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Chanjuan Chen

Sustainable fashion

Chanjuan Chen

A master's student in fashion design, Chen won two first-place awards for graduate students at the International Textile and Apparel Association’s 2013 conference for her dress design, "Origami Meets Eco-Fashion."

She researched sustainable clothing, natural fabric, origami techniques and transformable design — garments that can be worn in several ways — to prepare for the project with the help of Marian O’Rourke-Kaplan, associate professor of design.

Chen’s winning design, which received the Cotton Inc. Innovations in Cotton Design Award and the Fashion Supplies Innovation Design Award, was influenced by the origami principle of folding to prevent fabric waste.

She is preparing her final collection of sustainable, transformable clothing for her M.F.A. and plans to pursue a career in academia and further her research in fashion sustainability.

Marisha Frazier


Marisha Frazier

Frazier, a senior biology and chemistry student in the Honors College, is a McNair Scholar. The program prepares students who are first generation or underrepresented in graduate education for doctoral education, providing research mentors and individual research opportunities.

As a researcher on the team of James Kennedy, Regents Professor of biological sciences and director of the Elm Fork Education Center and Natural Heritage Museum, she is studying the health and water quality of the Trinity River through analysis of aquatic insect populations.

She also helps sample and test mosquitoes for West Nile virus in research Kennedy and his students conduct for the city of Denton. Their research results are reported to the state and federal government.

Frazier is interested in entomology and ecotoxicology and hopes to work for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Melissa Hatheway

Musician health

Melissa Hatheway

Hatheway, a senior music education major and clarinetist, won the Alice G. Brandfonbrener Young Investigator Award at the Performing Arts Medicine Association’s annual symposium in 2013 for her research on health issues of marching band musicians. She is the first undergraduate student from the United States and the first non-medical student to win the award.

Working with faculty mentor Kris Chesky, director of education and research for UNT’s Texas Center for Music and Medicine, she conducted an epidemiological survey of marching band members to investigate the impact of marching band on participants’ health and which members are most prone to experience pain.

She found that the music majors in the marching band experience more pain and injuries, due to longer hours of daily music-making, than the non-music majors. Her research was published in the Medical Problems of Performing Artists journal.

Hatheway, an Honors College student, plans to work as a teacher and continue her research in graduate school.

Katherine Lester

Medical geography

Katherine Lester

Lester, who earned her bachelor’s degree in geography in August 2013, is working on her master’s degree in applied geography at UNT with the support of a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship. As an undergraduate, she was selected as a finalist for the Harry S. Truman scholarship.

In her work with Joseph Oppong, professor of geography, she uses geographic information systems to determine areas underserved by mental health services, particularly for the homeless, and recommends solutions.

She is evaluating a proposed scattered supportive housing initiative to house 2,000 chronically homeless people in Houston. The model she is creating for locating new mental health facilities, which also can be applied in Dallas-Fort Worth and other urban areas, would help agencies use available funding for mental healthcare in Texas more efficiently.

Lester hopes to pursue a career in academia and applied policy research.

William Ou

Metal catalysts

William Ou

Ou, a student in UNT’s Texas Academy of Mathematics and Science, was named a regional semifinalist in the 2013 Siemens Competition in Math, Science and Technology, one of the most prestigious competitions for high school students. TAMS is a two year residential program at UNT that allows talented students to complete their freshman and sophomore years of college while receiving the equivalent of high school diplomas.

For his Siemens project, Ou investigated metal catalysts that can be used to convert organic compounds into hydrogen gas with Tom Cundari, Regents Professor of chemistry. Discovering more efficient ways to create hydrogen gas would be useful for crude oil processing and other industries.

Thomas Pemberton


Thomas Pemberton

Pemberton, who earned his bachelor’s degree in marketing in December 2013, was named the 2013 Collegiate Marketer of the Year by the DFW American Marketing Association for implementing a digital marketing strategy for Culinaire International.

The project used emerging technology and social media to increase brand awareness and brand affinity for Belo Mansion, a popular event venue that had not previously earned additional revenue from marketing initiatives.

In addition to taking classes, Pemberton ran his own business, Trending Global LLC, and worked as a full-time project manager at SPYCH, a Dallas-based marketing research and strategy consulting firm.

He credits his mentors in the Department of Marketing and LogisticsMichael Gade, principal lecturer, and Francisco Guzman, associate professor — for helping him succeed.

Heather Quinn

Nonprofit management

Heather Quinn

As a student in the UNT Honors College, Quinn earned an applied arts and sciences bachelor’s degree in August 2013, with concentrations in nonprofit management, public administration and sociology. Through the UNT service learning program, she was introduced to the creators of Serve Denton, a future multi-tenant nonprofit center in Denton.

