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Senior Projects

2016 Senior Project is the culmination of a student’s learning experience at Ross School. Through the execution of Senior Project, students embody their passions in a process and product that integrate such Ross School principles as multiple intelligences, cultural/historical context, personal reflection, application of technology, and pursuit of excellence. The main components of the Senior Project are the Process Folio, the Final Product, and the Presentation. The relationship between the student and his or her Senior Project mentor is critical to the evolution and realization of the project. Ross faculty members serve as Senior Project mentors, performing as facilitators, advisors, editors, critics, and advocates. At the conclusion of the Senior Project, students have deeper insight into themselves as learners and producers.

EugĂŞnia A. Affonso Marajoara Through Times Mentor: Therese Lichtenstein Domains: Cultural History, World Languages and Literature: English, Visual Arts Faculty: Jennifer Cross For my Senior Project, I decided to design my own collection of scarves with patterns inspired by the ones that were made on ceramic pots by a Brazilian pre-Columbian Indian tribe called Marajoara. My objective is to come up with both the historical context/history of the tribe (how the society was organized, symbolism, etc.) and my designing process itself, explaining the techniques I used to create the scarves. This is, in other words, my own contemporary version of their patterns, a combination between two passions of mine, scarves and fashion, and a tribute to my home country.

Bruno Paolino Alves Body-Mind Connection Mentor: Wes Howard Domains: Wellness, World Languages and Literature: English, Science Faculty: Linda Hanrahan For my Senior Project I plan to study, learn, and practice different styles of yoga. I will practice three different types of yoga for one month each to see how each type of yoga changes my mood and my physical performance during my normal daily routine. I will present my results in the form of a book, a video, and graphs about my performances. The book will contain information about yoga, each exercise, and my feelings on the project; graphs about my performances; and the journal that I will keep for three months. The video will contain video logs that I will do during the three months of activity and an interview with two yoga professionals.

Malik Basnight Fag Furniture Mentor: Jon Mulhern Domain: Visual Arts Faculty: Wes Howard I designed and constructed chairs using woodwork, welding, and fabrication. The outcome is a furniture set consisting of four chairs as sculptures. Each piece of furniture will revolve around a large concept of the LGBT community.

Julia Benedetti Rutzen Sustainable Development and Its Influence on Fashion: Ethical and Aesthetic Mentor: Therese Lichtenstein Domains: Visual Arts, World Languages and Literature: English, Science Faculty: Carleton Schade As an initiation for a possible future career pursuit, I chose to study fashion and sustainability. The goal was to bring awareness to a subject much talked about but hardly put into action because of various reasons: lack of economic resources, lack of knowledge in the area, and most frequently, sleazy competition. The unethical practices that involve its maintenance are still deeply rooted in the business means of contemporary society. For my Senior Project, I developed a research paper about three main ideas of sustainability: to be ecologically correct, socially fair, and economically affordable. I designed a sustainable clothing collection to visualize my discoveries and to further understand the applications of new practices for this industry. My installation is a combination of the knowledge I want to share and the solutions I found for creating sustainable clothing expressed in artistic means.


Sailor Brinkley Cook The Weight of Being a Woman Mentor: Alexis Martino Domains: Cultural History, Media Studies Faculty: Sam Yarabek The weight of being a woman is a multimedia study and exhibition on female body image in society and media. I interviewed girls of different ages, cultures, and situations. Each girl has a unique story, outlook, and understanding of body image and shares their opinions and breakthroughs with me via video interview. I show the audience that body image issues are not restricted to one certain body type through powerful imagery and an eye-opening film. Through this project I learned advanced photography and videography skills as well as being able to thoroughly study body image issues among women my age.

Constance Caiola My Pursuit to/of Happiness Mentor: Carleton Schade Domains: Science, Wellness Faculty: Ed Gaias For my project I decided to embark on a journey to my own “pursuit of happiness.” I wanted to figure out how one can become truly happy or become happier through a series of different steps. I decided to share my journey through a website that will be shown through a screen recording/tutorial of myself going through it, and explaining all of the content.

Natalia Calcaneo Part of Us Mentor: Ned Smyth Domain: Visual Arts Faculty: Brianna Ashe For my Senior Project, I made an installation of sculptures representing humans as Mind, Body, and Spirit. I’m questioning the idea that humans are different or superior to animals. I feel, that in the end, we may retain more similarities to animals than we may think. Mind, represented as the jaguar head, is a traditional symbol in Mexican culture, alluding to ferocity. Body, represented by the female torso, resembles the Mother Earth, the feminine and fertility. And Spirit, represented as paper cranes, alludes to freedom, and at the same time love, friendship, and our spirit. For my product, I have “incorporated” these three pieces in order to exemplify our non-unity.

Deborah Casares The Royal Institute Animal Rescue Mentor: Kevin Pomerleau Domain: Visual Arts Faculty: Brianna Ashe I chose to focus on the rescue of beagles from the Royal Institute in São Paulo. It had worldwide projection in the media and was granted an international award for animal rights, resulting in new animal rights laws in the state of São Paulo, where I was born. São Paulo was the first state in Latin America to forbid tests on animals for cosmetics and


cleaning products. I have created a series of watercolors and prepared them in an informative storybook to express the suffering of these animals. Even though I am new to the medium, through research and practice I have learned many new techniques. The book portrays several beagles in a range of conditions to illustrate the cornerstone of this story. This subject is relevant to me because I feel passionate about animal rights. Many people, like us students, support companies which test their products on animals without even knowing it. I chose Ross because of its artistic approach to its studies and its focus on social issues. The purpose of my project is to trigger a debate among students and have my peers question the products that they use.

