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14 USD Scholars Selected for U. Discover Summer Research

Fourteen students are participating in the University of South Dakota’s U. Discover Scholars summer research program.

The highly selective program is a joint project of the Council for Undergraduate Research and Creative Scholarship (CURCS) and the Center for Academic and Global Engagement that's designed to give undergraduate students experience conducting a scholarly research project under the guidance of a faculty mentor. Students applied to participate in the program during the early spring semester and went through a rigorous application review and interview process before being selected as a U. Discover Scholar. As part of the program, the scholars meet bi-weekly as a group for lunch hour presentations on various topics related to conducting research and creative scholarship.

Summer 2015 U. Discover Scholars and their faculty sponsors include:

  • Rebecca Froelich, a fine arts major from Vermillion, South Dakota, and faculty mentor Shane Semmler;
  • Johnathan Susemihl, an anthropology major from Sioux Falls, South Dakota, and faculty mentor Samuel Herley;
  • Thayme Watson, a history and political science major from Brookings, South Dakota, and faculty mentor Donald Dahlin;
  • Austin Fritza, a chemistry major from South Sioux City, Nebraska, and faculty mentor Grigoriy Sereda;
  • Lauren Cass, a chemistry major from Medina, Minnesota, and faculty mentor Evelyn Schlenker;
  • Mitchell Wagner, a marketing major from Millbank, South Dakota, and faculty mentor Jing Liu;
  • Kayla Wyffels, a marketing major from Marshall, Minnesota, and faculty mentor William Jones;
  • Thorn Dramstad, a chemistry major from Huron, South Dakota, and faculty mentor Ranjit Koodali;
  • Jose Martin Munoz, a political science and international studies major from Mitchell, South Dakota, and faculty mentor Eric Jepsen;
  • Emily Roberson, a sustainability and anthropology major from Tyndall, South Dakota, and faculty mentor Meghann Jarchow;
  • Rachel Johannsen, a biology major from Milbank, South Dakota, and faculty mentor Jacob Kerby;
  • Shelby Huber, a contemporary media & journalism major from Freeman, South Dakota, and faculty mentor Teddi Joyce;
  • Chelsea Campbell, an English major from Sioux Falls, South Dakota, and faculty member Darlene Farabee.

Among the project topics: "Shakespeare in the 19th Century South Dakota"; "Peru and Colombia: Civil-Military Relations in War and Post-War Contexts (1990-2012)"; and "Brand Names vs. Brand Mascots: Studying Gender Responses in Brand Extensions."


USD’s Center for Academic & Global Engagement (CAGE) gives students the chance to gain real-world experience and knowledge and connect with their community and the larger world. CAGE offers academically based opportunities that create skills employers and graduate schools seek. Among them: off-campus service-learning programs, studying abroad, student exchange, undergraduate research and nationally competitive awards and fellowships. CAGE also provides support to international students with cultural and academic adjustments as well as immigration concerns.


Founded in 1862 and the first university in the Dakotas, the University of South Dakota is the only public liberal arts university in the state, with 202 undergraduate and 84 graduate programs in the College of Arts & Sciences, School of Education, Knudson School of Law, Sanford School of Medicine, School of Health Sciences, Beacom School of Business and College of Fine Arts. With an enrollment of nearly 10,000 students and more than 400 faculty, USD has a 16:1 student/faculty ratio, and it ranks among the best in academics and affordability. USD’s 18 athletic programs compete at the NCAA Division I level.

This material is available in an alternate format upon request. Please contact University Relations at 605-677-5759. If you are a person with a disability and need a special accommodation to fully participate in any university activity or event, please contact Disability Services at 605-677-6389 as soon as possible, but no later than 48 hours before the event, so that appropriate arrangements may be made.


Hanna DeLange
USD News