Students Present at COPLAC Undergraduate Research Conference

Presenting at the COPLAC undergraduate research conference were (front row, l to r) Carah Deal; Corinne Smith; and Jenna Febrizio. (Back row l to r) Melanie Schukrafft; Sara Lewandowski; Katelin Cragg; and Melissa Lamson.

GENESEO, N.Y. - Seven SUNY Geneseo students presented their research or creative endeavors Oct. 1-3 at the Council of Liberal Arts Colleges (COPLAC) Undergraduate Research Conference in North Adams, Mass.

The Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts hosted the conference, which featured 72 presentations of research in the humanities, arts, social sciences and natural sciences. The conference also included an arts show in which one Geneseo student displayed her watercolor works. The students discussed their work with other presenters and faculty in their discipline from other COPLAC colleges attending the conference.

"The talented students who presented at this conference are indicative of the close connection undergraduates have with faculty at a liberal arts college," said Carol Long, Geneseo provost. "We are seeing an increasing number of Geneseo students engaging in undergraduate research and to present at conferences such as this is an invaluable opportunity that greatly enhances their academic experience."

Geneseo students presenting at the conference include:

Katelin Cragg, a studio art major from Brighton, N.Y., who displayed four watercolor works in the conference's arts show. Her faculty mentor is Tom MacPherson, professor of art.

Carah Deal, an early childhood/childhood education major from Seneca Falls, N.Y., who presented on the data analysis she has done as part of a project team that has been evaluating the effectiveness of Peace Circles, an approach to restorative justice intended to build community and resolve conflict in the classroom. Her faculty mentor is Leigh O'Brien, professor of education.

Jenna Febrizio, a history and art history double major, from Long Beach, N.Y., who presented an analysis of how accurately French revolution figure Charlotte Corday has been represented in images depicting her assassination of Jean-Paul Marat, who was partly responsible for the atrocities of the Jacobin Reign of Terror. Her faculty mentors are Todd Goehler, lecturer in the Department of History, and Lynette Bosch, professor of art.

Melissa Lamson, a chemistry major from Syracuse, N.Y., who presented on the formation and spectroscopic characterization of two different cholesterol-based gelators. Her faculty mentor is H. Cristina Geiger, a lecturer in the Department of Chemistry.

Sara Lewandowski, a biology major from Syracuse, N.Y., who presented on the behavioral and spatial patterns of two species of slavemaking ants and their impact on spatial patterns of host nest distribution. Her faculty mentor is Jennifer Apple, assistant professor of biology.

Melanie Schukrafft, a psychology major from Warwick, N.Y., who presented on psychological entrapment and women's commitment to violent dating relationships. Her faculty mentor is Jennifer Katz, associate professor of psychology.

Corinne Smith, an art history and English double major from Greenville, N.Y., who presented on the debate over the years on who Raphael was depicting in his painting La Fornarina. She will argue that the painting doesn't represent one woman in particular but his image of his ideal woman. Her faculty mentors are Lynette Bosch, professor of art, and Cynthia Hawkins-Owen, director of galleries in the School of the Arts.


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