Preview of Grad Slam prelim rounds 3 and 4: Tuesday, April 10

by Daina Tagavi, Professional Development Peer
Sunday, April 08, 2018 10:31 PM

The 6th Annual Grad Slam continues with prelim rounds 3 and 4. Remember to get out the vote to help your favorite presenters advance to the semifinal rounds! Check out a preview of the presentations below, and be sure to follow us on Facebook for live updates on the winners of each round.


Tue Apr 10 | 11a-12p
Engineering Science Building 1001

Ishani Gupta | Computer Science
LocBorg: Hide Your Location Without Hiding Yourself
LocBorg is an AI cyborg who enables you to keep your location private but maintaining your online persona.The vision is to have the power to express oneself with all the available social media but yet have the control over one's privacy.So,go ahead tweet your thoughts with full freedom, LocBorg will make sure no one can track you!

Katie Harrison | Communication
Communicating Resilience During Acute and Chronic Stress
The theory of resilience and relational load was tested with 60 couples and their adolescent children (ages 11-18) with type I diabetes (T1D). The couples participated in a stress inducing conversation task in their home, followed by random assignment to a two week intervention designed to increase their relationship maintenance. Before the intervention, stronger communal perceptions predicted greater maintenance for husbands and wives, but maintenance only reduced T1D stress for wives. The wives' and adolescents' T1D stress were also correlated, but the husbands' T1D stress was not significantly associated with either of them. Better maintenance was associated with less conflict during couples' conversations. Maintenance was also directly associated with less perceived and physiological stress (cortisol) from the conversation. Finally, wives in the intervention reported the most thriving, communal perspectives, and the least loneliness. The intervention also reduced adolescents' general life stress, but did not influence their T1D stress or thriving.

Emily Honn | Environmental Science & Management
Incentivizing Groundwater Recharge in the Teton Valley, Idaho
With an increasingly variable snowpack across the west, many are turning to free and more reliable water storage in the ground to replace it. The path toward effective underground storage is not simple, however. I will present a case study in the Teton Valley in Idaho as a pertinent example of the benefits and challenges of incentivizing groundwater recharge.

Robert Huerta | Art
The Imposter Syndrome
"I worked so hard to get here, so why don't I feel happy, or proud, or accomplished? Maybe if I stop smiling someone will notice..." Ideas of success, progress, insecurity, and unhappiness, are rarely looked at as a unit, and are typically explored as separate feelings and stages. What happens when they are all felt as once, by the same person, in the same moment? The talk engages these ideas as a complex situation, rather than a series of discrete and linear aspects of a narrow path from the perspective of a first-generation graduate student of color from a low-income community. 

Jacob Kirksey | Education
Schools as Sanctuaries: Is ICE Raiding the American Dream from Schoolgoing Immigrant-Origin Youth?
Schools are at the forefront of the current national immigration crisis. With a rapid increase in the number of deportations since 2009, there has been expressed concern for the future of the 5.5 million children (~7.3%) of children enrolled in public and private K-12 schools in the United States who are living with at least one undocumented parent (Passel and Cohn, 2016). This research is the first to address the impact of enforcement and removal operations on school attendance for immigrant-origin youth. With an overwhelming majority of immigrant families seeking a better future for their kids, this research is vital for understanding to what extent schools can navigate the harsh political realities and consequences for those seeking the American Dream. 

Annie Lamontagne | ​Earth Science
Seismicity and Severe Weather: Generation of Seismic Waves by a Tornado
Tornadoes are among the most common natural disasters to occur in the United States. Various methods are used in tornado forecasting, but knowing when a tornado has touched down is hard to determine exactly. Seismic data offers an opportunity to study tornadoes in new ways, using the ground motions generated by the tornado when it touches down.

Nicol Parker | Environmental Science & Management
OrganoFate: A Rapid, Spatially-Explicit Risk Assessment Tool
The number and quantity of chemicals in use has rapidly expanded in recent decades and currently, millions of new chemicals are synthesized each year according to the Chemical Abstracts Service Registry. The screening of the risks of new chemicals by regulators must compete with the exponentially increasing number of chemicals introduced to the market each year, which necessitates the utilization of predictive risk tools. Models currently available are too complicated to provide rapid risk assessments for or do not account for important regional variability in environmental characteristics and climate. To improve upon existing risk assessment modules, we have developed a dynamic multimedia fate and transport tool which provides rapid, spatially-explicit risk assessments that account for daily variability in environmental conditions, provides a user friendly interface, and is freely available as a web based tool. 


