Whether in the classroom or one-on-one with professors, students creatively explore topics from social psychology and the natural sciences to sports and epics in Western Culture.

Hampden-Sydney students are doing exciting things in research.

  • TEDx - students and professors community-wide present their own round of TEDx talks on the topic of " Tradition and Change: 21st Century Men's College"
  • English Capstone - students examine race and identity through a series of podcasts 
  • PechaKucha - faculty and students sharpen their brevity by describing their research using 20 slides presented in 20 seconds each
  • H-S Journal of the Sciences - Hampden-Sydney's very own science publication releases its latest edition
  • Elevator Pitch Competition - Rhetoric students hone their research pitch with 2-minute presentations about "Problems and Solutions in the World of Sports"
  • Disney Institute - student interns present lessons on leadership from the "happiest place on earth"
  • Environmental Studies Capstone - students present their ideas and commercials 

Students present research at academic conferences throughout the country.

2018 National Conference of Undergraduate Research (NCUR) at the University of Oklahoma

  • Carlo Anslemo '18, Joshua Elliott '18, Travis Stackow '19, Shelby Hanna '20

2019 American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology in Orlando, FL

  • Cory Allgood ’19, Hunter Lee ’19, Eli Strong ’20, Jason Pough ’19, Hunter Weiland ‘19

2019 National Conference on Undergraduate Research (NCUR) at Kennesaw State University, GA

  • Wade Bredin ’20, Blake Martin ’19, Brendan Schwartz ’19, Brian Tarnai ’20, Sean Stimpson ’19, Zach Wiggin ’19, Nico Correa ’19, Travis Stackow ‘19

More Student Research Stories

Student Research Highlights 2019

David Bushhouse '19, 2018 Goldwater Scholar and recipient of an Undergraduate Research Grant from the Virginia Academy of Science, was recognized for his ongoing research on tumor immunology with Dr. Kristian Hargadon, Elliot professor of biology and a Goldwater Scholar himself during his student days at H-SC. They are determining, on the molecular-genetics level, how a protein called FOXC2 regulates the spread and metastasis of melanoma skin cancer. He has presented his work at the Fall VAS Undergraduate Research Meeting and the American Society for Cell Biology Annual Meeting in Philadelphia, PA and the 2019 Annual Meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research in Atlanta, GA.

David will attend Northwestern University, where he received a full scholarship and stipend to pursue his Ph.D. in the Interdisciplinary Biological Sciences Graduate Program.

Corey Williams '19, Coleman Johnson '19,and Elliott Associate Professor of Biology Dr. Kristian M. Hargadon '01 published a review article on cancer immunotherapy in the journal International Immunopharmacology entitled " Immune Checkpoint Blockade Therapy for Cancer: An Overview of FDA-approved Immune Checkpoint Inhibitor." Their article highlights the emerging field of checkpoint blockade therapy that has revolutionized the treatment of many cancer types in recent years.

Both students presented their research at the 2019 Annual Meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research in Atlanta, GA, as well as the Undergraduate Student Caucus and Poster Competition, where Corey Williams stood out among both undergraduate and post-baccalaureate students from major research institutions and received an Honorable Mention Award.

Corey and Coleman have been doing melanoma research in Dr. Hargadon's laboratory since the summer of 2017 and have both been accepted into Virginia Commonwealth University's School of Medicine.

Travis Stackow '19 was awarded a prestigious H-SC Summer Research Fellowship to explore three of Russian author Fyodor Dostoevsky's most famous works— Crime and PunishmentThe Brother Karamazov, and  Notes from Underground. He was fascinated by the way Dostoevsky approaches the problem of 'heightened consciousness' through three of his characters—Raskolnikov, the Underground Man, and Ivan. After submitting his abstract, he was selected to present his summer research at the Central Slavic Conference, an honor granted to a select few undergraduate students.

