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PROUD Newsletter

2022 PROUD Nominees

The CSU- LSAMP Program for Recognition of Undergraduate Distinction (CSU-LSAMP PROUD) is a new program designed to recognize and highlight the achievements of our outstanding CSU-LSAMP students. Each year, the LSAMP Statewide Office requests that campuses select up to four students based upon their achievements such as outstanding academic performance, research accomplishments, service, leadership, or personal triumph. These PROUD Scholars will be featured in an annual CSU-LSAMP publication that will be made available on the CSU-LSAMP Statewide website. All students featured in the publication will receive a certificate acknowledging their distinction. Below are the 2021 PROUD Nominees from CSUF! We congratulate all of their success!

Leeza-Marie Rodriguez

Leeza-Marie RodriguezLeeza-Marie Rodriguez, a senior Biology major at California State University, Fullerton, conducted research investigating the effects of the non-indigenous spaghetti bryozoan, Amathia verticillata on the recruitment of the native Olympia oyster, Ostrea lurida. The main objective of her study was to understand the role of facilitation non-indigenous species may have on native species and how to apply these findings to achieve conservation efforts on coastal and intertidal environments. She has successfully defended her undergraduate thesis. She learned the importance of conducting science as well as communicating it to broader audiences. She presented her research last year at the Western Society of Naturalists Conference and received the honorable mention for best undergraduate research poster. She presented her first oral presentation as the only undergraduate in the Olympia Oyster Session at the National Shellfisheries Association Conference. Leeza-Marie interweaves this research with environmental justice, to address and inform marginalized communities about the issues associated with climate change through education and outreach. She is committed to increasing diverse participation and safe spaces for marginalized groups in science. She is a 2021 Ecological Society of America-Environmental Justice Vice Chair and Strategies for Ecology Education, Diversity, and Sustainability alumni, and a 2022 National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship Program awardee. In graduate school, Leeza-Marie is eager to become more aware while also educating others about environmental justice. She will utilize everything she learned in her undergraduate and from her advisors and mentors at CSUF, in her graduate career and beyond. 


Marlo Ramo-Morales

Marlo Ramo Morales

Marlo participated in Cornell University’s 2021 Remote Research Experience for Undergraduates in Astrophysics and Planetary Science and worked with Prof. Saul Teukolsky and Senior Research Associate Dr. Larry Kidder. He worked on a project aiming to implement a gauge transformation in SpECTRE designed to increase the efficiency of high-spin binary black hole evolutions. Marlo worked on implementing coordinates that make the horizon spherical. A spherical horizon requires fewer grid points to simulate accurately and enables substantial increases in accuracy at the same computational cost; in fact, without this gauge transformation, the horizons' non-spherical shapes dominate the cost of SpECTRE simulations of rapidly spinning binary black holes. Marlo was also involved in computing black-hole horizon quantities. He completed the computation infrastructure to calculate quantities like the surface area, mass, and spin magnitude. He also verified that these horizon quantities are computed correctly by performing convergence tests which compared numerical results at different resolutions to provide error estimates to check if the results were accurate enough for use by gravitational-wave detectors. Marlo is also a co-author on this paperPDF File Opens in new window .


Noora Ghadiri

Noora GhadiriNoora’s research interests included modeling gravitational waves emitted by extreme astrophysical events, such as merging black holes or neutron stars, by using numerical relativity. Her research involved implementing and testing a calculation of the vorticity of a spacetime to measure the twisting an observer would experience near a black hole because of differential frame dragging. Noora implemented this using a next-generation numerical-relativity code called SpECTRE, with the goal of using it to help explore the behavior of warped spacetime with high-accuracy simulations of binary black holes. Noora has presented her work at many different venues, including the American Physical Society (APS) and Southern California Conferences for Undergraduate Research (SCCUR). She completed her 2021 Summer Research Experience for Undergraduates program at Washington State University. 


Thuan Truong

Thuan Truong

Thuan graduated from California State University, Fullerton in Spring 2022 with bachelor’s degree in Computer Engineering. He obtained several honors and awards including winning the ECS Showcase and receiving “Best Project in Computer Engineering”. As a member of the senior design project, Thuan worked with team members to produce an innovative and affordable ROV (Remotely Operated Underwater Vehicle) that can be used for marine expeditions and research. He also worked with students in the Computer Engineering program regarding the handover of the ROV project. Financial support provided from the LSAMP program allowed Thuan to focus and dedicate more time to his research with Dr. Mahto and working on the ROV. Researching a memristor based pixel cell using Ledit has provided Thuan with invaluable experience as an engineer.