Tue Apr 10 | 3-4p
SRB Multipurpose Room

Brett Aho | Global Studies
Slow Violence and Regulation of Endocrine Disrupting Chemicals
You are the victim of a form of violence that is slow and accretive, the effects of which remain largely invisible. Right now, your blood contains a wide range of industrial chemicals that adversely affect the normal functioning of your endocrine system. Many of these chemicals should be regulated and restricted, however the chemical industry is working hard to ensure that they are not. 

Courtney Cochran | Environmental Science & Management
Far from Basic: Managing Ocean Acidification in Marine Protected Areas
Ocean acidification is a complex, global problem that is difficult to manage. However, marine protected areas offer a solution as to how we can control for the effects of ocean acidification on a discrete, local spatial scale. My group project thesis helped evaluate which marine protected areas on the West Coast are most at risk from ocean acidification.

May ElSherif | Computer Science
#NotOkay: Understanding Gender-based Violence in Social Media
Gender-based violence (GBV) is a global epidemic that is powered, in part, by a culture of silence and denial of the seriousness of its repercussions. In this talk, we present one of the first investigations of GBV in social media. Considering Twitter as an open pervasive platform that provides means for open discourse and community engagement, we study user engagement with GBV related posts, and age and gender dynamics of users who post GBV content. We also study the specific language nuances of GBV-related posts. We find evidence for increased engagement with GBV-related tweets in comparison to other non-GBV tweets. Our hashtag-based topical analysis shows that users engage online in commentary and discussion about political, social movement-based, and common-place GBV incidents. Finally, with the rise of public figures encouraging women to speak up, we observe a unique blended experience of non-anonymous self-reported assault stories and an online community of support around victims of GBV. We discuss the role of social media and online anti-GBV campaigns in enabling an open conversation about GBV topics and how these conversations provide a lens into a socially complex and vulnerable issue like GBV. Last year's presentation was about street harassment in the physical world. This year, I will be talking about women discussing their stories in the digital world.

Mario Espinoza | Sociology
The Care Advocacy Paradox: How Social Movement Organizers Strategize in Support of People Living with HIV/AIDS
Social Movements, such as AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power (ACT UP!), have had an impact on the health and well-being of people living with HIV/AIDS (PWHAs) (Chambré́ 2012; Elbaz 1992; Gould 2009; Lune & Oberstein 2001; Wolfe 1994). This thesis explores strategies deployed by ACT UP for garnering attention for PWHAs by analyzing interviews (n=55) collected from the ACT UP Oral History Project (2002-2015). I use conversation analysis and grounded theory coding to analyze the interactional level contexts of social movement organizers and to investigate how past action could help bridge existing and future gaps within HIV/AIDS community care. 

Andrea Figueroa-Caballero | ​Communication
Examining the Effects of News Coverage Linking Undocumented Immigrants with Criminality: Extending Beyond the Voting Booth to the Jury Box
An examination of the effects of crime news coverage featuring undocumented immigrants, specifically looking at punitive consequences.

Ali Rahman | ​​Comparative Literature
Digital Rhetoric and Gatekeepers of Knowledge: Islamic Authority in America
Amongst Sunni Muslims, there has long been a crisis of authority given its lack of hierarchal structure.  More recently, modernity has threatened the traditional Islamic authority even more because of the supposedly democratizing technology that diminishes the role of the gatekeeper.  Scholars have since adapted to the new paradigm in which they must utilize their digital savvy to cater to a contemporary audience.  But this technological shift has empowered potentially anyone to create and maintain their own authority regardless of education, credibility, and merit.  This talk will explore the reality facing not just Muslims, but everyone concerned with the reliability of knowledge in the information age.

Odelia Simon | ​​Education
Math and Science Identity Equivalence
Using national data, this study examines whether 9th grade students have the same conceptual understanding of what it means to be a math or science "person," as well as whether these understandings are the same across gender and race. Utilizing factor analysis and invariance testing, comparisons are made within and across groups.