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Honors program encourages undergraduate research

August 02, 2017 1:30 PM
Mary Sparacello Tara Nicole Brown
Taylor Selembo, BSPH candidate 2018

Tulane University senior Taylor Selembo, a bachelor of science in public health candidate, is working with the Healthy Corner Store Collaborative (HCSC), which is funded by the city and organized through Propeller, Top Box Foods, and Liberty's Kitchen. The HCSC works with corner store operators to increase the amount and quality of fresh, healthy food in the stores while also working to maximize business sustainability. 

Selembo is one of 21 undergraduates awarded summer research grants through the Newcomb-Tulane Honors Program to conduct studies alongside faculty members. 

"This summer I've continued working with them, and through the Honors Program I was able to partake in supplemental research to support the HCSC, with my faculty mentor Jylana Sheats," says Selmbo. Their supplemental research included a Nutrition Environment Measures Survey (NEMS) that allowed them to assess the community nutrition environments by surveying the stores for various nutrition markers. The research also included the implementation of a modified version of the Stanford Healthy Neighborhood Discovery Tool that surveys the built environment, allowing the researchers to see facilitators and barriers to healthy living. All of this supplemental research is to be continued throughout the HCSC pilot program, and has been extremely beneficial in how to identify and address community needs.

I am grateful that the honors grant enabled me to stay in New Orleans this summer to complete this work!

Taylor Selembo, BSPH 2018

Undergraduates in a variety of majors and fields conducted research.

Tulane University rising junior Hannah Kent is investigating the links between ancient Greek tragedy and modern combat veterans.

“The question is whether human experience is universal,” she said. “We live in a very different society from ancient Greece … But I think the classics do have a role in our lives. We can use these ancient texts to address stigmatized topics.”

Kent, majoring in classical studies in the School of Liberal Arts, is collaborating on a project conceived by Michael Brumbaugh, assistant professor of classical studies, to evaluate the pre-existing scholarship about modern and ancient war veterans in the context of Tulane and in New Orleans.

These opportunities were made possible by philanthropic support from generous Tulane donors, including Grace and F. Chapman Taylor, a 1982 Tulane graduate; Harold E. Glass, parent of Jesse Glass, a 2008 Tulane graduate; and Chris Austin, a 1980 graduate.

Other students awarded grants include:

  • Olivia Barnard
  • Emma Bortz
  • Claire Davis
  • Charles Ellsworth
  • Alejandra Gonzalez Vargas
  • Shahmeer Hashmat
  • Jiayu Huang
  • Rachel Israilivich
  • ​ Jamin Kidd
  • Dylan Koester
  • Cameron Leahy
  • Amanda Lee
  • Rebecca Levy
  • Riley Loria
  • Andrew Markel
  • Nathan Nguyen
  • Claire Sentilles
  • Izzat Shbeeb
  • Weiyao Wang