UPIKE students selected for Ledford Research Scholarships

The University of Pikeville recently endorsed three students that were selected to receive the Appalachian College Association (ACA) Ledford Research Scholarships. These scholarships offer financial assistance for summer research projects to undergraduate students enrolled at ACA member institutions.

Each year, the ACA awards scholarships to support ongoing educational objectives. Ledford Scholars present their research from a variety of fields of study, such as health sciences, social sciences, humanities, applying various methodologies, laboratory research, fieldwork, participant observation, interview/oral history or archival/library research.

Professional Development Manager, Eric Werth, Ed.D., and Faculty Development Educator Katie Williams are both serving as mentors to supervise Adrianna Deskins. Deskins’ project is to continue exploring the work of Open Education Resources (OERs) and the impact of these materials on a college student.

Professor of Biology Phillip Jen, Ph.D., is serving as a mentor for Elizabeth Shepherd on her project to investigate the function of neuropeptides in cancer tissues and determine how neurotransmitters and neuropeptides function in human lung, breast and colon tissues.

Rachel Williams, also mentored by Dr. Jen, has a project to investigate the function of neuropeptides in the gallbladder to determine how neuropeptides function in triggering sudden colonic transit, pain, gas and sensations of urgency.

UPIKE Provost Lori Werth, Ph.D., encourages students to pursue specialized learning and research opportunities such as those afforded by the Ledford Research Scholarships.

“The University of Pikeville is committed to excellence in the classroom and leading in the areas of research and practice,” said Werth. “We are thankful to the Appalachian College Association for their support of student-led research and opportunities to innovate in a variety of disciplines.”

The program culminates with the Ledford Scholars requesting their attendance and presentation of their research findings at the ACA’s Annual Summit held in Pigeon Forge, Tenn., on September 25 and 26.

For more information about UPIKE, please call (606) 218-5251.