Graduate Student Excellence-in-Research Award

Initiated in 1999, the Graduate Student Excellence-in-Research Awards recognize the quality and significance of graduate student scholarship at the University of Georgia. These awards may be given in five areas: Fine Arts, Humanities and Letters, Life Sciences, Mathematical and Physical Sciences, and  Applied Studies.

2016 Recipients

Michael Baer, a recent doctoral graduate in management, studies the concepts of trust and fairness in the workplace. His dissertation examines the motives that drive managers to engage in trusting behaviors toward their employees. Some of his other work demonstrates the benefits and burdens of being trusted by one’s supervisor. On the plus side, being trusted can fill an employee with pride, which may enhance their work performance. On the negative side, being trusted brings more workload and more worries about one’s reputation, which can exhaust employees. Baer’s work reveals the importance of supporting the “stars” in a unit with resources that can help them manage their stress levels. He is now an assistant professor of management in Arizona State University’s W.P. Carey School of Business.

Lindsey Harding, a recent doctoral graduate in English, distinguished herself by producing a sophisticated dissertation that investigated multi-modal forms of writing, including photography and digital archives. A hybrid of creative non-fiction and faux documentary, personal family history and rhetorical criticism, photography theory and homemade imaging, Harding’s dissertation explores the relationship between photography and motherhood and, more specifically, the cultural construction of motherhood through digital photographs. A chapter of her dissertation, titled “Motherhood Reimag(in)ed: A Study of Domestic Photography in the Digital Age,” is forthcoming in Photographies. Harding is the lead web developer for the literary journal Mandala, a publication of the Institute for African American Studies. She currently serves as the assistant director of the Franklin College Writing Intensive Program and as the faculty advisor and editor for The Classic, the Writing Intensive Program’s journal of undergraduate writing and research.

Horry Parker, a recent doctoral graduate in geology, has made several outstanding contributions in the fields of geology and geophysics. He applied geophysical methods, including seismology and magnetics, to study the structure and composition of the southern Appalachians and Atlantic Coastal Plain. The results provide new insight into tectonic processes associated with Appalachian mountain building and the relationship between geologic structure and the present topography of the Blue Ridge Mountains. This project required extensive fieldwork, including the deployment of an 85-station network of broadband seismometers across the southern Appalachians and adjacent coastal plain. Parker is currently applying seismic methods for imaging the crust-mantle boundary, or Moho, to investigate the formation of the South Georgia rift basin.

Asher Rosinger, a recent doctoral graduate in anthropology, is recognized for his work on human water consumption and nutrition. During one year of fieldwork in lowland Bolivia, Rosinger combined ethnographic methods with objective biomarkers of nutrition and disease to test how diet and local knowledge protect health. By considering both foods and drinks, he investigated how people meet their water needs in an environment with little to no access to potable water throughout the majority of the year. His research has broader implications within anthropology for advancing our understanding of human adaptations to heat as well as developing a holistic understanding of human water needs. Rosinger is now working as an Epidemic Intelligence Service Officer with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Chi Zhang, a recent doctoral graduate in Bioinformatics, studies the mechanisms of cancer initiation, progression, metastasis and post-metastasis development using large-scale data analyses of cancer tissue samples and computer modeling. Much of his research focuses on cancer micro-environment alterations and the Warburg’s theory, which states that the primary cause of cancer is the replacement of oxygen in normal body cells by a fermentation of sugar. Zhang uses new genomic and transcriptomics data to explore this theory more completely by examining the fundamental metabolic changes that appear to be one of the primary causes of cancer in multiple tissues. His work could lead to new approaches to cancer prevention and treatment. Zhang is currently working as a postdoctoral associate in the department of biochemistry and molecular biology.

Past Recipients