pm.  


For more information, please contact:

Phil Metres, PhD





Calling all artists: Seeking entries that celebrate creative arts at JCU!

CLICK HERE to submit your entries to the 2023 Art Show.  

Students can submit their artwork in any visual media (paints, pencils, photography, fibers, sculpture, etc.). Submissions will be displayed in Grasselli Library & Breen Learning Center through the end of the semester. 


For more information, please contact:

Amy Wainwright

Open Date: Friday, March 3, 2023

Close Date: Friday, April 14, 2023


Important: Late applications cannot be accepted. The application form will automatically close on 4/14/23 at 11:59 p.m.


The deadline for submission to Celebration of Scholarship 2023 is April 14, 2023.

Applications for poster submissions (presentation and competition) and all oral sessions must be submitted by Friday, April 14, 2023.  No exceptions will be granted so please plan ahead.


If you have issues with your application or the timeline, please contact Erica Kennedy ( or Mary Jo Levand ( before the deadline.


CLICK HERE for the detailed Schedule of Events


11:30 am - 12:15 pm      Kickoff Remarks and Chick-fil-A lunch

Dolan Science Center Atrium


All day and week     Poster Presentation & Competition

Online via Symposium


12:30 pm - 6:15 pm     Panel Session & Oral Presentations

D.J. Lombardo Student Center: O'Dea, Murphy, Jardine


8:00 pm - 10:00 pm     Arts at Night

Dolan Science Center Atrium


All day and week     Art Show

Grasselli Library & Breen Learning Center

Contact us at


Erica Kennedy, MBA, CRA Director of Sponsored Programs  SIH 250

Mary Jo Levand, CPA Post Award Coordinator  SIH 250

Jim Krukones, Ph.D. Celebration of Scholarship Host Associate Academic Vice President 216.397.4762 SIH 133

CLICK BELOW for the full schedule: