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Students awarded Provost Scholarships for Honors Thesis Research (Relased: 5/1/96)

This is a compilation of individual releases sent to students' hometown newspapers. Students are listed alphabetically.

Office of University Communications.

STORRS, Conn. -- Laura Burnett of Mansfield, a senior majoring in dietetics at the University of Connecticut, has received a Provost Scholarship for Honors Thesis Research. The competitive scholarship enables undergraduate students to conduct additional research in their field.

The title of her thesis is "The Effect of Early Nutrition Therapy on the Maintenance of Nutritional Status in Outpatient, HIV-Positive Clients." Through UConn's Eastern Connecticut Health Outreach, she developed individualized nutrition plans for clients and measured the results by tracking changes in the clients' hand grip strength and body weight.

Burnett plans to pursue a master's degree.

STORRS, Conn. -- Benjamin Freda of Greenwich, a physiology and neurobiology major at the University of Connecticut, was awarded a Provost Scholarship for Honors Thesis Research. The competitive award enables undergraduate students to carry out research in their field of study. His project is titled "The Anatomical Distribution of Peyer's Patches in Rabbit and Human Small Intestine: Possible Role of Peyer's Patches in the Pathobiology of Crohn's Disease."

Freda, a victim of Crohn's disease, had surgery in 1989 and has been in remission since. The Crohn's and Colitis Foundation of America awarded him a research fellowship for the same project. He is one of 15 students internationally to receive a research fellowship from the American Gastroenterological Association for his project.

These awards will enable him to continue his research this summer at UConn with Herbert J. Van Kruiningen, a professor of pathobiology. According to Benjamin, "Dr. Van Kruiningen is one of the top researchers of Crohn's disease in the country."

Freda is a volunteer Big Brother at Mansfield Youth Services, where he spends a few hours a week acting as a mentor/companion to children who come from broken homes, have learning disabilities or suffer from attention deficit disorders. He received a research fellowship from the American Heart Association in 1993.

In the fall, he will attend medical school at the University of New England.

STORRS, Conn. -- Ira David Galin of Simsbury, a senior physiology and neurobiology major at the University of Connecticut, received a Provost Scholarship for Honors Thesis Research. The competitive award enables undergraduate students to conduct research in their field of study. His project is titled "NMDA and Neurotrophin Interaction in Neocortical Development."

He is a member of two national honors societies and participates in intramurals. He played lacrosse for two years and was a Red Cross volunteer. Galin has been named a Presidential Scholar each year at UConn.

He will attend Boston University Medical School after graduation in May.

STORRS, Conn. -- JoAnne Giel of Hebron, an animal science major at the University of Connecticut, has been awarded a Provost Scholarship for Honors Thesis Research. The competitive scholarship enables undergraduates to conduct research in their field.

Her project is titled "Geriatric Veterinary Medicine," which examines the physiological and pathological changes in aging dogs, the attitudes of practitioners toward geriatric medicine and the adequacy of education in geriatric medicine.

Giel established her own business and started a family after attending RHAM High School in Hebron. After a 13-year break, she went to college. At age 35, she looks forward to graduating next month.

STORRS, Conn. -- Susan L. Grace of Coventry, a senior nursing major at the University of Connecticut, has received a Provost Scholarship for Honors Thesis Research. The competitive award enables undergraduate students to conduct research in their field of study. Her project is titled "Adult Survivors of Childhood Sexual Abuse: Experiences of Being in Control or Out of Control in a Health Care Setting."

In her study, she explains that "research on the traumatic treatment will help recognize and prevent retraumatization of the hospitalization experience for survivors of sexual abuse."

Grace, 35, received her first undergraduate degree from UConn as an animal science major. She has received several awards, including the Clara Barton Award for Volunteer Leadership, which she achieved by volunteering in Puerto Rico for the American Red Cross. She plans to attend graduate school after gaining experience working in the field following graduation in May.

STORRS, Conn. -- Andrew Gutterman of Windsor, a senior ecology and evolutionary biology major at the University of Connecticut, has received a Provost Scholarship for Honors Thesis Research. The competitive award provides funding for undergraduate students to conduct research in their field of study.

His project, titled "Habitat Assessment of the Rufous-Sided Towhee (Pipilo erythropthalumus)" involved research in Cape Cod last summer. He hypothesizes that this species of bird is declining because shrubby habitats have disappeared.

This summer Gutterman will work for the National Park Service in Cape Hatteras, N.C. The project involves conservation of the piping plover, a shore bird. He may enroll in graduate school in the fall of 1997.

STORRS, Conn. -- Amy R. Holibaugh of Mt. Vernon, Ohio, a senior psychology major at the University of Connecticut, has received a Provost Scholarship for Honors Thesis Research. The competitive award enables undergraduate students to conduct research in their fields of study.

Her project is titled "The Effects of Pluralistic Ignorance and False Consensus on Attitudes toward and Perceptions of Drug Use." She examines whether youths are more influenced by peers or the media in relation to marijuana use.

Holibaugh is a research assistant for applied social psychology at UConn. She is a resident assistant and has volunteered for a number of organizations, including the American Diabetes Association, the March of Dimes, Work Out for Hope and Walk America.

