Graduate Student Success

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Inspiring Stories from our Graduate School Students and Alumni

Fr. Philip Sutherland Doctorate PhilosophyRev. Philip Sutherland, S.J. is a doctoral student in Philosophy. Currently in his first year, Fr. Philip plans to teach philosophy at a Jesuit university as a Jesuit priest. On October 21, 2017, he attended the Fordham Lincoln Center campus in Manhattan, NY and presented his research paper at the Society of Ancient Greek Philosophy. Sutherland’s paper, The Many Senses of Justice in Nicomachean Ethics, is an attempt to make sense of a notoriously difficult chapter in Aristotle’s ethics. Sutherland identifies what he believes are the relationships between the different kinds of justice that Aristotle discusses. The paper also contributes to the field of Aristotelian ethics and politics and his analysis provides a more unified reading of book V than has traditionally been acknowledged, including the concept of justice as a critical bridging concept between the individual virtuous life of the Nicomachean Ethics and the politically-oriented life of the Politics


 Benjamin Nestor, Ph.D. studentBenjamin R. Nestor is a second-year history Ph.D. student at Marquette University specializing in Modern Germany and the Holocaust. His dissertation will focus on the intellectual and cultural world of the Einsatzgruppen with particular interest in ideology and contingency, masculinity, and the role of mid-level functionaries in the advancement of the program to murder the European Jews. On November 10, 2017 he presented Negotiating Nationalism in the Kaiserreich: Gustav Landauer between Particularism and Universality at the 83rd Southern Historical Association Conference in Dallas, TX. In the past year, he has held fellowships through the Holocaust Education Foundation and the European Holocaust Research Infrastructure, and in January will be a seminar fellow at the Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies, United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, Washington, D.C.


David_Defilippis_Marquette_Graduate_ProgramDavid Defilippis had a secure diesel mechanic job with good pay  and benefits in his mid-20's before he made the bold decision to leave to study biology and pursue his doctorate with Marquette's Department of Biological Sciences. This spring, he was awarded a three-year, $144,000 National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship. Read about his Long Road to Ecology journey to success here.


Jeff LaJeunesse, a fifth-year Ph.D. candidate in the Mechanical Engineering program, attended the American Physical Society Conference in St. Louis, Missouri. At this conference, LeJeunesse presented his research paper, entitled Investigating the shock response of dry and water-saturated sand: flyer-plate experiments and mesoscale simulations. His work characterized the response of dry and water-saturated sands to high-velocity impacts on the order of 400-4000 mph. Tracking these waves and characterizing how they propagate helps to understand how materials behave under extreme thermo-mechanical loading conditions. The behavior of sand under these extreme conditions was measured within the laboratory at Marquette University and modelled with massively parallel codes that utilized U.S. Department of Defense super computers. This work was performed in conjunction with researchers from Georgia Tech, Harvard University, University of California-Davis, and Eglin Air Force Base, and supported by the Air Force Office of Scientific Research. LaJeunesse plans to work for a U.S. National Laboratory after receiving his doctoral degree.


Chris JohnsonChris Johnson, a master's student in the Mechanical Engineering program, attended the American Physical Society Conference in St. Louis Missouri this past July, and presented his research there. His research paper, entitled Photon Doppler Velocimetry Measurements of Transverse Velocities, looks into how granular materials, such as sand, respond to longitudinal and shear loading at high strain rates. Measuring both longitudinal and transverse velocities in the Marquette University Shock Physics Laboratory are important for understanding how materials respond to high strain rates, ultimately allowing for material strengths to be determined. Johnson's goal for after graduation is to work in a national laboratory exploring experimental shock physics.


Theresa HardyTheresa M. Hardy, a fifth-year Ph.D. candidate in the Nursing Department, recently attended the Sigma Theta Tau conference in Dublin, Ireland to partake in a poster presentation session. Hardy's presentation about her research, entitled Biobehavioral predictors of anti-Müllerian hormone: A Systematic Review, examines a biomarker of ovarian function called anti-Müllerian hormone. Hardy wants to increase the understanding of the hormone in the general population so that it can be used to more accurately reassess reproductive potential. Her research examines the biological and behavioral factors that affect the hormone's concentration so intervention can be made to prevent a premature decline in ovarian function and fertility lifespan. Hardy will complete her Ph.D. in May of 2018, and plans to start a postdoctoral fellowship afterwards. Her fellowship will be funded by the National Institute of Nursing Research.


