The Odyssey Program

February 2019 Odyssey Grants

Hendrix Odyssey Program

Project Funding

February 2019


With the February 2019 funding cycle, the Committee on Engaged Learning has now awarded $4,224,354.21 in Odyssey grants to support 1,317 projects by Hendrix students and faculty since the Odyssey Program’s inception in 2005. In this cycle, 31 projects were awarded $107,634 in grants to help Hendrix students conduct research, learn new skills, share their passions in film and print, and explore their interests around the world. Also, see below for this year’s recipient of the Robert F. Baker Prize in Economics.


Landon Anderson

Examining the Role of Lipid Concentration and Flow Rate on the Formation of Supported Lipid Bilayers (SLBs)

Category: UR

Supervisor: Peter Kett, Chemistry


Landon Anderson will apply his academic background to solving real-world problems and prepare for a career as a chemical engineer through a research project this summer. He will conduct a series of experiments on the formation of Supported Lipid Bilayers, which are a form of model biological membranes.


Steffan Bonilla

Banking on the Future

Category: PL

Supervisor: Buck Buchanan, Intercollegiate Athletics


As a corporate banking analyst for Regions Bank, Steffan Bonilla will be a key team member supporting both internal and external client initiatives He will be mentored by several senior analysts at the company. During this summer, Bonilla will increase his management skills by taking part in corporate level decision making, implementing financial plans, and advising corporate clients.


Cayman Botner

Summer 2019 EPROACH Program

Category: SP

Supervisor: Courtney Hatch, Chemistry


As part of the Experiences in Professional Research Organization and Atmospheric Chemistry at Hendrix (EPROACH) program, Cayman Botner will travel to Boulder, Colo. He will tour national scientific and academic laboratories and have informal discussions with professional researchers to learn about potential career options in chemistry.


Sandy Burks

Atlantis Fellowship-Clinical Shadowing in Spain

Category: PL

Supervisor: Cori French, Foreign Languages


As an Atlantis Fellow, Alexander Burks will spend three weeks shadowing physicians at Hospital Universitari Sagrat Cor in Barcelona, Spain. The Atlantis Project gives students who are interested in medical careers the opportunity to experience international healthcare through clinical shadowing.


Brittany Chue

Documentary on Food Insecurity in Panama

Category: UR

Supervisor: Stacey Schwartzkopf, Sociology and Anthropology


Brittany Chue will study hunger and poverty in Panama this summer. A series of video interviews with Panamanians from diverse cultures, social classes and geographic regions will form the basis of her documentary, which will explore how poverty and food insecurity are tied to the country’s economy.


Michael Crippen Jr.

Printmaking Professional Work Experience with Professional Artist Kristin DeGeorge

Category: PL

Supervisor: Melissa Gill, Art


Kristin DeGeorge is an accomplished professional artist in France who has a print studio of her own. She will mentor art major Michael Crippen, Jr. this summer to teach him new methods of researching and creating art, the steps to prepare for an exhibition, and how to market himself as a professional artist.


Rachel Elmakiss

Coffee and Hospitality in the Bedouin Society of the Negev

Category: UR

Supervisor: Stacey Schwartzkopf, Sociology and Anthropology


Coffee is an integral part of Bedouin hospitality. In Bedouin society, hospitality is often expressed through coffee, such as how many cups a guest may receive from their host or even how much coffee one is given in their cup, which can represent how long a guest can stay and the level of hospitality that will be provided. Rachel Elmakiss will be staying in a Bedouin Community in the Negev Desert of Israel as she conducts her research on the importance of coffee in hospitality and their society in general while also teaching English to the local children.


Claire Fleming

Engaging with the African Leadership University in Mauritius

Category: GA

Supervisor: Allison Shutt, History


Mauritius is a small island nation off the coast of Madagascar, and it is home to the African Leadership College. International students and faculty learn about entrepreneurship as a method for global economic and political change, Claire Fleming will have the opportunity to interact with problem-solvers from many African cultures through special sessions planned around the graduation of the first group of scholars from the college. Additionally, she will learn more about the island, its culture, and the impact Mauritius can have on the future of Africa through educating forward-thinking scholars.


Storm Gardner

Using RNA Interference to Study Genes Involved in DNA Repair in bdelloid rotifers

Category: UR

Supervisor: Andrew Schurko, Biology


Storm Gardner will work on an independent research project this summer. His project focuses on silencing gene expression in a group of aquatic invertebrates. Learning about how DNA is repaired in these organisms may increase understanding of the repair mechanisms in other creatures.


