Eighteen Students Present at 21st Annual SEPCHE Honors Conference

SEPCHE honors conference webEighteen students presented their research projects during the 21st Annual SEPCHE Honors Conference, held at Cabrini University, on Saturday, March 23. Under the direction and guidance of Holy Family University’s Honor Council and nominated by their mentoring professors, students presented a variety of academic and artistic presentations. The next SEPCHE Honors Conference will be hosted by Holy Family University on Saturday, March 28, 2020.

“The SEPCHE Honors Conference is an opportunity for Holy Family University to showcase some of the best student work that is produced both inside and outside the classroom,” said Dr. Michael Markowitz, Vice President for Academic Affairs. “Students who participate in this event have always carried the standards and hallmarks of a true Holy Family education. We’re immensely proud of all of them.”

Kenny Brightcliffe
Faculty Mentor: Dr. Mary Carroll Johansen
Philadelphia is known as a city of neighborhoods. Philadelphians, perhaps more so than people from any other major city in America, have pride in the section of the city that they grew up in. Philadelphians love their city, but they have a connection with their specific neighborhood. This research will explore the relationship surrounding Mayfair, a neighborhood in the Northeast section of the city.

David Butkiewicz
Faculty Mentor: Dr. Jaclyn Myers
Genetic Engineering of Influenza Virus A Antigenic Sites
The Influenza virus is continually changing due to its high mutation rate. High variability in antigenic sites prove difficult for vaccine production. In this research, we systematically introduce point mutations into hemagglutinin antigenic regions to observe how single-point mutations influence viral characteristics. The purpose of this research is to understand viral changes through reverse genetics.

Melissa Cahill
Faculty Mentor: Sr. Marcella Louise Wallowicz CSFN, Phd
Sabermetrics Applied to Faculty Evaluations
This research is a continuation of my project involving sabermetrics, statistics made to evaluate baseball players, applied to university faculty to quantify faculty research, scholarship, and faculty service.

Rachel D’Angelo
Faculty Mentor: Pamela Flynn
Oil Painting: 3,2,1
This piece expresses a futile struggle, specifically through a female perspective, that suggests that although we may face hardship, we do not have to accept this as part of our identity. Who we are is made up of memories, but the past does not exist.

Christina Erwin
Faculty Mentor: Dr. David Whelan
The Reality of Police Suicide
Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the United States and almost 45,000 Americans die by suicide each year. While suicide can affect people of all age, race, and gender, one group in particular has seen a disturbing rise in suicide rates, police officers. In recent years, there have been more police officer suicides than line-of-duty deaths.

Christopher Ewing
Faculty Mentor: Pamela Flynn
Suicide Awareness
This video presentation aims to raise awareness for suicide and to try and prevent anyone else from completing this dreadful act.

Rachel Fox
Mentor: Dr. Janice Xu
Chick-fil-A Whitman Square Community Relations Case Analysis
Chick-fil-A is a family-oriented restaurant with locations across the United States that serves millions of guests daily. This research will focus on the community relations activities of Chick-fil-A of Whitman Square, a fast food chain located in Northeast Philadelphia. The community relations case analysis will be based on the results of surveys and focus groups conducted in 2018 among customers and staff at this location.

Amanda Gurecki
Faculty Mentor: Dr. Jonathan Rosen
Understanding the Relationship between Organized Crime and the States: A Complex Nexus
This presentation is drawn from a chapter of an edited volume, which strives to understand the different ways in which organized crime penetrates the state apparatus in Latin America.

Nicholas Ihnatenko
Faculty Mentor: Dr. Daniel Bassi
PDX, Furin, and Ovarian Cancer
Ovarian cancer remains a difficult cancer type to treat due to its late-stage detection and diagnosis. Furin, a proprotein convertase, has been shown to be involved with tumor growth and progression through the activation of growth factors, their receptors and matrix metalloproteinases. To counteract this development, the gene PDX is utilized to silence the furin gene and stop subsequent tumor growth. PDX acts as an inhibitor of furin in ovarian cancer cells to successfully transfer the gene for PDX to these cell lines. The transfer and then activation of PDX results in a decrease of cell proliferation or possible decreased tumor growth.

