Twenty-Fifth Annual University of Maine Farmington Symposium

April 19, 2023

UMF Symposium takes place every spring, and this year’s Symposium will occur on Wednesday, April 19. Symposium Day celebrates academic and artistic achievement and excellence by giving students a chance to highlight their best work. Students may pursue independent research projects, share creative work, or be assigned a project as part of a course. All daytime classes are canceled on Symposium Day with the exception of afternoon once-a-week courses, which may be scheduled at the discretion of the instructor. The Symposium website has more information and access to the programs from all of the previous UMF symposia.

The program for the 2023 Symposium outlines all presentations, posters, and events. 

Symposium Sessions

These sessions are organized by venue, with all of the sessions at each venue listed chronologically within each venue.

Venue 1: Lincoln Auditorium (Roberts Learning Center)

 Wilson Scholar Presentations 9:00 to 12:00

Some presenters have multiple presentations and will not stay for the entire time, or may arrive late.  Depending on the flow of the morning, the times given for presentations may not exactly correspond to what is below.

9:00 – 9:15 – Jaycie Stevens:  Sexual Health Behaviors and Knowledge of College Students before and after the COVID-19 Pandemic.

9:15 – 9:30 – Will Robert: Geochemistry of Surface Waters Near the Plumbago North Lithium -Bearing Pegmatite, Newry, Maine

Geochemical analysis of surface waters near the Plumbago North (PbN) spodumene bearing granitic pegmatite was initiated in Fall 2022 to provide an environmental baselinefor any future lithium mining. We collected seven 125 mL filtered (0.45 microns) samples: from a perennial pool in the PbN quarry, Spodumene Brook (1 site above, 3 sites below PbN, Howe Brook (control), and the Ellis River at USGS Site 01054300 (upstream). Samples were collected on 2022.09.27 and again on 2022.11.06. The samples were analyzed by ICP-MS for concentrations of major, minor and trace elements, by ionchromatograph for chloride and sulfate, and alkalinity was determined by difference from charge balanceat the University of Alaska Anchorage’s ASET Lab. All samples  are
calcium-bicarbonate in composition. Lithium concentrations at the six stream sites rang from 1.5 to 6.6 g/L (September) and 27 to 37 g/L (November), which are less than pool values (167-172 g/L), and all lower than the EPA drinking water standard of 700 g/L. Lithium in Spodumene Brook is 1-4 more concentrated than outside of the watershed, consistent with similar studies of lithium-bearing pegmatite drainages in Ireland, eastern Europe, and Portugal. While our discharge measurements did not reveal significant variation from September to November, the 6-fold increase in lithiumconcentration may be a dilution effect or, possibly, related to the coincident loss of foliage, increase of leaf litter and production of organic acids.

9:30 – 9:45 – Heather Janson : Deep, not Wide: Mathematics for the Gifted and Talented Student

In gifted and talented education programs across the country, students often encounter surface-level mathematics materials that do not allow them to deepen their understanding of the content. As a form of remedial action, the project Deep, not Wide: Mathematics for the Gifted and Talented Student was developed in order to design and create a mathematics-curriculum supplement that aligns with the Common Core standards and can be applied in any gifted and talented education program structure. These learning activities provide an explicit progression of the content from a wide approach to a deep approach, resulting in an open-ended product. This presentation will explore some of the sixth grade learning activities that were developed during the course of this project, the feedback received and implemented from gifted and talented educators within the state, and how the project will continue to expand and progress in the future.

9:45 – 10:00 – Autumn Koors Foltz

This presentation will feature Autumn Koors Foltz’ yearlong undergraduate research project as a Wilson Research Fellow. “Beloved Letters: An Investigation of the Evolving Form of Queer Letter-Writing” navigates the queer epistolary realm through academic literary analysis followed by a poetic exploration. This presentation will cover the primary hypotheses of the project establishing traditions such as affirmation, reverie, and the unique ways that queer epistolars understand both salutation and valediction.

Autumn Koors Foltz is a double major in Creative Writing and English alongside a triple minor in Editing & Publishing, Gender & Women’s Studies, and Environmental Studies. They are the Eastern Region Student Representative of Sigma Tau Delta, the president of their campus’ Writers’ Guild, and the station manager of WUMF 91.5 FM. Autumn is a poet who is invested in the ways literature informs and changes community.

10:00 – 10:15 – Kelly Gentilo:  Cooger and Dark’s Pandemonium Shadow Show

Bradbury’s novel, Something Wicked This Way Comes, was required reading in sixth grade of my Catholic middle school and has stuck with me ever since causing a complex relationship between the book, religion, and myself.  During the 2022-2023 school year, I took the book and altered many of the pages via drawings and blacked-out passages, among other alterations. The work expanded outward from the altered book to an installation piece involving a soundscape and four carousel horse drawings on the walls to simulate an experience of stepping inside a mysterious carousel. This piece concerns themes of religion, childhood, and the reclamation of a text.

Kelly Gentilo is a Performing Arts major with minors in Music and Film Studies.   While working in many mediums, their art is often visual and best consumed in three dimensions. Kelly revels in combining the absurd, visceral, and nostalgic and is interested in questions of purpose, temporality, and cycles.

10:15 – 10:30 – Isabelle King

10:30 – 10:45 – Ashley Ward:

The student will conduct a powerpoint presentation summarizing analytic exploration conducted within the student’s Wilson Scholarship project (a 15-20 page journal-length article). Themes of gender and race in Shakespeare’s Othello will be closely analyzed by the student in comparison to other Renaissance dramas (plays written between 1562-1642). Specific instances of gender/racial politics in Othello will be examined to see how they gesture towards what life might have been like for anyone of the Renaissance era that was not a rich/white man.

Ashley Ward is a junior Creative Writing major at UMF, alongside a double minor in Editing & Publishing and Video Game Studies. She is heavily involved in UMF’s student run newspaper, The Farmington Flyer, and has been the Editor-in-Chief since her sophomore year. She loves to read and has developed a new-found appreciation for Renaissance dramas.

