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Keystone Archive

The Keystone Project is the anchor of the Honors Humanities curriculum, in which students are encouraged to apply their growing knowledge of the humanist disciplines to a project of their choice. The Keystone can be either a creative project or a traditional research paper, but most projects are a combination of the two. For example, substantial research is central to all artistic projects, and many research projects involve a form of artistic application (e.g., a musical recording, paintings, etc.). At the end of their two years in Honors Humanities, students are asked to present their research or perform/display their creative projects in a symposium or other forum that is open to the public. Students typically present their work at the annual Honors Humanities Undergraduate Research Symposium, which is open to students throughout the Washington, DC/Baltimore region. Learn more about past symposia: POPsmARTs, justpolitik*, WorldTalk, The New Syntheses, and Humans 2.0.

We archive Keystone projectshere so that future students can explore past Keystones to get inspiration or to learn from their peers. They are archived by subject and then by the year they were created. Each entry below reads as follows:

Name of Project
Name of Creator (Graduation Year from Honors Humanities)
Description of Project

Any Keystone whose title is highlighted will link you to a copy of that student's entire project. Please do not hesitate to contact us, if you would like to speak to a specific student about his or her project.

Creative Projects

Scholarly Projects

Creative Projects

Creative Writing

Collabowriting: Multiple Authorship in Speculative Epistolary Fiction
Lyla Lawless and Daniel Hopkins (2013)
An alternative history novel written collaboratively using "the letter game"

Ava's Dance
Juinell Williams (2013)
An illustrated children's book that introduces the children of military service members to PTSD

Is It All In Your Head?
Stephanie Levi (2012)
A collection of short stories investigating ideas from neuroscience and cognitive science

Marmalade the Mongaloo
Madeline Barnett (2012)
An illustrated children’s book about the power of diversity

Jessica Jones (2009)
Aerospace Engineering
Token Cleric, Reluctant Hero: Examining Religion in Fantasy Fiction

Ilana Kelsey (2009)
The Search for My Self: A Collection of Poetry

Andria Bowman (2009)
Family Science
"Letters in an Empty Apartment," a short story

Max Emmerling (2009)
Biological Sciences and Chinese
Paris is Worth a Massace: A Novel

Synchronicity: A Graphic Novel
Chanan Berkovits and Dan Schwartz (2006)
English Language and Literature

The Terrapist, UMD’s Magazine of Satire and Englightenment”
Andrew Bowen (2006)
History and Women's Studies (Certificate Program)

Daniel Greene (2007)
Psychology and English Language and Literature
Red Dreams: A novel of old myths and new stories; where Angels and crazies meet at the end of the world

Julia Kolchinsky (2007)
English Language and Literature and Linguistics
Tricks to Falling Asleep

Amanda Lee (2007)
Government and Politics
A Collection of Advice Columns based on 'Sex and the City'

Wang Mingyue Li (2007)
International Business
Novel on Colonial Latin America

Ben-An Pan (2009)
How People Change: A Graphic Novel

Hannah Wenger (2006)
English Literature and Women's Studies
Memoirs of a Frum Feminist

Lindsay Wilcox (2006)
Secondary English Education
The Challenge: Short Stories

Nathan Yaffe (2009)
Godsend: A Graphic Novel

Fashion/Textiles/Material Culture

Katie Farhang (2008)
“Extreme Sporting Equipment for Women, not Mini-Men”

Shannon Kielty (2009)
"An original line of eco-friendly, sustainable fashion"


Playing Pays Off:  The Positive Impact of Playing Instrumental Music During Adolescence
Rachel McGrain (2011)
A documentary about the value of music education

Sustainable Coffee: What the Consumer Needs to Know Joshua Thompson (2011)

The Art and Sport of Fencing: History and InstructionNatalie Hankinson (2009)
Aerospace Engineering

How UMD Students Feel About 9/11 Today: A Video-Journalism Piece
Jacob Berman (2008)
Criminology and Criminal Justice

The Millennial Generation and the ‘Get Out the Vote’ Movement
Lindsay Denmark (2007)


Liminal Spaces
Rajna Swaminathan (2011)
An exploration of cultural hybridity through musical form

Four Original Arrangments and Performance of Music Across Time and Cultures, for Piano, Cello and VoiceTanya Ruth (2009)
Music Performance (Professional Program-Voice)

Characterizing Aesthetics: A Recital for Double Bass
Ben Silverman (2008)
Music Education

Kyle Johnson (2007)
Music Composition
The Time Then was Now, Literally

Lauren Lane (2007)
Cell Biology and Genetics
A Collection of Western Protest Music

Adam Optican (2007)
Finance and Accounting
Multigenre Music Album


Personal Writing

Ndang Azang-Njaah (2008)
"Cameroon: Living and Learning"

Maya Jackson (2006)
"She is Beautiful, No?"

