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In late April, nearly 40 students from the Class of 2023 presented their research for Distinction in the Field of Study as the culmination of their academic research projects.

Members of the Class of 2023 presented to classmates, faculty, staff and more during Emmanuel’s annual Candidates for Distinction in the Field Presentation Day on Thursday, April 27th.

Distinction in the Field of Study is an honor for Emmanuel students. The opportunity to conduct and present a significant research project is only granted to senior students who hold a 3.5 grade point average or higher in their major course of study. It is representative of the candidates' dedication to their field and commitment to academic excellence.

This year's projects spanned a wide range of academic areas, including history, marketing, criminology, political science, biology, neuroscience, philosophy and more.

Distinction in the Field of Study Recipients


Hannah Bigos, Marketing
“Is the portrayal of professional basketball players different for female and male athletes? An examination of ESPN’s social media posts during the WNBA & NBA 2022 Finals”
Advisor: Jing Yang, Ph.D.
Alyssa Santangeli, Management
“Beyond the Stats; How College Programs Can Help Athletes Fight Mental Health Stigmas”
Advisors: Kelly Basile, Ph.D.; Daniel Holbrook, MBA


Leah Batarseh, Political Science (Class of 2024)
“The Progress of Women’s Rights in the Middle East: Empowering Women and Developing Society”
Advisors: Lenore Martin. Ph.D.; Laurie Johnston, Ph.D.
Thalia Capraro, Criminology & Criminal Justice
“Nonconsensual Pornography: Investigating Risk Factors and Policy Implications”
Advisors: Sultan Altikriti, Ph.D.; Janese Free, Ph.D.
Gabriella E. Dipietro, International Studies
“Economic Costs of Intimate Partner Violence in Colombia, Bangladesh, and Romania: The Impact of Female Subordination”
Advisors: Lenore Martin, Ph.D.; Florencia Gabriele, Ph.D.
Isabella Drago, Communication & Media Studies
“Media-Convergent Movie Promotion: Theatrical versus Streaming Blockbusters”
Advisor: Caitlin Lawson, Ph.D.
Isabella Drago, Political Science
“From Camila Cabello to Charli D’Amelio: Popular Gen-Z Celebrities and Influencers as Agents of Political Socialization”
Advisors: Marie Natoli, Ph.D., J.D.; Adam Silver, Ph.D.
Jared Riley Iseler, History
“’Deliver Us from the Tyrant’s Chain’: Resistance, Protest, and Change by the Female Operatives of Lowell”
Advisor: William Leonard, Ph.D.
Catherine Kelleher, International Studies
“A Comparative Analysis of Turkey, Jordan and Lebanon’s Response to the Syrian Refugee Crisis”
Advisors: Lenore Martin. Ph.D.; Laurie Johnston, Ph.D.
Nicole Kendall, Criminology & Criminal Justice
“Police Officers’ Responses and Perceptions of Intimate Partner Violence Calls”
Advisors: Janese Free, Ph.D.; Jeffrey Lopes, DLP
Mariana Kordorsky, Political Science
“The Intersection of Sports and Geopolitics: The Olympics as a Tool of Political Soft Power”
Advisors: Lenore Martin, Ph.D.; Adam Silver, Ph.D.
Kathryn Grace Leland, Sociology
“Alternative Recovery Support Services for Students: Spreading Awareness & Changing Perceptions of Recovery High Schools”
Advisor: Ivy Krull, Ph.D.
Ayden MacLeod, History
“Living Intentionally, Living Elsewhere: The Story of Communal Living in American History”
Advisor: William Leonard, Ph.D.
Alyson Grace Maye, International Studies
“Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting in Kenya and Egypt: Overview, Justifications, and the Path to Elimination”
Advisors: Lenore Martin, Ph.D.; Violetta Ravagnoli, Ph.D.
Ingrid O’Dell, Philosophy
“Humiliation as Fodder for Societal Oppression”
Advisor: Michelle Maiese, Ph.D.
Sarah Revis, Communication & Media Studies
“Classrooms, Rhetoric, and Twitter: The Impact of Anti-Critical Race Theory Discourse and Disinformation”
Advisor: Caitlin Lawson, Ph.D.
Erin Rosa, Criminology & Criminal Justice
“The Relationships among Educational Attainment, Incarceration, and Recidivism”
Advisors: Jeffrey Lopes, DLP; Sultan Altikriti, Ph.D.
Jonathan Torres-Lopez, History
“Rhymes and Crimes: Hip-Hop’s Delegitimization and Rise to Social Power in Contemporary Urban America”
Advisor: William Leonard, Ph.D.
Brooke Van Ackooy, International Studies
“Brazil’s Destructive Environmental Policy and its Effects on Indigenous Peoples: Can Indigenous Knowledge Help?”
Advisors: Lenore Martin, Ph.D.; Petros Vamvakas, Ph.D.


