Skip to main content Skip to navigation

WSU College of Agricultural, Human, and Natural Resource Sciences Funds 30+ Undergraduate Research Projects

PULLMAN, Wash. – An unprecedented number of undergraduate students in the Washington State University College of Agricultural, Human, and Natural Resource Sciences will have an opportunity to conduct hands-on science thanks to a series of grants from the college specifically aimed at supporting undergraduate research.

“Experiential learning and applying basic science and research to real-world issues and challenges are cornerstones of what our college is about,” said Kim Kidwell, CAHNRS associate dean for academic programs. “The lessons learned by actually conducting research are much more impactful than those learned solely by listening in a lecture hall.”

Last year approximately 10 projects received grants of between $500 and $1,200. This year, the program has been expanded to fund more than 30 projects. “The student projects were chosen for funding based on the soundness of the science and research methods they proposed,” Kidwell explained. “The level of quality and innovation is impressive.”

The students, working in teams with CAHNRS faculty and graduate students, will conduct research on everything from developing wheat for celiac patients and dietary health to enhancing seed germination in sweet cherry breeding programs, from environmental design of the modern golf course to attribution of blame to victims of sexual abuse.

A complete list of the projects is available at Students will present findings from their research at the CAHNRS Awards Banquet at the end of the Spring 2009 semester.

The undergraduate research grant program is funded by the WSU Agricultural Research Center and the CAHNRS Office of Academic Programs.


CAHNRS Undergraduate Research Projects Funded for 2009

download a PDF of this list


Molecular Characterization of Steroyl-CoA Desaturase (SCD1) Gene for Improving Pork Quality
Students: Kari Von Krosigk, Dor Dor Vuong, Amy Youngren
Faculty advisor: Dr. Zhihua Jiang

Evaluation of Residual Feed Intake in Suffold Ram Lambs
Student: Ashley Conway
Faculty advisor: Dr. Margaret Benson

Manual Annotation of Nucleus Encoded Mitochondrial Genome in Bovine
Student: Dana M. DeRego
Faculty advisor: Dr. Zhihua Jiang

The Genetic Correlation between Cows with BVDV during Pregnancy and PI Calves
Student: Elizabeth Domby
Faculty advisor: Holly Neibergs

Whole Genome SNP Information Transfer from Cow to Buffalo
Students: K.C. Fagan, Ashley Lewman, Brianna Oas
Faculty advisor: Dr. Zhihua Jiang

Does Acidified Water Decrease E.Coli 0157:H7 on Beef Trimming Without Decreasing Quality and Palatability?
Student: Riley Mengarelli
Faculty advisor: Jan Busboom

Regulation of Energy Use in Dairy Cattle Using Nutrigenomic and Gene Array Approaches
Students: Jessica Miller, Amanda Lowe, Cale Duncan
Faculty advisor: John P. McNamara

Humoral Immunity to Avian Pox Virus and Culex Mosquitos
Student: Julia Pasztor
Faculty advisor: Dr. Jeb P. Owen

Genetics of Feed Conversion: Using a Dynamic Metabolic Model to Investigate the Patterns of Nutrient Flux in the Most Efficient Dairy Animals
Student: Chris Shachtschneider
Faculty advisor: John P. McNamara

Nutrigenomic Regulation of Pig Growth and Pork Quality in Pigs Fed Pacific Northwest Alternative Diets
Students: Alexandra Whalen, Alycia Youngquist
Faculty advisor: John P. McNamara


Adding Value to an Apparel Product for the Mature Woman
Students: Sierra Cook, Suzanna Valdez
Faculty advisor: Dr. Yoo Jin Kwon

Monokini Bathing Suits
Student: Tamara Hall
Faculty advisor: Dr. Carol Salusso


Develop an Innovative Management Strategy to Better Manage Agricultural Operations Using Global Position and Geographical Information Systems for a Brazilian Farming Operation
Student: Michael Hughes
Faculty advisor: James Durfey

Identification of phyB-4 Activation-Tagged Suppressors in Arabidopsis
Student: Derik LeFave
Faculty advisor: Dr. Michael M. Neff

Wheat for Celia Patients and Dietary Health
Student: Tyler Markwart
Faculty advisor: Dr. Diter von Wettstein

Grazing Management Utilizing GPS Remote Control
Student Kent Stokes
Faculty advisor: James Durfey


Development of an Innovative Management System Strategy to Better Manage Agricultural Operations Using Global Positioning and Geographical Information Systems for Northwest Agricultural Producers
Students: Brian Fink, Jessica McAlavy, Brandon Van Dalsen, Meagan Hughes and Chad Lewis
Faculty advisor: James Durfey


Development of an Organic Barley-Based Nutrition Bar
Student: Rosyleen Aquino
Faculty advisor: Dr. Stephanie Clark

Acceptance of Nontraditional Ice Cream by Consumers
Student: Christina Martin Samuels
Faculty advisor: Dr. Stephanie Clark


Enhancing Percentage of Seed Germination in Sweet Cherry Breeding Program
Student: Mathew Allan
Faculty advisor: Dr. Amit Dhingra

Efficient Micropropagation of Apple, Pear, and Cherry Using Specialized Light Regimes
Student: Maureen McFerson
Faculty advisor: Dr. Amit Dhingra

Identification of Pixie Gene in Washington Wine Grapes
Student: Dane Scarimbolo
Faculty advisor: Dr. Amit Dhingra

Enabling Grape Genomics: Establishing a Regeneration Protocol for Pixie Grapes
Student: Kathie Lee Nicholson
Faculty advisor: Dr. Amit Dhingra


Body Image among Transgender Adolescents
Student: Erin Callahan
Faculty advisor: Dr. Jenifer K. McGuire

Building Emergent Literacy in Young Children: A Collaborative Study with Fort Vancouver Regional Library
Student: Karen Furnanz
Faculty advisor: Dr. Yoshie Sano

Spat, Spite and Spit: Subjective and Objective Indicators of Child Functioning and Their Contributions to Child-Related Interparental Conflict
Student: Janet Irons
Faculty advisor: Dr. Patricia Pendry

The Attribution of Blame toward Victims of Sexual Abuse
Student: Yolanda Kukuia
Faculty advisor: Dr. Jenifer McGuire


Spokane Regional Business Center Office Redesign
Students: Alex Almerico, Sara Koelsch, Rachel Aust, Cassie Stenberg and Jenni Olson
Faculty advisor: Nancy Blossom


Guiding the Modern Golf Course: The Art and Science of Environmental Design
Student: Garrett T. Jones
Faculty advisor: Ken Struckmeyer


Soils and Civilizations in the South Pacific
Students: Lauren Young, Rachel Welch
Faculty advisor: Markus Flury


Benthic Invertebrate Colonization Following Sediment Oxygenation in North Twin Lake

Student: Brian Lanouette
Faculty advisor: Dr. Barry Moore

Media Contacts

Kim Kidwell, CAHNRS associate dean for academic programs, 509-335-7247