Student Research Highlights 2018

Max Dash '18 devoted the bulk of his senior year to honors research in English, delving deep into what he calls a very personal, passion-driven project. With the help of his advisor, Dr. Sarah B. Hardy, Max divided his capstone research work equally between the creative and the critical. Including a series of multi-media projects utilizing audio, video, photography, and writing and a deep-dive into Tiger athletics past and present, Max's research analyzed the relationship between sports narratives and American culture.

Will Fussy '18 chose an Honors Capstone research topic that combined his biology major with his desire to attend law school: the legal patenting of human genes. At the crux of Will's thesis is the 2013 Supreme Court case AMP v. Myriad, which ruled that natural DNA discoveries could not be patented. Will's paper examines the ruling's effect on research and innovation. The interdisciplinary project had Will working with professors from multiple disciplines: government professor Guy Burnett, who advised Will's legal research; biology professor Michael Wolyniak, who advised his scientific research; and classics professor Janice Siegel, who advised his writing.

Persus Okowuah '18  is interested in combating invasive species without resorting to pesticides, which damage native plants and seep into groundwater. Inspired in part by the landscape he passes through between campus and his home in Northern Virginia, Persus found that disturbed soil, like that found on construction sites and near road work, benefits the invasive weed to the detriment of native plants; the introduction of clover, however, keeps the knap weed in check and helps other native species survive, as well. Understanding and adjusting to that dynamic early can prevent the development of a large-scale problem like the current invasion of kudzu in the southeast.

Sean Walden '18 is tackling a problem that poses a significant economic threat to the beer industry: fungal infections in Humulus lupulus-the common hop plant. In recent years, several H-SC students have studied hops and the downy mildew that attacks them, but Sean is particularly interested in studying the plants' own defenses as a potential fungicide—a natural alternative to current fungicides that seep copper into the soil and groundwater. He hopes he's laying the groundwork for future essential oil-based fungicides.

Student Research Highlights 2017

Brant Boucher '17  and   James Lau '17 were among the approximately 100 undergraduate students to present research at the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) Annual Meeting, attended by more than 20,000 cancer researchers. They had to submit abstracts to present their work as well as be nominated by two AACR members. James and Brant's research with Elliott Associate Professor of Biology  Dr. Kristian Hargadon '01,  focuses on the FOXC2 protein, which is overactive in many aggressive cancers. James' work has shown that FOXC2 in melanoma cells promotes the ability of these tumor cells to migrate and invade tissues, which relate to the capacity to metastasize.

Alex Abbott '17, a history and philosophy major,  and  Dr. Marc Hight, Elliott Professor of Philosophy, collaborated on a summer research project in the humanities. The two worked to relate the idea of immaterialism, as presented by George Berkeley, 18thcentury Irish philosopher and divine, and religious dogma from the incarnation of Christ to the re-inhabitance of bodies in an afterlife. They conducted research to project the relationship between ontological views (what people believe is fundamentally real) and religious beliefs.

Josh Chamberlin '17, was involved in Assistant Professor of Biology,  Dr. Erin Clabough's research investigating the developmental patterns that regulate sea turtle hatching on Hatteras Island. The work involved the placement of sensors into newly laid sea turtle nests using an innovative, remote controlled, real time access sensor and communication system designed to monitor motion within the nests. This was an extension of his summer research through the H-SC Honors Program, which he did jointly with an internship at the Hatteras Island Ocean Center. 


Research Opportunities

Faculty Research Interests

Summer Research Program

Summer Research

Journal of the Sciences

Hampden-Sydney's very own science publication, has half a decade under its belt. It showcases a wide variety of undergraduate research in the Division of Natural Sciences and Mathematics. According to  Dr. Michael Wolyniak, Associate Professor of Biology and advisor to the Journal, it is a place to consolidate the great undergraduate scientific work taking place on Hampden-Sydney College's campus.

Arthur White '20

Arthur White ’20 has made the most of his four years on the Hill. From the rugby pitch to the theater stage, the Spanish major is unafraid of trying something new.

Arthur White '20