The University of Minnesota, Morris Undergraduate Research Symposium offers undergraduates the opportunity to present their research, creative work, or art performances to their peers, faculty, and the campus community. For more information, see the Undergraduate Research Symposium website. The 2022 Undergraduate Research Symposium was held on April 21-22, 2022.
Type 2 diabetes is a growing health concern worldwide characterized by high blood sugar. Anti-diabetic therapy aims at correcting this sugar imbalance by inhibiting the enzyme α-glucosidase which is responsible for cleaving carbohydrates and starch into glucose. Benzophenone glycosides are a class of biomolecules with α-glucosidase inhibitory properties that have garnered some attention. It can be found and isolated from some traditional medicinal plants which was not done for this project. Once isolated, new derivatives can be synthesized by manipulating protecting groups of the starting material to get the benzophenone. The benzophenone can then undergo glycosylation with the protected sugar to get the penultimate benzophenone glycoside. This process can be monitored using TLC plates and the final product characterized using NMR and TLC. In lab glucose and galactose were used as the starting material and were reacted with the 2-hydroxybenzophenone and 2-hydroxy-4 methoxybenzophenone. TLC plates were then used to identify the fraction that contained both the spots for the sugar and benzophenone. This fraction could then be used in the NMR to confirm the presence of the coupling peaks in the C13 NMR as well as the correct ratio of peaks belonging to the sugar and benzophenone to confirm the sugar and benzophenone were successfully coupled.
Interpreting Settler Infrastructure in Stevens County, Minnesota: Gager's Station and the Post Dakota-US War of 1862 Frontier
Mitchell Kane Hancock
Gager's Station is a little known, but formative settler infrastructure project from the 1860s in west-central Minnesota. Gager's Station was situated along both an important military supply route, and lands of significant importance to the Indigenous people of the area. Gager's Station bears several similarities to the scout camps and civilian defense forts in the broader Fort Wadsworth network that provided civilian defense to new homesteaders following the Dakota-US War of 1862. Fort Wadsworth served as another goal post in western expansion of the United States. Further, the networks of forts that supported it appeased the anxious settlers who feared Dakota uprising levels of reprisal from people who no longer lived in their settlements. The following is a synthesis of the historical and archaeological record of Fort Wadsworth network and how Gager's Station fits into the broader goals of the colonial project in the upper Midwest.
This presentation examines gendered differences in how Minnesotan farmers attempted to maintain control over their lives during the 1980s farm crisis. Although left-wing activism, rightwing activism, religion, and suicide may seem like disparate responses, they all came from the same impulse to maintain control. These responses were highly influenced by community values, particularly the ideas that hard work would be rewarded and men should not show their emotions. Religion offered a sense of community and solace to farmers; activism – although a relatively rare response – offered solutions; and suicide offered an escape. Women found more comfort in religion than men, and men successfully attempted suicide at much higher rates than women.
Perceptions of the environment are based on individuals’ experiences and values. This work, in the subfield of environmental political theory, seeks to understand why people hold the environmental beliefs that they do. Through a literature review, the beliefs of two hypothetical citizens of the country of Georgia were deduced based on the economic, political, and environmental history of Georgia. I hypothesized the likely values and experiences of an Azeri pharmacist and Georgian casino dealer, concluding that the power structure of Georgia would privilege the Georgian casino dealer. The Azeri pharmacist is likely of a lower socioeconomic status, is more tied to the land and environment, and is thus more concerned for the environment. The Georgian casino dealer is of a middle socioeconomic status and concerned with economic growth, perhaps at the expense of the environment. This latter opinion is also that of Georgia as a nation; the country is more occupied with economic than environmental concerns. This analysis provides a theoretical framework to understand tangible problems. For example, it is easier to argue for sustainable policies with knowledge of the values and beliefs of one’s audience.
The Effects of Expectation Violations in the Workplace: Why Do Fresh Graduates and New Employees Leave?
For years, recent graduates and new employees have been faced with a work environment that is different from their expectations when they first choose a job or enter the workforce. The factors that new employees perceive as violating their expectations in the workplace may cause employees to lose interest in their careers, decrease job satisfaction, lose the momentum of completing work, and even wish to leave their jobs. This study was conducted through a questionnaire and quantitative analysis, applying expectancy violations theory (EVT) to recent graduates and new employers who are preparing or just starting their careers. Both the participants’ satisfaction levels with various components of their expectations and the impact of these on the likelihood of announcing their decision to leave their jobs are investigated in the questionnaire. Although there are some limitations to the questionnaire distribution, the data analyzed from the survey results indicate that people’s expectations of various factors in the workplace do influence their decision to terminate their careers. Salary and compensation and opportunities for promotions in the workplace ranked first and second, respectively. At the same time, the article offers some insights for new job seekers or recent graduates who are about to become new job seekers. The goal is to increase the recognition and awareness of expectation violation, as well as its relationship to job satisfaction and performance, ultimately helping fresh graduates and new hires reduce the negative impact of expectation violation.