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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.

REU Logo
NPS Logo
Summer Research Symposium 2020 Banner

We are excited for the 7th Annual Summer Research Symposium 2020 on August 7, 2020! Our first every 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 for the morning session and 1:00 PM for the afternoon session.

Each undergraduate researcher has submitted a 10-minute pre-recorded oral presentation and will be shown during each undergraduate researcher's assigned time followed by a live 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.

2020 Student Abstracts

For Attendees

  • No registration required.
  • UROC asks all guests and presenters to refrain from recording any of the presentations for proprietary reasons.
  • We encourage audience members to ask questions.
  • Be sure to explore the Symposium Program that contains all presenter abstracts beforehand. Program will be available August 5th.

Morning Session

College of Science - Biology & Chemistry

Moderated by Dr. Corin White

Time Student Presentation Title
10:10amEmma TeallEnvironmental DNA as a tool for wildlife conservation
10:25amSaul GarciaWildlife impacts from recreational activity in response to Covid-19 
10:40amKaiku KaholaaSpecies-Specific Vital Rates in Hawaiian Corals Pocillopora ligulata and Porites lichen
10:55amKarla JassoOptimization of transparent synthetic soil protocols for in situ visualization of plant infection with soilborne pathogens
11:10amNicholas HeyerAn Investigation of The Intronic Regions of NOTCH2NL a Human Specific Neocortical Gene

College of Science, College of Business - Biology & Chemistry, Mathematics, Computer Science, Business

Moderated by Dr. Jessica Bautista

Time Student Presentation Title
10:10amGabriel ChavezA Generating Function For f λ(m) given only the λ and gcd (n, m) of a SYT
10:25amSaray GarciaThe Effects of Identity-Congruent Messages on Sustainable Food Consumption
10:40amMichael HaidarUsing EEG and convolutional neural network for information retrieval
10:55amEmily BeasleyBioinformatics and Pathway Analysis on the Aging Brain

College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences - Psychology

Moderated by Dr. Heather Haeger

Time Student(s) Presentation Title
10:10amTrevor StevensBeing homeless: Using virtual reality to generate empathy in college students
10:25amSelina EspinozaCannabis Perceptions of Risks, Benefits, Spirituality, and Impact of COVID-19 Among College Students and Veterans
10:40amMaria ReyesDoes fatalism moderate the relation between a Culturally Adapted Cognitive-Behavioral Stress Management Intervention and Aspects of Benefit Finding among Spanish-Speaking Latina Breast Cancer Survivors?
10:55amNatassia AlemanCaregivers' Effect on the Amount of Time Children Spent at Gender-Typed Exhibits in a Children's Museum

College of Science - Marine Science

Moderated by Eric Barajas

Time Student Presentation Title
10:10amMaxwell RudelicEffects of combined acidification and hypoxia on fast-start response in juvenile rockfish
10:25amMelissa VezardComparing Changes of Vital Rates for Corals in Maui Over Time
10:40amMaria RochaClassification and Mapping of Marine Habitats Using Drone Data
10:55amMaggie SeidaCaño Island biological reserve
11:10amLaney KlunisSize Matters: Variation in Phytoplankton Biovolume Observed in Remote Sensing Imagery Across a Putative Gradient Nearshore to Offshore of Southern California
11:25amCasey JuliussenEffects of S. purpuratus on kelp forest recovery

College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences - Humanities & Communication, Social & Behavioral Sciences

Moderated by Natasha Oehlman

Time Student(s) Presentation Title
10:10amAngela SteeleClimate Change in National and State Parks of the Monterey Bay Region: How Small, Everyday Acts Can Make a Big Difference
10:25amAmelia Parker, Jesus OrozcoHigher education is not immune to messaging mishaps: A qualitative rhetorical analysis of COVID-19 messaging on U.S. campuses
10:40amSebastian MirelesPornography and Capitalist Ideology: The Commodification of Sex
10:55amMelyssa (Mel) SpandriHurricane Preparedness Planning for Low-Income/Homeless Citizens During the COVID-19 Pandemic
11:10amDarchelle BurnettComparison of Afro Indigenous to African American and Native American student research models in Higher Education
11:25amXenia EnriquezH2A Guest Workers in the Salinas Valley and Central Coast Valley during the Covid-19 Pandemic