Isoo Chang Inside Out Mentor: Lance Sun Domain: Visual Arts Faculty: Gerard Doyle For my Senior Project, I wanted to reflect on my past memories. I built three structures outside Senior Building 1-7 and decorated the rooms so that each of them reflected certain memories of mine. One of my rooms is based on my memory from age 6, and contains the themes of delight, carefreeness, and coziness. The second room, based on age 14, represents the time when I frequently moved around different countries and changed schools. In other words, it was a time when I often felt unsettled or isolated from being in new environments. It incorporates themes of loneliness and emptiness. The last room is based on age 17 and my experience during the last year of high school and heading toward the future. Throughout the year and the Senior Project process, I have been experiencing the most dynamic emotional shifts. For that reason, the themes of this room are uncertainty and dreaminess.

Mark Cheng Cab and Grab—A Short Film Mentor: Ivan Salcedo Domain: Media Studies Faculty: Alexis Martino Film can simply be described as a series of images and sounds, but to me it is the most powerful and vivid form of storytelling. Everybody knows the simplest way to be happy is to be themselves and enjoy every moment. One goal that I pursue as an artist is to make film that makes people laugh. For my Senior Project, I am producing a 10-minutelong dark comedy short film. It is a story about two robbers, Roddy and Bernie, who rob tourists in East Hampton, NY. But this time, they rob the wrong guy—Simon, a drug dealer’s brother.

John (Cole) Colby The Art of Ski Building Mentor: Jon Mulhern Domains: Visual Arts, Technology Faculty: Shelby Raebeck I built two pairs of skis by hand out of a laminate of wood, fiberglass, Kevlar, and a plastic polymer material. The core is made from a composite of maple and poplar. The ski uses the stiffer and denser maple on the inside edge in order to promote better edge hold when making turns. This specific differentiation of wood placement has never been done before and will be interesting to test for the first time.


Jeff Cui Air Purifier Construction Mentor: Anna Strong Domain: Science Faculty: Carleton Schade Advanced technology is a double-edged sword: even though the development of technology improves the quality of life, certain technologies have side effects that negatively impact the quality of life. Fossil fuels, for example, allow us to drive cars, which enhance the quality of our lives, but burning fossil fuels leads to huge emission of toxins into the air. The air quality gradually raises concerns about environmental issues. To improve indoor air and embody the Ross value of sustainability, for my Senior Project, I’ve chosen to create an air purifier. The goal of my product was to improve air quality and purify the toxic components in air. Slogans on the air purifier illustrate the effort to raise our awareness of environmental issues. Flowers can be very sensitive to the concentration of toxins; therefore, I used flowers as an indicator of toxins such as sulfur dioxide. I used a laser that emits light as an indicator for visible dust in the experiment when I tested the effects of my air purifier. I am willing to create an affordable air purifier that is lower than the average price of air purifiers in the market.

Israa Dhaif Between the Lines Mentor: Brianna Ashe Domains: Cultural History, Visual Arts Faculty: Kevin Pomerleau The project is a based on the research of facial art/tattoos of different countries. Based on the research, I will conduct face-painting sketches that show the facial art of each country. Behind each line, dot, and symbol there is a relevant importance to the country and its tradition and culture.

Elsa Diaw Reach Mentor: Dr. David Morgan Domains: Science, Technology Faculty: Urban Reininger For my project I am building a 3D printed prosthetic arm that is controlled by the electrical signals that go from your brain to your muscles. I will be using Surface Electromyography (sEMG), which is a device that records electrical signals produced by the movement of muscles. The received signals from sEMG will be used in a code to move the prosthetic arm. The purpose of this project is to show how new advancements in technology can be used to improve the lives of the people who have lost a limb.

Elia Doyle Collision of the Senses Mentor: Brianna Ashe Domain: Visual Arts Faculty: Therese Lichtenstein My project is a visual representation of my experience with synesthesia, a condition that affects one in 2,000 people. Synesthesia is a blending or union of the senses and affects the way they are perceived inside the brain. I created a series of watercolors and sculptures in order to display my own experience with synesthesia.


Emma-Scott Egbert Salad Days Mentor: Brianna Ashe Domain: Visual Arts Faculty: Ed Gaias I have designed and produced a line of T-shirts portraying the importance of one’s youth. Made completely from organic cotton, the words or expressions are designed to inspire people to understand and appreciate the importance of one’s youth. The multistep process included building a silkscreen unit of my own, drawing out the designs onto the screen, and handprinting each design onto each T-shirt.

Emma Engel Waves That Hold Me Mentor: Sheryl Hastalis Domains: Performing Arts, Visual Arts Consultant: Lida Winfield Faculty: Therese Lichtenstein For my Senior Project I have choreographed a three-part dance, with an animated visual arts component. My dance piece reflects my relationship and view of the world as expressed through my relationship with the ocean. As a piece of driftwood gets tossed among the ocean waves, arriving on shore, molded by its journey, this dance reflects my life experience of growth.

Jonas Erdmann The Mental Handbook: A Look at the Psychology of Tennis Mentors: Kevin Snyder, Mark Tompkins Domains: Wellness, Cultural History, World Languages and Literature: English Faculty: Sam Yarabek The main product for my Senior Project will be a Mental Handbook that shows different methods to improve the mental game of tennis. Besides the Mental Handbook, I will create a questionnaire about the importance of psychology in tennis and to get to know how much time tennis players actually spend to practice their mental game off the court. The questionnaire is more like the base of my whole project, which also includes a second product, which will be an analysis of how the methods I described in the Mental Handbook work out when I teach them to tennis players at different clubs.

Mark Frenzel-Sulyok Taking Stock Mentor: Bob Eldi Domain: Mathematics Faculty: Richard Rainville For my Senior Project, I created a several stock portfolios that vary in risk. Since the money is what drives this nation and most of the world, I was interested in taking part in this catalyst of change. The objective of the project was to learn how the stock market functions; in relation to global events, good or poor financial results, and/or any other events that stimulate change in the market. For me this project was about more than just learning though, it is about experiencing first hand how the stock market works, and determining whether this is in fact a career path that I want to take. Additionally in my project I am studying generally the history of the trading shares in companies, and specifically the economic history of the particular companies that I have “invested” my money into. The reason for this 6

is that I believe that it is important to understand the context of a company so that I can use better judgment when managing my portfolios.

