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Undergraduate Research and Creative Activity

2011 Award Recipients and Project Abstracts

Bernadine De Asis, Dry Bay Documentary Trevor Fritz, Bait types for Dungeness Crab Chelsie Harris, Wood Fire Workshop
Ishmael Hope, Naatsilanei Play Performance Richard Howes, iPads for Seniors Yoko Kugo, Resilience of Haida Ecological Knowledge
Tyler Linderoth, Cryptic Coloration Kristie Livingston, Globalization and Ketchikan Virginia Oliver, Tlingit Phrase of the Week
Boni Parker, Vegetable Oil Test Kiln Joshua Reeder, Paintings and Sculpture Public Installation Diana Thompson, Sea Otter Skeleton

Bernadine DeAsis

Dry Bay Documentary. Mentor: Dan Monteith ($2500) The Yakutat tribe, National Park Service, US. Forest Service and University of Alaska Southeast began an ongoing collaborative research project in Dry Bay, searching for the historical tribal house sites on the Akwe River and in Dry Bay, in 1997. The goal of this collaborative project is to locate all of the original house sites of the Guseix village. This year the descendants of Dry Bay and the people of Yakutat plan to have a l0-year celebration in Dry Bay in commemoration of the research done and the 10th year of the last KU.eex (potlatch) in the Bay. The elders of Yakutat have requested me to document the Dry Bay celebration, which will happen at the end of May. I am therefore requesting funding to enable me to make a video documentary of the event. I plan to film the celebration as well as conduct interviews with participants involved with the event. It is my goal to show this documentary at Sealaska Celebration, Juneau, 2012. I would also like to submit the finished documentary to state and national Native documentary film festivals. The original ethnographic video footage will be conserved for the clan and tribe. The ethnographic research from this project will be part of my senior project and a paper for the Alaska Historical Society meetings Fall 2011 and at the Alaska Anthropology Association meeting Spring 2012

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Trevor Fritz

Bait Types for Dungeness Crab. Mentor: Carolyn Bergstrom ($762) The goal of this project is to conduct a study aimed at understanding and comparing the effectiveness of bait types used for catching Dungeness crabs. This project was initiated in September of 2010 as part of a University of Alaska Southeast Biology Program's Field Research in Behavior and Ecology course. I compared three bait types (salmon carcasses, herring and dog food) in their relative effectiveness at catching Dungeness crab (Cancer magister) in Echo Cove, Alaska. My objective is to investigate two hypotheses in the spring/summer of 2010 in Echo Cove: 1) bait herring catches have a greater composition of retainable crabs than salmon carcass catches and bait clam catches, and 2) increasing ring soak-time produces a greater composition of retainable crabs in a catch. The study will culminate with the contribution of novel research to the scientific community in the form of a scientific paper suitable to submit for publication in a peer-reviewed journal. Additionally, a poster will be prepared for display on campus.

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Chelsie Harris

Wood Fire Workshop. Mentor: Jeremy Kane ($1176) My project proposes a trip to Helena, Montana during which I will participate in a wood-fire workshop at the Archie Bray Foundation. This workshop will teach me various skills and techniques that will broaden the excellent education I have received at this university.  If provided with this experience, I will bring back to UAS extended knowledge of wood-kiln firing, inspiration from new influences and information on the opportunities available to other aspiring ceramic artists at UAS. The final product of this trip will be a show I plan to hold at UAS of my wood-fired ceramics produced both here at UAS and at the wood-fire workshop I hope to attend at the Archie Bray.

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Ishmael Hope

Naatsilanei Play Performance.  Mentor: Richard Dauenhauer ($200) UAS student Ishmael Hope, in collaboration with UAS student Erin Tripp, former UAS faculty member Flordelino Lagundino, and Ed Littlefield and Frank Katasse, will write a play based on the story of Naatsilanei, the origin of the Killer Whales, entitled The Reincarnation of Stories. Lagundino will direct, Littlefield will compose original Tlingit songs, and Tripp, Katasse, Hope, and Littlefield will perform the play. Stories will also tell, in its entirety, master storyteller Willie Marks' original version of the Naatsilanei story, all in Tlingit. The performance will be held at Perseverance Theater, who will serve as co-producers with UAS and Lagundino's Generator Theater. The Reincarnation of Stories will, for the first time, perform a play that tells a story entirely in the Tlingit language. There will be much English in the performance, too, to make the show accessible for today's audiences. This project, though, will advance the cause of Tlingit language revitalization, and build on the skills of UAS students and Tlingit language learners Tripp and Hope. We are "role models" for our peers and for the next generation. In recognition of this fact, we will visit schools, such as the Early Scholars Program classrooms at Juneau-Douglas High School and Thunder Mountain High School, in which we'll talk with Native students about the play, about Tlingit language and cultural learning, and about considering UAS to advance their educations.

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Richard Howes

iPads for Seniors. Mentor:Rick Wolk ($780)  I, along with Sherry Mitchell and Marc Theiler, also BBA students at UAS, are seeking to expand on a project,"iPads for Seniors," began in BA 311, Buyer Behavior, in Fall 2010, in preparation of presenting the project at the Students in Free Enterprise (SIFE) regional competition in New York in April, 2011 as representatives of UAS. The iPads for Seniors project is to determine the benefit of the use of technology to improve the quality of life for the in-need group, seniors, in Alaska. The project will be continued beyond the first competition in preparation again for the Spring 2012 SIFE regional competition.

