Your Hendrix Odyssey

April 2012 Odyssey Grant recipients

Hendrix Odyssey Program 
Project Funding 
April 2012

The Odyssey Program has provided more than $2 million in competitive grants to faculty and students to support projects around the world.  The Committee on Engaged Learning (CEL) awarded $54,803.76 in Odyssey grants to 22 projects proposed by faculty and students in the April 2012 cycle. The grand total for funding since the Odyssey Program’s inception in 2005 is $2,101,630.51. 

Students will serve others around the world, travel India by rail, research cancer treatments, create a smoothie recipe book, and explore printmaking.

The grant recipients include:

Lora Adams

Threads of Hope: Nonprofit Internship in Peru

Category: SP

Sponsor: Dr. Lilian Contreras-Silva

The international non-profit Threads of Hope is an economic development project dedicated to breaking the cycle of poverty for disadvantaged artisans. “The organization has just recently begun to work with student interns that have an interest in microfinance, economic development, and working with impoverished communities,” said Lora Adams. She will travel to Peru, using her language skills and working directly with artisans and their families.

Chad Binns

Effects of Ectopic Expression of Suppressor miRNAs 133b and 193b on Prostate Cancer Metastasis in Conditional Pten Knockout Mice (Mus musculus)

Category: UR

Sponsor: Dr. Varsha Kaushal

“Recent studies have shown that miRNAs, small non-coding RNA molecules that regulate genetic expression at the transcriptional and translational levels, are differentially expressed in cancerous prostate tissue,” said Chad Binns. These molecules show potential as anti-cancer therapies. He will conduct research on mice this fall to explore this concept.

Monica Chatterton

WWOOF Argentina: Immersion in Organic

Category: GA

Sponsor: Dr. Jeff Kosiorek

Through Worldwide Opportunities on Organic Farms, Monica Chatterton will work with a family in El Bolson in Argentina for two weeks. “This experience will provide me with lasting knowledge about organic farming, the connection between community and local food, as well as the experience of an unfamiliar culture and language,” Chatterton said. The family has a garden, fruit trees, beehives and livestock, giving her a wide range of duties on the farm.

Kaleigh Clary and Jeannette Inema

Lessons from the Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing

Category: SP

Sponsor: Dr. Gabe Ferrer

The 2012 Grace Hopper Celebration (GHC) of Women in Computing is a conference series focusing on research and career interests of women in computer science. Sessions are directed by leaders in industry, academia and government. Kaleigh Clary and Jeannette Inema will attend the conference and gather insight into the topic for a campus presentation. “Given the dual focus on research and academic and career development, GHC brings together the methods, insights, concerns, and subject matters of different disciplines for women within computer science,” they said.

Francis Cruz

The Gift of Violence at Winter Wonderland

Category: SP

Sponsor: Prof. Ann Muse

The Winter Wonderland Workshop is a two-day event organized by the Society of American Fight Directors. The workshop offers eleven separate courses on stage combat and consistently draws participants from all over the world. This year Francis Cruz will be honing his craft at the workshop. “I will be gaining experience that I could use in the day-to-day performance of my future career, and I will be building relationships to help me become a valid contributor of the stage combat community,” he said.

Emily Depre

Hatch Show Professional Experience

Category: PL

Sponsor: Dr. Rod Miller

Emily Depre will work at the Hatch Print Show in Nashville, Tenn. It is one of the oldest letterpress studios in America, using antique wood and metal typefaces on custom print jobs. “My plan is to spend the month of January learning new printmaking techniques, how to operate a letterpress, and further develop skills of design and composition,” Depre said.

Jimmy Dornhoffer

The College Guide to Smoothies

Category: SP

Sponsor: Dr. Leslie Zorwick

The dining hall at Hendrix College has a blender station where students can create their own smoothies. Jimmy Dornhoffer will work with Harrison Lindley, Marvin McLennon, and Bryan Vanco to publish a humorous smoothie recipe guide that will be sold in the Hendrix bookstore. The proceeds will benefit Bethlehem House in Conway. “We would assemble each page to look like a student’s notebook that has been doodled in and scribbled in, while in class,” Dornhoffer said. He noted that each page would include drawings, the recipe and a measurement system for taste, healthiness, and weirdness.

