SOU Expands Annual Showcase of Arts and Research

Southern Oregon Arts and Research (SOAR) will Feature More Than 100 Academic Presentations, 26 Laboratory and Studio Open Houses, Live Performing Arts and a Student Film Festival

(Ashland, Ore.) Southern Oregon Arts and Research (SOAR), Southern Oregon University’s annual celebration of faculty and student research and artistic achievement, returns May 15-18 with several new features. This year the event will include “Performances on the Plaza;” open houses in 26 scientific laboratories, art studios and special exhibits; a student film festival, plus an afternoon of student music and theatre performances.
Virtually every academic workshop on campus will be open to view this year. Visitors who tour six or more of the labs and studios are eligible to enter their name in a drawing to win an Netbooks.
There will be free parking in the Mountain Avenue lot across from the Music Building. All SOAR presentations are free and open to the public. For a list of all SOAR presentations, visit

DAY ONE, May 15

SOAR Opening Ceremonies are Tuesday, May 15 at noon in the Stevenson Union courtyard with speakers and music performances.
Labs and Studio Open House including:
1:00-3:00 pm
Jefferson Public Radio, Central Hall 017
Digital Media Gallery, Library 120
Special Collections/Archives, Library 209
Interlibrary Loan, Library 217
Digital Projects Lab, Library 231
Distance Education, Library 321
CoLABoratory, Library 305
RVTV Multimedia, 345 Webster Street
3:00-5:00 pm
Costume Shop, Theatre 115
Scene Shop, Theatre 121
Anthropology, Taylor Hall 230
Geospatial Lab, Taylor Hall, 102
Computer Data Center, Comp Sci West 116A
EMDA: Digital Arts, Comp Sci East
Chemistry Labs, Science 260 and 264
Biotechnology Center, Science Building 160
Physics Labs, Science 103, 156
Nursing Simulation Center, Britt Hall 112
Art Studios, Marion Ady
Student Film Festival
Films directed by SOU students will be showcased from 7:00 – 9:00 pm in the Meese Auditorium in the Art Building.

DAY TWO, May 16

9:00 am-4:00 pm – Presentations by students and faculty in the Stevenson Union, Hannon Library and the Center for the Visual Arts.
1:00-1:30 pm – Performances on the Plaza: Music and other performances by students on the Student Union Plaza.


10:00 am-4:00 pm – Presentations by students and faculty in the Stevenson Union, Hannon Library and the Center for the Visual Arts.
Noon-1:30 pm – Poster Session, Stevenson Union, Rogue River Room. Interact with 160 students and faculty as they talk about their research graphically portrayed on a poster.
5:00-7:00 pm – Reception in the Rogue River Room of the Stevenson Union