10:45 – 11:00 – Ethan Rodrigue  -Run Club for Elementary Students with Behavioral Support Needs

This presentation is a statistical analysis on whether a before school Run Club program at Farmington’s elementary school has an impact on students who are in need of additional behavior support. These findings will be used to see whether or not the program should be scaled up, or if efforts should be divertedtowards different programs.

Ethan is a junior in UMF Actuarial Science and Mathematics program.

11:00 – 11:15 – Jacqueline Hamilton and Caroline Granata:  Book Buddies: Learning About Literacy With Fourth Graders

What happens when 4th graders and preservice teachers partner up to learn about middle grade novels? What do we learn about literacy practices and our pedagogical thinking from our own mastery experiences, and from the vicarious experiences of others through the analysis of data from previous student experiences in the Book Buddy project?

Caroline Granata is a junior at UMF in Elementary Education with a minor in ESOL and a concentration in math. She is also in the honors program, and works as a peer advisor for freshmen in the Elementary Education program. She is also a team manager for the women’s basketball team where she has learned so much and has made so many friends. She really enjoyed doing this research and putting together this presentation and is excited to share it here at UMF.

Jacqueline Hamilton a junior at UMF. She is studying elementary education with a minor in ESOL and a concentration in mathematics. Jacqueline is also an honors student and works as a peer advisor for freshmen in the Elementary Education program. Jacqueline plays basketball at UMF and loves to cheer on her friends at other sports events. Jacqueline plans to get her masters through UMF as well. Jacqueline loves UMF and the community around her!

11:15 – 11:30 – Jocelyn Royalty –  Time & Again

Time & Again: Time Travel and Transcendence in Literature. It will consist of two parts–a rhetorical analysis, where she looks specifically at the device of the time loop in speculative fiction, and a creative portion, where she reads an excerpt of her own writing.

11:30 – 11:45 – Gabriel Glidden:

Dissemination of psychological research study results examining the mediating role of aging anxiety in the triggering of ageist stereotypes in situations of forgetfulness. As well as a brief discussion on lessons learned from data collection and survey distribution.

The present study examined the relationship between aging anxiety and the triggering of ageist stereotypes in situations of forgetfulness. More broadly, the presence of an ageist double standard in the perceptions of forgetfulness is examines. Through convenience sampling, 164 younger and 24 older adults were recruited and were randomly assigned to read a story depicting either a 23-year-old or a 63-year-old woman experiencing a sequence of forgetful situations. Participants were then asked to respond to a series of questions measuring their perceptions of the target character, why they thought the target was forgetful, and their level of aging anxiety (Anxiety about Aging Scale). Consistent with previous literature, support for an ageist double standard in perceptions of dementia, severity of forgetfulness, and target’s worry about getting older was found. In addition, partial support for existing attribution theory in regard to age was observed, with the younger target’s forgetfulness being perceived as the result of situational factors (i.e., inattention, recent death of the target’s dog) and the older adult’s forgetfulness as a result of unchangeable and internal factors (i.e., dementia, memory problems). Finally,  older adult participants reported higher levels of aging anxiety compared to younger adults, especially in the realms of psychological concerns and physical appearance. Aging anxiety was found to correlate with decreased attributions of traditional ageist cognitive stereotypes in the older target condition but not in the younger target condition. These findings suggest that an age-based double standard in the perceptions of forgetfulness exists, and that aging anxiety may play a role in the perceptions of forgetfulness in older adults but not in younger adults.

Keywords: Aging anxiety, ageism, ageist stereotypes, forgetfulness, memory.

Gabriel Glidden is a psychology undergraduate senior with a keen interest in aging studies and gerontology. Gabriel is interested in pursuing a research track in the future and intends on pursuing graduate studies. In addition to his academic pursuits, Gabriel also enjoys drawing, playing board and video games, and spending time outdoors. Gabriel is an ambitious and driven individual with a passion for learning and exploring new ideas.

Venue 2 – Education Center 112

9:00 – 10:00   Theresa Overall Class session 1

Future teachers will share their research, ideas, and prototypes of how technology can support learning in middle/secondary English, Math, Science, Social Studies, Health & Physical Education, and World Languages. They have designed a unit in their content area using the Understanding by Design model. The performance task of the unit gives the learners an opportunity to demonstrate their understandings in a real-world context utilizing technology in a transformative way (on the SAMR Model). These future teachers will share an overview of their unit as well as prototypes of their unit performance task and two other technology-based assessments. This is an opportunity to see a variety of web-based technologies and how they can be used for summative and formative assessment with 6th – 12th graders.

Abbie Bitomske, Abigail Wakefield, Alicia Bridges, Blue Lagoda, Caitlyn Cross, Courtney Hinkley, Dylan Charlton, El Couture, Emma Willey, Hailey Capano, Hannah Littlefield, Isaiah Day, Jared Burns, Riley Sullivan, Tom Brann, Willow Betz

10:30 – 11:30   Theresa Overall Class session 2

Abby Blair, Bryn Bernier, Dani Faltraco, Dylan Griffin, Hattie Dunton, Jo LeMahieu, Kami Howes, Kate Withee, Kelly Halloran, Meghan Renander, Nate Rackliff, Rhiannon Alley, Sakinah Fuzzell, Sarah Emerson, Tori Bellegarde, Truly Franciose-Chillemi

2:10 – 3:00:   Patty Williams – Strengthening Teacher Workforce Research Team

Maine is facing a shortage of highly prepared teachers, exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. The causes of this shortage are multifaceted, highlighting challenges in teacher recruitment, retention, and development. In Maine, almost 30% of new teachers leave the profession within 3 years (Johnson et al., 2020).  As a result, 13 different areas and certifications have been identified as teacher shortage areas in Maine for 2022-2023 (Maine DOE, 2022).

