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### Showcasing Interdisciplinary Student Research at Graduate School’s 150th Anniversary Celebration

The Sesquicentennial Scholarship Exhibition at the Vanderbilt Graduate School featured innovative research by ten exceptional students, covering a wide range of topics such as prenatal diets’ impact on diabetes in infants, public opinions on immigration, and the cellular response of brains to cocaine. This event took place on Feb. 15 at Alumni Hall.

A diverse group of students representing various disciplines delivered engaging five-minute lightning talks to an audience comprising faculty, staff, and students who had gathered to acknowledge the excellence in graduate student research.

Following the lightning talks, Darian Carroll, Alexander Tripp, and José Zepeda were recognized as prize winners for their exceptional presentations, each making significant contributions to their respective fields.

Carroll, a fifth-year student in molecular physiology and biophysics, delved into the effects of maternal diet during pregnancy on offspring susceptibility to diabetes and obesity. Tripp, a fourth-year student in political science, explored the shifts in public opinion regarding immigration. Zepeda’s research centered on the influence of specific brain receptors on locomotion during cocaine exposure.

In appreciation of their outstanding contributions, these three students will each receive a $250 prize and will be featured in a video on the Graduate School website showcasing their research. Furthermore, their work will be preserved in a V150 Graduate School time capsule to be opened in 50 years, and they will be celebrated at the Graduate School’s Honors Banquet in March.

The Sesquicentennial Scholarship Exhibition not only highlights the lasting impact of student research but also underscores the university’s unwavering commitment to nurturing the future generation of scholars.

Top Ten Finalists

  • Darian Carroll, Molecular Physiology and Biophysics
  • Stacey Carter, Nursing Science
  • Kelly Cunningham, Philosophy
  • Sophia Kekes-Szabo, Hearing and Speech Sciences
  • Yinru Long, Psychology
  • Nicole Muszynski, Biomedical Engineering
  • Preeti Nambiar, Political Science
  • Rachel Siegman, Teaching, Learning and Diversity
  • Alexander Tripp, Political Science
  • José Zepeda, Pharmacology

*Denotes final three