GWU Students Present Research at Regional Conference

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Twenty Students Travel to Washington, D.C., Area

By: Chelsea Sydnor, GWU Communications Intern

Callie Elliott and Joy Smith
At the Southern Regional Honors Council conference, Callie Elliott, right, and Joy Smith presented a poster, “An Honors Event: Murder Mystery Dinner.”

BOILING SPRINGS, N.C.—Twenty students represented Gardner-Webb University recently at the annual conference of the Southern Regional Honors Council (SRHC) held in Arlington, Va. The SRHC promotes and advances honors programs and honors colleges in the Southern United States. Students had the opportunity to hear or see over 400 presentations, including panel discussions, talks, art works and poster displays.

Gardner-Webb students also met members of the Plant Protection Group of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and had dinner with Patrick Woody (’03), who shared how his time at GWU helped him advance to his current position, in which he briefs White House staff.

The keynote speaker was linguistic anthropologist Dr. K. David Harrison, author of “The Last Speakers:  The Quest to Save the World’s Endangered Languages.”

Biology major Callie Elliott (’19) of Terrell, N.C., was elected as Student Vice-President of SRHC for the next year and will serve at the 2018 National Collegiate Honors Conference in Boston, Mass. She will represent more than 10,000 students at more than 100 institutions with Honors programs in the Southern Region.

Public relations major Alice Byrd (’18) of Asheville, N.C., presented her project “Nerds Abroad: A Semester Spent in Florence.”

Chemistry major Jessica Ferguson (’18) of Lawrence, Kan., English major Callista Eckert (’20) of Newnan, Ga., Exercise Science major Kylie Ameres (’20) of Palmetto, Fla., and Jordan Vitale (’20) of Tampa, Fla., discussed their research topic, “Jocks Can Still be Nerds.”

Ferguson also collaborated with accounting major Laine Parker (’19) of Greensboro, N.C., and English major Hannah Roberts (’19) of Summerfield, N.C., on “Fascism Today – A Study of Nazi Germany and how its Fascist characteristics appear in our world today.” Additionally, Ferguson presented her own project: “Crash and Burnout: The Sophomore Slump in College Athletics.”

Political science major Eli Hardin (’18) of Boiling Springs, N.C., and Nicholas Brondum of Eastern Kentucky University in Richmond discussed “Through the Eyes of a Researcher and a Participant: How Two Individuals View the Hurricane Katrina Evacuation Differently Based on Perspective.”

Elliott and photography major Joy Smith (’20) of Casar, N.C., shared information about “An Honors Event: Murder Mystery Dinner.”

Alice Byrd
Alice Byrd presents her project at the conference.

Psychology and Spanish major Emily Hamilton (’18) of Everson, Wash., spoke on the “Effectiveness of Alternative Therapies for People with Special Needs.”

Journalism major Chelsea Sydnor (’18) of Cary, N.C., talked about “Fake News: Agenda Setting and Gatekeeping in the Media.”

Psychology major Emily Szalkowski (’18) of Fayetteville, N.C., presented her study titled, “Feminist Cosmo: An Analysis of Cosmopolitan Magazine Surrounding the Heights of Feminism.”

Psychology major Kylie McGee (’18) of Monroe, N.C., discussed her project, “Single or Taken: The Effect of Relationship Status, Gender and Interaction with the Opposite Sex on Arousal and Spatial Ability.”

Psychology major Mallory Baucom (’19) of Monroe, Spanish and public relations major Kathryn Manning (’18) of Boiling Springs, N.C., Economics and German Studies major Garret Allen (’21) of Kings Mountain, N.C., and Biology major Megan McDowell (’21) of Gaffney, S.C., served as moderators during conference sessions.

Located in the North Carolina foothills, Gardner-Webb University is a private, Christian, liberal arts university that prepares students to become critical thinkers, effective leaders and compassionate servants in the global community. Emphasizing a strong student-centered experience and rigorous academics, Gardner-Webb ignites learning and service opportunities for undergraduate and graduate students. Ignite your future at