Given this, the development and support of teachers entering the field is a major concern. For new teachers, 52% reported that having a designated mentor or formal leadership coach would be an effective support, with 43% asking for more mentoring within the classroom such as co-teaching, modeling, and peer observation. Nationally, EdWeek Research Center Surveys show 91% of practicing teachers report frequent job related stress, reporting the need for more supervisor check-ins, time, and support around student challenges in order to decrease their stress (Will, 2021). Without support being provided to newly certified teachers, their likelihood of persisting in the field and providing high quality educational experiences for children in Maine schools is at risk. Hence, the goal of this project is to learn what pre-service and new teachers throughout the state of Maine are looking for in their jobs and profession. As the teacher shortage deepens, we need to be better prepared to develop and support new teachers. School districts also need to better understand what new teachers are looking for in positions and in their teaching career in order to successfully structure positions, advertise them, and fill vacancies. These efforts will both diversify and stabilize the teacher workforce in Maine. Data will be presented from the statewide survey highlighting trends in the state of Maine.

Samantha Michelson, Double Majored in Early Childhood 0-5 with a cert in K-3 and Psychology, 4th year. I’m from Buxton, ME and my career goal is to open up a daycare in a low income housing area so folks from those areas can have affordable child care.

Dongmei Yuan, a nontraditional junior student majoring in Elementary Education with a certificate in k-8. I am from China and my career goal is to help build a bridge between two cultures, connecting kids in China and the U.S to learn from each other, after furthering my education.

Venue 3 –  North Dining Hall A, 9:00 – 11:30

Nicole Kellett’ class of Senior anthropology research.

Elliot Morelli-Wolfe: You Are What You Eat: An Exploration into Survival Cannibalism

How do we as humans respond when pushed to the brink? How would we react to a siege, or to being shipwrecked with no food? Humans throughout history have provided key case studies to answer these very questions during their own personal survival situations. This presentation explores the phenomenon of survival cannibalism, wherein people who are desperate to survive resort to eating the bodies of the dead. From the Siege of Leningrad to the plane crash of a team of rugby players in the Andes, we explore how different situations that result in the same, deeply taboo survival technique, can have drastically different outcomes for survivors and communities- and why.

Samantha Brillhart: Pigeon Social Structures and People’s Perspectives

Pigeons, the domesticated descendants of the rock dove, were once venerated as signs from a god, romanticized as symbols of purity, and honored as messengers in times of peace and war. They have incredibly complex and diverse social systems and are present all around the world.  Could pigeons be more socially complex than previously understood? How does our understanding of pigeons in the US compare to others around the world? This research aims to answer these questions in a way that humanizes a bird most often seen as a pest. So much of our knowledge of the world centers on the study of humans and removes us from our place in nature.  Each time we recognize another species as kin is another step towards realizing that anthropology, and humanity, does not have to exist in a bubble.

Sydney Halle: Multiple Generations and Multiple Sclerosis: Exploring the Experiences of Three Generations of Women

This personal ethnographic study was conducted to tell the story of my mother and her battle with Multiple Sclerosis. The research examines generational experiences with Multiple Sclerosis, told through the eyes of a Grandmother, Mother, and Daughter. Each woman share’s her personal story about how Multiple Sclerosis has touched their life. Through the use of interviews and observation and incorporating personal stories and experiences, I have gathered a greater understanding of how my mother is physically and mentally affected by Multiple Sclerosis. I aim for this report to bring awareness to the hardships of Multiple Sclerosis, while also demonstrating how strong will, courage, and positivity allow a person to overcome pain.

Covy Dufort: Justice for the Crooked Lawyer: A Brief Analysis of the Morality of Defense Attorneys

Defense attorneys play a critical role in our society; however, there are myriad moral dilemmas s part of this profession. The goal of this research is to better understand why people become defense attorneys and how they are able to cope with the heavy moral implications of their profession. Additionally, this project explores defense lawyers' character and their reasoning for  choosing this profession in the first place. The concept of “burnout" tends to be a popular buzz word within this occupation, so a key component of this project examines factors that contribute to this issue. In pursuing a career in law, I seek to better understand the complexities of determining truth amidst the criminal justice system and any moral dilemmas such professionals face in striving for positive social change.

A.J. Booth:Players’ Pursuit of Fictional Romance in Video Games

Video games of varying genres have featured mechanics by which the player pursues and enters into a romantic relationship with a fictional character. The appeal of these mechanics and the identities of the players are examined with a cultural lens. As part, several participants were

asked to take a survey that would provide information on their playing habits, the characters they have enjoyed romancing, and their identities. Some individuals were further interviewed, in

order to further expand upon how they view romance in video games. In analyzing the responses, certain trends in what made characters appealing were found. Primarily, a character’s personality and perceived quality of writing were identified as what made their romance appealing, which did not alway correspond to real-life relationships. Differences in how players chose characters to romance were also observed, though agreement in diversifying and changing the more unrealistic aspects of fiction was found. Ultimately, romance in video games reveals how fiction allows for individuals to engage with love they may not pursue in their real lives. At the same time, players still desire a realistic representation of romance to further immerse themselves in the world.

Hannah Calkin: The Music of Ancient Greece and Rome: An Invocation of Prosperity

Music has long been a vital part of human culture in some way shape or form. Despite its prevalence, ethnomusicology–the study of music within its various cultural contexts–lacks depth in academic spaces. This presentation concerns the music of the Greco-Roman Era, or the Era of Classical Antiquity (500 B.C.E – 400 C.E). By asking what music can tell us about Ancient Greece and Rome, its prevailing cultural values, and the people who created and performed it, we are better able to form a clearer picture of the social and sensory aspects of people’s lives. In other words, it can shift the lens we view ancient people from a distant, quantifiable viewpoint to an anthropological perspective that is more closely aligned with the circumstantial human experience. In this presentation about Greco-Roman music, I assert that a consideration of music is not peripheral, but an essential method that examines a multitude of human expressions as experienced throughout various unique and integrated spaces and aspects of the wider culture they occupy, including religious, domestic, and practical settings.