Afternoon Session

College of Science - Biology & Chemistry, Applied Environmental Science

Moderated by Dr. Corin White

Time Student Presentation Title
1:10pmSilvia VasquezCoral thermotolerance
1:25pmJada CarterThe Genetic Variation Underlying the Salt Stress Response in Oryza glaberrima Plant Evolutionary Genomics
1:40pmCarlos RosasInvestigating the roles of LIP1 and LAC1 in the early G1 phase of Saccharomyces cerevisiae
1:55pmHannah CarrellCorrelation between California bat activity and hexapod activity at a site along the Salinas River
2:10pmRebecca MunsterAlgebraically predicting percent compositions of eutectic solutions: can the perfect solution be predicted before we make it? 
2:25pmAlicia KhounThe Breeding Phenology of Wildlife on The Santa Lucia Preserve

College of Science - Applied Environmental Science

Moderated by Dr. Jessica Bautista

Time Student(s) Presentation Title
1:10pmSarah Munro-KennedySARS-CoV-2 and Larus occidentalis: How the CoronaVirus Pandemic has Affected Western Gull Behavior and Foraging in Monterey
1:25pmEkatarina (Kat) PatriceThe role of epiphytic lichens in facilitating arthropod and avian communities within oak woodland habitat cascades
1:40pmConor Rickard, Wendy Feng, Alan SevinAnalysis of small-scale, spatial variability within high-density arrays of passive fog collectors to determine the optimal location for for collection
1:55pmArmando FloresEffects of anaerobic soil disinfestation on volatile organic compound production in strawberry fields
2:10pmTrinity GomezCSUMB Botanical Garden Project: A Framework for Learning Laboratories on Campus
2:25pmGretchen WichmanMake it rain: Nutrient dynamics of riparian and stream ecosystems during simulated rainfall events
2:40pmAhtziri Carranza-Medrano, Chris ShattoClimate adaptation planning in an agricultural community: Results from Pajaro Valley outreach

College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences - Cinematic Arts & Technology, Psychology

Moderated by Dr. Heather Haeger

Time Student(s) Presentation Title
1:10pmStephany BarreraThe Making of Emotional Cut Out Animation
1:25pmGagandeep ChoonghMotivating responsible behaviors during COVID-19 through effective messaging: Perspective from CLT
1:40pmDanielle FloresLGBTQ+ Casual Sex: Foundational Investigations for Improving Health and Well-being of Vulnerable Populations
1:55pmZaida Lopez, Lea CarrascoAssociation between MMPI-2-RF Somatic/Cognitive Scales and medical diagnoses among forensic psychiatric inpatients
2:10pmAngel DiazInteraction of Physical Fitness, Inflammation and Cognitive Performance in Healthy Young Adults 
2:25pmCameron BattersbyLearning Outcomes Help Students Understand What They Learned

College of Science - Marine Science

Moderated by Eric Barajas

Time Student Presentation Title
1:10pmEmilia (Mia) LepeMonitoring microphytobenthos biodiversity in intertidal mudflats of the San Francisco Bay
1:25pmJennifer GrossmanThe Range of Arm Flexibility of Octopus vulgaris in the Field
1:40pmAlly MorrisTesting the fidelity of global biogeochemical algorithms in the California Current System to study carbon cycling
1:55pmJordan VelascoThe Novel Application of Virtual Reality: Quantifying Patterns in the Distribution of Temperate Kelp Forest Fishes through VR and Traditional Underwater Visual Census
2:10pmMaite Gato-FuentesCoral symbiont mediation of the effects of sedimentation and water flow on corals
2:25pmJasmin JohnsonEffects of crown-of-thorns, Acanthaster planci, predation of corals on the survivorship of reef fishes

College of Health Sciences & Human Services, College of Science - Kinesiology, Collaborative Health & Human Services, STEM Education

Moderated by Natasha Oehlman

Time Student(s) Presentation Title
1:10pmMaximillian Gastelum-MoralesExercise is Medicine® On Campus: Employee Circuit Training Course Increases Physical Activity
1:25pmTzu-Ling Tseng (Linda)Qualitative study of cancer screening utilization among Latinos in a remote agricultural community
1:40pmEric De SotoVariables that affect the success of first generation college students in a Geoscience STEM REU Program
1:55pmLily Amador, Krysta Malech, Viviana VigilSuccessful Online Transitions: How Instructors Supported Students during COVID-19
2:10pmMackenzie (Kenzie) Price, Vicki MerazAssessment of student work in a chemistry course series
2:25pmMatthew DunhamThe relationship between student attitudes and their conceptual understanding of statistics
2:40pmPaulina CadenaCreating Educational Animated Videos and Comic Strips for Use in Introductory Oceanography Classes

Learn more about what our students are doing!

Summer research workshop, students playing an ice-breaking game
REU students working in a lab
REU students learning basic GIS skills during a summer workshop

Undergraduate Research Opportunities Center

(831) 582-4241