Undergraduate Research Opportunities Center

Summer Research Symposium

With almost 100 student researchers working with numerous research institutions in the Monterey Bay area, there is certainly a lot to celebrate!

John Banks (far right) with UROC summer research presenters
Dr. John "Buck" Banks (far right) with UROC summer research student presenters.

The Annual CSUMB Summer Research Symposium celebrates the research and creative activities of the undergraduate students in the Undergraduate Research Opportunities Center (UROC), Monterey Regional Ocean Sciences Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) Program, and Naval Postgraduate School (NPS) Internship Program. To date, this symposium is the largest summer research program in the region.

In addition to a summer of research, many undergraduate participants also attend over 20 hours of professional development workshops spanning topics like research communication, graduate school preparation, and the value of peer mentoring.

We are certainly proud of our undergraduates and this event allows us to celebrate with them their commitment to diving head-first into tackling some of the most difficult questions and working with stellar faculty mentors who guide the process with inquiry along the way.

UROC Otter Logo
REU Logo
NPS Logo
Decorative banner for Virtual Summer Research Symposium Friday, August 13, 2021

We are excited for the 8th Annual Summer Research Symposium on August 13, 2021! Our second Virtual Research Symposium will consist of a morning and afternoon session each offering five different academic disciplines to choose from moderated by UROC Staff. The Symposium kicks off at 10:00 AM PST for the morning session and 1:00 PM PST for the afternoon session. Check back later for the schedule of student presenters. 

Each undergraduate researcher will have 10 minutes to present their research live followed by a 5-minute Q&A. There will be a moderator for each session who will introduce presenters and monitor the chat throughout the presentation and during the Q&A. Presentations will not start early.

For Attendees

Special Presentations

The following presentations will be held on Instagram Live via UROC's Instagram page. Follow our Instagram at uroc_csumb to watch them. 

Date & TimePresenterPresentation TitleResearch Tagline
August 6, 3:00pm Wendy Feng Reframing Environmental Education to include Asian Americans  Understanding why Asian Americans have been left out of the environmental movement and how do we center their experience?  
August 6, 6:30pm Leta Dawson Recovery of Black Abalone Populations in Monterey County Are black abalone populations any closer to reaching the CA Fish and Wildlife criteria?
August 9, 2:00pm Amelia Parker Exploring COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy in Seaside, CA, in college-aged Black and Latinx communities Understanding causes of vaccine hesitancy in college-aged students to combat low rates of COVID-19 vaccinations
August 10, 5:15pm Jordan Velasco The Novel Application of Virtual Reality: Quantifying Patterns in the Distribution of Temperate Kelp Forest Fishes through VR and Traditional Underwater Visual Census We've got the fish. Take a look around!
August 11, 6:00pm  Mary Sullivan  The issue with Film School The failure to educate our future storytellers how to critically and creatively analyze and expand on our society 


Morning Sessions

Session 1: Department of Biology & Chemistry

TimePresenter(s)Presentation TitleResearch Tagline
10:10 Avalon Surratt Bioremediation of Pesticides: Applying Molecular Genomic Techniques to Uncover Efficient, Eco-Friendly Methods of Cleaning Agricultural Waste How can we clean toxic agricultural waste at a fast pace and be environmentally safe?
10:25 Rimki Barua Harvesting of Fog Water Spend wisely and harvest fog water
10:40 Robert Hays Potential Biofuel Solutions Through the Isolation and Characterization of Novel Catalase Enzymes from Cow Rumen Can cows bring the future of renewable energy?
10:55 Alma Leon Observing Beaked Whale Foraging Behavior with Acoustic Localization What do whales do when no one is watching?
11:10 Cassandra Tice Assessing the Sensitivity of Indigenous Pythium spp. from the Salinas Valley to the Fungicide Mefenoxam  Are local populations of Pythium sppsusceptible to commercial fungicides? 
11:25 Jade Betancourt Effects of Hypoxia on the Physiology of Juvenile Flatfishes Will lowered oxygen levels contibute to flatfish species abundance?

Session 2: Department of Computer Science; Department of Mathematics

TimePresenter(s)Presentation TitleResearch Tagline
10:10 Daniel Jacoby The Relationship between Computational Complexity and Energy Efficiency of Common Algorithms We are going to save the world, by reducing the energy used by even the smallest of programs!
10:25 Keyoni Mcnair Gauging Student Interest: Computer Science Interest Survey Results What are students interested in Computer Science interested in?
10:40 Michael Haidar EEG Data With Time vs Frequency Domains An evaluation of EEG data in time vs frequency domains for the use of Brain-Computer Interface
10:55 Cobey Davis African American Students and their Mathematics College Preparatory Readiness Are African American students prepared for college mathematics through high school preparatory courses?