Sergio Estrada Villegas, a Ph.D. candidate in the Biological Sciences Department, recently traveled to Merida, Yucatan, Mexico to attend a conference for the Association for Tropical Biology and Conservation and give an oral presentation about his research. His research, entitled Dynamics of biomass accretion in the absence of competition in tropical successional forests, discussed the competition between plants in areas of the tropics that are being deforested and are quickly regeneration into early successional forests. These types of forests have the capacity to transform large quantities of atmospheric carbon dioxide into wood, but no one had considered how plants and trees may affect the speed at which early successional forests transform carbon dioxide into wood. Estrada Villegas and his fellow researchers provided evidence that lianas (woody vines) slow down tree growth and decrease the capacity of early successional forests to accumulate biomass (wood). Their results show the role of lianas in successional forests might be more detrimental than previously predicted. Once done with his doctoral degree program, Estrada Villegas hopes to work in academia or in NGOs and continue studying how tropical successional forests may help curb climate change and protect biodiversity.

Doug Lyke, a fourth year Ph.D. candidate in the Biological Sciences Department, recently traveled to Newry, ME to attend the Gordon Research Conference and participate in a poster presentation session. His presentation, entitled Actin and the Sequestration of Protein Aggregates, looked at the involvement of the cellular cytoskeleton and movement of protein aggregates. Many neurodegenerative diseases are the products of protein aggregation, and Lyke and his fellow researchers believe understanding the dynamics of cellular components to manage them is crucial in being able to efficiently understand, treat, and prevent these diseases. After receiving his doctoral degree, Lyke would like to pursue a career as a scientist in the industry or biotech field.

Matthew Douglas, a sixth year Ph.D. candidate in the History Department, recently attended the 49th Annual Meeting of Rocky Mountain Medieval and Renaissance Association to present his research. The theme of the annual meeting was "Reformations during the Middle Ages and Renaissance" and focused on religious issues in European History. Douglas's paper he presented, entitled A Politicized Reformation? French Huguenots and English Catholics in an Era of Religious Intolerance, investigated the treatment of religious minorities in France and England between the years 1685-1715.


photoThomas D. Moore, a recent graduate of the M.A. in English program, traveled to Boston, MA, to present a paper he wrote at a conference co-sponsored by the American Literature Association and The International David Foster Wallace Society. His paper, entitled Rereading the Clichés of David Foster Wallace: Resisting Neoliberalism Through Valuing the Ordinary, analyzes how Wallace's short story "Good Old Neon" exposes many of society's ills through linking selfishness, lovelessness, and delusions of uniqueness to competitive masculinity. It argues that the story serves as Wallace's most explicit reminder to readers that freeing oneself from damaging cultural ideologies is not easy, but can be done. This project from Moore features deeply-researched, theoretical work in Wallace Studies. Moore was one of only five scholars selected by The International David Foster Wallace Society to present on the author at this annual conference, and was the only graduate student in either of the two David Foster Wallace panels. As far as his career goals, Moore hopes to teach college-level English Literature .


Katherine ManiatesThird year Biological Sciences doctoral student, Katherine Maniates, plans to travel to University of California, Los Angeles for the 21st Annual C. Elegans Conference sponsored by Genetics Society of America. At this conference, Maniates will give a poster presentation on her research, entitled The miR-44 family of microRNAs are essential for normal fertility in C. elegans. MicroRNAs as a set of regulators are essential for both development and physiology, however little is understood about the functions of individual microRNAs. Maniates's research looks into one group of microRANs, the miR-44 family and has identified that these microRNAs are important for normal fertility in C. elegans. After completing her doctoral program, Maniates plans to pursue post-doctoral research, and eventually a career in the academic setting.


Meghan FealeyBiological Sciences fifth year doctoral student, Meghan Fealey, will be traveling to Los Angeles, CA for the 21st Annual C. Elegans Conference sponsored by Genetics Society of America at the University of California, Los Angeles. At this conference, Fealey will give an oral presentation on her abstract during the Gene Stability, Gene Expression and Technologies parallel session. Her presentation, entitled Developmental regulation of H3K9me2 and chromatin compaction by C. elegans synMuy B proteins, focuses on how DNA organization and compaction is achieved and what proteins within the cell are important for this. Fealey's research determines that a group of tumor suppressor proteins organize DNA and ensure that the surrounding genes are repressed, which gives insight to gene regulation and helps researchers understand cancer biology more thoroughly. In her future plans, Fealey hopes to continue her research through a post-doctoral research position, and eventually move on to teach and conduct further research at a university.

