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Northwest Missouri State University

Celebration of Quality (Photo by University Photography)
Celebration of Quality (Photo by University Photography)
Celebration of Quality (Photo by University Photography)
Celebration of Quality (Photo by University Photography)
Celebration of Quality (Photo by University Photography)
Celebration of Quality (Photo by University Photography)
Celebration of Quality (Photo by University Photography)
Celebration of Quality (Photo by University Photography)
Celebration of Quality (Photo by University Photography)

Welcome | Schedule

What You Need To Know

Celebration 2017
An Interdisciplinary Academic Symposium

3-9:30 p.m., Friday, March 31
3rd Floor, J.W. Jones Student Union

Celebration of Quality Call for Papers (and other Projects)

The Society of President’s Scholars and the Provost’s Office are proud to sponsor the Celebration of Quality, an interdisciplinary symposium spotlighting exceptional student work throughout campus.

The symposium is open to all Missouri Academy, undergraduate and graduate students at Northwest and may include work completed either this trimester or any time during the previous year. Faculty and staff are encouraged to recommend the symposium to students and to sponsor their best work, and students are encouraged to submit your work.  The Celebration now takes place a bit later in the trimester to accommodate projects undertaken this spring term.  If you will have a completed project by March 31 and a faculty member who is willing to sponsor you, please submit your work!

Submissions are due by Friday, March 10 before 11:59 p.m. The application form is available online.

This year’s symposium will be 3 to 9:30 p.m. Friday, March 31. Sessions will take place throughout the afternoon and evening, and there will be a banquet to which all Celebration participants and their faculty sponsors are invited; tickets may also be purchased for guests. Posters, artwork, and other projects also will be displayed throughout the entire event.

The symposium gives the University community a chance to see the work students are completing across disciplines, and it gives participating students an audience beyond the classroom. In past years, students have presented creative writing, original research, and analytical papers. They have given speeches, conducted panel discussions, and displayed original works of art and visual summaries of their projects in science, education and business. They also have presented dramatic readings and played or analyzed music, and some have presented other original work or projects completed in class or during internships.  The selection committee is open to new and innovative approaches in what students want to present and how they would like to present it!

Please address any questions to Dr. Elyssa Ford ( or Dr. Mohammed Meziani (

Thank you,

Brianna Wilmes, President of the Society of President’s Scholars
Elyssa Ford and Mohammed Meziani, Sponsors of the Society of President’s Scholars

Registration is closed.

Here's why you should participate:

  1. You will get an opportunity to hear people ooh, aah, clap, smile, and generally respond positively to your work.
  2. You can list your participation on your resume. This type of involvement looks great to potential employers.
  3. You will impress your family and friends.
  4. You will be even prouder of your work than you are now, truly believing all your hard work did pay off.
  5. And, you will get a free dinner!

Here’s what you need to do to participate:

  1. After you find a faculty member to be your sponsor, fill out the application form. (Faculty are quite happy to do this, and it doesn’t have to be the teacher for whom you completed your work.)
  2. If you are presenting with other students who worked on the same project, please put all of your names on a single form. If you and a friend want to present different projects but at the same session, please submit separate forms and indicate your preference to present at the same time.
  3. Submit the form.

We look forward to seeing you and your work!

Schedule of Events

Celebration 2017
An Interdisciplinary Academic Symposium

3-9:30 p.m., Friday, March 31
3rd Floor, Student Union

The Celebration of Quality symposium, sponsored by the Honors Program and the Society of President's Scholars, showcases the academic achievements of students across campus. The sessions and displays are free and open to the public and door prizes will be awarded.

View Printed Schedule

Friday, March 31

2:30-3:15 p.m.


3rd Floor,
Student Union

3:30-6:30 p.m.

Exhibits and Poster Displays
Moderator: Brianna Wilmes


3:30-4:15 p.m.

Session 1

Geography & Sports
Moderators: Megan Clasen

Jonathan Harley, “Going the Distance: The Geography of Men’s NCAA Division II Cross Country Runner Origins, 2016,” (Sponsor: Dr. Theodore Goudge)

Jamie Ball, “Sunbelt Success: A Spatial Analysis of Intercollegiate Spring Sports,” (Sponsor: Dr. Theodore Goudge)

Colden Hillyer, “Out from the Heartland: The Geography of NCAA Div. II Baseball,” (Sponsor: Dr. Theodore Goudge)

Meeting Room A

Local History
Moderators: David Schmitt

Aaron Schmidt, “Nodaway County during the Civil War: A Graphical Examination,” (Sponsor: Dr. Elyssa Ford)

Megan Knott, “Nodaway to Saigon: The Vietnam War in Nodaway County,” (Sponsor: Dr. Elyssa Ford)

Meeting Room B

4:30-5:30 p.m.

