University of Oregon

UO Libraries' 2013 Undergraduate Research Award Winners Named

Award winners come from all disciplines in the library's Undergraduate Research Awards competition.

Six University of Oregon students who authored outstanding research papers and theses during the 2013 calendar year have been named winners in the university's Undergraduate Research Awards competition sponsored by the University of Oregon Libraries.

The annual competitive program honors UO students who produce exceptional original research and scholarship using resources available through the UO Libraries.

A reception honoring the winners is planned for April 25, 2014.

Electronic copies of all winning students’ work will be deposited in Scholars’ Bank, the library’s open access archive for UO research, publications, and supporting materials in digital form.

The Undergraduate Research Awards are made possible by endowments established through the generous support of Barbara Blinco Sparks, Lisa and Jon Stine, and Gretchen and Walt Barger.

For more information on the awards, visit

Winners of $1,000 in the Thesis Category

Natalie Brezack

Psychology Major in the Clark Honors College

“Motionese: Subject to Preference?” (Thesis)

Faculty Sponsor: Dare Baldwin, Department of Psychology

Library Recognition: “The library aided my thesis process by providing countless peer-reviewed journals. … I also used free scanning in the library and software on the computers to edit my videos. … I did most of the analysis and writing in the library, spending countless hours over several months.”

Student Quote: The planning, data collection, data analysis, and writing process spanned over two years of my undergraduate career at the UO. It is by far my proudest accomplishment and one that I could not have achieved without the help of the library. … I feel like a true researcher now. I am fortunate that the library is still available to me even after I have graduated. …. I will continue to credit the University of Oregon Libraries as an instrumental part of my success as a developmental psychology researcher.


Gabriel Sanchez

Anthropology Major in the McNair Scholars Program

“Cetacean Hunting at the Par-Tee Site (35CLT20)?: Ethnographic, Artifact, and Blood Residue Analysis Investigation” (Thesis)

Faculty Sponsor: Jon Erlandson, Department of Anthropology

Library Staff Recognized: Miriam Rigby, Jennifer O’Neal

Student Quote: The library was essential to this project because it allowed me access to primary sources, including those in Special Collections. Research experts, including Miriam Rigby and Jennifer O’Neal, among others, prepared me for effectively processing information at the Smithsonian during the week I spent doing research there. I worked extensively with the written works from the Southwest Oregon Research Project (SWORP) for researching Oregon Native American history. … My research experience has motivated me to continue researching within academia. … In all aspects of my research I had support from the UO Libraries through its knowledgeable and approachable staff and its academic resources.


Lindsay Thane

Political Science Major

“Freedom from Guantánamo: How the Court Curtailed Prerogative Powers and Increased Civil Liberties for Detainees” (Thesis)

Faculty Sponsor: Daniel Tichenor, Department of Political Science

Library Staff Recognized: Victoria Mitchell

Student Quote: I discovered the immense reach of the library by requesting books through Summit and ILLiad, the library’s interlibrary loan systems, when the books were not physically present in our campus libraries. I also made extensive use of the academic journal databases to which the university subscribes. … Victoria Mitchell helped me discover ProQuest and CQ Weekly, which I relied upon along with the Library of Congress and Government Printing Office websites for presidential and congressional documents. … The entire process of targeted reading, writing succinct case analysis, and compiling sources can hopefully lay the groundwork for other related research, and it has drastically improved the way I now read, research, and edit, skills which have been vital in my current study of the law.


Winners of $1,000 in the Single-Term Paper Category


Amber Bryan

Women’s and Gender Studies Major in the McNair Scholars Program

“Exotic Sexuality: Examining the Effect of Exotic Dancing on Women’s Sexuality” (Single-Term Paper)

Faculty Sponsor: Lamia Karim, Department of Anthropology

Library Staff Recognized: Miriam Rigby, Terry McQuilken, Reference Services Staff, Knight Library Computer Help Desk Staff

Student Quote: The helpful staff at the library has played a huge part in my advancement in navigating both the online system and the resources within the library itself. Without the dedicated library staff, I am confident I would still be lost on the Internet searching aimlessly for articles while trying to figure out how to afford the cost of gaining access to them. As a result of using the library, I was able to write a research project that has been accepted for presentation at a conference and will form the basis of my graduate school writing sample. … Gone are the days of sifting through countless websites; now I simply log on to the UO Libraries website and search for the information I need.

Kimberly Lerner

Biology Major in the Clark Honors College

“A History of Racism and Prejudice: The Untold Story of the Northern Paiute” (Single-Term Paper)

Faculty Sponsor: Kevin Hatfield, Department of History

Library Staff Recognized: Jennifer O’Neal

Student Quote: The UO Libraries Special Collections provided vital resources needed to complete my research paper. Without the help of Jennifer O’Neal, University Historian and Archivist, I would have been unaware of the information housed in the library that allowed me to write a paper with a strong primary source base. Another valuable source of information came from scouring microfilm collections. The McKay Papers Microfilm collection provided supporting details in my paper. Before working on this project, I had never utilized microfilm, conducted research in Special Collections, or used discussion and interviews in a paper. Oral histories provided a valuable source in my research. … This paper would have been impossible without the information I collected from the UO Libraries, especially within Special Collections and University Archives and the Document Center.

Kyle Swartzlender

Art History Major in the Clark Honors College

“Deconstructing the Novel: The Critical Function of the Artist’s Book” (Single-Term Paper)

Faculty Sponsor: James Harper, Department of Art History

Library Staff Recognized: Cara List and Architecture and Allied Arts Library Staff

Student Quote: My research paper would not have been possible had it not been for the assistance I received from the UO Libraries, including its librarians, resources, and search tools. I now feel much more comfortable using library collections and am currently in the process of conducting thesis research through Special Collections and University Archives. … I now have a much stronger understanding and command of the variety of resources that are available through the library.


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