Virginia-North Carolina Alliance for Minority Participation

2016 VA-NC Alliance Undergraduate Research Symposium “Navigating Transitions in Your Academic Career”

April 10, 2016 to April 11, 2016


The 9th Annual VA-NC Alliance Undergraduate Research Symposium was co-hosted by Piedmont Virginia Community College and the University of Virginia on April 10-11 in Charlottesville, VA. Events were held on both campuses. Alliance scholars were encouraged to submit their oral and poster presentations.

Winners of the Research Symposium oral and poster presentation categories















Winners of the Ninth Annual VA-NC Alliance Research Symposium in the oral and poster presentation categories are as follows:


First Place - Dexter Austin, Virginia Tech: Quantitative assessment of NAS symptoms

Second Place TIE -

Bilal Elsayed, George Mason University: Simulator for Automatic Climate Control System

Alia Woffard, Elizabeth City State University: Effects of Antimalarial Pyrimethamine on Embryonic Chickens at Day 9 of Development


First Place - Ciara Spence, Elizabeth City State University: Integrating Reverse Engineering and 3D Printing for Manufacturing Process

Second Place - Brittainy Hereford, University of Virginia: Ventral Anterior Homeobox 1 (Vax1) is Required for Normal Circadian Rhythms and Fertility

Third Place - Darius Carter, University of Virginia: Study of Cetacean Fluke Structure's Effect on Hydrodynamic Performance


Keynote Speaker: Dr. Archie Holmes, Jr.

  Archie Holmes serves as the Vice Provost for Educational Innovation and Interdisciplinary Studies and Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Virginia. He received his B.S. (highest honors) from the University of Texas at Austin and his M.S. and PhD. degrees from the University of California at Santa Barbara.  Prior to joining U.Va. in 2007, Archie was an Associate Professor in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at the University of Texas at Austin and holder of the Lybarger Endowed Faculty Fellowship. His research interests are focused on the development of novel optoelectronic devices, particularly in the short- and mid-infrared wavelength ranges.  This work has been funded by several federal agencies and he has been actively involved in projects translating his research into the commercial sector. Over his career, Archie has co-authored over 110 referred technical articles and 70 conference presentations. 

Archie has also received numerous awards for his teaching and advising activities. At the University of Texas, he received the Dad’s Association Centennial Teaching Fellowship, the Texas Excellence Teaching Award in Engineering, and the Gordon T. Lepley IV Endowed Memorial Teaching Award.  At the University of Virginia, Archie was an inaugural member of the University Academy of Teaching started by the Teaching Resource Center and received a Hartfield–Jefferson Scholars Teaching Prize in 2012.  Archie also received an Outstanding New Advisor Award from the National Academic Advising Association in 2005 and Trigon’s Thomas E. Hutchinson Faculty Award in 2013.

In his role as Vice Provost for Educational Innovation and Interdisciplinary Studies, Archie’s major responsibilities will include areas related to the undergraduate educational experience, especially in strengthening connections between the schools and between the academic mission and student affairs. He also will work on building the interdisciplinary capacity of U.Va. and further efforts to establish institutes and centers to foster interdisciplinary research and education

Archie serves as a Co-PI of the VA-NC Alliance.