Second year Master of Science in Environmental Engineering student, Saba Seyedi, recently traveled to St. Paul, MN for the Central States Water Environment Association conference to participate in a poster presentation session. His presentation was entitled Anaerobic co-digestion of condensate from biosolids pyrolysis. Pyrolysis is a thermochemical process that transforms wastewater biosolids to 4 products, including condensate. His research looked into results regarding inhibitory influence of condensate on anaerobic digestion and the results of continuous co-digestion.

Congratulations to the three Marquette University students, one of them being Dane DeVetter, a current master's student in the International Affairs program, who were recently selected for the prestigious 2017-18 Fulbright English Teaching Assistant Awards. As recipients of this award, the three students will several months working in classrooms overseas. DeVetter, who is also a Trinity Fellow here at Marquette, will be placed in the German state of Baden-Württemberg, which has a large refugee and immigrant population. Read the full story about the award and the three recipients in Marquette Today.

Elizabeth Paitel, a first year graduate student in the Clinical Psychology doctoral program, recently traveled to Zurich, Switzerland, to present research at an event sponsored by the European Cognitive Aging Society. Paitel's poster presentation was titled Early detection of cognitive dysfunction via ERPs: Anterior N2 amplitude and the role of APOE and alexithymia. The project employed event-related potentials (ERPs) to detect subtle differences in cognitive functioning amongst healthy older adults, half of whom carry the Apolipoprotein-E (APOE) ε4 allele as genetic risk for Alzheimer's disease. Her findings may allow for early detection and intervention for individuals at risk for developing cognitive dysfunction. Upon completing her program, Paitel plans to pursue a career in the university setting where she can teach and continue performing research in her field.

Lee Kimbell, a 2nd year Ph.D. student in the Civil, Construction, and Environmental Engineering program, will travel to University of Michigan in Ann Arbor this upcoming June to present his research at a conference for the Association of Environmental Engineering and Science Professors. His poster presentation, entitled Biosolids-Derived Biochar to Sorb Micropollutants from Wastewater, will focus on whether filters with biosolids-derived biochar could be implemented to remove additional containments at the end of the wastewater treatment process. After completing his Ph.D., Kimbell intends to work in industry or environmental consulting.

Cory Haala, a doctoral candidate in the History department, recently received a $5,000 grant from the Wisconsin Chapter of the National Society of Colonial Dames. This grant will be used for a three-month research trip during the summer of 2018 to archives in Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Iowa. The research at these various archives will explore the emergence of prominent women's caucuses in Midwestern politics.

All of Marquette’s Clinical Psychology candidates for predoctoral internships matched with internship positions for the fifth year in a row. This is a very competitive process and Marquette consistently rates above the national average for internship matches. Read more about the process in Marquette Today.


Jennifer MaraJennifer Marra, a sixth-year doctoral student in the Philosophy department, recently traveled to the American Philosophical Association Conference in Kansas City, MO., to present her research, entitled Cassirer on the Politics and Morality of Humor. In her presentation, Marra explains how comedians and philosophers ought to proceed during the current political situation in the United States. Her paper leans heavily on the word of Ernst Cassirer, a Jewish philosopher during the time of Hitler's reign, and his promotion of critical engagement. Upon receiving her Ph.D., Marra plans to pursue a career in academia.


David MarraDavid Marra, a fourth-year graduate student pursing his degree in clinical psychology, recently attended the annual International Neuropsychological Society meeting in New Orleans, LA. At the conference, Marra presented a research poster, entitled "An updated exploration of the frequency of suboptimal effort in a healthy undergraduate sample," which explored the frequency that students put forth sub-optimal effort in psychological testing. Marra also presented a paper, entitled "Cognitive reserve predicts post-operative cognitive decline in anterior temporal lobectomy patients," which demonstrated how higher education is associated with better cognitive outcomes in patients who undergo neurosurgery to treat intractable epilepsy. He believes his research may help clinicians form more accurate prognoses for their patients. Once he completes his doctoral program, Marra hopes to work at an academic medical center.


Cory HaalaCurrent Ph.D. candidate in the History department, Cory Haala, has been awarded the Minnesota Historical Society Legacy Research Fellowship, which rewards him a $5,000 grant for research in the Gale Family Library. Haala's project, titled "The Many DFLs in Rudy Perpich's Minnesota,"focuses on the widespread and varied grassroots within the Minnesota Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party in the 1980s, and themes in Midwestern liberalism during the Reagan Administration and beyond.


Monique TarrantCongratulations to current Master of Science in Nursing student, Monique Tarrant, for receiving the 2016 Milwaukee Black Nurses Association (MBNA) Graduate Scholarship! The mission of the MBNA is to support, empower, and educate nurses of color around the Milwaukee area, and Ms. Tarrant continues to live by this mission through her work. 


