Cadet Research News

Photo of VMI cadets posing in front of conference at the 2021 SoCon Undergraduate Research Forum (SURF).

“SURFers” Share Research Projects

Maj. Sarah Patterson and Maj. Blain Patterson from the Department of Applied Mathematics had the privilege of accompanying 11 cadets as they presented their research on a variety of topics, ranging from identifying glycans with neural networks to women in counterterrorism.

Mitchell Masterson '21 and his mentor, Maj. Jochen S. Arndt

Cadet Presents Research at Mid-Atlantic Regional Conference for Undergraduate Scholarship

Mitchell Masterson '21 and his mentor, Maj. Jochen S. Arndt, travelled recently to the Mid-Atlantic Regional Conference for Undergraduate Scholarship, where Masterson presented his work on "Reporting on Civil War: How Newspapers Explained Township Violence in South Africa, 1990-1994."

Dr. Vera Heuer and Allie Sassaman '22 discuss Sassaman's research on women in terrorism.—VMI Photo by Eric Moore.

Cadets Return to In-Person Summer Research at VMI

Conducted by the VMI Center for Undergraduate Research, SURI (Summer Undergraduate Research Institute) is a program where the cadet, as the principal investigator, conducts research directly with a faculty mentor.

Maj. Jochen Arndt and Mitchell Masterson ’22 compare notes regarding Masterson’s independent research project on the media coverage out of South Africa in the early 1990’s.--VMI Photo by Mary Price.

Cadet Project Focuses on South Africa and the Media

This summer, working under the auspices of the Summer Undergraduate Research Institute, Masterson completed an independent research project on media coverage of South Africa’s transition from apartheid to democratic rule, which took place between 1990 and 1994.

Gabby Handford '24 and Maj. Molly Kent prepare sections of a rat brain for study under a microscope.—VMI Photo by Kelly Nye.

Rat Brains and Betta Fish Support Lab Learning

Maj. Molly Kent’s neuroscience lab is a busy place this summer, with multiple cadets working on multiple projects split over the two summer sessions. But despite their wide-ranging projects, the cadets share a common bond: a desire to learn lab skills and grow as scientists.

Dr. Vera Heuer and Allie Sassaman '22 discuss Sassaman's research on women in terrorism.—VMI Photo by Eric Moore.

Cadet Researches Women in Terrorism

This summer, Alexandra “Allie” Sassaman ’22 is delving into research for her national security minor thesis, which will focus on the roles of women in terrorism and counter-terrorism and their reasons for involvement.

Thomas Muldowney '21 is shown in front of his laptop computer.

Determining What Helps Migrants Integrate

This summer, Thomas Muldowney ’21 is working on a research project that involves a lot of number crunching— finding out which policies benefit people.

Josie Freeman '23 works on her laptop computer

SURI Project Seeks Motivation for Memes

“Memes are just an interesting concept.” That’s what Josie Freeman ’23 has to say about her Summer Undergraduate Research Institute project, “Motivation for Memes.”

Maj. Steve Knepper and Maddy Moger '20 discuss her research on fairy tales.—VMI Photo by Mary Price.

What Wicked Stepmother?

Maddy Moger '20's summer research project has involved a deeper look at the "whys" of classic fairy tales, using a psychoanalytic approach.

Andrew Broecker, VMI Class of 2022, prepares to fly a drone while Dr. Hongbo Zhang looks on.—VMI Photo by Kelly Nye.

Soybean Research Goes Airborne

An interdisciplinary project involving the biology and computer science departments could help a local soybean farmer produce higher yields.