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Ford Center for the Fine Arts

Knox College Announces 2023-24 ASSET Fellows

Knox College is thrilled to announce the selected recipients of the ASSET (Artists, Scholars, Scientists, and Entrepreneurs of Tomorrow) fellowship for the academic year 2023-2024. 

The ASSET program, a flagship initiative supported by the Vovis Center, offers a unique opportunity for students to engage in a 10-week, fully-funded research or creative project of their design. Additionally, participants will benefit from the ASSET Seminar, which fosters reflection on career aspirations, explores graduate study options, and facilitates a deeper understanding of the research process. The program, commencing in the winter term, will run until August 2024.

This year's ASSET fellowship program saw a surge in interest, with double the number of applications compared to available spots. The selection process was highly competitive, with only sophomores, juniors, and seniors planning on a fifth year with a GPA of 3.3 or higher considered eligible.

The following outstanding students have been selected as ASSET fellows for 2023-2024, along with titles of their projects, faculty mentors, and the funding that makes it possible:

Jed Bothe ’25: "Holy Orders" (Creative Writing), mentored by Associate Professor of English Chad Simpson and funded through the Richter Memorial Fund. 

Frances Hillard ’25: "Synthesis and Analysis of a Series of Stilbenes" (Chemistry), mentored by Professor of Chemistry Diana Cermak and funded by the Lizzy Warner ’13 Fund for Women in STEM. 

Skylar Koepke ’25: "A Comparative Overview of Speech and Power Dynamics of Animal Transformations in Ancient Mediterranean Literature" (Classics and Ancient Mediterranean Studies), mentored by Chair & Associate Professor of Classics Hilary Lehmann and funded by the William Fern Prize.

Marli Messner ’25: "The Poetics of Horror: a Theory of Necessary Complication" (English), mentored by John and Elaine Fellowes Professor in English Rob Smith and funded by the Artists, Scholars, Scientists, and Entrepreneurs of Tomorrow (ASSET) program. 

Anokhi Molligoda ’25: "Disparities in Healthcare Access and Utilization between Refugee and Swiss-born families in Switzerland: A Comparative Study" (Public Health), mentored by Professor of Biology and Chair of Economics Judith Thorn and funded by the Steve Floyd Memorial Fund. 

Natalie O'Brien ’25: "Exploring the Benefits of an Inclusive Integration of the Arts in the Classroom" (Educational Studies), mentored by Assistant Professor of Educational Studies and Director of Teacher Education Mary Lyons and funded by the David R. Arnold Research Award.

Precious Odejimi ’26: "Computational Analysis of Iron Catalysts with Different Backbones and Side Groups" (Chemistry), mentored by Associate Professor and Chair of Chemistry Helen Hoyt and funded by the Laszlo J. Nemeth Memorial Research Award.

Emma Pollock ’25: "Agriculture and the Environment: How Leading Agricultural Nations Apply Sustainability to their Policies and Practices" (Environmental Studies/Political Science), mentored by Chair & Associate Professor of Political Science Andy Civettini and funded by the Charles & Arvilla Timme Fellowship Award.

Arundaya Rajbhandari ’25: "Understanding the Impact of Investor Sentiment on Stock Market Volatility & Behavioral Biases in Investment Decision-Making" (Economics), mentored by Assistant Professor of Economics Ameesh Upadhyay and funded by the Charles & Arvilla Timme Fellowship Award.

Henri Reno ’25: "An Investigation into Antiferromagnetic Materials Using Mössbauer Spectroscopy" (Physics), mentored by Associate Professor of Physics Mark Shroyer and funded by the Baker-Velde Student Research Fund.

Brandon Roberts ’25: "The Final Prophet: Reconnecting Jesus with Hellenistic Judaism" (Religious Studies), mentored by Lecturer in Religious Studies Scott Harris and funded by the Knight Fund for the Study of Religion and Culture.

Jon Yeakey ’25: "Plant Community and pH Variations In Restored and Remnant Prairies" (Environmental Studies/Biology), mentored by Watson Bartlett Professor of Biology and Conservation Stuart Allison and funded by the Mogbo Endowed Sustainability Fund.

The diversity of projects reflects the richness of academic exploration at Knox College, and we look forward to witnessing the impact of their contributions to their respective fields and beyond. ASSET fellows will share their project results at the HORIZONS student research symposium in May 2025.

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Printed on Sunday, July 14, 2024