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Ten Kansas State University graduate students earn honors at Research and the State

Tuesday, Nov. 28, 2017

Winners of Kansas State University's annual Research and the State competition

Winners of Kansas State University's annual Research and the State competition, from left:Barrett Scroggs, Jillian Joyce, Stuart Sprague, Samantha Fox, Kahao Lim, Narmadha Mohankumar and Laura Constance. Not pictured are Rijesh Karmacharya, Ashley Kelly and Tom "Yile" Su. | Download this photo.


MANHATTAN — Research on enhancing health for treatment of depression, the influences of parental emotional support on income and well-being during the transition to adulthood, and recovering sustainable resources from a municipal wastewater anaerobic membrane bioreactor at Fort Riley are the focus of some of the winning research presentations by Kansas State University graduate students who were selected to represent the university at the 15th Capitol Graduate Research Summit, Feb. 20, 2018, at the State Capitol in Topeka.

Ten students were chosen to present their work in Topeka based on their research presentations at Research and the State, Nov. 9, in the K-State Student Union.

Research and the State involved 62 participants from five academic colleges and 25 graduate programs. The event was sponsored by the Graduate Student Council, the Graduate School, the Office of the President and the Office of the Provost and Senior Vice President. Each winner received a $250 scholarship.

"The winners of Research and the State showcase the outstanding and diverse research being conducted at K-State that has direct benefit to the state of Kansas," said Carol Shanklin, dean of the Graduate School. "The winners will communicate the value of their research to the state legislators, the Kansas Board of Regents and the public when they present at the Capitol Graduate Research Summit in February. This event is one of the many opportunities that the Graduate School and the Graduate Student Council help coordinate to enhance our graduate students' ability to communicate their research to the public."

The Capitol Graduate Research Summit is an annual statewide summit for Kansas legislators and features current research of graduate students at Kansas State University, the University of Kansas, the University of Kansas Medical Center, Wichita State University, Emporia State University, Fort Hays State University and Pittsburg State University. A university professor and an industry representative will judge the poster and student presentations. The top presenter from each university will be awarded a $500 award. In addition, BioKansas will select a winner from each university whose research has the greatest potential for commercialization. Each winner will receive a $500 award from BioKansas.

The following Kansas State University graduate students were selected to present at the Capitol Graduate Research Summit:

Stuart Sprague, doctoral student in horticulture, Manhattan, for "Expression of ATGRXS17 in Maize increases yield under heat stress." His faculty advisor is Sunghun Park, associate professor of horticulture and natural resources.

• Kahao Lim, doctoral student in civil engineering, Temple City, California, for "Sustainable resource recovery from municipal wastewater in a pilot-scale anaerobic membrane bioreactor (anmbr) at Ft. Riley, KS." His faculty advisor is Prathap Parameswaran, assistant professor of civil engineering.

Samantha Fox, doctoral student in biology, Dawson, Georgia, for "Soil microbial community shifts due to different fire severities." Her faculty advisor is Ari Jumpponen, professor of biology.

• Barrett Scroggs, doctoral student in family studies and human services, Duluth, Georgia, for "The influence of parental emotional support on income and well-being during the transition to adulthood: A life-span approach comparing sexual minority and heterosexual individuals." His faculty advisor is Amber Vennum, associate professor of family studies and human services.

• Laura Constance, doctoral student in veterinary pathobiology and second-year student in veterinary medicine, Clyde, North Carolina, for "Role of the gut microbiome in response to vaccination and viral respiratory infection in growing pigs." Her faculty advisor is Megan Niederwerder, assistant professor of diagnostic medicine and pathobiology.

• Jillian Joyce, doctoral student in human nutrition, Greensburg, Pennsylvania, for "Development of evidence-based school lunch best practices: A critical review." Her faculty advisor is Sara Rosenkranz, assistant professor of food, nutrition, dietetics and health.

• Ashley Kelly, master's student in horticulture, Sydney, Australia, for "Inspiring future conservationists through a junior zookeeper program." Her faculty advisor is Jeffrey Skibins, assistant professor of park management and conservation.

• Yile "Tom" Su, master's student in family studies and human services, Guangzhou,China, for "Enhance health with a new evidence-based treatment for depression." His faculty advisor is Joyce Baptist, associate professor of family and human services.

• Rijesh Karmacharya, master's student in civil engineering, Kathmandu, Nepal, for "Calibration of highway safety manual for 4-legged signalized intersections at urban and suburban areas in Kansas." His faculty advisor is Sunanda Dissanayake, professor of civil engineering.

• Narmadha Mohankumar, doctoral student in statistics, Kotagala,Sri Lanka, for "Optimizing the design of the Kansas Mesonet Environmental Monitoring Network." Her faculty advisor is Andres Patrignani, assistant professor of agronomy.


Carol Shanklin


Graduate School

News tip

Manhattan, Kansas;Temple City, California; Dawson and Duluth, Georgia;Clyde, North Carolina; and Greensburg, Pennsylvania.

Written by

Kelsey Peterson

At a glance

Research that helps Kansas advances 10 graduate students to the Capitol Graduate Research Summit.