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The winners of the 2006 O'Brien Research Prizes, with their faculty mentors. From left, front, General Biology Specialist Carol Budd, Professor of Anthropology Ali Pomponio, Eden Mohammed '09 and Rebecca LaPier '09. Back, Kai Cameron-Gilsey '09, Professor of English Sidney Sondergard and Associate Dean of the First Year Steven Horwitz. (Photo by Lindsay Muetterties)

The Third Annual William O'Brien First-Year Research Prizes have been awarded to three students whose projects for the 2005-2006 academic year were judged to "best reflect the goals of the First-Year Seminars."

First prize of $250 went to Rebecca LaPier '09, of West Chazy, NY, for "Hong Kong Cinema's Recipe For a Heroine: Inconsistencies in the Feminine Representation." Her First-Year Seminar was taught by Professor of English Sidney Sondergard.

Kai Cameron-Gilsey '09, of Rockport, MA, was awarded second prize, $100, for "An American Family Dinner," a monologue and group performance in the First-Year Seminar taught by Associate Professor of Performance and Communication Arts Rebecca Daniels.

The $50 third prize went to Eden Mohammed '09, of Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, for "African Orphan Care in the Post-AIDS Era," in a seminar taught by General Biology Specialist Carol Budd and Professor of Anthropology Ali Pomponio.

All three will give presentations of their work at Family Weekend.

The William O'Brien First-Year Research Prizes were created in honor of O'Brien, a member of the Class of 2006 who was killed in an accident the summer after his first year at St. Lawrence. His family and friends created a fund in his memory, specifically to benefit the First-Year Program and students participating in the program. The research prizes and the First-Year Cup are supported by the fund.

Each spring, the faculty and administrators of the First-Year Program select three students whose research in their First-Year Seminar best reflects the goals of the seminar. Those three students receive cash awards and present their research to the campus community upon their return to campus in the fall of their sophomore year. Students are nominated by their seminar advisors, and submissions are judged on their "creativity, originality, the quality of their written or oral presentation and, especially, their ability to meet the research goals of the First-Year Seminar," which are:

- To assess the research requirements of a particular assignment and to meet those requirements by using library collections, electronic databases and Web-based sources.
- To be able to choose amongst these sources to determine which are most appropriate for a particular assignment.
- To assess and represent the complexity of a particular line of inquiry and to enter responsibly into the conversation about the issues it raises.

More information: First-Year Program

Research Opportunities at St. Lawrence

Posted: September 21, 2006

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