Darby O’Neil, Political Science and International Affairs, Class of 2020
“Gender Dynamics in Kazakhstan’s Urban Landscape and Mediascape and their Role in the Construction of Kazakh National Identity”
Darby is a senior Political Science and International Affairs dual major at UNH. With the guidance of her research mentor at UNH, Prof. Svetlana Peshkova, she received a SURF Abroad grant to conduct research in Kazakhstan during summer 2019. Darby’s research examined Kazakh gender roles as they are portrayed in print media and analyzed their connections to the process of national identity building in Kazakhstan. After graduation, Darby hopes to work in Washington, DC for a few years before pursuing a graduate degree.
Ben Fehr, Mathematics, Sustainable Agriculture and Food Systems, Class of 2020
"The Effects of Tillage and Pesticide Seed Treatments on Weed Seedling Emergence"
Ben is a senior Mathematics and Sustainable Agriculture and Food Systems duel major. He’s currently involved in research using computer simulations under Dr. Shadi Atallah here at the University of New Hampshire. After graduation, Ben plans on pursuing a graduate degree in applied mathematics.
Dylan Wheeler, Information Technology and Philosophy, Class of 2020
“Artificial Intelligence as a Disinformation Engine”
Dylan, a Hamel Scholar in the Honors Program, is a senior pursuing degrees in Information Technology and Philosophy. With the help of his mentor, Professor Nick Smith, during the summer of 2019, Dylan researched how new developments in artificial intelligence are enabling the mass manufacture and distribution of fake news. Looking specifically at deepfakes, a form of fake news that utilizes face-swapping, he examined how new computer software makes it trivial for anyone in the world to manufacture disinformation, false information spread deliberately to deceive the masses. Dylan believes that, if we are not careful, we could enter a post-truth future, where the truth about issues becomes overshadowed by emotionally-charged headlines and discourse. With little ways to determine which images and videos have been synthesized, the most viral news will attract the most attention. In his paper, he outlines the problems we are facing, researches the algorithms that make them possible, and offers recommendations for how our society can overcome the challenges ahead. Dylan is extending his Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship through his senior thesis in philosophy, where he is digging deeper into the epistemological issues of trusting the media in our modern world.
Aubrey Porter, Psychology, Class of 2022
"Culture and cognition: How different religious affiliations impact understandings of monotheistic and polytheistic ideas"
Aubrey is a sophomore Psychology major. She spent last summer at UNH through a REAP grant working in Dr. Robert Ross's neuroscience lab using EEG to look at brain wave oscillations concerning different religious concepts. She is continuing to work in Dr. Ross's lab as an undergraduate research assistant on a different project concerning Parkinson's disease.