Following graduation in May, she plans to attend graduate school and work either in the field doing research or in a business setting.

STORRS, Conn. -- Rebecca Jordan of Brookfield, a junior biology major at the University of Connecticut, has received a Provost Scholarship for Honors Thesis Research. The competitive award provides funding for undergraduate students to conduct research in their field. Her project is titled "Spatial and Temporal Variations in the Age-Length Relationship of Larval Bay Anchovy (Anchoa mitchilli) in the Hudson River."

Fascinated by the environment and ecology, she plans to attend graduate school to study marine vertebrate behavior.

In addition to riding horses and ballroom dancing at UConn, she has been a member of the Norwich Volunteers program, UConnPIRG, the Scuba Club and the Sign Language Club.

STORRS, Conn. -- Brian Keech of Ansonia, a senior physical therapy major at the University of Connecticut, has been awarded a Provost Scholarship for Honors Thesis Research. The competitive award enables undergraduates to conduct additional research in their field of study. The title of his project is "Shoe Inserts: Costs Versus Benefits During Jumping."

Keech conducted experiments to determine the power generation and shock absorption of different shoe inserts. Eventually, this research may be used to improve the performance of athletic shoes.

Keech is a resident assistant, a member of the Ballroom Dance Club, a eucharistic minister and a lector at St. Thomas Aquinas Church, and a peer health educator for UConn Health Services, where he speaks on campus about nutrition and fitness. He is a member of the Phi Kappa Phi National Honor Society and the finance chair of the Golden Key Honor Society.

In addition to this award, Keech was named a 1993 New England Scholar. He would like to continue his education at the graduate level in either physiology or health care.

STORRS, Conn. -- Sarah Quimby of Canterbury, a junior majoring in physiology and neurobiology at the University of Connecticut, has been awarded a Provost Scholarship for Honors Thesis Research. The competitive scholarship enables undergraduate students to conduct research in their field of study.

Her project is titled "The Importance of NMDA Receptors in Neural Functioning and Development."

Quimby is a resident assistant, secretary of the Cycling Club and a member of Norwich Volunteers. She is looking forward to being an orientation leader at UConn this summer. She is considering medical school to become a pediatrician or a psychiatrist. Quimby also has been named a Presidential Scholar.

She attended Norwich Free Academy.

STORRS, Conn. -- Lanette Roulier of Mansfield, a University of Connecticut senior, has been awarded a Provost Scholarship for Honors Thesis Research. The competitive scholarship provides undergraduate students with funding for research in their field of study.

She double-majors in psychology and dietetics. The title of her project is "The Effect of Genetic Taste Status on Eating Restraint, Cholesterol Levels and Body Composition."

Roulier hopes to attend graduate school after gaining some experience in dietetics-related work following graduation in May. She was also named a University Scholar in 1993.

STORRS, Conn. -- Judith Scott Severson of Simsbury, a nursing major at the University of Connecticut, has been awarded a Provost Scholarship for Honors Thesis Research. The competitive scholarship provides undergraduate students with funding for research in their field of study.

The title of her project is "Nutritional Assessment and Intervention in Early HIV Infection." She explains that nutrition plays a huge role in the functioning of the immune system.

Severson plans to further research the topic in graduate school, specifically from a nurse's point of view. She looks forward to graduation this May. She studied at Bucknell University and the University of Missouri prior to attending UConn.

STORRS, Conn. -- Andrew Webber of Sharon, a junior molecular and cell biology major at the University of Connecticut, has received a Provost Scholarship for Honors Thesis Research. The competitive award provides funding for undergraduate students to conduct research in their field of study. The title of his project is "Interactions of Metallophthalocyanines with Selected Proteins."

He has had an internship in the chemistry department for three years examining interaction between metallophthalocyanines and proteins to see if they can artificially cut double-stranded DNA.

Webber volunteers for UConnPIRG and plays intramural softball and volleyball. He has received various scholarships in addition to the Provost Scholarship. He will graduate in the spring of 1997 and apply to medical school, perhaps at UConn.

STORRS, Conn. -- Vicki S. Welch of Ashford, a senior anthropology and psychology major at the University of Connecticut, has received a Provost Scholarship for Honors Thesis Research. The competitive award provides funding for undergraduate students to conduct research in their field of study.

Her project included two papers: "Analysis of Shell Beads at Long Pond Cemetery" and "Native American Self-Esteem and Social Support." The first paper has historical significance since the examination of beads found in Native Americans' burials is associated with the impact that colonization has had on them. Her second paper addresses the psychological aspect of anthropology, specifically the Native American sense of self being group-oriented.

Originally from East Greenbush, N.Y., she attended Hudson Valley Community College, where she studied languages. At age 37, with 14 years of work experience in between her college career, she shifted her studies through interest of her own heritage.

She has coordinated and hosted the annual powwow in Pomfret Center for 12 years. She has received the Gladys Tantaquidgeon Women's Center Award from UConn for a paper on Native American women's identity, and an undergraduate research grant from UConn's Psychology Department.

Welch hopes to attend graduate school at UConn. She graduates in May.

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