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University Relations

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May 11, 2006
Contact: Alison Watkins, Graduate School and International Programs, (785) 864-4963.

KU dissertations on Peruvian poetry, anti-cancer products win prizes

LAWRENCE — Winners of the Haglund and Argersinger prizes for outstanding dissertations at the University of Kansas will be honored during the Doctoral Hooding Ceremony at 4 p.m. Saturday, May 20, at the Lied Center.

Leslie Bayers in Spanish and Portuguese won the $1,000 Dorothy Haglund (pronounced HAYG-lund) Prize for her dissertation, “Voice, Visuality, and Performance: Alternative Expression in Contemporary Peruvian Poetry.” She is the daughter of Mary and Frank Bayers, formerly of Milford, Conn. Her parents currently reside in Whitehouse Station, N.J.

Brandon Turunen in medicinal chemistry won the $1,250 Marnie and Bill Argersinger Award for his dissertation, “Anticancer Natural Products: Synthesis and Enabling Methodologies.” He is the son of Linda and Gary Wadaga and Roger Turunen, all of Baraga, Mich.

“The Haglund and Argersinger dissertation prizes honor Dorothy Haglund’s and Dean William Argersinger’s efforts to improve graduate education, and we celebrate the creation of new knowledge and research by recognizing these outstanding graduate students and their scholarly works,” said Diana Carlin, dean of the Graduate School and International Programs.

Bayers has accepted a position as an assistant professor of Latin American languages and literatures at St. Mary’s College of Maryland in St. Mary's City. Her master’s and bachelor’s degrees are from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Bayers is a graduate of Joseph A. Foran High School in Milford.

Turunen is conducting post-doctoral research in chemistry at Stanford University in the laboratory of Professor Barry M. Trost. Turunen earned a bachelor’s degree at Michigan State University in East Lansing and his master’s degree at KU. Turunen is a graduate of Baraga High School.

The Haglund Prize for an outstanding doctoral dissertation was established in 1979 through the generosity of former vice chancellor and dean William J. Argersinger Jr., his wife, Marnie, and their friends, in cooperation with KU Endowment. The prize was established to honor the late Dorothy Haglund, who served KU graduate students from 1940 until her retirement in 1983. In 1992, Argersinger and his wife established a fund to provide an additional dissertation prize. Before a dissertation may be nominated into the competition for either the Haglund or Argersinger prizes, doctoral candidates must pass their dissertation defense with honors.

Ten additional doctoral candidates whose dissertations were nominated for the awards will be recognized at the hooding ceremony. They are listed by their hometown, major, dissertation title and when available, their previous degrees, high schools and parent names.

From Lawrence
Barry Ray Cobb, business, “Inference and Decision Making in Hybrid Probalistic Graphical Models.” He has a bachelor’s degree from KU and is a graduate of Wichita High School North.

Ray Pence, American studies, “First and Foremost a Scientist? Lee Meyerson and Changing Definitions of Disability, 1948-1988.” Pence has a master’s degree from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio, and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Wyoming.

Jonathan Springer Perkins, Slavic languages and literatures, “Redefining the Russian Fantastic Tale (1825-1842): An Analysis of Mikhail Zagoskin’s An Evening on the Khopyor.” He has a master’s degree from KU and a bachelor’s degree from Middlebury College in Vermont.

Madalina Daniela Teodorescu, French and Italian, “Spectral Vision and Skeletal Structure in A la recherche du temps perdu.” Teodorescu has master’s and bachelor’s degrees from KU. She is a graduate of Booker T. Washington High School in Tulsa, Okla.

Yieyie Yang, molecular biosciences, “Mechanisms of Rac in C. elegans Axon Pathfinding.” She has master’s and bachelor’s degrees from KU.

From Overland Park (ZIP 66215)
Alfred J. Casillan, medical student and doctoral student in molecular and integrative physiology, “Microvascular Acclimatization to Systemic Hypoxia.” He has a bachelor’s degree from KU and is a graduate of Rockhurst High School in Kansas City, Mo.

From Excelsior Springs
Lisa Cox Hall, sociology, “The Significance of Age in Breast Cancer Experience.” She has a master’s degree from KU and is the daughter of Richard Cox.

From Washington
Lenin Omar Torres-Carvajal, ecology and evolutionary biology, “Phylogenetic Systematics of South American Lizards of the Genus Stenocercus (Squamata: Iguania).” He has master’s and bachelor’s degrees from KU.

From Lanzhou, Gansu Province
Guangyu Lin, chemical and petroleum engineering, “Experimental and Modeling Investigations on the Effects of Electrode Flooding on the Performance of PEM Fuel Cells.” He has a master’s degree from KU.

From Kanagawa
Eri Haneishi, music education, “The Effects of a Music Therapy Voice Protocol on Selected Perceptual and Acoustic Parameters of the Speaking Voice and the Psychological States of Individuals with Parkinson’s Disease.” She has a master’s degree from KU.


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