Conference 2020

Welcome to the 5th Annual Bruin Brains Research Conference!

Bruin Brains is an annual SLCC TRIO Programs student-led research conference that is intended to support diversity in undergraduate research!

Please use the links below to navigate the virtual conference throughout the event.
Welcome & Guest Speaker

10 A.M. – 11 A.M.

myra parker

Dr. Myra Parker

Research with Tribal Colleges and Universities: Cultural Adaptations for Improved Interventions Among Diverse Communities.

Myra Parker (Mandan-Hidatsa-Cree), Ph.D., J.D., is an associate professor in the Center for the Studies of Health and Risk Behavior in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, in the University of Washington School of Medicine. She also serves as the director for Seven Directions: A Center for Indigenous Health. Dr. Parker received her B.A. in Human Biology from Stanford University, a J.D. and M.P.H. from the University of Arizona in 2001 and 2002, respectively, and a Ph.D. in Health Services from the University of Washington School of Public Health in 2010. Dr. Parker has worked for over ten years on tribal public health program implementation, and coordination with tribal communities in Arizona, Idaho, and Washington, as well as with tribal colleges and universities across the United States. Her research experience in public health involves Community Based Participatory Research, cultural adaptation of evidence-based interventions, and disparities research. As an enrolled member of the Mandan and Hidatsa tribes, she is aware of the historical health practices and misconduct perpetuated on tribes in the United States, as well as other minority and disenfranchised populations. Her background in law and policy has informed a broader understanding of the principles of ethics as well as honed her skills in identifying methods to address the disparities in research control and access through the use of formalized agreements.

Research Poster Presentation Session

11:20 A.M. – 12 P.M.

This breakout is a student research poster session. A poster presentation is a way to communicate your research or your understanding of a topic in a short and concise format. It usually includes two elements - a poster and a brief explanation. Please use the links below to ask the presenter questions about their individual projects.

Megan Luetchford
Title: Research to Prevent Cyberbullying in Middle School Aged Kids.
Summary: My name is Meg, I have conducted research to help educate parents of middle school students on the rising issue of cyberbullying. My research covers the effects and warning signs of cyberbullying. As well, I will teach parents about the guidelines and how to use various social media platforms (Instagram and Snapchat) to ensure their children are safe online.

Zachary Knettles
Titled "How to Be a Big Boy"
It is a theoretical approach to mitigating bullying in young boys, kindergarten age, by working on a slight deconstruction of hegemonic masculinity. I am proposing a simple acronym for teachers to help use on a poster that gives boys a way to facilitate their own safe space to have conversations about emotions and feelings. It is a basic approach to introducing the "if this then that" style of conversation and problem solving to an age group that is entering gender typecasting where it is not promoted for them to talk about feelings, especially hurt ones. Not only does this help boys feel safer to talk about their emotions, it helps to not put other boys in the box of being a bully or bad kid, because they too are learning how to process and support emotions with their peers.

Tanya-Lynn Faupula
Title: Perceived Mental Health of People of Color
In my previous research, I noticed that higher percentages of POC tended to score themselves higher on the negative emotions’ scales more often than their white counterparts. I’ve also observed that mental health isn’t a common topic of conversation in many communities of color. Many of the participants from my past project were POC that I know personally that also deal with mental health disorders and this project helped open up discussions with friends that were either embarrassed about or didn’t know where to seek help. My idea was to put together a survey that participants would answer anonymously. I want to show common experiences between formally-diagnosed, self-diagnosed, and non-diagnosed folks. The goal of my project is to continue to open up these discussions and possibly help someone have the courage to seek help. I also want to include information on some affordable/accessible resources and mental health professionals of color as part of my conclusion (possibly using a QR code).

Jessamyn Gofberg
Title: Cyberbullying
My project is focused on exploring cyberbullying. Specifically, what cyberbullying is, the effects, and what we can do to prevent and help those who have been cyberbullied. My project includes a flyer to advertise an zoom meeting held by a social worker to discuss what cyberbullying is, the effects, and what parents and teachers can do. My project includes a PowerPoint on that information. This presentation is a PowerPoint to show kids, aged 10-14, information to educate themselves about cyberbullying. In the future, the intended audience for the presentation will be children and adolescents, placing special emphasis on the importance of empathy and how that can impact cyberbullying.

Karlus Pulley
Title: Comparing Piano Playing Kinesthetics: Composed Works vs. Freestyle
In this experiment a detailed analysis of the motion of the hand/wrist while playing the piano was conducted. Five songs were played that were already composed works and five songs played off the top of the head were analyzed. The study was of the motion of the right hand while playing. An accelerometer was attached to the hand to collect data at 20 Hz. Using numerical methods, the kinetics of the hand/wrist were calculated, and the smoothness and cyclical patterns were analyzed. The analysis looked for major differences between the two types of playing.

Michael Sawyer
Title: Hazing
My research presentation is about bullying, specifically focusing on the concept of hazing. This is a PowerPoint presentation and it is information about hazing at colleges for students who are going to be going to a University or another college out of high school. It is a 7 to 10 minute presentation. The presentation is intended to bring awareness to hazing.

Ozzie Lacey Spor-Ockey
Title: Salivary Analysis of Pet Reptiles Experiment
Summary: My experiment was to find and compare the amounts of bacteria in the saliva of three different species of pet reptiles based on their diet. I had chosen these three different kinds of reptiles based on what is most owned in the U.S. Ball Pythons Python regius (carnivores), Bearded Dragon’s Pogona vitticeps (omnivores) and Leopard Gecko’s Eublepharis macularius (insectivores).

