Lindale student earns research honors at Mississippi State

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STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Senior psychology major Rachel A. Booth of Lindale was awarded first place in the recent Summer Undergraduate Research Symposium at Mississippi State University, school officials announced.

Hosted by MSU’s Judy and Bobby Shackouls Honors College, the annual competition received 84 submissions from undergraduate students conducting faculty-guided research.

Booth won first place in the Social Sciences division and was advised by Andrew F. Jarosz, assistant professor of psychology.

Projects were assigned to one of four categories — arts and humanities, biological sciences and engineering, physical sciences and engineering, and social sciences. Certain categories had multiple award winners due to the large number of submissions.

A team of 30 campus faculty and graduate students representing a cross-section of academic areas served as competition judges.

MSU Vice President for Research and Economic Development David R. Shaw said pursuit of research opportunities is a critical part of academic life. MSU students are recognized for their contributions in labs, studios, libraries, research farms and beyond, he added.

“We are pleased that members of our faculty are committed to providing undergraduates with meaningful roles in the overall research enterprise, and promoting interdisciplinary research as an important component of scholarly activity,” Shaw said.

Residents of Mississippi, Alabama, Tennessee, Texas, Vermont, China and Sri Lanka, this year’s winners include (by category and placement):

SOCIAL SCIENCES:

FIRST—Rachel A. Booth, a senior psychology major from Lindale, Texas, advised by Andrew F. Jarosz, an assistant professor in the Department of Psychology.

SECOND—Alexis L. Murrell, a senior civil engineering major from Vicksburg, advised by Cliff McKinney, an associate professor in the Department of Psychology.

BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES AND ENGINEERING:

FIRST—Paulino Jarquin, a senior biological engineering/biomedical engineering major from Nashville, Tennessee, advised by Steve Elder, a professor in the Department of Agricultural and Biological Engineering.

SECOND—Jordan A. Coggins, a senior biochemistry/pre-medicine major from Saucier, advised by Justin Thornton, an associate professor in the Department of Biological Sciences.

THIRD—Anna E. Crawford, a junior biological engineering/biomedical engineering major from Hoover, Alabama, advised by Hubert M. Tse, associate professor of microbiology at the University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Medicine.

THIRD—Thomas Nunn, a biological sciences major at Centre College, advised by Mark Lawrence, associate dean and professor in the MSU College of Veterinary Medicine’s Department of Basic Sciences. Nunn is participating in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering’s summer Research Experience for Undergraduates program on computational biology.

PHYSICAL SCIENCES AND ENGINEERING:

FIRST—Jacob A. Rogers, a senior aerospace engineering/astronautics major from Poultney, Vermont, advised by Donghoon Kim, an assistant professor in the Department of Aerospace Engineering.

SECOND—Maleen W. Kidiwela, a senior geoscience/professional geology major from Sri Lanka, advised by Varun Paul, an assistant professor in the Department of Geosciences.

THIRD—Tianci Huang, a senior aerospace engineering/aeronautics major from China, advised by Yu Lv, an assistant professor in the Department of Aerospace Engineering.

THIRD—Kice Brown, a chemistry major at Mississippi College, advised by Keith Hollis, an associate professor in MSU’s Department of Chemistry. Brown is participating in the department’s summer Research Experience for Undergraduates program on food, energy and water security.

For more on MSU’s Judy and Bobby Shackouls Honors College, visit www.honors.msstate.edu and follow on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram @ShackoulsHonors.

MSU is Mississippi’s leading university, available online at www.msstate.edu

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