2016 Student Research Forum

Jasmine Lopez, an undergraduate in biological sciences, presents her research on reversing retinal ischemic injuries

Jasmine Lopez, an undergraduate in biological sciences, presents her research on reversing retinal ischemic injuries. Photo: Roberta Dupuis-Devlin

Students’ hard work came to fruition April 12 as they presented their projects at the Student Research Forum.

Nearly 300 students showed off their work at the UIC Forum, judged by 300 faculty and alumni judges.

Students from all disciplines were invited to present their work individually to judges and others during a three-hour presentation session, which was followed by an awards ceremony.

Senior Jeff Harvey, a physics major, enjoyed discussing his project, which uses physics to try and understand what’s happening on a molecular scale when an ion is extracted from the water into the oil phase.

“It was a great opportunity to get to talk to people that are outside of physics and try to show them why this work is interesting,” he said. “Presenting work in this kind of forum is also a really good test of how well I understand the material myself. Being able to explain things in an accessible manner takes a lot of work, and forces you to really identify the key points of the concepts in order to paint a cohesive and logical picture.”

Ruxandra Griza presented her work on the relationship between food waste and energy and the impact of smart food packaging.

“I’m really into environmental things, especially when it’s considering wasteful behavior not only with food but with plastic waste and water waste,” said Griza, a freshman in earth and environmental sciences.

Dimitra Papadakis, a senior in psychology, focused her research on juror motivation by gender. She conducted a mock jury study that showed that contrary to previous research, women didn’t change their minds more frequently than men.

“All the studies that say that women change their minds were done before the year 2000, so maybe that means that women do not struggle to uphold a position. Maybe there has been a cultural change. Maybe women are more motivated to speak up, so I think that’s pretty cool,” she said.

Sarah Lee, a senior in neuroscience, was happy to fulfill a dream she’s had since freshman year of presenting at the research forum.

“Now since I’m a senior, I feel like I’ve got my nostalgia goggles on, and I just want to enjoy everything as it’s happening,” she said.

View a complete list of award winners online. 

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