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2018 Writing Flag and Research Award Winners Announced

The School of Undergraduate Studies recognized a year’s worth of outstanding student writing at the third annual Undergraduate Writing and Research Awards ceremony, held on April 4, 2019. The Center for Skills and Experience Flags and Texas Libraries co-hosted the event at which $2400 was awarded to undergraduates who submitted work in four different writing categories: collaborative, research, critical/persuasive, and creative/reflective. Additional awards were dispersed for the categories “Images of Research” and “Information Literacy”. The Information Literacy Award recognized student projects submitted in a Signature Course. First place winners for each category were awarded $300, second place winners received $200, and third place winners were awarded $100. First place students presented excerpts of their work at the ceremony. A total of 330 students submitted work for consideration, the largest number of submissions in the program’s history.

The intensive nature of the writing, editing, and submission process helped students develop essential academic skills and learn about campus resources. “Preparing my work for submission taught me a lot about how to write a research paper and strategies for organizing it,” said Nitesh Kartha, third place winner in the research category. “Winning this award also helped me gain an awareness of the other research and writing opportunities available on campus.”

The 2019 Writing and Research Awards ceremony will no longer feature a distinct “collaborative” category, Instead, submissions for collaboratively written entries will be accepted in all other categories. In addition, the “research” category will be divided into two separate pools: one will be focused on work in the STEM fields while the other will be devoted to submissions in the humanities and the arts, as well as cross-disciplinary studies. “This change will allow us to recognize more of the excellent work submitted in the research category,” says Susan Schorn, Writing Program Coordinator for the School of Undergraduate Studies. “It will also make things a little easier for the judges, who sometimes struggle to weigh a good biology lab paper against a good paper on classical literature. Dividing the category will allow more of an apples-to-apples judging process.”

The 2019 Writing Flag Award is accepting submissions until Dec. 20, 2019.

2018 Undergraduate Writing and Research Awards

Images of Research Award

  • First Place – Matthew Yu – Sophomore, Electrical and Computer Engineering – Title of Image: “Into the Eye(s)”
  • Second Place – Katherine Strain – Senior, Environmental Science – Title of Image: “Why so Blue?”

Signature Course Information Literacy Award

  • First Place – Grace Ngyen, “The Water Isn’t Safe: The Dismal State of Texas Drinking Water Regulation”
  • Second Place – Mohit Gupta, “Jerusalem in Israeli Politics”
  • Third Place – Tanvi Ingle, “The Relationship between Social and Economic Marginalization and Alcohol Abuse within the African Racial Group”

Collaborative Writing Category

  • First Place – Sathaye Maanas and Oishik Saha, “Digital Dystopia: Analyzing Facebook Data Permissions and Regulations from 2014-2018”
  • Second Place – Caroline Leonard, Christina Archer, and Geoffrey Tian, “Context Report on the Catalonia Living Lab”
  • Third Place – Victoria Luu and Murphie Price, “GlaxoSmithKline Health Care Fraud Settlement with the U.S. Justice Department, 2012”
  • Honorable Mention – Makenzie Kulhanek, Emily Garza and Joey Saad, “The 2017 Arkema Plan Explosion following Hurricane Harvey in Crosby, Texas”
  • Honorable Mention – Alyssa Zucker, Alexis Huynh, Angela Whiteley, Leslie Ortega, Ryan Tanoury, Sam Chen, and Sarah Clark Ballard, “Costa Del Mar Study”

Research Writing Category

  • First Place – Laura Tarrant, “The Rhetoric of Oath-Taking in the Medical Profession”
  • Second Place – Bo Greg Hanson, “Polymorphisms in Alcoholism”
  • Third Place – Nitesh Kartha, “Influenza Vaccines: An Overview of the Most Common Seasonal Vaccination in the World”
  • Honorable Mention – Kelly Hayden, “Separated from Parents: the Trauma and Lasting Effects of the Child’s Development”

Critical/Persuasive Writing Category

  • First Place – Jasmine Sun, “Lions and Eagles and Serpents, Oh My: The Significance of Animal Symbolism in the Oresteia”
  • Second Place – Elizabeth Braaten, “’Open Minded Couple Seeking a Third’: Queer Women in the Digital Age”
  • Third Place – Emma Hoffman, “Protect the Church”
  • Honorable Mention – Vivienne Leow, “Fellini’s Obsession with Obsession in La Dolce Vita”
  • Honorable Mention – John Austin Witt, ‘Echoes of the Emperor’s Errors: Addressing Poverty in the Land of Imitators”

Critical/Reflective Writing Category

  • First Place – Hailey Algoe, “Disquiet”
  • Second Place – Anjali Ramachandran, “The Conch Shell”
  • Third Place – Sofia Mock, “The Unconventional World of Dani”
  • Honorable Mention – Olivia Hartwell, “Holiday in Pentagoa”
  • Honorable Mention – Quynha Tran, “Weighing the Odds”