Category » Student Research

Data Driven
May 26, 2012

Data Driven

Chris Patton uses computer modeling to help build world-champion racecars

When Chris Patton was helping his Formula SAE team design a racecar for international competition, he made an unusual suggestion: angle the rear wheels outward in relation to the car. Common knowledge would warn against that move. Turning the rear tires outward makes the car less stable. But Patton, a Ph.D. student in mechanical engineering […]


Green mulch
May 25, 2012

Green mulch

More veggies and more fruit = more plastic mulch on farms. Oregon State students look for alternatives.

Bear with me; here’s the problem. Plastic mulch — those shiny sheets spread across row upon row of veggies, strawberries and other crops — enables farmers to produce more types and greater quantities of food. It makes farming more profitable, preserves soil moisture, reduces weeds and saves on labor costs. But this type of mulch […]


Quartet for the Earth
February 21, 2012

Quartet for the Earth

Four students bring distinct perspectives to climate change research

A mountaineer, a world traveler, an athlete and a Chinese scholar pursue answers to climate change questions.


OSU undergraduate solves long-standing problem in organic chemistry
December 8, 2011

OSU undergraduate solves long-standing problem in organic chemistry

Sam Bartlett's findings make chemical synthesis faster, more efficient

When Sam Bartlett, an Oregon State University senior in chemistry, put on his lab coat, goggles and latex gloves in the summer of 2010, he didn’t expect to wind up helping organic chemists around the world. With guidance from Chris Beaudry, assistant professor of chemistry, he developed the most efficient and productive method yet reported […]


Mapmaker for the climate
December 6, 2011

Mapmaker for the climate

OSU grad student will help Web users visualize climate data

If you love 3-D graphics, the daily TV weather maps just keep getting better. With the sweep of an arm, an announcer can set winds and weather systems in motion like the master of ceremonies in a three-ring circus. We can sit back and watch clouds, rain and snow swirl over landscapes from local to […]


Vital contributions
November 28, 2011

Vital contributions

When Angelica Grizzle started college, her idea of research was scientists in lab coats looking into microscopes. When she found out that there were opportunities for undergraduate students to work with young kids on school readiness research, she jumped at the opportunity. Grizzle says the research seed was planted during her first year at Oregon […]


October 31, 2011

Bridging the Nuclear Divide

Historian connects scientists and Navajo people

Nothing could have prepared Linda Richards for her visit to the Navajo Nation in 1986. The landscape was littered with piles of uranium debris. Signs warning of radioactive contamination were hung on playgrounds and living areas. The water wasn’t safe to drink. Families were living in homes made of radioactive materials. “Many of the people […]


Birth Knowledge
October 4, 2011

Birth Knowledge

Master's student aims to solve devastating maternal health problem in Uganda

As a midwife in Eugene, Ore., Bonnie Ruder has overseen more than 150 successful homebirths. When she leaves for Uganda with her family in November, she will be investigating circumstances when things don’t go so well.


Cultural Designer
June 3, 2011

Cultural Designer

Contemporary images respect Ojibway traditions

Neebinnaukzhik means “summer evening” in the Ojibway (also known as Chippewa) language of the Great Lakes region. When Neebinnaukzhik Southall was growing up, she made handcrafts — friendship bracelets, dream catchers and beaded animals — and sold them to family and friends. She called her business Summer’s Specials.


June 1, 2011

10 Places for Undergrads to Look for Research Opportunities

Support for student research can be as far away as a phone call or click of a mouse.

1. To help their peers find opportunities and OSU faculty members to mentor undergrads, a group of students worked with Susie Brubaker-Cole, associate provost for academic success and engagement, and Dan Arp, dean of the University Honors College, to produce a comprehensive guide to undergraduate research at Oregon State. 2. The OSU Research Office maintains […]


Good Impressions
May 31, 2011

Good Impressions

How do we size each other up?

Call it gut instinct, intuition, street smarts or sixth sense. Good poker players need it. Success in business, politics and athletics demands it. Psychologists call it emotional intelligence, but unlike the myriad tests available to assess verbal and quantitative intelligence, a well-validated test for emotional intelligence has yet to be established, according to Frank Bernieri, […]


Building a Better Student
May 31, 2011

Building a Better Student

One research project at a time

When undergraduate students do hands-on research with eminent professors on projects that matter, everyone wins. Students become better thinkers and citizens; the professors who mentor them become better teachers and researchers. Employers get access to employees with critical thinking, problem solving and communication skills that are so important in an economy increasingly dependent on innovation […]


How Do You Know That?
May 31, 2011

How Do You Know That?

“It is important that students bring a certain ragamuffin, barefoot irreverence to their studies; they are not here to worship what is known but to question it.” — Jacob Bronowski, The Ascent of Man

As an undergraduate at Johns Hopkins University in the 1970s, I immersed myself in learning about my field of choice, oceanography. I spent plenty of time in class studying the leading texts of the day. But my real education came from first-hand research experiences.