Session 2

Identity & Sense of Self
Moderators: Megan Clasen

Kayla Pelsor, “The Imagined Community of Black Lives Matter,” (Sponsor: Dr. Dr. Brett Chloupek)

Jade Gurney, “The Influence of the Past on Southern Identity in Go Set a Watchman,” (Sponsor: Dr. Ashley Black)

Kennia Lopez, “Playing Hide and Seek with Jesus: Elements of Christianity in American Born Chinese,” (Sponsor: Dr. Jenny Rytting)

Meeting Room A

Moderator: David Schmitt

Sarah Saladen, “St. Mary's Cathedral Daycare Emergency Disaster Plan,” (Sponsor: Mr. John Carr)

Katie Falconer, “Influence of Structured and Rhythmic Movement on Academic Achievement in Math over a 12 Day Period,” (Sponsor: Dr. Sue Wood)

Meeting Room B

Math & Physics
Moderator: Steven Gordon

Anzumaan Chakraborty, “Diffraction in matter-antimatter binding: Positronium formation from C60,” (Sponsor: Dr. Himadri Chakraborty)

Dakota Shields, “Can halogens escape light hiding inside a cage of Buckminster fullerene?,” (Sponsor: Dr. Himadri Chakraborty)

Yoo Na Kim, Siyun Tan, Jie Qiu and Woo Jin Shim, “Determining the number and location of warehouse needed for one-day shipping ground” (Sponsor: Dr. Mary Shepherd)

Meeting Room C

5:30-6:30 p.m.

Session 3

English & Literature
Moderator: Megan Clasen

Korbin Jones, “The Effects of Showing and Telling: A Rhetorical View of the Unavoidable Authorial Presence in Contemporary Short Fiction,” (Sponsor: Dr. M. Melissa Elston)

Kayla Simmons, “The Unobtainable Truth: Female Virtue,” (Sponsor: Dr. Jenny Rytting)

Kennia Lopez, “Love Me: An Observation of the Glaringly Obvious Superficiality of Celebrity Culture,” (Sponsor: Ms. Brenda Ryan)

Meeting Room A

The U.S. & The World
Moderator: David Schmitt

Aaron Moser, “The American Exception,” (Sponsor: Dr. Brett Chloupek)

Brandon Keller, “Inflation and Unemployment: An Empirical Study of Seven Countries,” (Sponsor: Dr. Chi Lo Lim)

Hannah Sears, “The Intentional Exporting of the Iranian Revolution,” (Sponsor: Dr. Kim Casey)

Meeting Room B

The Sciences
Moderator: Steven Gordon

Lillia Lepak, “The effects of Xylene on Strongylocentrotus purpuratus,” (Sponsor: Dr. Peter Adam)

Alexandra Davis, “Temporal and spatial variation of chlorophyll a in Old Woman Creek Estuary, Lake Erie measured from field and laboratory reflectance measurements,” (Sponsor: Dr. Lorita Mihindukulasooriya)

Som Singh, “Immunohistochemical Evidence of Renal Sensory Denervation after Resiniferatoxin Administration,” (Sponsor: Dr. Mark Knuepfner, STARS Program)

Meeting Room C

6:45-8:45 p.m.

Banquet (not open to the public)

  • Introduction: Brianna Wilmes (President, Society of President's Scholars)
  • Keynote Address: Dr. Jeff Foot (Director of Admissions & International Affairs)
  • Door Prize Drawing


Exhibits and Poster Display
Moderator: Brianna Wilmes

Presenter(s) Title Sponsor
Hans Bassich "Age and Sex Structure of Turtle Species at Separate Pond Locations in Maryville, MO" Dr. Jay McGhee
Maci Hicks "Characterization of Potentially Novel Rhodobacteraceae from Walker Lake, Nevada" Dr. James Campbell
JiYoon Lee "T-Homogeneous Local Rings and Their Associated Graded Rings" Dr. Justin Hoffmeier
Irene Hung "Characterization and Investigation of Antibacterial Properties Found in Brevibacillus sp. Isolates from Calcium Carbonate-Rich Soils" Dr. Alisha Campbell
Lindsey Madsen, Courtney Chapple, Hannah McNear and Lauren Buck "Hogwarts, Holigrams, and Hippos in Honey: The Development and Clinical Use of Magical Thinking, Creativity, and Imagination" Dr. Elizabeth Dimmitt
Zoe Green "The New Cabinet" Mr. Armin Muhsam
Luqi Zhao "Evaluating the temporal variation of Algal Biomass in the Old Woman Creek estuary using reflectance data" Dr. Lorita
Alexander Henry "Isolation of Bacteria from the Human Oral Cavity Using Environmental Media' Dr. James Campbell
Jennifer Schultz and Him Shrestha "Silver Nanoparticle in Inhibiting the Growth of Bacteria" Dr. James Campbell
Trey Vinke, Aaron Feehan "Understanding and Controlling Bromate Formation When Chlorinating Drinking Water in EDM" Dr. Mike Bellamy
Courtney Kern "Evaluating Weekly Variation of Algal Biomass in the Old Woman Creek Estuary Using Visible Spectral Reflectance" Dr. Lorita Mihindukulasooriya
Mallikharjuna Rao Dande, Chiranjeevi Snehu Kotu, Rakesh Chitturi, Teja Parimi, Nayan Reddy Prodduturi and Vamsi Krishna Solasa "Campus Tour Application - Northwest Missouri State University" Dr.
Michael Oudshoorn

The Celebration of Quality is hosted by the Society of President's Scholars (faculty sponsors: Dr. Elyssa Ford and Dr. Mohammed Meziani; student president: Brianna Wilmes)

Special thanks to the Office of the Provost for sponsoring this event.

Attend & Win

If you will be attending the banquet (not open to the public), be sure to enter the door prize drawing. You are eligible for one entry for each session you attend (be sure to sign up each time), so the more sessions you attend, the more likely you are to win! You must be present at the drawing to collect the prize.