Aerial view of the Dowagiac campus

SMC Honors Program showcases projects

12/21/2017 - 2pm
Honors Program presenters with Gary Franchy, Mark Pelfrey

Southwestern Michigan College’s finest students put their finest work on display during the second Honors Showcase Dec. 12 in the art gallery of the Dale A. Lyons Building on the Dowagiac campus.
Fourteen students enrolled in SMC’s Honors Program presented posters and answered questions from attendees, simulating a professional conference experience unheard of for most college freshmen and sophomores.
Their work represented research done as Honors students in SMC classes, ranging from chemistry, calculus, economics and graphic design to popular culture. They worked closely with their primary faculty member, as well as Gary Franchy and Mark Pelfrey, the two faculty members who coordinate the college’s Honors Program.
The work presented was truly phenomenal for students still at the associate level. Posters centered on work done in mathematics classes:
• Tanner Bohan, Marcellus – Calculus’ Effect on Digital Media;
• Michaella Lei-Sam, Berrien Springs – The Mathematics Behind Viral Videos;
• Angela Smith, Mendon – How Frequency Analysis Can Detect Fraud;
• David Brogan, Dowagiac – Presenting Calculus to High School Students.
Several posters and presentations came from the world of business and economics:
• Brooke Essig, Bridgman – Quickbook Analysis of the Construction Department’s Tiny House;
• Hannah Wilson, Paw Paw – National Debt;
• Michael Heinisch, Hartford – The Financial Crisis of 2008.
Sciences, especially environmental sciences, were represented by multiple posters:
• Melanie Becker, Edwardsburg – Biosorption of Lead From Aqueous Solution Using A Hydrolyzed Protein Extract;
• Jennifer Hinton, Monticello, Ill. – Solar Energy;
• Sierra Millword, Lawrence – The Cow of the Sea;
• Matthew Reeves, Berrien Springs – Mockup of Zinc-Promoted Horner-Wadsowrth-Emmons Reactions.
Other presentations ran the gamut of SMC courses:
• Madison Walker, Paw Paw – The Representation of Homosexuality in Film;
• Jenna Proud, Buchanan – Nutrition in Pregnancy;
• Allison Richcreek, Edwardsburg – Graphic Design Honor Projects.
The Honors Showcase at SMC has become an annual event for the Honors Program, providing students the opportunity to participate in graduate-style research early in their academic careers.
These experiences ensure SMC Honors Program graduates are at the front of the line for transfer scholarships, internships and job opportunities.
Want to learn more about the Honors Program, or join the program yourself? Check out program eligibility requirements and benefits, as well as learn about full-ride scholarships available to incoming Honors Program students at

For more detail on their research projects, visit