Session 3: Psychology Department

TimePresenter(s)Presentation TitleResearch Tagline

Melissa-Ann Lagunas; Courtney Crouse; Claudia Rocha

Cannabis Use and Perceptions Among College Students in California Students find relief using cannabis as a treatment or medication
10:25 Brooklyn Greene Mental Health Education in Black Communities Mental health education among Black youth is lacking, which results in the high statistics of poor mental health, and suicide rates. What does health education do to change these statistics? And what is the most effective way to implement these systems?
10:40 Gagandeep Choongh Examining women's empowerment in India: Takeaways from conducting research and data collection abroad A case study on conducting cross-cultural research in India
10:55 Angel Diaz Decreased physical activity during the COVID-19 pandemic associates with increased stress, anxiety and impoverished academic performance in undergraduate students This is your brain on exercise: a closer look at the impacts of stress, anxiety, and academic performance during the covid-19 pandemic
11:10 Spencer Winter Exploring The Neural Processes of Perceptual Decision Making How does our brain make decisions for us? 

Session 4: Department of Marine Science

TimePresenter(s)Presentation TitleResearch Tagline
10:10 Paige Siegel Sea star species along the Monterey Peninsula Trillions of stars in the universe, but how many sea stars are in the ocean?
10:25 Stephanie Stephens Everyone’s Harvest Research Team: Summer Progress  Health education, food insecurity, farmers market, social safety net, COVID-19
10:40 Paulina Cadena

The role of symbiont community on Galapagos coral thermal tolerance

The symbionts on coral have a bigger role than you think
10:55 Emily Vidusic; Kaitlin Rooney Rise of the Urchins: Monitoring size structure and population density along the Monterey Peninsula Intertidal How has size structure and population density of purple sea urchins changed over time at various intertidal sites? 

Session 5: College of Business

TimePresenter(s)Presentation TitleResearch Tagline
10:10 Eduardo Aparicio

Espoused organizational and team culture values as antecedents of protection motivation among IT employees

Impact of the dimensions of organizational culture and team culture on the cognitive ability of the employees to appraise threat and coping motivation associated with information security compliance
10:25 Athena Lee Enforcing the Screen Time and Technology Usage of Children: Evaluating the Impact of Parental Perception of Technology, Locus of Control and Children Daily Usage of Technology How does the parental perception of technology and locus of control impact their view on enforcement of screen time and technology usage by their children?
10:40 Zah-Rah La Tour Coming soon!   Coming soon!  
10:55 Erika Hernandez-Gonzalez Green skepticism: Examining the role of social media influencers on consumer attitudes toward green brands Impact of social media influencers on green brands
11:10 Saray Garcia Business for 2030: A content analysis of firm’s statements on the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) Business Today: How are firms enacting sustainable development goals across countries?
11:25 Angelica May Amita The Empowering Role of Anti-Domestic Violence Messages: Evaluating the Effectiveness of Public Service Announcements and Social Media Platforms  How do the roles of traditional vs. modern media play in social issues like Domestic Violence? 

Afternoon Sessions

Session 6: Department of Biology & Chemistry

TimePresenter(s)Presentation TitleResearch Tagline
1:10 Grace Hardy Evaluation of Anaerobic Soil Disinfestation and Pathogen Suppressive Microbial Inoculants For White Rot Management  How can we save garlic fields without harmful chemicals and pesticides? 
1:25 Vicky Ordaz Garcia Raising Covid-19 Awareness for Teens  I got the SHOT
1:40 Morgan Raimondo Optimization of Laboratory Methods to Isolate and Characterize Soil Streptomyces Digging for the answers: How soil microbiomes can influence crop health
1:55 Chenelle Gueverra Evolutionary processes that drive fur color in Chinchilla lanigera and other rodents

How does the gene mc1r influence the Chinchilla lanigera’s fur color? 

2:10 Conor Rickard Investigating functional redundancy among PLK receptor kinases in the Arabidopsis root Digging into root growth

Session 7: Departmnet of Applied Environmental Science

TimePresenter(s)Presentation TitleResearch Tagline
1:10 Summer Alinaeem Patterns of Longtime Fog Variability at Fort Ord National Monument A foggy future: how fog patterns affect Monterey's natural biome
1:25 Alyssa Schaer Indicator species composition depends on river salinity What happens to freshwater bugs as salinity increases?
1:40 Lexi Yokomizo Revealing how wildfires can affect river sediments and chemistry  Things are heating up: How wildfires affect watersheds 
1:55 Monica Urias The relationship between climate change concerns and women’s intention to have children Climate change affects women and their desire to have children
2:10 Gretchen Wichman

The influence of salinity on leaf-litter breakdown rates in tidal streams

Aquatic microbes munching on fallen leaves in rivers connected to the ocean
2:25 Judah Young Are small water systems within Monterey County really safe to drink?  Dirty drinking water? H 2 Oh Nooo! 