Chelsey Roy: Luck of the Irish: A story following the rehabilitation of a family gang.

How does a family raised for one life end up in another? This project focuses on an inteimate ethnography of a reformed Irish Catholic family gang. This family has broken out of the systemic roles of their environment and has made it to the other side of reformation. It is reported that the recidivism rate for America is 82 percent, meaning that 82 percent of those incarcerated in state prison were arrested at some point in the 10 years following their release. This shows that the majority of people who go to prison are not being rehabilitated. My goal for this project is to take a closer look at this system and understand the factor that push people into a life of crime, as well as what a successful rehabilitation process looks like through the lens of the Green family’s experience. Why can this family escape what so many have been trapped in, is this a predetermined plan or the “luck of the Irish.”

Amy Hodge:The Resource Curse: Lithium Extraction in Chile and Maine

In recent years, there has been a dramatic increase in demand for lithium to move to a cleaner and more sustainable world. In turn, lithium mining in the Atacama Salt Flat of Chile has been at an all time high because of the abundance and accessibility to the critical mineral. Mining has had a long and controversial history because the extraction process has enormous impacts on local communities and their natural resources in which they rely on for daily practices and long- standing rituals. We often have a mindset to not care about these conflicts because they are not happening in front of us. This project aims to show that these issues are happening near us and not just internationally by looking at the large lithium deposit located in Newry, Maine and try to understand residents’ opinions through key informant interviews and a survey and then compare it to what is happening in Chile.

Luka Baskett:Angels in Asylums

This capstone project aims to highlight some of the unique struggles faced by non-males in psychiatric care, and to uplift the project the real experiences of women and genderqueer folk who have ben in the psychiatric health system. The research is done through literature analysis, live participant surveys, and interviews; aiming to form a holistic view of how the patriarchy,

through time and public policy, has permeated the structure of our health and medicine practices. The literature shows that there IS a marked difference between genders when it comes to needs in mental health facilities, which tend to have an institutional, one-size-fits-all approach. The participants then help to reveal how this has manifested using their own perspectives and memories in times as modern as 2022. Lives-experience research is incredibly important to the mental health field; both for the accuracy of the information and to aid in the equity of groups like women with disabilities, which have been all too often disregarded and depreciated in scientific progress. Angels in Asylums aims to show the strength and property that both women through time and these participants have shown in the face of systematic oppression.

Venue 4:  Education Center Lobby

9:00 – 10:20  —  Kathryn Will

How might we help our future students engage in literacy practices in meaningful ways? How will we know which books to recommend or choose for instruction? The Book Challenge was the means to develop our knowledge of children’s literature for the intermediate and middle school audience in order to explore these questions. Many of these were shared texts, texts recommended by our 4th grade Book Buddies in Wiscasset, or texts selected based on honors and awards, blog posts, or book lists. With each of the texts, we explored ways in which learning could be expanded or deepened while considering alignment to the English Language Arts Standards. In our session you will learn about the texts we read, structures for engagement, and extension activities we explored on our journey of the Book Challenge.

Madison Bean, Lis Carlson, Kayla Donlin, K.B. Dunham, Caroline Granata, Jacqui Hamilton, Calli Leach, Amey Leeman, Maddie Lenfest, Cassie Libby, Christina Lougee, Ilana Lybarger, Cal Motenbeau, Kate, Nowell, Liv Paradis, Taylor Richard, Madisyn Smith, Abigail Trefsger, Lucas Tuttle.

10:30 – 11:50 – Pete Hardy, FYS – “Is UMF Sustainable?”

The students in Dr. Peter Hardy’s FYS 100 – Building a Sustainable Future course will present their study of UMF’s sustainability practices including a history of UMF’s sustainability initiatives and the accomplishments of the Sustainable Campus Coalition, UMF’s energy use, carbon footprint and climate action plan as well as suggestions for future projects. Come and see what grade the students give UMF on its stewardship of the environment.

1:10 to 2:00: Dan Jackson class  “Sustainability of Ancient Structures – A Journey through Geometry, History, and Science.”

Led by the enthusiastic students of MAT 304! Explore the fascinating world of ancient buildings and uncover the powerful connections between their sustainable designs and the geometric principles that underpin them. Experience first-hand how our inventive class of aspiring educators crafted an engaging, hands-on lesson that sparks curiosity and deepens participants’ appreciation of the essential role of geometric analysis in understanding sustainability. Our presentation promises to be an exciting blend of history, science, and real-world problem-solving, with audience members actively participating in the fun. Don’t miss this one-of-a-kind opportunity to delve into the world of the ancients through the eyes of geometry.

2:10 to 3:00 – POSTER SESSION 

Julia Daly’s class: Luke Bliss, Alice Bowden, Kayleigh Brisard, Gil Hamilton, Jeremy Pica, Will Robert, Chelsea Roy, Brent Soucy, Carson Theriault

In July 2022 an historic spillover dam on Temple Stream, a tributary to the Sandy River in Franklin county, was removed following a multi-year planning process involving the town of Farmington, numerous state and federal agencies, and the Atlantic Salmon Federation. The watershed is 89 km2 and largely forested, and is of significant interest as potential Atlantic salmon breeding habitat because of the cool water and moderate gradient. Since 1780, when the dam was constructed, sediment movement through the lower reaches of the stream was impeded by the structure which created an impoundment extending 1.7 km upstream. Sediment samples and drone photography collected above, within, and below the impoundment before and after removal for grain size analysis allow us to track sediment mobilization and downstream deposition associated with dam removal. Samples were dried and sieved for sand and larger sizes, or settled for fines, to characterize the grain size distribution of three different populations: pre-removal channel bed sediments, sediments actively transported during baseflow conditions following dam removal, and sediment deposited as overbank deposits during high water events after dam removal. Within the impoundment, sediments collected in the channel prior to dam removal are much finer (silt-mud) than the coarse sand which was actively migrating downstream following removal. Downstream of the former dam location, high flow events resulted in somewhat finer sand being deposited in an area that was previously sediment starved. Future sampling at these locations will characterize changes in sediment size and deposition patterns over time.