Molly Elders and Emily Deitchler

The Roots of Hendrix: Revitalizing the College Campus Arboretum

Category: SP

Sponsor: Dr. Joyce Hardin

“The Hendrix College Campus Arboretum was established in 1995 to serve as an educational resource for Hendrix and the larger community through the identification, cataloguing, and labeling of trees on campus,” said Molly Elders and Emily Deitchler. In 17 years, the campus has experienced many architectural and landscape changes, and many of the original plaques attached to trees have become lost or damaged. They will survey the campus, choose 100 prominent and centrally-located trees to receive new plaques, and create an educational pamphlet that outlines the locations of the labeled trees on a campus map.

Sara Hales

Connecting Museum Theory to Museum Practice and Vocation

Category: PL

Sponsor: Dr. Rebecca Resinski

Sara Hales will investigate her own interest in museum curation with visits to the Getty Villa, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Guggenheim Museum. She will explore the exhibits at these top museums and interview curators about their methods and reasons for putting the displays together. “The best way to see what being a museum curator is actually like is to spend time with curators and experience their work in person, “ Hales said. She hopes to gain valuable insight about the philosophy and purpose of museum work and the obligations and expectations placed upon curators.

Elana Harrison

Parliamentary Quotas and their Effects on Gender-Empowering Legislation

Category: UR

Sponsor: Dr. Kiril Kolev

Rwanda uses a gender quota in its legislature, resulting in one of the highest percentages of female Parliament members in the world. However, this doesn’t necessarily create more gender-empowering legislation on behalf of women. “I hypothesize that female MPs do not necessarily represent women in a more substantive way than male members,” said Elana Harrison. She will conduct research on women’s interest bills in the country’s legislative archives and plans to interview Parliamentary members as she explores this concept.

Cannon Koester

Heart of Texas, Heart of History, Heart of Humanity

Category: SP

Sponsor: Dr. Brett Hill

After his family’s ranch was victorious in a legal battle with a utility company, Cannon Koester became intrigued by the long history of human habitation on the property in Coleman County, Texas. He intends to write an essay covering the span of time from 1500 years ago when Native Americans lived on the property to his own grandfather’s childhood along with the recent court case. “As an aspiring novelist I want to create a narrative to tell an engaging story of a modern legal drama that personally touched my family,” Koester said.

Clare Mauney

Icelandic Odyssey:  A Special Project Exploring the Republic of Iceland Using the Literature of Halldor Laxness

Category: SP

Sponsor: Dr. William Hacker

There has been a growing international interest in the literature of Iceland, including the works of Halldór Laxness who received the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1955.  His works describe the pristine beauty of the environment of Iceland. “Since reading Laxness, I have become even more interested in this country that was for so long largely untouched and unnoticed by the rest of the world,” Clare Mauney said. She will study Icelandic history, culture, and landscape with a focus on the writings of Laxness as a guide.

Sreesh Reddy and Anthony Cabrera

Ultimate Frisbee Clinic for Little Rock High School Students

Category: SW

Sponsor: Dr. Jenn Dearolf

For the past decade, Ultimate Frisbee has been the fastest growing sport in the world. “Ultimate can best described as a combination of the fast-paced movement and athletic endurance of soccer and the aerial passing skills of football,” said Sreesh Reddy and Anthony Cabrera. They will promote the sport in a series of clinics for Little Rock high school students, culminating in a tournament in December.

Alexandria Saunders

Trehalose and Autophagy in Mouse Model Prostate Cancer

Category: UR

Sponsor: Dr. Varsha Kaushal

Alexandria Saunders will research how trehalose impacts autophagy, the self-digestion of cellular components, to reduce prostate tumor size and rate of proliferation in mice. This could offer a benign treatment course for human cancers. “Because trehalose is already frequently ingested (high concentrations are  found in shrimp and other seafood), it seems to be a good potential option for human therapy,” Saunders said.