Ph.D. student in History, Maggie Nettesheim-Hoffmann, has been awarded the Humanities Without Walls (HWW) PreDoctoral Fellowship for 2017. As a Fellow, Maggie will receive a $5,000 stipend and attend a summer workshop in Chicago. The Humanities Without Walls is a consortium of humanities centers and institutes at 15 major research universities throughout the Midwest and beyond. Based at the Illinois Program for Research in the Humanities at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC), the consortium is funded by a grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. This is the first time HWW has sponsored a summer workshop. Guided by one of the leading public humanities organizations in the nation, these workshops encourage humanities doctoral students to think of themselves as agents of the public humanities and showcase opportunities beyond the walls of the academy in an uncertain academic job climate. Learn more about Humanities Without Walls online.

Gary P. Klump, a third year Ph.D. student in the Religious Studies program, recently traveled to San Antonio, TX for a conference sponsored by the Society of Biblical Literature. At the conference, Klump gave a paper presentation about his research, entitled Androdyne: The (Re)Union of Male and Female Qumran. In his presentation, Klump discussed the myth of the Androdyne, and its connection to a passage in the Qumran Damascus Document. After completion of his program, Klump hopes to teach at a small Catholic liberal arts school.

Congratulations to one of our recent graduates, Matt Costello, on his new job opportunity as a senior historian at the White House Historical Association! Costello earned his M.A. and Ph.D. in American History from Marquette University, and was a research fellowship recipient. Costello is a great example of the knowledge our students gain from programs at Marquette University, and how this knowledge allows them to succeed in their career aspirations.


Maja WhitakerMaja Whitaker, a second year graduate student studying speech-language pathology with a Bilingual English-Spanish specialization, recently attended a conference in Philadelphia, PA sponsored by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association. At this conference, Whitaker presented a poster, entitled Vowels Acoustics in English-Accented Spanish, which demonstrated the qualitative research she has done in her field regarding this area. In her research, Whitaker examined that English-Accented Spanish speakers may show greater variability in individual vowels compared to native Spanish speakers. Whitaker, who recently received the American Speech-Language-Hearing Foundation Graduate Student Scholarship, plans to either work as a speech-language pathologist with elementary-aged students or in a medical setting with adult patients upon receiving her Masters of Science.

Miguel Sotelo, a second year doctoral student, recently traveled to Minneapolis to give a presentation on his research, entitled Methods for Whole-Brain Probabilistic Tractography in Acute and Chronic Stroke Survivors. In his presentation, Sotelo explained the methods he implemented to use a probabilistic model of brain connectivity with information of local fiber orientation, and the results the research yielded. Sotelo plans to receive his Ph.D. in Functional Imaging, and eventually teach at the university level.

Brice Cleland, a graduate student in the Clinical and Translational Rehabilitation Health Science program, recently attended the Society of Neuroscience Conference in San Diego, California. At the conference, Brice presented his research on whether the affected limb in stroke survivors retains motor abilities during pedaling.

Ashley Moss, a sixth year graduate student in the Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology program, recently traveled to Savannah, GA for a conference sponsored by the Society for Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics. At the conference, Ashley presented research she conducted on the sleep quality and disease outcomes among adolescents with Type 1 Diabetes Mellitus. Ashley is currently interning at Children's Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota, and plans to pursue a Postdoctoral Fellowship in Pediatric Psychology after completing her current doctoral program.

 Evan Hess, a third year graduate student at Marquette University in the neuroscience program, was featured in the influential Fall 2016 issue of the Society for Neuroscience quarterly newsletter. In his research, Hess found that astrocytes are a key component in compulsive behaviors.

Brian Pattengale, a third-year Ph.D. student studying Chemistry, presented his research on the application of ZIF-67 to Photocatalytic Hydrogen Evolution at the Gordon Research Conferences at Salve Regina University in Rhode Island. His research aims to fundamentally understand the transient photodynamic catalytic events that underlie solar fuel conversion reactions. After earning his degree, Brian plans to pursue research and continue a postdoctoral position.

 Marquette University hosted its 7th Annual Diversity in Psychology Research Conference on Saturday, October 8th. We were excited to welcome undergraduate and graduate students and faculty from Marquette and 16 colleges and universities.