Xin (Olivia) Gan History of Woman’s Shoes Throughout Chinese History Mentor: Kevin Pomerleau Domain: Visual Arts Faculty: Kyle Helke I have studied art for several years at Ross School, and I love to explore different techniques. I have used my Senior Project as an opportunity to gain knowledge of different women’s footwear throughout Chinese history. Running large factories, my parents offered me extraordinary insight into the designing and production of shoes. Therefore, I have always had a passion for designing and creating shoes. I decided to use watercolors to create these paintings because I feel the soft, translucent colors best represent the light pigments and organic materials that these shoes are made of. As a result, I hope to inform viewers of the history of woman’s shoes and learn a bit about this subject myself.

Manli Gao Mapping the History of U.S./China Trade Mentor: Richard Rainville Domains: Cultural History, Mathematics Faculty: Jennifer Cross We are living in a society in which international trade affects everyone. Almost everyone buys products that are made in different countries, especially China. However, when did the “Made in China” phenomenon prevail in the United States? For my Senior Project, I will investigate the international trade between China and the United States. I will make eight maps that show the changes of different products traded between America and China from 1949 to the present, at the same time mapping the original export locations of different products.

Denise Garcia The Soleful Runner Mentor: Cathy Yun Domains: Wellness, Visual Arts Faculty: Chelsea Audibert For my project idea, I drew inspiration from one single picture I took while in Sri Lanka; it was of a teenage boy running a 5k race with no shoes on an extremely hot day. I sympathized with this young man because I knew what it was like to run in hot weather, but couldn’t imagine my love for running would be as strong as it is if I had to run barefoot on steaming hot pavement. From this picture, I came up with my project. I have worked on collecting shoes for a nonprofit organization called Soles4Souls, which provides shoes to people around the world. I realized the dangers and illness that people could contract and wanted to do my part to try and better the global community; from this experience I also decided to run every day and log my experience in a written journal, and I decided to create a photography book that would capture and express the essence and experience of my Senior Project and my inspiration.


Ioannis (Yanni) Clifford Nikolaos Bacchus-Giannakopoulos Off the Poster and into My Hands: The 1959 Gibson Les Paul Mentor: Rob Davies, Jon Mulhern Domains: Visual Arts, Performing Arts, Science, Technology Faculty: Gerard Doyle In my Senior Project, I attempted to replicate the world’s most expensive and sought-after solid body electric guitar, the 1959 Gibson Les Paul. I will be using all historically accurate timber, hardware, and electronics to recreate the classic tone that pushed guitar playing forward in the late 1960s by players such as Mike Bloomfield, Jeff Beck, Keith Richards, Jimmy Page, and so on. This original model is often priced at anywhere between $450,000 to $1.2 million dollars, and has been the poster on my closet door since I was nine years old.

Filipp Gorodetskiy Interchangeable Housing Mentor: Ned Smyth Domain: Visual Arts Faculty: Jon Mulhern For my Senior Project at Ross School, I am designing an architectural system of prefab units fabricated from metal containers. I have designed six separate and unique architectural elements that can be put together in multiple ways. Using these prefab units, I have created 3D designs for a single-family dwelling, a multi-dwelling apartment building, and an industrial facility. Each of these designs are created using these same essential building blocks.

Tong Gu Fashion as It Is for Me Mentor: Nicole Berberena Domain: Visual Arts Faculty: Jennifer Cross My Senior Project is three pieces of clothing designed to represent my thinking process. The project includes not only fashion design but also fashion photography, styling, and sewing. The first stage of my thinking process is collecting the pieces. In this stage, I extract the essences of knowledge that I have learned before and gather them together. The reflection of stage one in my project is a black garment with a heavy strapless top. The bottom is soft black sheer fabric, which has an opening on the side. The fabric of the top was some leftover fabric from the previous year. To create this look, I challenged myself with the limited amount of fabric and the complexity of the draped pattern. Also, the garment contains the context of “using old knowledge (fabric scraps) to create something new and better (garment).” The second stage of my thinking process is construction. This stage shows how I put the segments of thoughts in a certain order and created a blueprint in my mind. In my project, I created a top with 10 yards of white cotton trim, grey shorts, and folded, fan-shaped belt. The trim was woven in a geometrical way. They were crossed in a particular pattern to indicate the theme of “construction.” I also included newspaper as fabric in this piece since the words and sentences on them help to represent the building of ideas. The third piece is used to represent my final stage of thinking, which is the completed and advanced product. In this piece, I am using the fundamental and basic garment, the white dress shirt. I designed and reshaped multiple shirts to create a modern dress. The structure got changed, and so does the form of it. It is still clear that the dress is transformed from white shirts but it is totally different and refreshing. The point of this piece is to indicate my essential


idea—my thinking process, using new and pre-existing knowledge and materials to create a brand new and improved idea. Other than these three pieces, I will do a set of photography to indicate the form of a look book. I will complete the photo shoot by myself and ask my friends to be the models.

Jeremy Guan Shadows of Anxiety Mentor: Carol Crane Domains: Visual Arts, Media Studies Faculty: Jennifer Cross For my Senior Project, I have tried to express my anxiety about my senior year. Many things stress me such as the college admissions, ACT scores, and my exhausting basketball schedule. During the same time, global issues such as global warming and terrorism have become much more severe. I created a mixed media installation about teenager anxiety.

Nicholas Gunther Nicholas Gunther Tennis Project Mentor: Ben Bonaventura Domains: Wellness, Technology Faculty: Vinicius Carmo For my Senior Project, I will be creating a website consisting of instructional videos on how to teach a young kid how to play tennis. Each stroke will have more than three videos showing you how to teach the kid how to hit a ball the correct way. This website will be nonprofit as a practice of community service because my original project was to teach underprivileged kids tennis for free, but then finding the kids and making them come to my program was a lot harder than I thought.

