Monday, August 1, 2011

Twelve Goshen College students research alongside professors during summer


GOSHEN, Ind. – From exploring Mennonite-Muslim relations to researching the membrane transport process, 12 Goshen College students spent the summer working with professors on various research projects during the college's eight-week Maple Scholars program.

Maple Scholars gives students the opportunity to participate in independent research projects alongside Goshen College faculty of various disciplines. Each scholar is paired with a faculty member who serves as both colleague and supervisor. This year, the program ran from June 5 to July 29.

Ben Baumgartner, a senior Bible and religion major from Hesston, Kan., worked on a project reviewing the history of Mennonite-Muslim relations over the past 50 years with Professor of Bible and Religion Paul Keim.

Andrea Detweiler, a senior art and music double major from Goshen, explored the relationship between the elements of color, surface quality and scale in paintings with Professor of Art John Blosser. After researching, Detweiler planned to develop visual images based on her findings.

Daniel Fecher, a junior molecular biology/biochemistry major from Goshen, Julia Stoltzfus, a senior biology major from Roann, Ind., and Kristin Martin, a junior molecular biology/biochemistry major from Lombard, Ill., researched the membrane transport process with Professor of Biology James Miller.

Cassie Greives, a 2011 graduate who majored in physical education from Rochester, Ind., researched issues related to overweight and obese children in Goshen and Elkhart County with Associate Professor of Physical Education Jewel Lehman. In addition to researching, Grieves helped to implement the Goshen Heart Camp, a summer program that provided physical activity opportunities for under fit and overweight children.

David Harnish, a senior history major from Flanagan, Ill., collected data about bullying prevention in elementary schools with Steve Thomas, adjunct professor of peace, justice and conflict studies. The findings will be used for EMPOWER, a peace education collaborative that is used in Goshen Community Schools to reduce bullying in the community.

Chaim Hodges, a junior mathematics major from Goshen, researched fair allocation with Professor of Mathematics David Housman.

Ted Maust, a senior history and English double major from Litiz, Pa., collected information and designed the template for the Mara Cultural Heritage Digital Library (MCHDL) with Professor of History Jan Bender Shetler. The MCHDL will consist of information about Tanzanian culture, a result of Bender Shetler's 15 years of research in Tanzania. The goal of the MCHDL is to give the people of Tanzania easy-access primary sources about their own history. Maust worked on the first phase of the digital library, which will be an ongoing task after the Maple Scholars project ends.

John Miller, a sophomore physics and English writing double major from Evanston, Ill., worked on the Musician Maker with Professor of Physics John Ross Buschert. The Musician Maker is a system that allows unskilled players the fun of creating improvisational expressive music. Buschert began working on the Musician Maker last summer with previous Maple Scholars students.

Micah Miller-Eshleman, a sophomore physics major from Dover, Ohio, researched the content and teaching methods for introductory informatics courses with Associate Professor of Informatics Kent Palmer. The goal of this research is to enhance Goshen College's Informatics I course, as informatics is a relatively new major at Goshen.

Bruck Mulat, a 2011 graduate who majored in physics and mathematics from Ethiopia, worked on x-ray studies of calcite growth with Associate Professor of Physics Paul Meyer Reimer.

Lynn Weaver, a junior molecular biology/biochemistry major from Goshen, Josh Yoder, a sophomore environmental science major from Tucson, Ariz., and Lisa Weaver, a senior molecular biology/biochemistry major from Denver, Pa., researched the effects of alcohol on honeybees with Assistant Professor of Biology Andrew Ammons. The project was a continuation of the research that Ammons began last summer with previous Maple Scholars students.

Ruth Wiens, a senior physics major from Newton, Kan., researched the role of cholesterol in biological membranes with Professor Emeritus of Physics Carl Helrich. 

The college's Maple Scholars program began in 1998. Unlike undergraduate research projects at many larger universities where students work only with graduate students, students in Maple Scholars work with professors who can answer their questions and guide them in their research and learning. Students also get the chance to share their work together in a colloquium each Friday and engage other students across disciplines. 

– By Alysha Landis

Editors: For more information about this release, to arrange an interview or request a photo, contact Goshen College News Bureau Director Jodi H. Beyeler at (574) 535-7572 or


Goshen College, established in 1894, is a residential Christian liberal arts college rooted in the Anabaptist-Mennonite tradition. The college's Christ-centered core values – passionate learning, global citizenship, compassionate peacemaking and servant-leadership – prepare students as leaders for the church and world. Recognized for its unique Study-Service Term program, Goshen has earned citations of excellence in Barron's Best Buys in Education, "Colleges of Distinction," "Making a Difference College Guide" and U.S. News & World Report's "America's Best Colleges" edition, which named Goshen a "least debt college." Visit


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Goshen, Indiana 46526
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