James Boksanski, Biology
“Bisphenol A is the toxic ex that just won’t go away, even though we know it’s bad for us: Finding Plastic Alternatives”
Advisor: Michelle Watt, Ph.D.
Madeline Bradley, Psychology
“’A Light in the Whole Darkness of Zoom’: College Students’ Experiences in an Online Mind­fulness-Based Stress Reduction Intervention During COVID-19”
Advisor: Helen MacDonald, Ph.D.
Bailey Carew, Psychology
“Mechanisms of Body Image: How Positive Body Talk Relates to Body Dissatisfaction”
Advisor: Linda Lin, Ph.D.
Juliana Cimino, Mathematics (*Class of 2024)
“Predicting Outcomes of WNBA Games: Analyzing What Determines Which Team Comes Out on Top”
Advisor: Rebecca Hehn, M.A.
Emma DiPietro, Biology
“Using genome editing to correct the SBDS gene mutation to treat Shwachman-Diamond Syndrome” Advisors: Michael Peters, Ph.D.; Daniel Bauer, Ph.D., Hematology/Oncology, Boston Children’s Hospital
Colleen Donahoe, Neuroscience
“Impact of translational early life stressors on behavior and brain development in CD-1 mice”
Advisor: Melanie Leussis, Ph.D.
James Donahue, Neuroscience
“Neural Circuits and Behaviors for Visceral Pain in A Mouse Model of Autism Spectrum Disorder”
Advisor: Melanie Leussis, Ph.D.
Jaqueline Ferreira, Biology
“Cutting the Thread of Life: Exploring EcoRI Kinetics and Single Molecule Cleavage Mechanisms”
Advisor: Allen Price, Ph.D.
Daniel Impellizzeri, Psychology
“Coping changes and well-being during COVID-19 among older populations”
Advisor: Lauren Mitchell, Ph.D.
Morgan Knauer, Chemistry
“Synthesizing tripodal ligands for reactive sulfur species detection”
Advisor: Nathanael Lau, Ph.D.
Patrick Mannion, Chemistry
“Optimizing the synthesis of a tris(2-pyridylmethyl)amine based ligand for trapping reactive sulfur species”
Advisor: Nathanael Lau, Ph.D.
Justin Mejía, Biology
“Un-worming the secret of aging: Exploring SKN-1-mediated longevity in C. elegans”
Advisor: Natalie Karagodsky, Ph.D.
Isabella Miller, Neuroscience
“The effect of the microbiome on neuroimmune activity in Parkinson’s Disease genetic mouse model”
Advisor: Melanie Leussis, Ph.D.
Van Nguyen, Biology
“Jumping to Conclusions: Visualizing Jumping in EcoRI’s Mechanism of Search”
Advisor: Allen Price, Ph.D.
Queenie Cheung, Biology
“Harnessing Bacteriophage to Target Multidrug Resistant Bacteria”
Advisors: Padraig Deighan, Ph.D.; Veniamin Slavitskiy, Ph.D.;
Mackenzie Roche, Biology
“Controlling Cellular Traffic: Merging Hrp1 and RNA leads to early transcription exit”
Advisor: Jason Kuehner, Ph.D.
Vivian Tran, Biology
“It’s Not Just Any Flow, It’s Nanoflow: A Flow Cytometry Methods Study”
Advisor: John Tigges, BIDMC Flow Cytometry Science Center
Samuel Zdon, Neuroscience
“Neuroanatomical characterization of kisspeptin neurons in the mouse bed nucleus of the stria terminalis (BNST)”
Advisor: Melanie Leussis, Ph.D.

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Class of 2023 Earns Distinction