Nadia Yahyapour
Title: Yogurt Bacteria: What are they and how do they survive best?
Summary: My research idea came from my biology 1615 class where I looked at yogurt under a microscope to find bacteria in it. The yogurt provided to us was a fruit yogurt and we found no bacteria in it, but the next week I took some homemade yogurt with me to school to test it under the microscope to find bacteria in it. I am doing this research project to find information about bacteria survival with different environments such as yogurt type, temperature, and light. So far, I have found primary research about yogurt bacteria such as lactobacillus and their survival in the human gut. I have also found primary research about lactobacillus acidophilus, a yogurt bacteria, and its survival rate in colder temperatures.

Brock Smith
Title: Verbal Bullying
I have written a program directed at addressing verbal bullying within the 5th grade of a local elementary school. My project has been expanded on from an initial social work course project. Thank you and I look forward to presenting.

Devon Robertson
Title: Sugar & spice, no more slice: End female genital mutilation.
My presentation explains FGM and the different types of mutilations that girls can experience. It also highlights how FGM is not just a foreign issue, but happens right here in the U.S., and how we can help bring an end to the harmful practice.

Caysie Bakke
Title: Environmental Justice
My project is a road trip though The United States that shows how places that are the most polluted/contaminated are in areas where most minorities and low income communities reside.

Shirley Paxtor
Title: Resiliency in Mixed Status Families
I am presenting on Mixed-Status Families in higher education. I am focusing on the challenges that students who are US citizens must encounter while they go to higher education and the barriers in micro and macro levels they got through to get an education.

Sophie Silverstone
Title: U R O.K. App - A Teacher's Resource for Classroom Awareness
Remember the "How are you feeling today?" chart? U R O.K. brings that chart up to date using an app! Teachers can use this resource for their classroom, where students can name their emotions, what is making them feel different, and help teachers track classroom emotions. The goal of this app is to decrease bullying by helping teachers identify students' emotions, stressors, power imbalances and what makes them feel different from the rest of the class so they can be aware of underlying dynamics that contribute to the atmosphere where bullying occurs. The app will help teachers see classroom trends over time and so they can lead discussions about different emotions and overall help students know it's okay to experience these complex emotions that occur in everyday life.

Rosa Quintero
Title: Bullying Prevention
According to the website, bullying happens among school aged children and is defined as an unwanted aggressive behavior that can be repeated. Bullying can have long lasting negative effects for those who get bullied. The emphasis of my project was to develop a program/activity that focuses on bullying prevention. My goal was to teach kindergarten students the meaning of bullying and things they can do to stop bullying.

Luz Tafolla
Topic: Bullying within minorities
I discuss how bullying goes on in a middle school filled with minorities. I will discuss a method that can be available for parents, students and staff. Also, how it will affect families and how they will be able to learn from it and bring families and students together.

Tabling Information Resources Session
1:20 P.M. – 2 P.M.

Scott Woodie  
Biodiversity od Microorganisms in a Montane River 

This study is a determination on whether or not the Jordanelle Dam effects the biodiversity of microorganisms in the Middle Provo, and if so, is the effect negative or positive. Using species richness, evenness, and the Shannon Index, I calculate and compare the biodiversity of sites above and below the Jordanelle Dam. These calculations are then used to determine the dam’s affect.   


Elizabeth Weilenmann 

Biodiversity population differences in Deer Creek Reservoir, versus the ecological environment of a duck pond in the same area. 
Does the biodiversity of organisms differ in bodies of water with motorized usage, such as boats, jet skis, etc., versus water sources that do not have motorized usage?

Join this session:

Guest Speaker
12:40 P.M. - 1:25 P.M.

steven roberts

Dr. Steven Roberts

Racism: A Developmental Story

Steven O. Roberts is an assistant professor of psychology at Stanford University. He received his AA from the Borough of Manhattan Community College, his BS from New York University, and his MS and PhD from the University of Michigan. In his research, he attempts to identify and dismantle social inequalities, especially racial inequalities. He is from a first-generation and low-income background and believes that the best science happens among diverse groups of scientists.

Explore SLCC Student Services

Faculty and staff are excited to support students and their efforts. Faculty and staff can also act as research mentors and advisors to SLCC students as students prepare to present at any conference!

Faculty can help students organize their thoughts, help coming up with a research question/topic, and resource referrals (e.g. journal articles and poster formatting).

Want research mentorship? Use the SME Research Catalog to connect with an SLCC Professor below!

STEM Learning Resources
STEM Learning Resources provides free tutoring services and textbook checkout to students enrolled in various courses offered by the School or Science, Math, and Engineering. Tutoring is provided as a drop-in service only, except in certain circumstances.

InnovaBio Lab
InnovaBio® is a biotechnology contract research organization. We offer a low risk environment for students to develop productive lab skills while working on projects for real companies. The challenging research completed by our interns creates a valuable talent pool for Utah biotechnology companies.

Student Reading and Writing Center
The SLCC Student Writing & Reading Center helps you to succeed as a student by helping you to improve as a writer and a reader. We offer free, in-person and online consultations for all SLCC students enrolled in any class. We also have a variety of literacy resources for students and teachers.

Honors Program and Interdisciplinary Studies
SLCC's Honors program is a personalized, engaging, and transformative experience open to all AA/AS students. Students in the Honors Program will sharpen their academic and scholarly skills through several rigorous Honors Courses that fulfill 9 credits of General Education: 3 in Social Sciences (SS), 3 in Humanities (HU), and 3 in the second half of Composition (EN).

Funded by SLCC TRIO Programs and ACE (Arts and Community Events).