Fernanda Gutierrez Mello Vianna Unconscious Sociology Mentor: Kyle Helke Domains: Cultural History, World Languages and Literature: English, Media Studies Faculty: Brianna Ashe For my Senior Project, I wrote a book about sociology in a didactic but simple, dynamic way. The book talks about the major concepts of the field, including the relationship between individual and society, the process of socialization, culture and ideology, role of work, capitalism, human rights, stratification, inequality, and social change. My goal is not only to teach what I’ve learned so far about sociology, which is my true passion, but also to show its extreme relevance in the world, contradicting the fact that most people and schools take this area for granted and do not address it with such importance. ‘‘Unconscious Sociology’’ will make you realize the presence of sociology and its aspects in everything you do, unconsciously or not, and better understand the historical facts that shaped the society you live in and, consequently, your life.


Ashley (Mingyun) Hao Fashion Sculpture Mentor: Therese Lichtenstein Domain: Visual Arts Faculty: Anna Castellazzi For my Senior Project, I have created an original fashion/sculpture collection consisting of three pieces that merge natural organic shapes with artificial materials. I have incorporated unconventional materials including wire mesh, shells, wood, sequins, and other materials in a unique manner. The three fashion/sculptures will be presented on mannequins, which function as a base and will represent specific natural forms in nature including flowers, the forest, and seashells in both a realistic and abstract manner.

Shanshan He And Still, They Dance Mentors: Maria Maciak, Dr. David Morgan Domains: Cultural History, Visual Arts, Science, Media Studies, Technology Faculty: Carrie Clark My Senior Project is inspired by the beauty and the grand diversity of the nudibranch, which held me in awe since I assisted in marine research in the Solomon Islands. Last summer I applied for an internship at a marine laboratory in Zavora, Mozambique, an area relatively unexplored in terms of nudibranch research. I experienced the grand diversity of the nudibranchs, but also gained an understanding of the ecology, culture, economics, and politics of Mozambique. For my Senior Project, I am building a website that presents the interconnections between macro and micro aspects of sustainability. I will also exhibit oil paintings aimed to describe texture and colors of these amazing creatures. I want to show the audience how dramatic and fragile this marine species is, as well as how it connects to the ecosystems and human society.

Yuhuai (Hawke) Huang “The Third Arm�: An Assistive Tool for Handicapped Mentor: Anna Strong Domain: Science Faculty: Andrew Kirk I was once inspired by a Chinese student who lost his arms when he was eight. For the past 10 years he has been practicing his feet and finally he can use his feet to finish all the works neatly. However, for the people who lose their arms in their late life, they may not be able to control their feet so well. Therefore, for my Senior Project, I made an assistive tool as a substitute for hands. The goal of this tool is to help these handicapped people to eat without assistance.

Sarah Jannetti Harnessing Good Intentions Mentor: Carrie Clark Domain: Cultural History Faculty: Carleton Schade During my sophomore year of high school I began developing a business idea to assist charities using a powerful and underutilized asset: free labor. Then, I applied for 501(c)(3), or tax-exempt status, for my organization. When I was officially accepted last year, I began to design and promote my website, Essentially,


CharityLegs connects high school student volunteers with charitable organizations. Charities can visit the website and post opportunities for students to earn credit for community service.

Tommy Jerido Project Wild: A Journey to Become a Wildlife Rehabilitator Mentor: Kimberly Borsack Domains: Science, Media Studies Faculty: Therese Lichtenstein For my Senior Project, I volunteered at the Evelyn Alexander Wildlife Center, Inc., as an animal care volunteer. I had the opportunity to clean cages and bedding, and refresh food and water. I was also able to give injured wild animals intensive, time-consuming care like hand-feeding, preparing formulas and slurry, and basic medical care. I also helped monitor the animals’ health, observed behavior, and provided important feedback to staff. From this, I was able to take the necessary steps to obtain my license as a certified wildlife rehabilitator. As an additional part of my Senior Project, I also made intensive study support materials based directly on the information assessed on the wildlife rehabilitator licensing exam. This not only helped me, but with my new connections in the field, I hope to share these study materials with fellow students also looking to take the exam.

Dillon Kab Connecs Mentor: Carrie Clark Domain: Cultural History Faculty: Sam Yarabek “Eventually everything connects—people, ideas, objects . . . the quality of the connections is the key to quality per se.” —Charles Eames Inspired by Eames’s perspective, I have created a company, Connecs, to increase visibility, brand, and organizational awareness for nonprofits through development of new fundraising products and programs. Connecs provides opportunities to raise awareness that will reach and persuade the consumer to contribute. The first program I created, Ties for a Cure, is designed for the Max Cure Foundation, a pediatric cancer charity. The ties are sold for $25, and 85% of the gross revenue is used to provide financial support for families with a child battling cancer at Stony Brook Pediatric Cancer Center. Currently, the ties are sold online, at local festivals, and in two stores in Southampton. I hope to expand Connecs with new programs and products to help other nonprofits. Please go to or for more information.

Alex Kang Songs and Variation Mentor: Levi Stribling Domains: Performing Arts, Science Faculty: Kyle Helke For my Senior Project, I decided to choose five songs composed by Korean New Age musician Yiruma and make slight variations into the base parts of the songs. Over the summer, I spent time recomposing the base part of the songs in my own favor, but yet, still not too far off from the original version of the songs, which I will be performing. Currently, I am in the process of composing the bridge parts which will maybe be used to link the songs to each other.


Karen Kikuta Cultural Cobweb Mentor: Jon Mulhern Domains: Cultural History, Visual Arts Faculty: Therese Lichtenstein I created an installation at school with a full-size labyrinth, posters, and an interactive rope that will metaphorically represent different cultures, promote peace, and transmit the idea that we are all humans and we all go to the same place at the end.