Congratulations to the winners of the poster competition:  

Undergraduate Students

First Place: “I’ll Pray for You”: Religion-based Microaggressions and Adverse Psychological Symptoms

Jenin Kimber and Kevin Karl

 Second Place: Authentically American? Examining the Relationship Between Levels of Patriotism and Anger when Viewing Violence Against Ethnic Groups

Camille Lester and Nakia S. Gordon

Third Place: The Effects of Assertiveness and Race on Reactions to Female Speakers

Stephanie Lopez

Graduate Students

First Place: I-sharing after a Gender Threat Increases Liking for a Gay Man and Decreases Defensiveness

Juan Zapata

Second Place: Give Us a Curriculum and an Outline

Lucas Mirabito and Nicholas Heck

Third Place: Measuring Young Women's Experiences with Benevolent Sexism: Scale Structures and Correlates

Debra Oswald, Maha Baalbaki, and Mackenzie Kirkman

 Tom Bouril, a recent alumnus of the Marquette University Graduate School and former Marquette TA, was announced the winner of the 2016 MA Essay prize from the North American Council for British Studies. Tom's MA essay was written under the direction of history professor Dr. Carla Hay. Tom is currently a doctoral student at Syracuse University, where his studies are focused on African History.

This summer, graduate students in the Biological Sciences program participated in a research 'elevator talk' competition. The science conducted in their research labs can be complicated, so the studentsthe students used these elevator talks to break down their research projects into 60 second, easy to understand presentations. Summer research students, which included undergraduates from Marquette University and other institutions, served as judges. Videos of the elevator talks can be viewed online.


Laurie Kunkel-JordanThe Nurses Foundation of Wisconsin recently announced that Laurie Kunkel-Jordan, a current Marquette University Ph.D. student in nursing, is the winner of the 2016 Research Grant. Laurie's research explores newly graduated nurses and preceptorship. You can read more about Laurie's research on the Wisconsin Nurses Association website.



Clinical Psychology Ph.D. student Anthony Correro was selected as an inaugural recipient of the Milwaukee Cream City Foundation's LGBTQ+ Scholarship. The $2,500 scholarship was created to support LGBTQ+ and ally students pursuing post-secondary education.


Doug LykeDoug Lyke is currently a third year Ph.D. student in the Biological Sciences department and had the honor of presenting a poster at the Allied Genetics Conference in Orlando, FL this July. Doug's posted was entitled Early Stage Prion Formation and the Insoluble Protein Deposit (IPOD) and his research looks at proteins that are directly related to neurodegenerative diseases in the model organism yeast.  Specifically, Doug's work focuses on the cellular pathways by which these proteins enter their diseased conformation.  The significance of this work is that it will hopefully uncover details of the pathways that these different diseases such as Alzheimer's or Parkinson's take in their early development stages, and then this information could be applied to developing better treatment options in human health. In the future, Doug hopes to use his degree to work as a scientist in the biotech industry. Doug was also awarded the Summer 2016 Jobling Travel Award.


Drew WilliamsDrew Williams, third year Ph.D. student in Computational Sciences, presented at the Rehabilitation Engineering and Assistive Technology Society of North America's national conference in Washington D.C. Drew presented two posters: Access Ruler: An Accessible Measurement Application for Determining Accessibility in the Built Environment and xFACT: Developing Usable Surveys for Accessibility Purposes. Access Ruler relies on using a laser ruler, in conjunction with an iOS application that obtains measurements taken by the ruler and stores them in a list. Pairing the laser ruler with the application is a single-button process. Access Ruler improves the accessibility of the process of measuring building features for accessibility, in addition to retaining accuracy and ease of use. xFACT is a desktop application designed to assist in deploying accessible, usable assessments.  xFACT can create one survey for multiple types of assessments, and tailor it to the needs of the user with very little effort on their part, thus improving the assessment-taking process for determining accessibility, and other such uses.


Lucas MirabitoSecond year Clinical Psychology Ph.D. student Lucas Mirabito traveled to Denver, Colorado to present his research at the American Psychological Association's (APA) conference. Lucas's poster presentation, entitled “Give Us a Curriculum and an Outline!” Insights from Gay-Straight Alliance Advisors on Providing Mental Health Programming to LGBTQ Students, investigated the feasibility of a mental health promotion program designed to be implemented in a gay-straight alliance (GSA) group meeting in high schools. GSA advisors (usually teachers at the school) were asked about how they would like such a program to be designed, how much need they felt there was for the program, how they felt students would react, and the common mental health challenges they hear from their students. It has been shown in past literature that LGBTQ high school students face a greater number of mental health challenges and stressors due to their identity. Currently, no mental health promotion program specifically designed for this population exists. This research represents an attempt to meet the unique needs of LGBTQ students in a culturally appropriate way. Lucas is also the recipient of a $1,000 research grant from the APA.