Emma Hovencamp:  Mollusks in Maine: Impact of Chinese Mystery Snails (Cipangopaludina chinensis) on Native Aquatic Snails

There is still little known about the effect Mystery snails have on freshwater ecosystems in Maine, with even less known about their impact on native aquatic snails. Mystery snails are able to survive outside of water for long periods if weather conditions and humidity are right, effectively increasing their ability to invade new water bodies and expand their overall range in Maine via transportation on boats. We sampled a total of six lakes, four of which provided data we analyzed to determine the effect Mystery snails have on native aquatic snails. Our group was unable to determine the exact relationship between Mystery snail and native snail populations, but there was some evidence that a negative relationship was occuring. We also found all observed snails with a certain depth range, with there being no relationship between sediment type and snail species across all four lakes. With a limited amount of information about the current Mystery snail and native snail populations of Maine this research project was important, not only to us, but to the organisms which utilize these freshwater ecosystems as well. This study requires more thorough investigation to accurately determine whether there is support for our hypothesis that Mystery snails have an adverse influence on native snail populations, with a focus specifically on sampling. We suggest changes in these particular areas of our methods: more transects, a linear transect collection, a broader range of collection sites, and collection of data in the warmer seasons.

Emma is a second-year Biology major from Canaan, Maine.

Sadie Gray with Eme Saverese and Emily Eaton

Over the years climate change has become more prominent in our ecosystems, especially those that are in highly specified climates. Observing patterns and deciphering what they mean is extremely important when looking at changes in aquatic ecosystems. Focusing on secchi depth, ice out dates, and precipitation– this study interprets the impacts of climate change happening within four high elevation lakes in Maine. This presentation shows how climate change has impacted the visibility as well as the retention time of ice sheets on lakes in Maine. Regression tests performed on the four high elevation ponds found significant differences in the secchi disk depth for Midway Pond and ice out dates for Tumbledown and Speck Ponds. Also, graphs showed general increases in secchi disk depth from 2011 to 2022 in all ponds while ice out dates  were shown to be becoming increasingly delayed despite a warming climate.

Sadie is a junior earth and environmental science major. Eme is a junior biology major with a minor in anthropology. Emily is a senior earth and environmental science major with a minor in geography.

Venue 5:  Ricker Addition 207

9:00 – 10:20:   Bio 356 – Developmental Biology, Tim Breton

Emily Hargreaves:  Hoxd10 gene expression in Xenopus laevis

All tetrapods form limbs to help them move around and navigate their environments. The hoxd10 gene is involved with limb bud formation and limb development of the African Clawed frog. The purpose of the present study is to measure hoxd10 gene expression in embryonic stages forming limb buds. After embryos were staged, RNA was isolated and extracted and then turned into cDNA and used in qPCR. Expected results include a higher expression in later stages of development. Further research will need to be done in order to fully understand the process of hoxd10 gene progression in African Clawed frogs.

Divine Lenge:  The Expression of Sox 13 gene in Xenopus laevis during very early  vs tail forming stages

Sox 13 is a member of the SOX (SRY-related HMG box) transcription factors family involved in various embryonic developmental processes and in the determination of cell fate. The purpose of this study was to detect areas where Sox 13 is expressed in different embryonic stages and compare the abundance of its expression between early and later developmental stages. For this study, RNAs were extracted from Xenopus laevis oocytes and tail forming stages and turned into cDNA for qPCR . Results will likely show that Sox 13 is highly expressed in later developmental stages, mostly in the developing central nervous system. The expression of Sox 13 will also  likely be detected in early stages, but not as abundant as it was during neurulation. Further research is needed to determine if the expression of these genes is the same across vertebrates.

Rachel Hatfield:  Quantitative Analysis of Dact1 expression in Xenopus laevis oocyte, embryo, and adult brain.

Dact1, like the other three Dact genes, is part of the Nodal signaling family, and serves as an antagonist to β-catanin, making it an important regulatory gene for development. For this study, samples were taken of X. laevis oocyte, embryo, and adult brain. qPCR was done to measure the relative levels of Dact1 in each stage of development. Expected results are high levels of Dact1 in oocytes, with lower but still present expression at each later stage of development.  Dact1 expression has been measured in other model organisms, but has yet to be focused on in Xenopus laevis.

Michael Patnaude:  Characterization of VegT levels between Oocytes, Early Gastrulation and Organogenesis in Xenopus laevis

VegT is a maternally expressed gene present during oogenesis in Xenopus laevis.  In the gastrula, VegT is responsible for cell differentiation of the germ layers.  The goal of this project is to characterize the level of expression of VegT in Xenopus laevis oocytes, stage 10-11 and stage 29-32 embryos.  VegT mRNA was extracted from Xenopus laevis oocytes and embryos, converted to cDNA and analyzed with qPCR.  VegT is expected to be in high levels in both the oocyte and stages 10-11 but low in stages 29-32.  Following research should further investigate the expression of VegT after the formation of the germ layers to see if VegT has some role in later embryo stages.

Will Harriman:  Chordin (chrd.1) Gene Expression in Varying Developmental Stages in Xenopus laevis

Chordin is a key developmental gene in Xenopus laevis and plays a role in dorsal determination. This study aimed to compare the expression of Chordin in Xenopus laevis in the adult forebrain and embryonic stages related to mesoderm formation and neurulation. The mRNA from the frog embryos was extracted and cDNA was synthesized. The cDNA with the corresponding gene primers were used in qPCR. The qPCR is expected to show high expression for Chordin in the embryonic stages rather than the adult forebrain. Further research should be carried out on different stages and other regions to better understand this gene.