The Crime Scene: A Simulation Activity
Simulation techniques may help in the application of learning techniques to real-world model. The analysis of a mock crime scene is amenable to include simulation techniques that involve the collection of samples, sketching, note-taking and photographing techniques. Simulation techniques stimulate observation and knowledge in a criminal investigation. This group activity represented a combined effort between the School of Arts and Sciences as well as the School of Nursing and Allied Health Professions.

Kabir Kolawole
Faculty Mentor: Dr. Dan Mankowski
Left Handedness
Multiple factors, such as culture, influence the way left handedness is perceived around the world. Fortunately, a vast majority of those who are left handed have managed to paint a good picture of it. The main cause of left handedness has not been found yet, though it has been associated with intelligence and excellence.

Vanessa Lakatosh
Faculty Mentor: Dr. Dan Mankowski
Alzheimer’s Disease
Alzheimer’s is a disease that damages the brain through the buildup of tiny proteins that block messages, preventing people from performing normal tasks. It is thought to be developed as age increases. No one knows why it occurs and there is no cure, yet it continues to deteriorate the brains of many people.

Erica Longobardi
Faculty Mentor: Pamela Flynn
Painting: The Heart of the Matter
Pain and hardship are a reality that we experience in our lives. These experiences shape our perspectives of the world around us. This piece aims to affirm the various emotional hardships we endure by exploring vulnerability, violence, sadness, and pain.

Anna Muller
Faculty Mentor: Dr. Dan Mankowski
On April 25, 1986, Chernobyl, Ukraine faced an explosion from their nuclear reactor. A violation of safety policy and a design flaw led to the catastrophic event. Several researchers study the event itself and its long-lasting effects on its environment and people. The radioactivity levels have led to abnormalities in animals and diseases within humans.

Patrick Murray
Faculty Mentor: Dr. Mary Carroll Johansen
The Border: Finding a Balance Between Security and Cooperation
Drugs, violence, and extortion are leaving the common Mexican people with no choice but to flee their homes. The United States should continue to adopt policies that work toward assisting Mexico and Central America with financial aid and ensuring that corruption and cartel violence are not necessarily eradicated, but minimized to lessen the necessity of illegal immigration.

Jillian Nugent
Faculty Mentor: Dr. Dan Mankowski
Safe Injection Sites
On paper, safe injection sites look good and seem to have all the right answers, but in reality, they are doing more harm than good. This research explains why this practice is harming children and includes interviews with a Philadelphia Police Officer and a recovering heroin addict.

Meghan Rakus
Faculty Mentor: Dr. Kimberly Heuschkel
Everyday Mindfulness for the Everyday Classroom
With intellectual curriculum being in the forefront of the United States’ education system, teachers and families often overlook emotional intelligence. Everyday Mindfulness for the Everyday Classroom will display lessons and classroom techniques that align with Pennsylvania State Standards while simultaneously helping students become more mindful students and citizens.

Grace Van Thuyne
Faculty Mentor: Dr. Stacy McDonald
Video Games and Gun Attitudes: Are College Students' Views on Gun Control Influenced by the Video Games They Play?
In the United States, 24% of “E” (everyone) rated video games and 57% of “T” (teen) games involve guns (Smith et al., 2004). With such easy access, adolescents may view gun violence quite often. To examine if exposure to violent video games influences gun attitudes, the researcher completed an online survey. The research examines the variables and implications of the survey.

Donald Wallace
Faculty Mentor: Pamela Flynn
Plaster: Two Foxes
It started with a thought that I transferred to paper in sketch form. From there it became a small clay model. The plaster and water were combined in a bucket where it would dry. Once it dried enough, with the assistance of chisels and mallets, I tried my best to recreate my original thought, Two Foxes.