Blood Lines
May 28, 2011

Blood Lines

Ishan Patel found his niche in biomedical engineering

It wasn’t the most elegant way to enter a lab. Ishan Patel had just met his mentor for the summer of 2009, Dr. Owen McCarty at Oregon Health & Science University. The OSU bioengineering student wanted to make a good impression, and when McCarty told him to go across the hall and meet his research […]


Natural Defense
May 27, 2011

Natural Defense

Plant-based diabetes treatment shows promise

“I’m not one that is easily deterred,” Anneke Tucker says with a disarming smile. It’s a good thing. The 23-year-old Oregon State University senior from Lakeview, Oregon, has fixed her sights on nothing less than improving health care in rural communities. And along the way, she might throw in a new treatment for one of the nation’s most serious health threats, Type 2 diabetes.


Growth Factors
May 27, 2011

Growth Factors

High alcohol consumption inhibits bone healing

Feeding the rats was just the beginning. To get to the bottom of questions about the effects of alcohol consumption on bones, Cyndi Trevisiol learned how to remove the living cells from a femur and a tibia (purchased frozen from a biological supply house). She then removed the minerals — calcium, iron, magnesium, zinc, silicon […]


Pathfinders
May 24, 2011

Pathfinders

Have you ever shot an electron beam through a molecule? Undergrads in Ken Hedberg's lab take aim and discover how matter is arranged.

Robert Johnson gets a lot of strange looks when he tells his friends what he does in Ken Hedberg’s lab. The senior from Salem and another student, Luke Costello from Corvallis, shoot beams of electrons through clouds of gasses and use the results to analyze molecular structure. “People ask ‘why?’” says Johnson. “I just say, […]


Lines in the Water
February 1, 2011

Lines in the Water

Communities and scientists explore proposed marine reserves

As fishermen, scientists and coastal communities spar over Oregon’s system of marine reserves, OSU researchers and their partners are developing the science. One of their first testing grounds is Port Orford’s Redfish Rocks.


After the Spill
January 5, 2011

After the Spill

Sarah Allan is tracking toxins in the Gulf of Mexico

The 2010 oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico brought up bad memories for Sarah Allan. The Oregon State University Ph.D. student, who grew up in southeast Alaska, was a child in 1988, when the Exxon Valdez struck a reef and dumped millions of gallons of crude into another rich marine ecosystem, Prince William Sound. […]


A Name for Home: King Island
December 1, 2010

A Name for Home: King Island

If identity is linked to places on the landscape, names for those places become part of shared culture. An OSU research project has helped to document the culture of King Island, Alaska.


DIRT Camp
September 30, 2010

DIRT Camp

Scott Sell earned a paycheck on the way to his degree.


A World Apart
July 23, 2010

A World Apart

Jennifer Kue was just a little girl when she began assisting Portland’s Hmong community.


Partners in Rural Vitality
April 24, 2010

Partners in Rural Vitality

OSU students and faculty team with Wallowa Resources to address rural development

Beautiful landscapes may inspire us, but it takes more than scenery to create community vitality. Wallowa County and rural communities across the country struggle with economic development, a future for their youth and the cultural tensions that arise from changing land ownership. For more than a decade, such issues in Wallowa have been addressed by Wallowa […]


Reserve for Rockfish
April 24, 2010

Reserve for Rockfish

Policy and science in Port Orford

Redfish Rocks is home to a diverse collection of marine species — and to a unique collaboration among fishermen, university scientists and the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife. The jagged reef off the shores of Port Orford, one of two pilot sites in Oregon’s developing marine reserve network, was established by coastal residents who […]


The Mythbuster
April 17, 2010

The Mythbuster

OSU graduate student Jesse Abrams interviewed ranchers, homeowners, business people and local officials to understand changes unfolding in Wallowa County.


Depths of Discovery
February 22, 2010

Depths of Discovery

A young oceanographer carries on a legacy of epic seafloor science.

The colossal clamshells caught the young scientist’s eye soon after he arrived at Oregon State University in the late 1970s. Giant bivalves the size of footballs were piled in the corners of offices and cradled in the arms of researchers walking the halls of the School of Oceanography. “I realized pretty quickly that they weren’t […]


A Bracero’s Story
October 22, 2009

A Bracero’s Story

Farm labor is a family affair

It started with Salvador, the patriarch. In 1959, he left his wife and children near Guadalajara, Mexico, to work the fields of California.


Summer of Opportunity
June 23, 2009

Summer of Opportunity

Students plug into research experiences at home and abroad

Ah, summer vacation. Time to kick back, right? Not so much for OSU students who are discovering opportunities to expand their horizons. They’re modeling blood flow, studying wildlife conservation in Africa, surveying Oregon’s old-growth forests and teaching entrepreneurship.


April 24, 2009

Eat Locally, Market Globally

Dann Cutter has maintained a reactor on a nuclear submarine and, for the past 12 years, kept the computer networks running at Oregon State University’s Hatfield Marine Science Center. He serves on the Waldport, Oregon city council and two state advisory boards (rural health care and transportation). Why, then, would he return to college for […]


Committed to a Fault
January 24, 2009

Committed to a Fault

Ajeet Johnson is digging into Central Oregon's violent past

Growing up in Central Oregon’s spectacular landscape, Ajeet Johnson challenged the backcountry of the Cascades. She pulled herself hand-over-hand up Smith Rock and carved down slopes at Mt. Bachelor, but over time, she became curious about the forces that shaped the terrain and will influence its future.