Mullein Francis:  Churchill (churc1) Gene Expression Through Xenopus laevis Embryonic Development

The development of Xenopus laevis is regulated by various genes including those involved in growth factor signaling. Churchill (churc1) is a zinc finger protein that mediates cell migration during development and is a key regulator of neural competence in adult frogs. This study looks into the expression of churc1 in several developmental stages of Xenopus embryos and brain sections. To elucidate when churc1 is active in embryo and neural center development qPCR analysis will be used. High expression is expected in stages 24-28, 29-32, and adult brain sections as given in previous studies. These findings may provide clues into the gene’s role in cell migration as it relates to neural function and development.

10:30 – 11:50:  Noelle Dubay – “Century of Queer Literature” class.

Readers in this class studied various works across the past hundred years that might qualify as “queer literature,” paying particular attention to how these works render desire, sociability, gender, and futurity across character, plot, and literary form. What constitutes “queerness” in literature, and how does this change from place to place and time to time? In these presentations, students have selected their own work for consideration.

Tori Oliveira will present on Aromantic-Asexual experience in Alice Ozeman’s Loveless.

Tori is a 2nd year Creative Writing and English double major, with minors in Art and Editing & Publishing.

Sam Box will present “A Queer Reading of Elizabeth Bowen’s The Last September.” This presentation will explore compulsory heterosexuality and queer creation of identity through an analysis of the novel, which depicts a young Anglo-Irish woman trying to find her place in the world while the Irish War of Independence seeps into her life.

Sam is a junior studying Creative Writing and English. Outside of class, they can be found frantically updating their weekly to-do list, painting silly things, or staring at the distant horizon in an overly theatrical manner.

Em Platt’s presentation will look at religion, prophets, and angels in Tony Kushner’s Angels in America.

Em is a senior Creative Writing student. They enjoy playing video games and writing bad poetry. And good fiction.

Aubrey Merritt will present on Fried Green Tomatoes.   Aubrey Merritt is a rising senior studying secondary education with a concentration in English.
She spends her extra with her partner, her loved ones, and good books.

Respondent: Dex LaFrance (they/he)

Dex is a third year English/Creative Writing major, a nonbinary adventurer who loves questioning gender norms in life and literature, and an avid stargazer and sunrise-chaser.

1:10 – 2:00:  Marilyn Shea:  Honors Utopus Council

The members of the Honor’s Novus Utopus Council will describe the social contract developed for the governance of the citizens of Novus Utopus.  Economic, social, family, political, and ideal principles underlying our social structure will be presented.  Future citizens of our society are invited to attend, listen, and then to ask questions and contribute to the development of our social order.

Equipment – the ability to project images, mike, podium — the Landing would be nice since the whole council will be on stage at the same time.  But any room with a computer and projection capability.

Honor’s Novus Utopus Council;

Jameson Meyer Bloch

Odin Burgett

Caitlyn Rose Daigle

Thomas Joseph Gingras

Josh R. Hoffman

Noah Daniel Mayrose

Ashley Taylor Ray

Jamie Richardson

Maddy White

Venue 6:  Ricker Addition 217

9:00 – 9:30:   Rhonda Jamison – PSY 284

All humans have a need to belong.  In our PSY284 class we conducted a research project on things that may be related to belonging in college.  We collected data from UMF students about their academic and social experiences and their sense of belonging at UMF.  Implications for belonging (or not) will be discussed.

Students: Sydney Belanger, Grace Dwyer, Gabbi Fultz, Jennasea Hubbard, Klaus Jacobs, Grace Mahmood, Alex Manthorne, Abby Milner, Mikayla  Oliver, Tati Scott, Ella Sibole-Davis, Sophie Therrien

9:30 – 9:45:  Social Psychology RLE Lab – Karol Maybury:  Did You Get My Text? How text message emojis impact perceptions of appropriateness, likeability, social dominance, and creepiness

Abstract: Undergraduates (n=89) read a series of 6 text message exchanges between six different young adult dyads. Some of the text messages had emojis (e.g,. the smiley face, the drooly face, the cowboy emoji) and some were text-only (no emojis). The gender of the senders (male-male; male-female; female-male) and relationship status (single-and-seeking; established romantic partners) were also varied across conditions. Participants evaluated the popularity, likeability, dominance, and creepiness of the sender as a function of these independent variables. A number of significant findings emerged, suggesting that emoji use is a form of crucial non-verbal communication and a texter’s selection of  emojis is a significant indicator of how observers evaluate a message. 

Sydney Booth, Emma Bourget, Gabbi Fultz, Gabriel Glidden, Tom Gingras, Abby Hanson, Shaylynn Koban, & Tati Scott

9:45  – 11:50:   Karol Maybury:  The Senior Research Methods class (PSY 400)

Students: Nolan Batey; Iyana Berhanu; Brandi Farnum; Pidge Fournier; Peyton Hart; Alicia James-Aldus; Sherri Jewel; Valentina Levesque; Alex Manthorne; Meg McNeil; George Mills; Abby Pelletier; Cindi Rosso; Carol Upham; Justin Vigue; Rusty Young

Fifteen Psychology and Business Psychology students will present their independent research projects in oral presentations. Some of the students’ projects include how people respond to nostalgic music from their childhood; perceptions of a weeping college student; how chewing gum impacts memory performance; how people’s break up status is perceived, as a function of sexual orientation; correlations between personality traits and entertainment genre; correlations between the Big 5 personality traits and daytime activity level; personality and tattoo preferences; color and memory;  monetary spending anxiety as a function of childhood financial stress; how a funny video impacts mood; and how our pets’ influence our well-being. (Faculty sponsor: Karol Maybury)

1:10 – 3:00: – Michael Johnson – ENG 477, “Global Futurisms”

Global Futurism Panel

Sarah Sanford, “Examining Gender Roles in The Walking Dead”

This essay/presentation will examine gender roles in The Walking Dead and talk about how they use “old world” and Victorian era ways of thinking to try and create a modern society after the apocalypse to create a sense of ‘normalcy.’ Women were expected to participate in domestic roles with no bodily autonomy, and men were expected to protect their families at all costs. It also proposes the question: If normalcy is what they want to build up again, why are women objectified as a result- why is that the “sense of normalcy” these people want?