Serena Kim In Gratitude Mentor: Jennifer Cross Domain: Visual Arts Faculty: Jon Mulhern For my Senior Project, I will paint series of portraits of teachers that I have had since I came to Ross School. Also, I researched a number of 20th-century and contemporary artists who are known for their portraits, including Egon Schiele, Alice Neel, Lucien Freud, Chuck Close, and Eizabeth Peyton, and I decided to find my own style that used a combination of realistic and abstract elements. I was focusing on capturing the body language and personality of the person as well.

Veronica Ko Social Entrepreneurship Mentor: Carrie Clark Domain: Cultural History Faculty: Anna Strong For my Senior Project, I did a research paper on social entrepreneurship profiling a number of case studies. I chose this topic because I am concerned about the world around us, and very aware of the differences that we can make to create a better life for both others and ourselves. I researched several companies and individuals, learning what they have done to make social changes through business techniques. We live in a world where 3 billion people are still living on less than $2.50 per day. It is important for us to raise awareness and take actions in solving social and environmental problems.

Elizaveta Kotova Self Mentor: Alexis Martino Domains: Media Studies, World Languages and Literature: English Faculty: Therese Lichtenstein In my Senior Project I wanted to connect my own philosophy about the self together with 21 stories of people from different cultures, incomes, ages, and races. After personal information, each of the participants is evaluated on one of the terms such as mind, ego, and soul. As a final product, I have created a book that contains a total of 21 interviews in three different chapters: mind, soul and ego. The book ends with a self-evaluation to make a connection with the reader on a personal level.


Alex LaPierre The Things We Tell Each Other Mentors: Sam Yarabek, Noah Engel Domains: World Languages and Literature: English, Media Studies Faculty: Junellen Tiska For my Senior Project, I filmed and edited a documentary. This film is my story about what happened to me when I was 14 months old. I interviewed family members and close family friends about it and about their sides of the story. I’ve researched and collected photos, interviews, and home videos and have put them together into a short documentary. I wanted to figure out my story and my truths behind everyone else’s truths.

Yini (Dorothy) Li Tone to the Window Mentor: Marty Cooper Domains: Science, Performing Arts Faculty: Lance Sun The first music therapy started in 1789, and music therapy has continued to gain support until now. Luckily, by chance I met an autistic boy, and I started to teach him piano. This was a communication process. I found out music is a worldwide language for every creature in the world, so I want to know more about how music affects those special children, and I want to try to compose three music pieces for autistic children.

Lenox Loo The Goalkeeper Handbook Mentor: Kevin Snyder Domains: Wellness, World Languages and Literature: English Faculty: Howard Brown I wrote a book that is designed to teach young and aspiring soccer players to hone their skills to become a better and more mature goalkeeper. The book teaches physical skills and technique as well as the mental game. My book also provides the drills and explains the skills to progress to the next level of the game. I hope that with this book I can give young players a resource that I never had when I started out playing soccer.

Qianwen Lu Jewelry Design Mentor: Kristine Hart Domain: Visual Arts Faculty: Nicole Berberena For my Senior Project, I made four pieces of jewelry. Each product represents different elements from my school years at Ross. The first product is a bracelet, which is fresh, new, and beautiful. The second piece is a necklace, which represents friendship and spring. The third product is a bracelet that symbolizes my junior year, incorporating elements of happiness and sweetness. The last piece is a necklace, which represents my peaceful and serene moments of senior year.


Guoxuan (Allen) Mao Lupu Bridge Model Mentor: Andrew Kirk Domain: Visual Arts Faculty: Jon Mulhern I built a bridge model based on the world’s second-longest steel arch bridge called Lupu Bridge, which is a through arch bridge over the Huangpu River in Shanghai, China, connecting Pudong and Luwan Districts. In my hometown, Shanghai, it’s one of the most spectacular landmarks of architecture, which I’m extraordinarily proud of. I wanted to establish the model of it as authentic as possible to display this amazing bridge to people.

Maria Mekdessi The Reflections of the Holocaust Survivors Mentor: Jennifer Cross Domains: Visual Arts, Cultural History Faculty: Therese Lichtenstein In my Senior Project, I wanted to do something that connected to my passion for art as well as my interest in the topic of Holocaust survivors. I read books and watched movies and documentaries about survivors, and I chose four of them to be part of my project. Through my research, I got to know about their lives and what they felt. I did portraits of each of them with symbolic backgrounds. I basically tried to tell their stories through the painting and to transmit what they felt. For my work to be more truthful, I want people to get emotionally involved with the paintings, the same way as I did as I painted them. I want people to reflect on how they could be in the survivors’ places too. In addition to the paintings, I will present other information about various ways the Holocaust has been commemorated.

Katie Morgan Inequality by the Numbers Mentor: Kerrie Tinsley-Stribling Domains: Media Studies, Technology, Visual Arts, Cultural History Faculty: Susan Walker At this time in history, feminism as a movement has reached a point where many question its necessity. There’s a common belief that the goal of gender equality has already been achieved, and nothing is left to be changed. However, this is not only untrue, it is also a potentially dangerous assumption that promotes complacency. This exhibit uses data to highlight gender inequality in various realms of society, with visualizations that break down information in a way that is accessible and understandable to the general public. It aims to represent data in a way that stirs a reaction and sparks understanding.

Abigail Okin What’s Going On? Mentor: Ivan Salcedo Domains: World Languages and Literature: English, Cultural History, Performing Arts, Media Studies Faculty: Kyle Helke When trying to think of an idea for Senior Project, I wanted to do a project that combined a multitude of my passions. After debating among numerous ideas, I settled on one. I wrote, hosted, and edited an episode of my own talk and news-satire show. It is the perfect combination of my love of writing, politics, comedy, and television. It is also something I always wanted to attempt, although I am relatively inexperienced in all aspects of the project. The episode includes humorous perspectives on current events, an interview, and a comedy sketch. 14

Jodie Paffrath Planet Earth Table Mentor: Ned Smyth Domain: Visual Arts Faculty: Jon Mulhern For my Senior Project, I designed and made a coffee table that glows in the dark. In the middle of the table, I carved in the Earth and filled the oceans with a mixture of glue, a little blue acrylic paint, and a powder that glows blue in the dark. Going out from middle, I drilled a lot of holes in different sizes and filled them with the glue mix too, but used turquoise, some red, and some yellow paint with it. This table is a reminder of how unique and complex the world that we live in is, and that in order to maintain the beautiful nature of this planet we have to act soon by being more sustainable.