For her Honors research, she helped design a central intake system for the organization, providing a process to share client information across multiple agencies. She now works as the center’s collaboration director. Her faculty mentor was Brenda McCoy, senior lecturer and chair of community and professional programs.

Quinn’s research was featured in the Honors College journal, The Eagle Feather. She also was a National Merit Scholar, earned a PEO STAR Scholarship and gave the keynote address at UNT’s 2013 Honors Day.

Rania Salman


Rania Salman

Salman, a doctoral student in teacher education and administration, was awarded a scholarship from Kappa Delta Pi, an international honor society in education, for her dissertation research, "The (Mis)Representation of the Middle East and Its People in Elementary School Social Studies Textbooks: A Postcolonial Analysis."

In a study of elementary and middle school history and geography textbooks, Salman found that when the Middle East was mentioned, themes of oil, conflict and terrorism dominated the content. Little attention was paid to the culture and history of the region or the intricacies of each country. Simplified information and over-generalizations were common in the presentation of historical events. Her faculty mentor is Karthigeyan Subramaniam, assistant professor of teacher education and administration.

A recruiter and program advisor for UNT’s Department of Educational Psychology, Salman earned her master’s at UNT in human development and family studies. She plans to finish her doctorate this year and go on to teach at the collegiate level.

Adriana Solis

Fashion merchandising

Adriana Solis

Solis, a senior merchandising major, is the founder and president of Method Seven Enterprises LLC, a 45-member student-run business that produces Method Seven Magazine. Merchandising and digital retailing lecturer Jessica Strubel is the group’s advisor.

Method Seven’s business plan won first place in the 2013 New Venture Creation Contest hosted by the UNT Murphy Center for Entrepreneurship, earning the organization a $20,000 grant. The biannual online magazine features the latest fashions from local designers, design students and retailers for the 18- to 25-year-old demographic.

Solis coordinates the work of students in merchandising, journalism, communication design, photography, finance, mathematics, marketing and accounting to plan and create each issue, aimed at helping retail clients better understand their customer base.

Josh Urbanovsky

Entrepreneurship and computer science

Josh Urbanovsky

Urbanovsky, a senior majoring in computer science and entrepreneurship, was recognized as one of the top business students in the state by the Texas Business Hall of Fame in November, receiving a $10,000 scholarship.

His faculty mentors include Whitney Peake, assistant professor of management, and Armin Mikler, professor of computer science and engineering and director of the Center for Computational Epidemiology and Response Analysis.

Urbanovsky helped Mikler and a team of graduate students develop the bio-emergency assessment software RE-PLAN, and also built a new version of the center’s simulator, demonstrating how a disease or epidemic might spread over time.

He plans to pursue a doctoral degree in computer science at UNT and start his own high-tech company.

Jenny Wakefield

Learning technologies

Jenny Wakefield

Wakefield, a learning technologies doctoral student and a mentor for UNT’s accelerated online program, won a fellowship in 2013 from Alpha Chi, a national college honor society.

Her research covers an array of topics in formal learning, such as the use of social media, games, simulations, virtual worlds and transmedia. She has written six book chapters and published two articles, with a third due to be published in the International Journal of Social Media and Interactive Learning Environment about her research on the use of Facebook and Twitter as a teaching tool.

For her dissertation, she is researching the use of alternative reality games and transmedia storytelling in formal higher education learning with Scott Warren, associate professor of learning technologies.

She earned a bachelor’s in applied arts and sciences with a major in applied technology and performance improvement, and a master’s in computer education and cognitive systems, both from UNT.

Helen Xiong

Materials engineering

Helen Xiong

As a TAMS student, Xiong was named a Barry Goldwater Scholar in 2013 for her work with Witold Brostow, Regents Professor of materials science and engineering and member of the Renewable Bioproducts research cluster at UNT.

The Goldwater program is considered to be among the country’s most prestigious scholarships for students planning careers in math, science and engineering.

Xiong’s work helped refine the equation for defining polymer brittleness and helped describe the strengthening properties of clay in industrial machinery and the study of friction in materials science.

During her time at UNT, Xiong also was named a regional finalist in the 2011 Siemens Competition for work with carbon nanotubes and organic solar cells. She graduated from TAMS in spring 2013 and is completing her bachelor’s degree at Stanford University.


President's Note

Advancing research and economic development

News Briefs

Fulbright awards, medical research, student projects

Faculty Books

Race and the Cold War, science and politics, systemic thinking

Student Researchers

Sustainable fashion, ecotoxicology, musician health,
marketing, merchandising, nonprofit management

Faculty Researchers

Engineering, journalism, composition, psychology of physical activity, catalysts, behavior analysis, information aesthetics

End Note

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