Bailey Weston, “Autonomy and Free Will in Cyberpunk 2077”

Cyberpunk is a bleak subgenre of science fiction that focuses specifically on the fears and anxieties we have of a future that is becoming more and more technologically advanced, and consumerist. It rose to popularity in a time where people were exploring many new avenues of creative expression– one developing medium for this expression was video games.  Through its deep connection to the genre, carefully constructed narrative, and innovative game design, Cyberpunk 2077 is a living, breathing world in which a player is challenged to reflect on how a technological future could redefine the meaning of autonomy and free will.

Emily Farrington, “Fallout and the Impact of Class on Survival in a Post-Nuclear Apocalyptic World”

In the post-nuclear apocalyptic world of the Fallout video game series, social class position and the rate of survival go hand in hand. The elite survived in private luxury while the poor and middle class citizens were forced to find refuge on their own or perish in the blast. Two hundred years after the bombs fell on America, what became of the survivors and their descendants?

Genevieve Feeney, “The Sudden Uproar of Interest in Post-Apocalyptic Fiction”

In recent years Octavia Butler’s novel first published thirty years ago in 1993, Parable of the Sower has made the best-selling list for the first time. Books this old do not tend to appear on the best-selling list almost thirty years post-publication, so why did Parable of the Sower? As everyone surely remembers, there was a historical event that first became apparent in March of 2020, the covid-19 pandemic.  Octavia Butler’s Parable of the Sower is a post-apocalyptic novel set in the early to mid-2020s starting just one year before the current year, 2023. This novel explores many themes of racial discrimination, financial hardships, and climate issues which are all prevalent in our current lives. However eerie some of the similarities may be Butler of course did not word for word predict the current socio-economic crisis of the 2020s, making this novel similar in themes to today, but not an exact vision of the future.

William Picard, “Perspectives on Human Evolution in My Hero Academia”

Humans have been evolving for millions of years but what if human genes suddenly evolved and mutated to give the human race different superhuman abilities? How would our society have to change to accommodate this? How would different human groups react to this group of mutated people? My Hero Academia is a manga/anime series that is set in the future and addresses human evolution.

Cassandra Smith, “Cleverman: Imagining a Future to Confront the Past”

Summary: Cleverman was made by Aboriginal creator Ryan Griffen in 2016, so his son could have a hero who represented him. But, Cleverman acts as more than just another hero show and good representation. It employs the cultural stories and histories of the Aboriginal Australians, to bring to life a new (and semi-fictional) indigenous group, to confront the past evils committed against them.

Anastasia Mertz, “The Intersections of Ethnicity, Gender and Sexuality in the Robots of Autonomous”

Description: What are the boundaries between ethnicity, gender, and sexuality? Are these boundaries applicable to non-human beings, like robots? Annalee Newitz’s 2017 novel Autonmous expands the discourse surrounding the ethnicity, gender, and sexuality of sentient robots in the genre of science fiction. Paladin, an enslaved military robot who changes her pronouns halfway through the novel, and Med, a free robot who researches medicine and passes for human, complicate these human constructs by offering alternative methods of how social identities can be formed.

Hudson Sirois, “After Yang and Blade Runner 2049: Commodities in Science Fiction”

Set in gloomy worlds that have become heavily reliant on human-like technological marvels, After Yang and Blade Runner 2049 both explore striking interpretations on what makes a robot humane and what a loss of humanity looks like in high-sci-fi modern consumerism as well as the unjust social dynamics that unfortunately develop. By comparing the two films, I will highlight the underlying themes of the dangers of a throw-away society and the influences on interactions between humans and their supposed “disposable” counterparts.

Gwyn Ash, “Who the Odds Favor Most: How social class discrimination in The Hunger Games shows a non-diverse future for people in minority groups and people in poverty”

Through the lens of global futurism and diverse futures, the 2008 – 2010 Hunger Games series quite literally outlines how a world with no diverse future would operate. By demonstrating an extreme classism towards and segregation of the 12 districts, The Hunger Games provides an example of how harmful classism and social injustice is, specifically to citizens in minority groups and impoverished citizens, furthermore providing an example of what an “anti-global future” could look like for the United States.

Venue 7:  Roberts 105

9:00 – 11:50 – Brad Dearden class: Geography and Environmental Planning

Lillie Clark
Maria Boicu
Zack Laflamme
Eve Fischer
Brian Pollard
Jack Kane
Simon Spear
Jack Olson
Owen Austin

Venue 8:  Roberts 023

1:10 – 3:00  – Student Presentations

Elliot Morelli-Wolfe

Elliot Morelli-Wolfe is a senior Anthropology major who recently started their own Etsy crochet business, Made With Moonbows, where they sell homemade stuffed animals. They have been crocheting for over a decade. For their Honors creative project, they partnered with the Farmington County Children’s Task Force, a charity that provides essential services such as childcare, education classes for parents, and care packages for new mothers. Elliot has created six hand-crocheted baby blankets that they will be gifting to the Children’s Task for redistribution to new mothers at the Franklin Memorial Hospital as part of their care package program.

Levi Steere:  The Anthropocene: The First Man-Made Geological Age And It’s Ramifications

This paper focuses on the implications of the Anthropocene, defined as a new era characterized as the first man-made geological age. We will explore the idea that humans exist as one of the driving environmental forces within our own right. Furthermore, we will ask whether or not the terms ‘natural’ or ‘wilderness’ can be used to define anything about the land on our planet anymore. We will look at several philosophers and the idea of eradicating ‘nature’ as an applicable term, some arguing for its usefulness, some arguing against. Timothy Morton, a philosopher and professor at Rice University states “The Anthropocene is not only a period of manmade disruption. It is also a moment of blinking self-awareness, in which the human species is becoming conscious of itself as a planetary force.” We will conclude by talking about the idea of wilderness, and how the possible absence of it in modern time, will – and does – affect the human race.