Cory Haala, Ph.D. student in History, recently presented at the Agricultural History Conference in New York. Cory's presentation, Rebuilding Rural/Urban Liberal Networks in the Upper Midwest during the Reagan Revolution, focused on how liberal organizations across the Dakotas, Minnesota, Iowa, and Wisconsin attracted farmers and other rural voters to their cause in the 1980s by attempting to limit cultural conflict and promote a shared sense of socioeconomic injustice.

Earlier this summer, Cory also presented at the Midwestern History Association Conference in Grand Rapids, MI. There, he presented a research paper entitled Mikhail Gorbachev’s Saint Paul Summit and the Construction of a New Midwestern Identity.

Foreign Languages and Literatures student Julia Grubich recently presented her research at the International Conference on Afro-Hispanic, Luso-Brazilian, and Latin American Studies in Accra, Ghana. ICALLAS is a conference that promotes the study of issues related to Africa and the peoples of African ancestry in Brazil and the Spanish-speaking world. Julia's paper, Como vivimos:Los desafios de ser africano en Espana, explores the literary works of Donato Ndongo and Mamadou Dia and their representation of the immigrant African in Spain.


Ryan WarnerRyan C. Warner, 2nd year Ph.D. student in Counseling Psychology, attended the Black Graduate Conference in Psychology in Miami, FL this spring. Ryan presented a poster on factors that support career success for first generation, low-income college students. The purpose of Ryan's research is to investigate the factors, strengths, and resources  that enabled first-generation, low-income, college alumni of color to achieve career/life success. Outcomes of this study will provide ideas for how we can best empower such students at the individual and systemic level. Ryan's career plans include serving as a psychologist, researcher, and consultant to provide mental health services and promote psychological well-being for minority populations. Ryan is also a recipient of the Marquette University Graduate School Diversity Fellowship.

The third annual Marquette Graduate Student Humanities Conference was held Friday, April 22, and Saturday, April 23. This year, graduate students from Marquette united their efforts with graduate students from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. The keynote speaker and workshop leader at this year’s conference was Dr. Heather Cox Richardson, distinguished professor of history at Boston College. She teaches the history of the 19th century, paying particular attention to the transformation of political ideology from the Civil War to the presidency of Theodore Roosevelt. Graduate students from the History and English departments participated in organizing the conference including: Patrick Bethel, Thomas Bouril, Matthew Douglas, Margaret Nettesheim Hoffmann, Ashley Meddaugh, and Michele Weber from History, and Matthew Burchanoski, Patrick Mullen, Sareene Proodian, and Katie Sterr from English.


Stephanie HoodSecond year Clinical Mental Health Counseling master's student, Stephanie Hood, presented on Career Exploration and Liberation: A Career Program for First Generation, Low-Income College Students in Montreal, Q.C., Canada this spring for the American Counseling Association and Canadian Counseling and Psychotherapy Association. The study presented theoretical background, implementation, and evaluation of a career development seminar for incoming college freshmen who are the first in their family to attend college and who also come from low-income backgrounds. The intervention was a three-day program that integrated traditional career development theories with liberation psychology. Stephanie and the other presenters shared the results of a mixed-methods evaluation of the seminar, along with recommendations for similar programming.


Erin QuasneyErin Quasney, Clinical Psychology Ph.D. student, presented her research on Neurobehavioral Examination Performance and Motor Intrusion Errors in Mild Cognitive Impairment versus Dementia at the American Academy of Clinical Neuropsychology Conference in February in Boston, MA. Her project examines the ability of a newly developed, rapidly administered measure of broad cognitive function with a specific focus on identifying signs of executive dysfunction to distinguish between dementia subtypes and between dementia and mild cognitive impairment. Proper diagnosis of dementia spectrum conditions is necessary to better inform patients as well as their families and care providers about issues related to disease management and course.


Katie Hazlett ElvermanSixth year Clinical Psychology Ph.D. student Katie Hazlett Elverman presented her poster on Preclinical Markers of Risk for Alzheimer's Disease in a Task of Inhibitory Control at a conference sponsored by the International Neuropsychological Society in Boston, MA in February. Her study revealed significant genetic differences in event related potentials in healthy older adults, revealing a new marker of Alzheimer's disease risk, and indicated the importance of executive abilities, such as inhibition, in preclinical Alzheimer's disease. She found that inexpensive and easily accessible event related potentials may be more sensitive to preclinical risk than cognitive testing alone.


