Proposals selected for undergraduate summer research grants

First-ever awards of up to $3,000 for twenty-two student projects

University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa
Hal McArthur, (808) 956-8128
Director of Research Relations
Posted: Apr 25, 2006

Twenty-two UH-Manoa undergraduates will be working on a range of unique and exciting projects this summer with special research awards from the Vice Chancellor for Research and Graduate Education, Gary Ostrander.

"This is a new program we‘re very excited about," Ostrander said. "We issued a call for proposals in January and received nearly four-dozen really imaginative and creative project papers."

Submissions came from students in the Natural and Social Sciences, Engineering, Languages, Literature and Linguistics and the Arts and Humanities. Following rigorous review by a committee of seven faculty members a total of twenty-two proposals were recommended to the Vice Chancellor for support. Most of the winning students will receive an award of $3,000 that can be used as a stipend or to cover travel and other costs associated with their proposed work.

In making these awards, Ostrander said, "The opportunity to be involved in an independent research activity is the value-added component to an undergraduate education at UH Manoa. These experiences can equip students with the important organizational and critical thinking skills they can take into a professional career or further education in graduate school."

Director of Research Relations Harold McArthur is coordinating the program. He noted that the projects range from a botanical inventory of Kipapa Trail in the O‛ahu Forest National Wildlife Refuge to a hands-on study of Islamic style glass production in Turkey and an archeological excavation in Egypt.

Challenging topics in the natural sciences and engineering include a study of magma speedometry (movement of a type of lava in volcanoes) and an evaluation of the time of flight electronics for the world‘s highest luminosity collider (a particle accelerator) in Japan. In the social sciences, one winning student researcher will investigate factors related to mate preferences in adopted individuals, while an aspiring psychologist will study the effect of perceived controllability of pain on preference type of social support by chronic pain patients.

Students receiving summer research awards will be required to participate in a public presentation of the results of their work during the fall semester. Ostrander noted that he expects this to be the beginning of what will become a permanent program to support undergraduate education at UH Manoa.