Maddie Legere:  “Procedural-Vitalism in Nature”

This paper deals with the philosophical problem of whether value in nature exists and whether this value, provided it does exist, is intrinsic or instrumental. Through pondering the question with the aid of many philosophical texts presenting various different viewpoints on the matter, we have concluded that intrinsic value can be found within nature, located within the organism’s vital plan for life. The central guiding text to support this position is Holmes RolstonIII’s Ecology,  , Ethics: The Broken Circle. The procedural-vitalist view found within this text and elaborated upon in this paper recognizes not only a natural world invested with intrinsic value but nature itself as a system, because the vital plan each organism is an expression of finds its grounding on the species and ecosystem levels. This view is contrasted with the utilitarianism of Bentham and Mill to demonstrate that our ethical relationship to the natural world, including our own species, cannot be grounded upon abstract principles but must recognize what is real and vital first and foremost.

Venue 9:  Emery Center

9:30-10:00am: Cara Furman-EDU 333: Education Student Showcase (Emery Lobby)

Students in Dr. Cara Furman’s EDU 333 write “how the world came to be books” as a group project. Students begin this project by going outside and taking a picture of a natural item. They research this item. They read a number of folktales that tell the origin stories of particular plants and animals. Then they write their own about their item. Through this project they work through group dynamics, learn how to teach literacy, practice their own writing and drawing so they can teach writing better, and create an original story based on a natural item in Farmington that they can share with children. They then reflect on how they could bring this project to work with children in developing a meaningful integrated curriculum.The project brings together nature based education, social studies, science, art, and literacy. For symposium day, my class will create a display to highlight the curriculum –choosing key artifacts, captioning them, and then displaying them in chronological order to tell the story of our work. This will mirror a common means of sharing curriculum in progressive b-third contexts. We will also share our products. Participants will be students from EDU 333 Fall semester and EDU 333 Spring Semester. While primarily a visual display, students from the Spring Semester and a few interested from the Fall will sign up to walk visitors through our “museum.”

12:00 – 1:00 – Trustee Talk, Cara Furman

1:00 – 2:00 – Stephen Grandchamp panel: ENG 430, “Experimental Narrative in Video Games”

“Empathy, Affect, Immersion, and Pedagogy: Rethinking the Experience of Video Games”

Description: Although video games are popularly perceived as a space for recreation, recent scholarship has started to articulate how the experience of gaming is emotionally and intellectually generative. This panel will build on this body of scholarship to analyze the multitude of ways by which video games elicit complex responses from gamers that can be harnessed in productive ways in the context of literary studies, music composition, and education. Examining a body of games including The Last of Us, Sekiro, Pyre, Skyrim, and Nine Hours, Nine Persons, Nine Doors, this panel will articulate the diversity and richness that characterize the gaming experience..

AJ Booth, Morgan Rogers, Zoe Norris, Kyle Thrace, Ashley Ward (moderated by Dr. Stephen Grandchamp)

The five presenters are all students at the University of Maine at Farmington who enrolled in the Fall 2022 section of English 430 (Experimental Narrative in Video Games).

2:00pm-3:30: Jesse Potts-ART 430: BA in Visual Arts Senior Exhibition Artist Talks (Flex Space Gallery

Emma Wallace:  Short Animations

I will be speaking on the process of making the animations as well as the subject matter of each  work(for example: childhood trauma or human consciousness). I will conclude with my   takeaways of the project and what I learned from the experience. I will explain what changed from my original hypothesis of the project (storyboards/plans), as well as what improved over the semester, etc.

Emma Wallace is a senior art student studying Visual Arts: new media and graphic design.  After graduating she plans to pursue video production and graphic design in Maine for a bit. Possibly furthering her education in the future studying animation, education, or philosophy. She’s passionate about bringing awareness to current social issues, mental health care, and the climate change crisis through art and design.  Access to a projector, television set, or place for the animation to play–whatever is typically most efficient during events like this.

Gavyn Moreshead:  Project Goris and Artwork

Originally from Dover-Foxcroft, I am a multi-media artist, creating narratives within comic books, video games, and paintings.  I focus on how we as a culture interact with pop culture, and how i can inspire others to start their own artistic journey.

Jett Jordan

Ana Rogers

Elly Bernard

4:00pm-5:00: A Reading by the Students in Advanced Fiction

The students in Lewis Robinson’s current semester of ENG310-Advanced Fiction Writing will each read a three-minute excerpt from a work-in-progress. Throughout the spring, the students will facilitate their own “Portrait of the Artist” workshop in which they describe a source of inspiration (visual art, music, film, etc) before presenting their fiction. For this Symposium event, each student will choose a projected image to accompanytheir reading. Participating students include: Julia Anise, Horisun Antunee, Gwyn Ash, Adelle Belanger, Katherine Berube, Autumn Koors Foltz, Leo Goddard, Bekah Knights, Sean Maher, Jacob Mouser, Annie Newman, Alexis Sack, Haley Sewell, Ashley Ward, and Venus Wright.

A Tribute to Michael D. Wilson

UMF’s Symposium was originally named in honor of Michael D. Wilson and sponsored by a gift from Michael and Susan Angelides. Michael D. Wilson graduated from UMF in 1976. He loved teaching, helping children grow and develop. He reached out to help people whenever he could. He also had a deep love for the beauty and serenity of the wilderness where he felt a deep sense of connection. Michael chose to live his life in a manner that was true to his beliefs. Many people remember him as a special person and a good friend. He died in a tragic accident in 1977, just as he was preparing to begin a new teaching position in a small town in Aroostook Count