Amanda BaumAmanda Baum, fifth year Chemistry Ph.D. student, presented at the Bioinorganic Chemistry (Gordon Research Seminar) Conference in Ventura, California in January. Her presentation on Biologically Relevant Fe(II) Complexes Containing Redox Active (Hydro)quinone Ligands focuses on the preparation and characterization of synthetic metal complexes that mimic the structure and/or function of iron-containing enzymes in nature. These efforts combine inorganic synthesis, spectroscopic methods, and reactivity studies. Her research group expects that studies of the synthetic models will provide insights into the function of the biological enzymes and also reveal new and interesting chemistry.

History Ph.D. student, Matthew Douglas, presented two presentations for the 2016 Newberry Library Graduate Student Conference in Chicago, Illinois in January.

Matthew Costello, History Ph.D. student, works for the Washington Papers at the University of Virginia where he serves as Project Manager of the George Washington Bibliography Project, an online database and website that catalogs over 10,000 books that feature George Washington in some manner. He traveled to the Fred W. Smith Library at Mount Vernon in January to co-present the project status to the library staff and project donors. He discussed ideas for promoting the project in the next six months, and the website will go live in 2016 and serve as an educational resource and scholarly tool for anyone interested in George Washington, early American history, and histiography.

Maria Bengtson, Biomedical Engineering Ph.D. student, won the Pierce Prize Competition last week at January Dissertation Boot Camp. She gave a two-minute presentation on her rehabilitation engineering research for her dissertation, and her peers voted her presentation as the most clear, concise, and compelling of the 17 competitors. The Pierce Prize Competition is a friendly competition on the last day of Dissertation Boot Camp that honors Mr. Craig Pierce, who retired from his position as the Assistant Dean of the Marquette University Graduate School in May 2015 after serving the Graduate School for 17 years and starting our first Dissertation Boot Camp 10 years ago.

Third year Clinical and Translational Rehabilitation Health Science Ph.D. student Brice Cleland  presented at the Society of Neuroscience conference in Chicago, IL this fall. His presentation, entitled Reducing pedaling-related brain activation volume post-stroke does not depend on task performance, investigates factors that contribute to movement-related brain activation in stroke survivors. A recent study demonstrated that stroke survivors have decreased brain activation compared to controls during a pedaling task. This change in brain activation may result from changes in the structure or function of the brain or changes in the way that movements are performed. The factors causing changes in brain activation post-stroke are important because they potentially can be manipulated to improve brain activation and movement. When Brice graduates from Marquette, he plans to work as a researcher and professor at a university.

Shaun Miller, sixth year Philosophy Ph.D. student, was a presenter at the North American Sartre Society's conference in Bethlehem, PA. Shaun's work, entitled Bodily Consciousness: A Sartrean Response to Irigaray, focused on philosopher Luce Irigaray's critiques of Sartre's phenomenology. The main criticism is that Sartre is ignoring the body when it comes to relationships. Shaun responded in his research by defending Sartre against Irigaray by offering textual evidence that Sartre does pay attention to the body in the way that Irigaray asks for. Moreover, understanding Sartre's notion of the body can give insight on what it means to be a conscious being by focusing on the body. During his time at Marquette, Shaun plans on finishing his dissertation about the ethical assumptions of sex education programs in the United States.


Kimberly EngelsFifth year Philosophy Ph.D. student Kimberly Engels recently had the honor of     presenting a research paper at the North American Sartre Society's conference, held at East Stroudsburg University in Bethlehem, PA. Kimberly's paper was entitled Ethical Subjectivity in Sartre and Foucault and focused on the ethical thought of Sartre and Foucault, arguing that each presents ethics as a type of self-creation in relation to the social practices of one’s historical epoch. Kimberly developed Sartre’s and Foucault’s claims that creating oneself as an ethical subject involves critical reflection, empathy, and creative invention. Her research is significant to the discipline and to the wider community because she contributes historical scholarship on Sartre and Foucault, and further presents a conception of ethics that is compatible with contemporary moral practices. Kimberly was also awarded the Smith Family Fellowship for 2015-16.

Benjamin Linzy is currently a master's student in the History department. This November, Benjamin had the honor of presenting a research paper, entitled The Shame of Nations: International Responses to Genocide in the Wake of the 1948 Genocide Convention at Northern Illinois University Graduate Student Association's eighth annual conference. He also presented his paper Indigenous Eclipse: How indigenous victories shaped the British Empire, 1842-1885 at the 81st Annual Meeting of the Southern Historical Association.

