The 2020 awardees will work on research projects in history, psychology, conservation and ecology, communication sciences, audiology, basic biomedical sciences, chemistry and archival research. Their hands-on research experience will be supplemented by a series of professional development seminars that cover a variety of topics relevant to academic and research careers.

Including this year’s 11 scholars, 163 students have participated in UDiscover since the program's inception in 2006. Undergraduate research experiences have proven to have a strong positive impact on students and their post-graduation paths, with many finding the experience and skills gained invaluable.

Applying for UDiscover is open to USD full-time undergraduate students in any discipline. Each cohort of UDicover scholars presents their projects at the annual USD symposium, IdeaFest, the following spring. 

The 2020 UDiscover Scholars and Faculty Sponsors

  • Michaela Ahrenholtz, a neuroscience major from Denison, Iowa, will work with Kurt Hackemer, Ph.D.
  • Ashmita Ghosh, a psychology major from Gurugram India, will work with Sara Lowmaster, Ph.D.
  • Peyton Keller, a medical biology major from Byron, Illinois, will work with Jake Kerby, Ph.D.
  • Katie Brust, a biology and studio art major from Northfield, Minnesota, will work with Andrea Liebl, Ph.D.
  • Morgan Eikanger, a medical biology and English major from New Ulm, Minnesota, will work with Khosrow Rezvani, Ph.D.
  • Vanessa Weigel, a biology major from Scandia, Minnesota, will work with Jake Kerby, Ph.D.
  • Hailey Lammers, a communication sciences & disorders major from Norfolk, Nebraska, will work with Lindsey Jorgensen, Ph.D.
  • Madeleine Nelson, a medical biology major from Sioux Falls, South Dakota, will work with Doug Martin, Ph.D.
  • Luke Lewandowski, a chemistry major from Fort Dodge, Iowa, will work with Andrew Sykes, Ph.D.
  • Hanna Browder, a communication sciences & disorders major from Blythe, California, will work with Kyle Brouwer, Ph.D.
  • Jaren Voss, a philosophy major from Box Elder, South Dakota, will work with Scott Breuninger, Ph.D.

For more information about the UDiscover Scholars program email the Gallagher Center at

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