Bethany students participate in Scholars Showcase

Two Bethany Lutheran College students will participate in the annual Minnesota Private College Scholars Showcase event in St. Paul, Minnesota, on Thursday, March 10, 2016. The event features students from fifteen private colleges and universities, and it promotes the important role that undergraduate research plays in students’ educational and professional development. Each institution determines the two undergraduate research projects that will be included. All academic disciplines are welcome; research efforts that have a clear link to policy or society are encouraged. Bethany’s representatives are Danielle Marzinske and Timothy Wildauer.

Marzinske worked with Bethany faculty member Dr. Jennifer Wosmek (Psychology). Her research and paper carried the title Examining the Link Between Religiosity and Altruism. Few studies have included observational measures of participants’ altruistic behavior. In Marzinske’s study, participants completed questionnaires, which evaluated their degree of religiosity, spirituality, and altruism. In addition to this self-reported measure, each participant had the opportunity to engage in “helping behavior.”

Wildauer’s research came about as a result of a Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) program at the University of Georgia in Athens. Wildauer was one of fifteen students selected for the program among 400 that applied from throughout the nation. He worked with Dr. John Drake from the Epidemiology Department at Georgia. Wildauer’s work is titled Visualizing the Effect of Interventions during the 2014-2015 West Africa Ebola Outbreak.

Wildauer noted, “This project was very math-intensive, so when I returned to Bethany last fall, I continued my work on the project with Dr. Ashley Rand (Mathematics, Bethany Lutheran College). Under her guidance, I’ve developed two more methods to solve the problem, and a third one is almost completed. I will be presenting these three methods as my senior thesis in late April. When I finish everything for my thesis, I will send a thorough review to Dr. Drake with the expectation our findings will be published.