Day FOUR, May 18

12:30 am-2:30 pm – Student Music Recitals, Music Recital Hall
2:30 pm-4:30 pm – Student Theatrical Performance, Greenway Between Music and Theatre buildings
A large number of SOU students are working on community-based projects and will be presented as podium presentations or a poster session. Additionally, computer science faculty and students are working together to create stimulating demonstrations.
Podium Presentations and Panels Devoted to Local Topics
How Ashland Residents Define and Experience Quality of Life Presented by seven students. The panel is headed by Professor Eva Skuratowicz.
Research Abstract: This panel will be composed of seven students from sociology and anthropology who have been studying quality of life in Ashland, during the winter and spring quarters, with Eva Skuratowicz and Jean Maxwell. Our class has used multiple methodologies, including focus groups, interviews, and surveys, to understand how Ashland residents perceive and define quality of life. For the panel, we will have four student presentations that center on this large research project. The first presentation will be an overview of the study and the literature review. The second will be the findings from the six focus groups and six in-depth interviews that were conducted by the students. The third will be results from the 180 surveys that the students administered to Ashland residents. Finally, the fourth presentation will be conclusions and recommendations for the community regarding maintaining and enhancing the quality of life in Ashland
Poster Sessions Devoted to Local Topics
Could Ashland Benefit From More Workforce Housing? Chris Seaman
Research Abstract: Ashland, Oregon is a city that in recent years has been discussing issues related to an expensive housing market and a potential shortage of affordable housing for its workforce. Affordable housing is seen as vital to the strength and diversity of any community and without it negative long-term consequences can exist. To further understand how a shortage of workforce housing can negatively impact a community such as Ashland’s, and what local planners could do to mitigate such a problem, a review of current literature was conducted. As a result this review seeks to raise awareness of local issues associated with this type of shortage, and present possible options to increase availability of workforce housing.
Evaluation of Wastewater Nutrient Removal and Ashland Creek Water Quality. By Dru Smith, Amanda Coffman, Dawn Hyde
Research Abstract: The combination of human activities, land runoff, animal wastes and inadequate wastewater treatment facilities create a scenario where excess nutrient inputs become a problem to urban streams and the biological communities that live in them. Wastewater discharges have the potential of adversely affecting aquatic systems including algae blooms, excessive weed growth and oxygen depletion in the receiving water system. What is the water quality of Ashland Creek? Is the quality of the water released from the City of Ashland’s wastewater treatment plant meeting DEQ requirements (considering phosphorus, nitrogen and temperature)? Is the effluent water quality negatively affecting Ashland Creek? Ashland Creek is important to our local eco-system. We intend to uncover whether specific standards are being met and share our findings with our community.
Radio-Telemetry for Arboreal Squirrels within the Ashland Watershed By Dana Young
Research Abstract: Within the Ashland watershed there has not been much research regarding dispersal patterns, home ranges, as well as nesting sites for arboreal squirrels. My main objectives are 1) document different nesting sites of two male flying squirrels, Glaucomys sabrinus, 2) determine how often males spent in there nests and 3) record how far they travel from one nest site to another. Results showed males had similarities in tree preferences, but maintained differences among vegetation preferences. The males preferred (Pseudotsuga menziesii), Douglas firs with heights ranging from17.9 to 50.9 m for the first flyer and 12.46 m to 114.7 m for the second flyer. This research could be a useful tool for watershed management in future conservation planning.
Public Perceptions of Forest Conditions and Management in the Ashland Creek Watershed By Mark Shibley and W Michael Shultz
Research Abstract: There is little research documenting public understanding of forest restoration efforts in southwest Oregon. This session presents preliminary results from a public opinion survey measuring beliefs and attitudes about forest conditions and management practices in the Ashland Creek watershed. Based on a random sample of Ashland residents, this study is part of the multiparty monitoring effort to track public support for the Ashland Forest Resiliency Stewardship Project (AFR). The survey was funded by a grant from the Collins Trust Northwest Conservation Fund, which supports work seeking to restore frequent-fire adapted forests in southern Oregon.
Computer Science Demonstrations
Computer Science Professor Greg Pleva will be giving a demonstration on 3D technology entitled, “How We Trick Your Brain.”
Computer Science Professor Lynn Ackler and his students are, “Digital Detectives,” as they do an NCIS and CIS forensic investigation recovering data from computer hardware that has been destroyed in a car explosion.
H2Joe is a student Computer Science capstone project focusing on the creation and development of a video game showcased in the Digital Media Gallery.
Other interesting posters and presentations
One’s Own Sistine Chapel: The Ways in Which Body Modification is Influenced by Young Adults’ Self-Esteem: By Jenna Rose
Research Abstract: The high prevalence of body modification practices among young adults has led to a need to evaluate how self-esteem is being affected by such practices. The purpose of this study, then is to evaluate the ways in which self-esteem influences a person to get body modification; as well as how body modification influences one’s self-esteem. The qualitative study used a semi-structured interview with habitual body modifiers between the ages of eighteen and thirty-two, who lived in the Rouge Valley. The results showed that those who habitually modify had higher rates of improved body image, individuality and uniqueness. This research contributes to a better understanding of the ways in which social embodiment plays out within our society and how self-esteem and body modification practices correlate with each other among young adults.
Holocaust Denial in the Classroom: What Teachers Can Do: By Shawn Foster
Research Abstract: Teaching about the Holocaust is required in the educational standards of 37 states. But what does a teacher do when a student says they don’t believe it really happened? This presentation reviews research regarding Holocaust denial and racism related to K-12 classroom teaching. Three levels of engagement in teaching about Holocaust denial are identified, and best practices related to teacher integrity, knowledge of the specifics of Holocaust denial, and the development of facilitation and historiographical skills are identified.
SANTO Y SEñA (electronic music and percussion duo)
Federico Behncke
Jake Phelps
Santo y Seña, an electronic music and percussion duo from Ashland, is formed by SOU´s music department alumni Federico Behncke and Jake Phelps. Santo y Seña presents performances of original music as well as covers of underground world and electronica music. The duo utilizes computers, synthesizers, drum kit, and world percussion to perform an eclectic, lively, and flavorful array of music from all over the world. Santo y Seña is a favorite at the OSF´s the Green Show, and this year have been invited back to open the Green Show´s 2012 season.

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