Local Media Coverage and State Level Ideology

Hello! My name is Joanna Borman and I am working on an independent project this summer that deals with media coverage of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). My project is an extension of work I have been doing through the Social Network and Political Psychology Lab (SNaPP) Lab on campus.  The lab is run by Government professor Jaime Settle and primarily covers the intersection of political science and psychology, or political behavior.  However, over the past year my team (dubbed the “Obamacare Group”) has been collecting information on the ACA in order to better understand one of the most seminal events in American politics over the past decade.

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Travel Guides that Shaped the Nation: Abstract

My name is Madeline Grimm and I’m very excited to start working on my honors thesis this summer!

My honors thesis will focus on British travel literature during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries and its impact on British society and culture. Travel by British citizens in the early modern world was a lengthy and challenging enterprise. Travel to America required capital and government support, while traveling to Europe often involved developing contacts and connections at local universities, courts and through trade.

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Mobile Phones and Empowerment: A Field Experiment

Greetings – My name is Raychel Schwartz and I am a rising senior at William and Mary.  This summer will be an immense challenge and learning experience, as I work as an AidData research fellow in Tanzania.  Allow me to elaborate…

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Preparation and Analysis of Diatom Frustules for Identification and Catalyst Substrate Preparation

Hi, I’m Neal Parker and I’m going to be working with Dr. Cooke in the physics department this summer.  The overall goal of this project is to remove excess nutrients and reverse eutrophication through the use of algae while also exploring the possibility of using these particular filamentous diatoms in fuel and catalytic applications.  Most biofuels being produced take more materials and energy to produce than they are worth.  Finding (or developing) an algal species that produces large amounts of combustible lipids and can be grown naturally and easily is at the forefront of biofuel research.  The algae also have a noncombustible silicon dioxide frustule (like a glass exoskeleton) that is left after burning.  Some of these structures are particularly interesting in that they have a very high surface area to mass ratio and regular sieve pattern.  The goal is to coat these structures with gold or platinum to make high-performance catalysts.  I will be refining and standardizing a method for cleaning these structures to remove organic matter while keeping them intact and then having the species/structure identified through electron microscopy.  I will also be involved with making caloric measurements of the algae to determine how much energy is produced when they are burned.  The eventual goal of this would be to introduce colonies of algae into the Chesapeake Bay that would bio-remediate the area while providing a commercial interest in the form of fuel and catalyst production.

Development and Testing of an Automated, Submerged Filamentous Algae Harvester

This project is part of an ongoing effort to develop a commercially viable operation that would grow and harvest the algae in the rivers that feed into the Chesapeake Bay. The algae would grow off of screens that are attached to our craft. The algae grown and harvested through the design would remove excess nutrients like nitrogen and phosphorus, which has caused eutrophication within the Chesapeake Bay. The algae itself can also be harvested and used for numerous products, such as biofuels or catalytic substrates. The goal of this summer is to produce a commercially viable system that can cover an acre of water surface, with a harvesting procedure that would be automated and require minimal maintenance. Throughout the summer we hope to test at least two possible designs and determine the most effective harvesting techniques and schedules, while maximizing the algae growth.