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Yoko Kugo

Resilience of Haida Ecological Knowledge.  Mentor: Dan Monteith ($1602) For the UAS Undergraduate Student Award, I plan to visit Haida weavers in Haida Gwaii. I would like to discuss with local weavers about the availability and condition of the materials in their communities. Especially I will examine harvesting of cedar bark from the old growth red cedar. When I visit these villages, I plan to interview weavers and carvers who have been harvesting in their local areas. I will compare temperature and precipitation data with the information weavers have given from different communities for the timing of optimum harvest. This data I am collecting will provide a better understanding of the timing of harvesting in different locations. I will also present my research findings at the Alaska Historical Society annual meeting in the fall of 2011 and the Alaska Anthropological Association annual meeting in spring 2012. My research also has an educational component to it, in which I hope to share and give back to the native communities. I will discuss with weavers, carvers and elders the importance of perpetuating the tool use and bark stripping techniques. I will present my research to youth groups to help them appreciate weaving, carving and respect for local ecological knowledge.

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Tyler Linderoth

Cryptic Coloration. Mentor: Dave Tallmon ($2500) For the past 1.5 years I have conducted research relating to the adaptive potential of background matching in coastrange sculpin, Cottus aleuticus. My current focused project within the framework of this larger sculpin research scheme is to examine the population genetic structure and phylogenetics of coastrange sculpin at a nuclear color gene and two mitochondrial DNA regions for populations ranging from Oregon to Alaska. I am inquiring into genetic structure at a fine and large geographic scale, while also determining the evolutionary and colonization history of coastrange sculpin along the west coast of North America. This work provides insights into the role of phenotypic plasticity and genetic assimilation in persistence in a heterogeneous environment. This information will, ultimately, be extremely valuable in understanding how organisms may respond to novel environments created by climate change. All of the aforementioned implications of this research are discussed in a manuscript that will be submitted for publication once the project is complete.

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Kristie Livingston

Globalization and Ketchikan. Mentor: Sarah Ray ($750) I would like to use this grant to help answer the question: What role does globalization play in Ketchikan's indigenous population's sense of place? This project is a continuation of the cultural landscapes project, where we landscapes to uncover their cultural significance, utility, and hidden implications, from Professor Sarah Ray's geography course. The cultural landscapes project requires local fieldwork, including user interviews and photography. In addition to the work associated with this project, I seek to document my research project through video and photographic images.

Virginia Oliver

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Tlingit Phrase of the Week.Mentor: Richard Dauenhauer ($1338)  The project is to produce sound recordings of a Tlingit Phrase of the Week for each week of the year, based on the traditional annual food gathering cycle. These will be broadcast on public radio station KSTK in Wrangell, and on any other radio station interested in participating. I became interested in producing a public radio program in Wrangell titled "Tlingit Phrase of the Week", when I was working in in 2003-2006. I heard the Alutiiq word of the week on KMXT Public Radio and I went and visited the Alutiiq Museum where the Alutiiq language was being preserved and asked if I could be of help. As Tlingit people, our lifestyle is a whole cycle surrounding food gathering for each time of the year passed down for generations. With this Tlingit Phrase of the Week our community will learn together how our people lived by the seasons and it will teach about what foods were gathered and hunted in that month throughout the year. The project will benefit UAS and the community at large. The final product can be broadcast not only on Wrangell public radio, but on any other interested station. The recordings can be used as an online audio resource for UAS distance delivery and to help any learner without easy access to a speaker or teacher of Tlingit.

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Boni Parker

Vegetable Oil Test Kiln. Mentor: Jeremy Kane ($2500) My project is to build a small test kiln that will be fueled by waste vegetable oil. While it is not a requirement in our program, kiln construction and firing is essential in ceramics education and will help prepare me for my goal of graduate studies in the field. This kiln will be a valuable learning tool that will enable my fellow students and I to expand our creative opportunities by exploring new firing methods while utilizing affordable and sustainable fuels. I believe this project will benefit the entire University by demonstrating our commitment to sustainability and strengthening relationships within the community by collaborating with local businesses for fuel donations.

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Joshua Reeder

Paintings and Sculpture Public Installation. Mentors: Sarah Ray and Jeremy Kane ($750) The objective of this project is to create an art show consisting of large canvas paintings and figurative sculpture that will be displayed at a public space. Normally artwork is shown in a gallery setting. Galleries tend to be formal and austere spaces designed exclusively for intellectual viewing of art. This setting alienates certain groups, such as uneducated and lower class peoples, excluding these groups not by legal boundaries but by social bounds. By having a show in a public setting I will remove these boundaries and bring awareness of contemporary art beyond the art community to the broader public. This show will challenge the people of Juneau to think about how we use public spaces and who gets to use them. The method for achieving this goal is to place the show in a centrally located, public space in conjunction with August Gallery Walk. The primary location will be Pocket Park, located at the intersection of Franklin and Front streets across from the iconic downtown clock. The final component of the project will be documentation from a spatial perspective. The viewers of the show will be given a short survey that will record viewers' perceptions. Conclusions can then be made about how the space is being used, who is using it, why they are using it and what their perceptions of the space are. This information will make it possible to write a research based paper on the interaction of space and art from a Human Geographer's perspective.

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Diana Thompson

Sea Otter Skeleton. Mentor: Andy Szabo ($279) I plan to dissect a sea otter carcass, photograph organs and skeletal structure, and re-construct the bones into a full-body skeleton. Additionally, the photographs will be compiled into a sea otter anatomy identification book, which also will be given to the UAS Biology Department.

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