Preview of Grad Slam prelim rounds 6 and 7: Thursday, April 12

by Daina Tagavi, Professional Development Peer
Wednesday, April 11, 2018 8:00 AM

The 6th Annual Grad Slam continues with prelim rounds 6 and 7. 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.

Thurs Apr 12 | 11a-12p
Engineering Science Building 1001

Ahmed Adam | Global Studies
This is an idea to talk about mental health issues and present it. I am battling with mental issues myself and I think it is important to talk about it. This is to shed light on that. 

Rebecca Baker | English
Cognitive Cyborgs: Minds, Machines, and (Re)Mediated Techno-Cultural Identities in the Post-Millennium
The Millennial generation, born into a period of human history experiencing unprecedented levels of technological and social change, is easy to malign. Though the popular view holds that this generation has “lost” certain capacities for being and knowing, this easy invective circumvents other salient questions, such as what it might mean for humans to be “born digital”, and how scholarship and reading practices can evolve to reflect increasingly rhizomatic, non-binary views of reality, identity, and socio-political possibility. Beginning with Donna Haraway’s foundational “Cyborg Manifesto” from 1985 and drawing on current trends in Cognitive Literary Studies, this talk will discuss and attempt to situate the figure of the Cyborg as a techno-biological trickster with that of the Millennial—a subjectivity that exists in the liminal space of both paradox and potentiality. 

Gregory Gate Chemistry
Evolution of Life in the Light
The code of life (DNA) evolved on an early Earth in face of abundant and energetic ultraviolet radiation. This UV bombardment was one of the driving factors in the selection of life's genetic material. The molecules of life were selectively chosen for their UV resistance, unlike structurally similar molecules. 

David Grimsman | Electrical & Computer Engineering
Synergy with Strategy in Submodular Maximization
Computationally-intense problems are often solved or approximated in a distributed manner, where agents make local decisions that are aggregated to form a global solution. The quality of such a solution is dependent on the nature of collaboration among the agents. This work uses mathematical proof to show the optimal decision rule and "social network" structure among agents in optimizing functions that exhibit a diminishing returns property. 

Meghna Soni | Education
Improving Children’s Fraction Understanding through the Use of Number Line 
Fractions are complex mathematical concepts that children struggle with. Findings will be presented from two types of innovative instruction given to fourth graders highlighting the use of number line to enhance children’s knowledge of fractions. One intervention used paper-and-pencil and the other used gaming technology.

Erik Spickard | Molecular, Cellular & Developmental Biology

Transorganogenesis: What a Worm Can Tell You About Rebuilding an Organ
At the 3rd annual Grad Slam, I introduced the phenomenon of transorganogenesis in the nematode C. elegans. This year, I will present the latest discoveries regarding this fascinating organ transformation, and highlight the implications for regenerative medicine in the future.

Jennifer Walker | ‚ÄčMechanical Engineering
The uHammer: Mimicking Traumatic Brain Injury One Cell at a Time 
The uHammer is a magnetically driven Mechanical Electrical Micro System (MEMS) device designed to apply strain to individual cells. The uHammer can be tuned to mimic the strain and strain rates of moderate to severe Traumatic Brain Injury. 

Thu Apr 12 | 3-4p
UCen State Street Room

Atal Agarwal | Technology Management
Buildings of the Future
The advancement in technology is disrupting the construction of buildings in the future. The aim of my project is to add convenience, save energy, improve safety and security for residents. The talk would be focussed on the new methods of construction and implementation of IoT while construction.

Sami Alsalloom | Education
Measuring Musical Emotions 
Music expresses what words cannot and evokes emotions that often escape description.  How are musical ideas translated into words, images, and even numbers that we can study scientifically?  How do we get from music to measurement ... and what gets lost in the noise?

Aaron Bagnell | Geography
Turning the Tides for Big Ocean Data
Enormous amounts of oceanographic data are collected each day, but these data are often inaccessible and go unused by the general public. Other ocean data have historically been sparsely sampled and remain difficult to collect. How can we better utilize the data we currently have available? Can they be transformed into useful products that inform policy as well as satisfy public and scientific needs? 

Camille Herrera | Environmental Science & Management
Solar Panels: Planning For Their Post-Rooftop Future
Solar panels have a long lifetime, 25-40 years. But at their end of life, how will they be disposed of? Solar panels are composed of high-value, highly recyclable materials but recovering residential solar panels to recoup that material is a logistical nightmare. An incentive program to increase participation, especially as state's like Washington pass extended producer responsibility laws, is needed, but what's the best form for it? 

Evan Layher | Psychological and Brain Science
Seriously!!! Stop Relying on Your Terrible Memory When Better Decision Strategies Are Available
Memory is elusive, but some people continue to rely on their weak memories even when the stakes are high. For instance, an eyewitness to a crime should be absolutely certain they correctly recognize an accused criminal to avoid putting an innocent person behind bars. However, my research suggests that many people will continue to favor their faulty memories over an optimal decision strategy, which leads to more consequential outcomes.

Jinwen Qiu | Statistics & Applied Probability
Sentiment Analysis in the Stock Market Prediction
Stock market prediction is one of the most challenge problems to be investigated. Based on the contents of the financial news and tweet feeds, it allows us to predict dramatic increase or decrease in stock price, I designed and implemented a system to predict stock price by mining textual documents and time series concurrently. 

Mengya Tao | Environmental Science & Management
‚ÄčA Safer World with Fewer Regrettable Chemicals
Being amazingly innovative as we are, we have created over 100 million chemical substances with around 84,000 being used on the market. However, only 1% of them are tested for their potential human health and ecological risk due to high cost in time, money and effort. To close the huge gap, we developed a rapid screening-level tool to estimate chemical's adverse impacts on human health and the environment.

Stephenson Brooks Whitestone | Communication
Authenticity in Eternity: Transgender Identity After Death
All too often, as transpeople age and die, they lose agency over their identity and are, sadly, de-transitioned by their unaccepting families and loved ones. The current study is a qualitative study of aging transpeople (40 y.o. +) to determine their thoughts on identity and death, to find out if they are having critical end-of-life conversations with their loved ones, to see if they are, in fact, taking steps now to defend and protect their identity after death.  People often take  steps to provide for the management of their material assets after death, but what asset is more important than our identity?