Jennifer Shostrand and Anna Broadwell-Gulde

Resource Complexity: A Multidimensional Study of Hydropower in Chile

Category: SP

Sponsor: Dr. Joyce Hardin

Jennifer Shostrand and Anna Broadwell-Gulde will study the environmental, social and economic impacts of controversial hydropower projects in southern Chile. “Through interviews with policy experts and local communities, we can obtain a direct understanding of current environmental policy issues and how they affect Chilean citizens,” they said. They will also meet with the Pehuenche people, an indigenous group that was relocated during dam construction in the 1990s to gather  local opinions from a group not ordinarily heard on an international issue.

Michael Tarne

Hendrix Climbing Coalition

Category: PL

Sponsor: Dr. James Dow

As one of the co-presidents of the Hendrix Climbing Coalition, Michael Tarne has plenty of experience as a climber. This fall, he will be certified by the American Mountain Guides Association as a Single Pitch Instructor. He would gain the skills needed to guide small groups on an outdoor climb and teach  the proper techniques. “I would like to be able to assume this role, to be able to lead others by example and assist them in their journey to becoming safe, confident climbers,” Tarne said.

Connor Thompson

India by Train: Exploring the Subcontinent from Hyderabad to the Himalayas

Category: GA

Sponsor: Dr. Jay McDaniel

The rail system in India is a vital means of transport for people of all economic classes and social backgrounds as they travel the many miles of track that crisscross and connect the massive country. “I am drawn by the question of how trains serve as an indicator of social class and regional identity as well as a unifying influence,” said Connor Thompson. He will travel from Hyderabad to Shimla, at the foothills of the Himalayas, selecting different types of trains and passenger classes to get a wide-ranging experience of rail travel in India.

Julie Wagner

Women's Outreach in Jaipur

Category: SW

Sponsor: Prof. Britt Murphy

Julie Wagner will volunteer with World Endeavors in Jaipur, India, for four weeks. “The organization that I will be placed with focuses on empowering women in Jaipur through English lessons, computer training, handicraft training and other services,” Wagner said. She hopes to learn how the cultural context of women in India affects and shapes the form that outreach must take to effectively serve them.

Vicki Wood

Pass on the Love

Category: SP

Sponsor: Rev. Wayne Clark

Vicki Wood will conduct an experiment on campus this fall to determine how good deeds influence both parties. She is particularly interested in the impact upon the recipient. Through journaling she will attempt to see if there is a discernible difference after her project has been completed.

Kesha Baoua

Exploring the Cultural and Educational Experiences of Nigerien Students

Category: GA

Kesha Baoua will take Desirae Holmes, Ieshea Goree and Vvdaul Holloway on an exploration of the educational system and culture of Niger, a developing nation in west Africa. “Primary education is required, but lack of access to schools, ineffective methods of tracking child residency, and overall poor economic conditions result in many children not receiving any formal education. Yet, the determination of Nigerien children to receive an education is inspiring,” Baoua said. They will observe educational facilities from primary school to medical school.

Prof. Melissa Gill

Mid America Print Council Conference Trip

Category: SP


Hendrix students in Prof. Melissa Gill’s printmaking class will participate in a conference to further their skills. The Mid America Print Council Conference “Pressing Prints/Pressing Palms: The Entrepreneurial Printmaker” will offer lectures, discussion panels, technical demonstrations, and exhibitions.  “Each student will participate in ‘Open Portfolio Night’ by presenting their own original works to the public,” Gill said.

Dr. Karen Griebling

Exploring Haydn (1760-1774)

Category: SP

The Hendrix College Chamber Orchestra will rehearse and perform selected portions of compositions by Joseph Haydn with three guest performer-lecturers this fall in order to explore a historic musical mystery and its possible solution. One innovative component of this project is the use of facsimiles of the Baroque style bow that was used in Haydn’s day.  Griebling hopes this will reveal “additional insights into the inspiration behind and realization of Haydn’s music."