CJ Gormly

A Summer Fellowship in Cáceres

Category: PL

Supervisor: George Harper, Biology


Through the Atlantis Fellowship, CJ Gormly will shadow doctors, prepare for the MCAT and learn about the differences between healthcare in Spain and the United States. Gormly will shadow up to twelve doctors in a range of specialties at a local hospital in Cáceres, Spain.


Zach Gray

The Impact of Sex Differentation on Drug Abuse: A Summer Professional Field Experience at the Neuroendocrinology and Motivation Lab at UT Austin

Category: PL

Supervisor: Sara Taylor, Pyschology


As a research assistant for Dr. Juan Dominguez in the Neuroendocrinology and Motivation lab at the University of Texas at Austin, Zach Gray will help conduct research on the role of sex differences in response to addictive drugs, particularly cocaine. Gray will gain experience working with animals, abiding by ethical requirements in the lab, and using microbiology techniques to analyze samples.


Jacob Handloser and Tucker Andrews

Design and Development of Supported Lipid Bilayers as a Model for Studying the Kinetics of Membrane Bound Enzymes

Category: UR

Supervisor: Peter Kett, Chemistry


Jacob Handloser and Tucker Andrews will work on a collaborative research project to examine the feasibility of using supported lipid bilayers as model biological membranes for kinetics research. Their goal is to see if the model systems are useful in the study of how enzymes speed up chemical reactions.


Elizabeth Jones

Think About What You Saw: A Learning Experience in Eastern Europe

Category: SP

Supervisor: Dorian Stuber, English


Elizabeth Jones hopes to specialize in World War II and Holocaust Education as she obtains her doctorate. One important step in that process is viewing the size and scope of concentration camps firsthand so she can share that as an educator. In addition, her visit to Holocaust sites in Europe will give her the opportunity to see original artifacts of the time that are only available abroad. For Jones, these locations are sites of memories that should continue to resonate with the world.


Maggie Lodge

Religion and the LGBTQ+ Community: An Exploration of Self-Identity and the History of LGBTQ+ Affirming Churches

Category: SP

Supervisor: JJ Whitney, Chaplain's Office


Maggie Lodge will visit LGBTQ+ affirming churches in Salt Lake City and San Francisco to understand the relationship between the churches of various denominations and the LGBTQ+ community. Lodge will also attend the 2019 Utah Pride Festival and visit the Human Rights Campaign Action Center and the National AIDS Memorial Grove.


Ivan Midtbust Heger

Investigation of the Longevity of Nicoya, Costa Rica

Category: SP

Supervisor: Brenda Houck, Biology


Nicoya, Costa Rica is one of the world’s five “Blue Zones,” where many people have above average longevity. Ivan Midtbust Heger will accomany Dr. Anne Goldberg and Dr. Jennifer Peszka to the area to investigate how same-sex friendships, attitudes and habits of work, and quality and quantity of sleep affect longevity.


Mary Nail

Thinking Outside the Museum: Exploring the Venues and Roles of Public Art in the United States

Category: SP

Supervisor: Maxine Payne, Art


Mary Nail is considering a career in museum curation. First, she intends to explore public art and other art in non-traditional venues as it relates to activism, community enhancement and artistic collaboration in San Francisco, Ca.; Fayetteville, Ark.; and Santa Fe, N.M.


Larissa Isimbi Ndimbira

Discovering the Financial World in Rwanda

Category: PL

Supervisor: Gina Bergfeld, Economics and Business


Inyange Industries is one of the largest food processing companies in Rwanda. Larissa Isimbi Ndimbira will intern in its finance department, which will allow her to apply the knowledge she gained in her accounting and economics classes to real-world situations.


Tristan Norman

The Humanity of Mohammad Yunus: The Social Vision of Social Business and Innovation

Category: SP

Supervisor: William Haden Chomposy, Economics


Nobel Peace Prize winner Muhammad Yunus pioneered the concept of a micro-credit loan system for the poor in Bangladesh. Inspired by his philosophy that focuses on social innovation and the merits of social entrepreneurship, Tristan Norman will attend the International Social Business Conference where students, NGOs, Grameen Bank, and other social businesses will discuss and apply social business and microfinance models to global social and environmental issues. There, Muhammad Yunus will give a lecture and advise different student and NGO committees on their designs for the future.


Kristen North

Testing the Role of Electrical Coupling to Thermotactic Learned Behavior in C. Elegans

Category: UR

Supervisor: Brenda Houck, Biology


Kristen North will delve into neuroscience research this summer with a project on nematodes. She will focus on learning and memory, which will help her understand how other scientists are approaching those issues in vertebrates.