Savanah Phillips Why We Dance Mentor: Jennifer Cross Domains: Visual Arts, Cultural History Faculty: Therese Lichtenstein My summers are spent traveling around the country and competing in powwows almost every weekend. I’ve been dancing since I was very young and spent my childhood traveling with my family. My goal is to educate people as best I can on the meaning of these dances and the impact this lifestyle has on Native American people. For my Senior Project, I am creating an installation to share the world of powwow and what it means to indigenous people. My installation would include footage of myself dancing at powwows as well as footage of various powwows across the country. Information about the origin and creation stories of different dances will also be included, as well as my own artwork of these styles of Native American dance. Quotes about personal powwow stories from dancers of all ages and from different tribes will also be shared, along with a performance of several styles of dance.

Shuting Qi Ecosystem of Business: Collectivization Mentor: Carrie Clark Domains: Cultural History, Mathematics Faculty: Mark Foard Based on my interest in social studies, I sought out the business opportunity of collectivization of printing and copy shop using the Online to Offline (O2O) model. For my Senior Project, I decided to write a business plan about the collectivization of a printing and copy shop for seed funding. I did so by reading critical reports, studying both successful and failed cases, and making predictions based on news and politics. To be considered, this business plan could be improved by more accurate data that I have not been able to find at this point.

Amber Qian Bagel & 粼 (Zhou) Mentor: Cathy Yun Domains: Wellness, Visual Arts Faculty: Liz Dobbs For my Senior Project, I created an ebook as a recourse and guidance for Ross School students who may encounter struggles in managing health and well-being through food. My book is made up of four chapters that describe the challenges I experienced in adapting to the foods, specifically breakfast, of my new culture and how I overcame these 15

challenges by being more conscious of a healthy way of eating. How my breakfast evolved over the past three years illustrates both the difficulties students adjusting to a new culture might experience as well as the opportunities for growth in managing personal wellness.

Ruoshui (Diane) Rao Mondrian in Pleats Mentor: Therese Lichtenstein Domains: Visual Arts, Cultural History Faculty: Carleton Schade Fashion has always fascinated me; therefore, I decided to create a line of garments for my Senior Project. My inspiration came from the paintings of the Dutch modernist painter Piet Mondrian, whose bold colors and interlaced lines caught my eyes the moment I saw his paintings. I connected traditional modernist painting forms with contemporary clothing design to produce a group of original pieces that are variations on a theme.

Beatriz Rigueira South American Civilizations Tour Guide Mentor: Andrew Kirk Domains: Cultural History, Science Faculty: Carrie Clark For my Senior Project, I wrote a book in the format of a tour guide talking about ancient South American civilizations. I basically chose three ancient civilizations that live or used to live in South America before colonization had a major impact on their culture and society, and that left important archaeological sites and remains that are being explored today. I ended up choosing the Incas, Indigenous Brazilian, and the Maya. Each civilization represents a chapter, and each chapter talks about three different archaeological sites of that culture that was left behind as well as a brief description of the customs of that specific society. In the book, I included pictures, maps, descriptions, and recommended routes and spots for each archaeological site.

Bernardo Sá 20 Sci-Fis That You Should Watch Before I Die Mentor: Ivan Salcedo Domains: Media Studies, World Languages and Literature: English Faculty: Dan Roe As far back as I can remember, movies have been a big part of my life. For my Senior Project, I wanted to work on something related to cinema; however, I am not interested in making films, so I decided to focus my project on movie criticism. The science fiction genre has always fascinated me because it shows how far the human imagination can go, and since it is probably my favorite genre, I have decided to critique 20 “must watch” science fiction films.

Frances Sacks Neuropsychological Novella Mentor: Carleton Schade Domains: Science, World Languages and Literature: Engish Faculty: Sam Yarabek In The Working Brain, Alexander Luria, the father of neuropsychology, describes three “functional units,” each composed of three “cortical zones” in the brain, whose participation are necessary for carrying out any mental 16

behavior. I have attempted to understand and articulate Luria’s neuronal division of labor (also utilizing the results of more contemporary research) by portraying each zone as the protagonist in one of nine interrelated short stories. Every story ostensibly describes the role of its main character in planning and committing an assassination. In reality, each protagonist is the personification of a functional unit in the brain of a single assassin during the microseconds before pulling the trigger.

Kendall Scala Our Fixes Mentor: Kerrie Tinsley-Stribling Domains: Cultural History, World Languages and Literature: English, Science Faculty: Susan Walker I have created a book that integrates the science behind addiction and the stories of different addicts with four different addictions: drug, alcohol, food, and gaming/technology. I have chosen to do this project because addiction runs in my family and my mom is an addict. Addiction has affected my life immensely, and I want to further educate myself and other people on addiction through my book.

Misuzu Shibano Guts Mentors: Dr. David Morgan, Ivan Salcedo Domain: Media Studies Faculty: Jennifer Cross This is a three-minute experimental clay animation. While the story is about a tiny creature’s adventure in a monster’s body, the main focus of the film is the implied information that it communicates. As an international boarding student at Ross, I have faced problems such as loneliness and isolation, language and cultural barriers, and homesickness. I used Claymation as a medium to express my feelings of facing these problems in a subtle and abstract way. Adjusting puppets made from clay and wire in settings made with mixed media, I built their movements and captured the movements frame by frame. Combining the movements of puppets with the color of the scenes, sound effects, and music, I attempted to create an atmosphere of loneliness. My goal is to communicate that international boarding students feel more than what they seem to feel.

