The Washington State University Emeritus Society of retired faculty members has selected seven students to receive awards and grants to support their undergraduate research efforts, group spokesman Tom Brigham said.

“As retired faculty from disciplines across the university, we feel it’s important to do what we can to encourage students’ research, scholarship, and creative activities,” said Brigham. “This allows us to contribute to the continued advancement of WSU, our community, and the state.

“We are very honored to present awards to undergraduate researchers in five categories, and our new arts and humanities grant to our first two awardees.”

Grant recipients

The recipients of the inaugural Emeritus Society Undergraduate Research Grants in Arts and Humanities each receive $1,000 grants to support mentored undergraduate student research and creative exploration in the arts and humanities at any stage of project development, up to and including a final presentation. The goal of these grants is to encourage students engaged in and studying the fine and performing arts; in exploring modern and ancient languages, literatures, cultures, philosophy, and history; and in examining human culture and expression from defined perspectives in the wide range of related interdisciplinary programs at WSU. Recipients are:

Music performance major and Honors College student Anya Guadamuz who researches with advisor Sophia Tegart “Music of the Spheres: Using Astrological Symbolism to Explain Dualities within Music.”

Microbiology major and Honors College student Emma Ledbetter who researches with advisor Melissa Nicolas “The Rhetoric of Communication of Scientific Information about COVID-19.”

Undergraduate research awards

The Emeritus Society Excellence in Undergraduate Research Award is presented in categories spanning disciplines to encourage students from all majors to strive for scholarly excellence. Read details about their research presented at the spring Showcase for Undergraduate Research and Creativities by entering their names in the search field. Listed by award category, the 2021 recipients of this $500 award are:
Physical Sciences and Mathematics—Physics and astronomy major Chelsea Weaver who researches with mentor Brian Saam “Fluxgate Magnetometer Integration in Spin Exchange Optical Pumping Experimental Setup and Electron Paramagnetic Resonance Frequency Shift Measurement”

Biosciences—WSU Vancouver biology major Randi Richards who researches with mentor Stephanie Porter “The Evolution of Heavy Metal Tolerance Leads to UV Tolerance in Plant Microbial Symbionts”

Engineering and Applied Sciences—Chemical engineering and materials science and engineering major and WSU Honors College student John Bussey who researches with mentor John McCloy “Characterization of Mt. St. Helens Ash for Use as a Lunar Regolith Simulant”

Arts, Humanities, and Creative Activities—Music composition and music education major Jack Spencer Smith who researches with mentor Gregory Yasinitsky “Hero, Op. 3: A French Overture for Wind Ensemble”

Social, Economic, and Behavioral Sciences—Neuroscience and psychology major and WSU Honors College student Olivia Willis who researches with mentor Cheryl Reed “Inspiring Transportation Career with K-12 Curriculum Activities.”

The Emeritus Society website has more information about this year’s awards and recipients.