WT Student Scores Second, Five Others Present Research at TAMUS Conference

Chip Chandler Mar 10, 2023
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WT Student Scores Second, Five Others Present Research at TAMUS Conference

Copy by Chip Chandler, 806-651-2124,


CANYON, Texas — A senior West Texas A&M University student placed second in a research conference for students across The Texas A&M University System.

Five other WT students also participated in the 18th annual Pathways Student Research Conference, held March 2 and 3 at Texas A&M University–Galveston.

The Pathways conference, organized by TAMUS graduate deans, is a platform for students to share their research and engage in academic discussions with peers and faculty.

The conference brings together students from a variety of disciplines, including natural sciences, social sciences, humanities, and engineering. Participants presented their work in either poster or oral presentation formats.

Allan Baltazar, a senior criminal justice and psychology major from Houston, won second place in the undergraduate social sciences category for his oral presentation “Crisis Intervention Teams in Police Departments: An Aid to Mental Health Crisis.”

Baltazar is a member of WT’s Ronald E. McNair Postbaccalaureate Achievement Program, or McNair Scholars Program, which prepares underrepresented, low-income and first-generation undergraduate students for doctoral study through research and other scholarly activities.

Other participants and their presentations included:

  • Andrea Mata, McNair Scholar and senior economics and mathematics major from Amarillo: “Educational Inequities in Developing Economies”;
  • Riley Phipps, McNair Scholar and senior sports exercise science major from Canyon: “Comparing Metabolic Expenditure of Prosthetic Knee Joints in Adult Transfemoral Amputees: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis”;
  • Elizabeth Ragan, Attebury Honors student and biology pre-med major from Houston: “Affordable Care Act Cancer Clinical Trial Policies:  Effect on Disadvantaged African American Patients”;
  • Andres Rivas, McNair Scholar and senior plant, soil, and environmental science major from Amarillo: “Determine and Compare Drought Tolerance in Different Trifolium Species in Water Limiting Conditions in the High Plains Area”; and
  • Joey Zimmerman, McNair Scholar and senior biochemistry major from Hutto: “Circadian Regulation of Platelets in Mice.”

The Attebury Honors Program is a student-centered enriched learning community highlighted by innovative discussion-based teaching, research, study abroad, mentoring, internships, leadership and a host of wider opportunities for undergraduate students.

“We are thrilled to participate in this prestigious conference and showcase the high quality of research conducted by our undergraduate students,” said Dr. Rex Pjesky, associate dean of the WT Graduate School and professor of economics in the Paul & Virginia Engler College of Business. “It is a testament to our commitment to providing our students with excellent academic opportunities and preparing them for success in their future careers.”

WT offers a nurturing yet rigorous educational environment through its efforts as a Regional Research University, a key principal in the University’s long-range plan, WT 125: From the Panhandle to the World.

That plan is fueled by the historic, $125 million One West comprehensive fundraising campaign. To date, the five-year campaign — which publicly launched in September 2021 — has raised more than $120 million.




About West Texas A&M University

WT is located in Canyon, Texas, on a 342-acre residential campus. Established in 1910, the University has been part of The Texas A&M University System since 1990. WT, a Hispanic Serving Institution since 2016, boasts an enrollment of about 10,000 and offers 59 undergraduate degree programs and more than 40 graduate degrees, including two doctoral degrees. The University is also home to the Panhandle-Plains Historical Museum, the largest history museum in the state and the home of one of the Southwest’s finest art collections. The Buffaloes are a member of the NCAA Division II Lone Star Conference and offers 14 men’s and women’s athletics programs.