Gurkan Sipahioglu Lonicera World Hotel Mentor: Ned Smyth Domain: Visual Arts Faculty: Sam Butler For my Senior Project, I designed a five-star hotel that has everything a five-star hotel should have. I drew all three floor plans and a façade of the hotel. The hotel has about 369 rooms, more or less. The plan and façade are drawn in 1/8 scale, which makes the building very huge.


Sara Stewart Matters de la Corazón Mentor: Dr. David Morgan Domains: Science, World Languages and Literature: English Faculty: Andrew Kirk For the objective of my Senior Project, I created a hands-on bilingual, educational experience for people of all ages, but specifically high school students. The purpose of this project is to learn and explore the functions of the human heart. My project consisted of two parts: a 3D-printed heart and a study kit. The life-sized, 3D-printed heart was created from a CT scan, to guarantee realistic characteristics and dimensions. The study kit I created contains flashcards, diagrams, and quizzes to teach and to test the student’s understanding of the heart and its functions. The study kit is available in both English and Spanish.

Gonzalo Suarez Proud Mentors: Jon Mulhern, Ivan Salcedo Domains: Visual Arts, Cultural History Faculty: Lisa Gillespie My project will be a visual representation of what I feel when I think about Hispanic culture. I made three-dimensional wooden letters containing images of what makes me proud regarding Hispanic/Latin culture.

Isabel Timerman War of Walls Mentor: Noah Engel Domain: Media Studies Faculty: Carrie Clark War of Walls is a documentary on graffiti/street art that exists all over the streets of Buenos Aires, Argentina. This film discusses the shift from political street art during times of chaos to more contemporary street art that is done by artists to increase the vibrancy of the city and make it more beautiful. This film also touches on subjects that are very crucial when exploring the history of Argentina. The people interviewed were political figures, professors, citizens of Buenos Aires, and street artists themselves. Some of these people endured years of hardship during events such as the Dirty War and the economic collapse that fractured so many people. These people are here to tell their stories, or to explain why street art has made such profound impact on people all over Argentina, especially during times of complete and total havoc.

Gonzalo Trapote Cooking Book Mentor: Kerrie Tinsley-Stribling Domains: Wellness, World Languages and Literature: English Faculty: Kevin Snyder In this Senior Project, I am going to create a cookbook. I am going to cook 15 American recipes and make a book with all the steps of how to cook. Each recipe is going to have a picture and all the steps to accomplish it. I am doing this because it has been the dream of my life to learn how to cook. This cookbook is going to be for beginners.


Nutsa Ugulava Creative Minds Mentor: Lisa Gillespie Domains: Visual Arts, Science Faculty: Brianna Ashe My Senior Project is about analyzing paintings done by children diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder. I taught classes at a school for autism in New York City and collected the children’s artwork. With the help of an art therapist, I analyzed their work according to their personalities. I made an installation showing their work and created an atmosphere that gives the feeling that I got while working with these children. I also made little zines (pamphlets) where I further explain my analysis and what I learned from these children.

Fei Wade Eco-Lux Hotelier Mentor: Wes Howard Domains: Cultural History, Science, Wellness Faculty: John Tracey I have created a business plan for a company providing environmentally friendly, sustainable, luxury villas for rent throughout Palm Springs, CA. The green initiatives laid out in the business plan are implemented on a small-scale model by remodeling a property in Palm Springs. I am using this property as proof of concept for the company and pitching the business plan for my company during my Senior Project presentation.

Alexandra Waldman Sand and Sea Mentor: Alexis Martino Domain: Visual Arts Faculty: Ed Gaias I embarked upon my Senior Project, “Sand and Sea,� at the beginning of the summer, with the goal of capturing a thousand photographs of the ocean and beaches surrounding my home on Long Island. The images are intended to evoke feelings through photography. The collection is not meant as a cultural examination, but as a body of art to represent an expression of emotion, as well as incite concern about the sustainability of our oceans. This project focuses on varying perspectives of the ocean, emphasizing different tides, lighting, and angles ranging from sizable crashing waves to barely a ripple. Personally, I feel most connected to nature when I am diving into the waves and being pulled by the natural current of the water. As I am immersed in glistening saltwater, I am motionless as the waves takes over the rhythms of my body. In this moment, I can open my eyes and see the sun above me, hear the birds talking, and know that even below me, there is a whole other diverse ecosystem. In these moments, I am in awe of the simple beauty of nature. My project tries to evoke within others the knowledge of this other precious world right in front of our eyes. The sea can also be interpreted as a metaphor for the soul and subconscious. In an effort to capture both the power and awe I feel viewing the ocean, I hope this installation encompasses those emotions I feel and transfers them to the viewer, evoking delight, comfort, and serenity, as well as a consciousness about our relationship to the environment. The images are simple, and that simplicity makes the viewer look for deeper meanings within the photographs and hopefully a greater reflection within him or herself. I combined these two passions to create a portfolio from which I will assemble an photographic exhibition.


Camila Wanderley Ocean Mentor: Shelby Raebeck Domain: World Languages and Literature: English Faculty: Therese Liechtenstein I wrote a book of six short stories with its roots based on a theory from the 1930s known as the Five Factor Model. In this theory, it is stated that people can only have five different types of personality. My characters are caricatures and stereotypical images of these personalities, showing how different people can interact to form a society, and how different personalities can form a whole.

Nissu Wang Inside the Creative Spirit Mentor: Jennifer Cross Domain: Visual Arts Faculty: Shelby Raebeck For my Senior Project, I decided to do research on various professionals in creative jobs including musicians, film directors, fashion designers, and actors, as well as students. I decided to make a series of portraits of selected people from each category using stenciled images and a graffiti style. My goal was to express in each work the challenges and pressures encountered in each profession. I used a variety of methods and materials, including acrylic, spray paint, collage, and written text.