Grace Rogers

Vocational Discovery in the Church: A Pastoral Internship

Category: PL

Supervisor: Eva Englert-Jessen, Center for Calling


As an intern at the Morrilton First United Methodist Church, Grace Rogers will develop basic pastoral skills including preaching, worship preparation, house visits, hospital calls, and serving communion. She will also design her own project that addresses her calling to meet social justice needs through the church, including applying theology to popular culture.


Keane Sammon

Penguin Conservation: Volunteering with SANCCOB

Category: SP

Supervisor: Jennifer Dearolf, Biology


This summer, Keane Sammon will head to Cape Town, South Africa, to volunteer for six weeks with the South African Foundation for the Conservation of Costal Birds. The foundation works to restore the population of marine birds, with a particular emphasis on the endangered African Penguin.


Christian Sandoval, Violet Pirtle, and Austin Jared

Retracing Revolution: Communism in Cuba

Category: GA

Supervisor: Jose Vilahomat, Foreign Languages


Christian Sandoval, Violet Pirtle, and Austin Jared will explore Cuba from a political, historical, and cultural perspective from the beginnings of Marxism to the modern Republic of Cuba. After conducting research domestically, they will visit significant sites on the island and engage with the Cuban people to get a better understanding of life in the post-revolutionary era.


Nugget Settles

Summer Spanish Progam

Category: SW

Supervisor: Irmina Fabricio, Foreign Languages


The Faulkner County Library is hosting a summer program to teach students aged 8 to 12 beginner level Spanish. Nugget Settles, a Spanish major, will create lessons and conduct classes for the students, giving them an exciting and creative way to learn a second language.


Arthur Trickett-Wile

Life, Labor, and Love in a Terlingua, Texas Summer

Category: SP

Supervisor: Maxine Payne, Art


After a mercury mining operation closed, Terlingua, Texas, became a ghost town—but it is making a name for itself now as a tourist attraction. Photographer Arthur Trickett-Wile will document the town and its inhabitants in a book with quotes about life there. At the conclusion of his project, he will have a public presentation in the town and give copies of the book to the Chamber of Commerce and the local lending library.


Shelbey Winningham

Hendrix College Cats: The Book

Category: SP

Supervisor: Carol West, English


The Hendrix Cat Colony has been a staple at the college for years. Shelbey Winningham will create a coffee table book on its history and role in the campus community, along with a look at similar colonies across the United States. The completed book will be sold online to help support the Hendrix cats.


Dr. Heidi Dahlmann

Organocatalyst Optimization and Artificial Nucleoside Development

Category: UR


Dr. Heidi Dahlmann will work with students to design, synthesize, and investigate the chemical and physical properties of molecules designed as tools with specific applications.


Dr. Jennifer Dearolf

Mophology of the locomotor muscles of three Arctic seal species

Category: UR


Dr. Jennifer Dearolf and McKenzie Fletcher will conduct research on the physiology and locomotor muscles of the bearded, ringed, and spotted seals to determine how far they can travel as distances increase between their icy home base and their feeding grounds.


Dr. J.D. Gantz

A Survey of Summer Active Insects Associated with Alaskan Peony Farms

Category: UR


Dr. J.D. Gantz will take three students with him to Alaska to survey potential insect pests that could threaten the yield of the developing peony farm businesses in the state.


Dr. Andrew Morgan

Attending the 2019 Estonian Song Festival

Category: GA


Dr. Andrew Morgan will take Hanna Detar, Jessalyn Hoskyn, Nicole Hendry, Matthew Haley and Avery Waid to Tallinn, Estonia. They will attend the Estonian Song Festival and learn about the unique role of vocal music in the country’s history.


Dr. Adam Schneider

Professional Field or Museum Experience at the Charles Darwin Research Station at Galapagos, Ecuador

Category: PL


Dr. Adam Schneider and Rosie Ronca will be participating in the Galapagos Tortoise Restoration Initiative, an ongoing project of the Galapagos Conservancy in cooperation with Galapagos National Park. Ronca will be working with staff scientists to better understand wild tortoise migration and dietary habits to better aid in conservation of these threatened species.


Dr. Caitlin Scott

Computational Drug Design to Develop Safe and Effective Pain Medication

Category: UR


Dr. Caitlin Scott, Monish Shukla and Mariny Phomakay will work on a research project to design drugs that relieve pain, but without the undesirable side effects of opioids.


Baker Prize for Economics Research: Monish Shukla, who will conduct research under the supervision of Dr. William Haden Chomphosy.