 First year History Ph.D. student Cory Haala presented at the 41st Annual Great Lakes History Conference at Grand Valley State University in October. The paper he presented, entitled Remembering and Rebuilding Farmer-Labor Gains in 1970s Minnesota, focused on the role historical memory played in the revival of a modern progressive movement in 1970s Minnesota. In his presentation, he argued that a new generation of liberals used the rhetoric, publications, and names of the Farmer-Labor Party in creating new networks which challenged the rising tide of conservatism in America.

Masters students in the Foreign Languages and Literatures program Sandra Baer, Julia Grubich, and Caitlin Carini all attended the Newberry Workshop on Don Quixote on October 15th in Chicago. The workshop allowed MA and PHD students from around the U.S. to connect, network, and share different opinions and theories on the well-known novel Don Quixote. The students reported that it was interesting getting to know people from all around the U.S. with different backgrounds and majors, such as political science, history, and English. Caitlin recalls that her favorite part of the workshop was touring the rare books section of the library where the Newberry staff displayed old, rare editions of Don Quixote that they had collected over the years.


Dylan SnyderDylan Snyder is currently a 5th year Ph.D. student in Marquette's Biomedical Engineering program. This fall, Dylan presented his research, entitled Effects of wrist tendon vibrations on cortical activity during arm stabilization, during a poster presentation at the Society for Neuroscience Conference in Chicago. This research is focused on the human brain and how it uses sensory information to control the body. More specifically, how the brain uses sensory information to control, arm stability. Past research in Dylan's lab has shown that applying vibration to the forearm flexor tendons can improve arm stability. Even though the application of tendon vibrations is known to improve the function, the mechanism behind the improvement is unclear. During his time here at Marquette, Dylan has built a passive robotic device that allows him to investigate how the brain controls arm stability and explore the mechanisms behind improved arm stability with applied tendon vibrations. Once the mechanisms of arm stability and tendon vibration are better understood, it may be possible to transfer this knowledge into the clinical setting to improve current neurorehabilitation techniques and to develop therapeutic devices. After graduating from Marquette University, Dylan plans to enter into industry and design neurological devices meant to restore or enhance function.


D.J. HobbsD.J. Hobbs, 3rd year Philosophy Ph.D. student, traveled to Atlanta, Ga. to present his research at the Society for Ricœur Studies conference this October. His paper, entitled Ricœur's Hermeneutics of Translation and the Case of Religious Language, discusses D.J.'s interpretation of the motivations behind Paul Ricœur's account of translation as “linguistic hospitality.” It subsequently tests this model against the difficult case of religious language. Although Ricœur's view of translation accounts well for the everyday occurrence of translation, D.J. argues, certain instances of religious language remain beyond its scope. This position stands in contrast to the attempts of some philosophers to extend Ricœur's model to religious speech without qualification. The article therefore serves to help keep Ricœurian hermeneutics of translation on the correct path towards its most practical uses. After attaining his doctorate, D.J. intends to remain in academia, hopefully securing a tenure-track job to continue his research and teaching.


Sophie SchunkSecond year Biomedical Engineering master's student Sophie Schunk had the honor of presenting her research at the Biomedical Engineering Society's Conference in Tampa, Florida. Sophie's poster presentation described a nonlinear computer simulation model for blood glucose regulation consisting of 3 compartments for glucose (blood plasma, muscle tissue/mitochondria, non-muscle tissue), insulin and glucagon control action, and new approaches for addressing the diverse nature of meal and exercise inputs. Results illustrate how differences with meal type (slow vs. fast glycemic index [GI]) and exercise/activity based glucose-glycogen consumption affect predictions of blood plasma glucose dynamics and hormonal control action. Current challenges are addressed with model personalization, providing input flexibility for body mass, muscle ratio, stress, and types of diabetes (T1D, T2D) informing drug delivery design. The model was created in Matlab (and Simulink) with future implications and algorithm development to help inform diabetics on how to best regulate blood glucose. Sophie is currently completing her master's thesis at Marquette and hopes to work directly with diabetic medical devices and supplies in a clinical applications role after graduation.


Jen Bonniwell is in her third year of the Electrical and Computing Engineering Ph.D. program, and she presented the results of her accepted paper, entitled Performance Analysis of Resilient Dynamic Feedback H2 Controllers, at the 2015 IEEE Multi-Conference on Systems and Control, in Manly, NSW, Australia. Her presentation provides an a priori analysis procedure useful to engineering system control designers by aiding them to make insightful selections of components with adequate tolerances. Jen was also awarded the Schmitt Leadership Fellowship.


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