Ricky Wang Ramen Noodles Mentor: Liz Dobbs Domains: Wellness, Cultural History Faculty: Kyle Helke For my Senior Project, I created my own ramen noodles and I will make a book that talks about history of ramen and includes the recipe that I used to create my own ramen noodles. I researched the ramen history using both books and online resources. My book talks about how ramen came out and became popular over the course of time. It provides general information about ramen, because the purpose of this book is to let people understand ramen quickly and adequately.

Katya Wolosoff Walk a Mile Through My Dreams Mentor: Sam Yarabek Domains: World Languages and Literature: English, Visual Arts Faculty: Jennifer Cross This project is the culmination of my studies on Freud’s and Jung’s writings on dream analysis and the logging and analysis of my own dreams in my own style and the style of Jung. Of my dreams over the past six months, I have chosen eight to depict in writing, voiceover, and charcoal in this multimedia installation.


Eric Wu Nostalgia: The Artistry of the Beijing Opera Mentor: Nicole Berberena Domain: Visual Arts Faculty: Kevin Pomerleau For my Senior Project, I drew inspiration from the Beijing Opera, which is a timeless and treasured tradition in China. At a young age, I was exposed to one of my country’s richest cultural experiences; seeing the Beijing Opera not only led me to be interested in my country’s past but it also opened my mind to design and visual analysis. The costumes that are worn during the Opera are intricate, elaborate, colorful, bold, and timeless; the makeup is also dramatic and adds to the overall aura of the opera. I translated my appreciation of the Beijing Opera into four different pieces: two menswear outfits and two womenswear outfits. I used colors that are often seen in costumes worn in the traditional opera to create a connection between the modern and traditional aspects of Chinese culture. I selected silk to work with because of its significant value in ancient Chinese civilizations and also because I love the way it reflects light and makes the pieces look elegant and seamless. My main objective in my project was to intertwine traditional Chinese colors and textures and use my passion for fashion design to make modern yet traditional pieces to be used in an exhibit that would give the viewer a little bit of insight into what it would be like to go to the Beijing Opera.

Guorui (Bob) Xiao Poems & Photographs: The Caducity Mentor: Sam Yarabek Domains: World Languages and Literature: English, Media Studies Faculty: Lisa Gillespie In an attempt to heighten people’s understanding and appreciation of the ephemeral nature of beauty, I wrote poems about and took photos of autumn. The purpose of my photographs is to give the reader a chance to see, visually, the moments that inspired my poetry. And the poems will serve as guideposts; they are meant to lead the reader through a variety of aesthetic impressions. By connecting these two components, my goal was to inspire the reader’s aesthetic sensitivity to the world around them so that they can experience the ephemeral nature of beauty for themselves.

Johnny Xu When Mathematics Meets Music Mentor: Adam Judd Domains: Performing Arts, Mathematics Faculty: Robert Davies Among thousands of years of human civilization, music and math are the most intelligent and indispensible subjects that humans developed through the enlightenment of human consciousness. Yet living in the contemporary world, fewer and fewer people pay attention to the origin and connection between these two subjects. Due to the fact that music and math are divided into different genres, many people consider music and math as irrelevant. I, through this Senior Project, will bring people back to the origin of music and explain the strong connection between mathematics and music. To fulfill this goal, I decided to write a book that can fully explain the relationship between mathematics and different styles of music. The book contains the establishment of basic music theory and the connections between different types of music and math with examples that will help people better understand the relationships. This is the project that will remind people of the history of music. This is the project that will reveal the exceedingly incredible and stunningly substantial relationships that exist between mathematics and music.


Big Kitty Xue Homme Fatale Mentor: Marie Maciak Domain: Media Studies Faculty: Ivan Salcedo I wrote, directed and edited a short film titled Homme Fatale. Under the influence of renowned authors like Flannery O’Conner and Patricia Highsmith, I combined my personal experiences and observations with fictional technique into this thriller about an affair gone bad. The story includes themes that commonly resonate with audiences such as compromising and manipulating, loving and hating, and the balance of power among relationships.

Claire Yan The Story Behind the Story Mentor: Adam Judd Domains: Performing Arts, World Languages and Literature: English, Media Studies Faculty: Carleton Schade I always have a feeling that listening to music pieces is like reading various stories. Story is the soul of music. For my Senior Project, I will do a three-part performance that contains my piano solo of three pieces of Romantic music and a display of the three videos I made to illustrate the stories behind them. I composed the scripts of the videos, the subtitles, and the background music used in the videos. The performance will be a combination of Romantic music pieces and my own imagination and life experiences.

Jin Zhang The Mongolian Memories Mentor: Jennifer Cross Domain: Visual Arts Faculty: Ned Smyth As a native Mongol, I always feel the urge to share my background with the Ross community. Did you know that the Mongols reside across three countries? If not, my project will introduce you to the Mongolian culture—a glance at greater Mongolia. It is dedicated to the Mongolian nation and named after my favorite restaurant in Beijing—one of the closest links to Mongolia when I’m staying there. With informative wall texts, the project incorporates different art media to display the culture in three perspectives: our traditional costumes, our homeland’s landscape, and our great national hero—Genghis Khan. I hope that through this project, people will not only understand Mongolia, but also me, Jin Zhang, also known as Tungalag Borjigin.

Ingrid Zhao Revealing the Secret in Chinese History Through Program Music Mentor: Adam Judd Domains: Performing Arts, Cultural History Faculty: Mami Takeda I composed two short violin concertos for my Senior Project. These pieces use musical narrative to tell one famous Chinese folk story and one well-known legend of a Chinese general. My project integrated the Chinese musical style with Western musical notation. I chose to do this for my Senior Project because of my interest in the Eastern style of music and the history of the Han Dynasty.


Ross Senior Project Catalog 2016  
Ross Senior Project Catalog 2016