ENS students win top honors at Research Day at the Capitol

Austin Evans
Austin Evans with Chancellor Glen Johnson (left) and EPSCoR State Director Jerry Malayer

Two students in TU’s College of Engineering and Natural Sciences received top honors at the 2015 Research Day at the Capitol on March 31 in Oklahoma City. Chemical engineering and chemistry junior Austin Evans won the overall grand prize. Mechanical engineering junior Jordan Hoyt earned first place in the research intensive campus category.

TU undergraduate students annually compete in the event, sponsored by the Oklahoma Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR), the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education and the National Science Foundation. Student presentations are conducted during the legislative session in the state Capitol’s rotunda to demonstrate the innovative research at Oklahoma’s colleges and universities. Student posters and oral presentations are judged for cash prizes, and the grand prize winner receives a summer research internship to the state college or university of his or her choice.

Jordan Hoyt
Jordan Hoyt with Representative David Brumbaugh

Evans’ presentation applied the method of sustainable chemical synthesis to water purification with the assistance of fellow chemical engineering student Michael Crockett and mentor Justin Chalker, former TU assistant professor of chemistry. Evans received $500 cash, a $4,000 research internship and $2,500 in lab funding.

Hoyt researched the use of nanoparticle fluids to increase solar cell efficiency under the advisement of Todd Otanicar, assistant professor of mechanical engineering. He received a $500 cash prize.