Riparian Buffers

This summer I’ll be storm chasing!  That’s because my entire research project depends on rain, and lots of it.  I’m studying riparian buffers, riparian for river, and buffer meaning a wooded area around an agricultural field that filters out sediment and nutrients from getting into the Bay.

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Senegal Bound

I can’t believe that this is all finally beginning!  For the past six months I’ve been working on a completely different research project and now that it’s finished, I can begin to focus on this amazing journey towards the completion of my honors thesis.  My project is somewhat of a combination of my interests in both of my majors – International Relations and French, with a little Econ mixed in for good measure.  I will be focusing on France’s unique and ongoing relationship with Senegal, both as a colony and an independent nation.  Whenever we think about “imperialism” we tend to consider it to be a phenomenon of the past.  However, I believe that the strategic dispersal of development aid is just another tool France uses to maintain a sphere of influence– a “new imperialism.”  I chose to use Senegal as a case study through which to evaluate the impact of France on its former colonies because Senegal has always maintained a close and rather special relationship with its mother country.  I am beyond excited to travel to the African continent for the first time in order to get an idea of how French development aid functions on the ground and its effect on the Senegalese.

A Pre-Medical Student’s Experience with the Escuela Taurina de Salamanca

My name is Michael Cammarata and I’m a junior at the College, as well as a Neuroscience major and Hispanic Studies minor. I will be spending several weeks in Spain this summer to train with the bullfighting school in Salamanca, while conducting interviews with young toreros, called novilleros, to understand the development of the aspiring matador, as well as the commitment and sacrifice necessary to succeed in such a competitive and dangerous industry. I am also in contact with the recently confirmed matador de toros, Alejandro Esplá, to arrange do a home-stay with him and his family, which will give me the unique opportunity to see the bullfighting world through the lens of a successful taurine family. His father is Luis Francisco Esplá, the famous retired matador from Alicante, Spain. I will be documenting my experiences daily, with the goal of synthesizing my experiences in an article addressing the future of bullfighting. I will also be writing several short stories, reflecting on works by Ernest Hemingway such as For Whom the Bell Tolls and The Sun Also Rises.

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An Introduction to Biracial Study

In Spring 2011, I enrolled in an independent study class with Prof. Cheryl Dickter at the College of William and Mary. Prof. Dickter is a psychology professor, whose research focus is social psychology. More specifically, social cognition,  person perception, stereotyping and prejudice. In this research lab, I have been trained to run participants and I have done extensive data analysis using SPSS (Statistical Package for the Social Sciences).

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Community Capacity Building in the Dominican Republic- Summer 2011

Student Organization for Medical Outreach and Sustainability (SOMOS) started as a duffel-bag medicine project that involved a group of undergraduate students from the College and alumnus physicians taking medical service down to the Dominican Republic. For the last seven years, SOMOS has been doing work in the community in the Northern region of Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic to improve public health and healthcare. As a part of the work, every January we hold a week long clinic in the community, where all patients are checked by physicians and accordingly given prescriptions.

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