Session 8: Psychology Department

TimePresenter(s)Presentation TitleResearch Tagline
1:10 Nevan Bell Major and minor differences in expression: How perceived emotions of students are influenced by styles of music and backgrounds Does music change the way students perceive and express their emotions?
1:25 Jennifer Lopez Abolitionist Practices in Social Work

How do social workers draw on the genealogies of abolition to center liberatory practices within the carceral context of their field? 

1:40 Nikole Karis Monterey County LGBTQ+ Historical Archives and Special Collections: A Virtual Exhibit Unearthing Monterey County's rich, and often untold, LGBTQ+ histories during the late 70's to the mid 90's

Megan Dearie; Rodi Edil; Paul Dommert

What skills have you developed? Psychology Undergrads' Understanding of Their Major Learning Outcomes"  Psychology Undergrads - Are you ready for what comes after graduation? 

Session 9: Department of Marine Science

TimePresenter(s)Presentation TitleResearch Tagline
1:10 Mariah Daniel Animal-Borne Video Analyses of Pursuit Strategies in White Sharks (Carcharodon carcharias) How are visual cues perceived, responded to, and how does this interplay influence White shark predatory behavior?
1:25 Danielle Anderson Detecting the Effects of Rising Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide on Ocean Carbon Dioxide in the California Current System using Satellite Remote Sensing Observations Will climate change doom phytoplankton? Or make it KA-BLOOM?!
1:40 Vaughn Compas Fog Detection: comparing efficiencies of methods Is GOES imagery a sufficient method to detect fog?
1:55 Kaiku Kaholoaa Spatial and Demographic Differences of the Hawaiian Coral Species: Porites lichen How does latitude affect coral populations?
2:10 Maggie Seida An Analysis of ROV External Lighting for 3D Modeling of Artificial Substrate.  Coming soon! 
2:25 Silvia Vasquez; Amalia Seigel Endosymbiont communities affect coral thermal tolerance in American Samoa  Pollution and the Symbiont Shuffle: The dance of coral thermotolerance  

Session 10: Department of Cinematic Arts & Technology; Schools of Humanities & Communication, Social & Behavioral Sciences, Global Studies, and World Langague & Cultures

TimePresenter(s)Presentation TitleResearch Tagline
1:10 Lily Amador; Korina McKinley Localization of History and Civics in Salinas Ethnic Studies Classrooms Centering Community: Learning From and With the Students & Community of Salinas
1:25 Darchelle Burnett Within the Blood Line: A Comparison of African American and Native American Educational History  Changing Indigenous Narrative by shedding a light on forgotten history
1:40 Chase Paparotti

Animation: A Credible Investment Education

Who taught you about the Stock Market?
1:55 Kelly Christensen Coming soon!  Coming soon! 
2:10 Hana Jacinto The Effects of Training and Language Learning Background on Japanese Sound Recognition by English Native Speakers How can we enhance English speakers’ skills to distinguish unique Japanese sounds?
2:25 Ulises Duenaz “I want to get off”; Hookup motives among LGBTQ+ Young Adults What motivates Queer and Trans Young to Adults hookup? Does it relate with heterosexual hookup resaerch?
2:40 Melyssa Spandri Coming soon! Coming soon!

Session 11: Department of Kinesiology; Department of Health, Human Services and Public Policy; STEM Education

TimePresenter(s)Presentation TitleResearch Tagline
1:10 Paula Beltran Reproductive health challenges: The barriers to access and/or obtain an abortion Your body, your choice, barriers and access to care
1:25 Jennifer Berberian Erasing Anti-Black Racism: Critical Consciousness for Equity and Advocates Raising awareness on anti-Black racism, bias, organized culture, and micro aggression
1:40 Viviana Vigil Limiting Screen Time in STEM Education Better living through limiting screen time in STEM education
1:55 Kenneth Tran The Cost of STEM Education: How Much Should We Be Spending? Exploring the costs of hands-on learning
2:10 Eric DeSoto Variables that could lead the CSUMB Makerspace to new opportunities The Benefits of Library-Based Makerspaces in Identity Formation in Higher Education


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