Amanda Olsen (2005)
“Guide to Study Abroad”

Kimberly Schubert (2008)
Environmental Science
“Adventures on Kiwi Island”

Theatre/Screen (Writing and Performance)

Eleanor Roosevelt:  No Ordinary Life
Allison Hartley (2013)
An original play, based on archival research, that dramatizes Eleanor Roosevelt’s life

Drag:  A Play in One Act
Eric Bricker (2013)
An original comedic play about a teenager with a cigarette fetish

Andy, Please Come Home
Melia Stuppy (2012)
An original play, read at the Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center, about a teenager who runs away from home

Chelsea Kerl (2009)
The Golden Year: A play about racism and religion after September 11, 2001

Monica Fernandez (2007)
Animal Science
Langley Park Children's Theater Troupe

Talia Goldman (2007)
Classics and English Language and Literature
No More Yielding But a Dream: a play in one act

Alison Anne Daniels (2006)
Theatre and English Language and Literature
Speak: An Adaptation from Book to Stage


Visual Art

Steffanie Espat (2013)
An exhibition about western media, the idealization of beauty, and the repercussions of an elusive goal

Public Beautification
Jordan Stachura (2013)
A graffiti-based intervention into art history and public art

Lily Zhen (2009)
Finance and Marketing
"The Exploration of Gender, Race and Class Politics Through Cross-Cultural Art"

Morgan Noonan (2009)
Art Studio
"Endangered Beauty: Global Climate Change and Its Effects on Biodiversity"

Emma Crenshaw (2008)
Architecture and Art History (minor)
Between Space and Place: Finding Symbiotic Presence in Nature

Rebecca Deprey (2006)
“Poetic Photography”

Anne Powell (2006)
English Language and Literature
"An Exploration of the Visual Arts: A Process"

Camilo Sanin (2006)
Art Studio and Art History
“Understanding Art as an Affecting Presence: An Analysis and Practical Application of Color Theory in the Works of Mondrian, Rothko, and Miro”


Scholarly Projects

Art/Art History

"Conflict Resolution in Israel: An Art Therapy-Based for Israeli and Palestinian Children"
Samantha Fleischer (2013)

“Museum Exhibits and Colonialism”
Tacy Lambiase (2011)
An analysis of the politics of art history

"Long Island Like You've Never Heard"
Amanda Gaines (2008)
Broadcast Journalism and Enviornmental Economics and Policy (minor)

"Flights of Fancy and Fights for Liberté: The Practice of Social and Political Ideology in Art in Eighteenth Century France"
Julia Clark (2007)
English Language and Literature

"A Study of the Implication of Art as a Measure of Societal Happiness in a Capitalistic Economy"
Paul Lehmbeck (2007)

"Popular Catastrophe: The Disaster Prints of Currier and Ives"
Grant Hamming (2006)
History and Art History


Cultural Studies

“Watch the World Burn:  A Critical Media Analysis of the 2012 Aurora Shooting”
Zoe DiGiorgio (2013)

Post-It Politics
Kyle Siefering (2013)
An attempt to provoke political discourse on the UMD campus

"The Appalachian Love Triangle: Complex Identities in the Issue of Mountaintop Removal"
Karina French (2011)

“Taking Satire Seriously on a ‘Daily Show’ Basis”
Matthew Popkin (2011)
An analysis of comedic "fake news"

"'Never Will Be Another King Like Me': Identity and New Orleans Mardi Gras"
Laura Williams (2011)

"Who's Got the Power: Privatization, the Public University and Student Power"
Bob Hayes (2009)
Mechanical Engineering

Michelle McGrain (2009)
Government and Politics and Sociology
"Black Representation and Musical Theatre"

Josef Parker (2009)
American Studies
"If These Stalls Could Talk: Spatializing the Ephemeral Practice of Bathroom Graffiti"

Elliot Teichman (2009)
"Exploring the Interactions between Minor League Baseball and Its Communities"

"Bruce Springsteen and Chuck D: Music as Social Commentary"
Alex Campbell (2008)
Government and Politics

Julianne Fretz (2008)
American Studies
"A Cultural Analysis of Autism"

Allissa Goldberg (2008)
"The Past, Present and Future of Reality Television"

Marcus Hadley (2008)
Chemical Engineering
"Quantitative Analysis of the Three Major Cable News Networks"

Jennifer Young (2008)
Government and Politics and Communication
"The Political Space of the Harry Potter Fandom"



“Education From Our Perspective”
Melia Jannotta (2013)
An investigation of Honors students’ attitudes toward their high school educations

Urban Education:  Building Our Future
Shelly Toub (2013)
A documentary on multiple stakeholders’ views of challenges in contemporary urban public education

“Why Taking an English Class May Be Better Than Rosetta Stone”
Amelia Guerriero (2013)

“Reading Our Way to Rome:  Using the Reading Method in the Latin Classroom”
Anna Johnson (2013)

Brittany Harrison (2009)
English and Secondary Education
"Equality is Just a Word: Education in Our Current System"

Margaret Crenshaw (2006)
Biology and English Language and Literature
"Greenroofs: A Proposal for the University of Maryland"

Brian McGillen (2006)
Music Education
"'GIANT STEPS’: Forming a New Concept of Music Education"

Lisa Rodio (2009)
Music Performance (Professional Program - Trumpet)
"The Necessity of Music"

Michael Warley (2009)
Environmental Science and Policy
"Competetive Speech in Education"


“From Rawls to Romney”
Madeline Bersch (2012)
An analysis of political liberalism

"A Developing Country and a Girl"
Kriti Paul-Gera (2012)
An autobiographical account of globalization

“Italy, America, and Women”
Lou Robinson (2012)
A comparative analysis of Western feminism

"South African Jewish Involvement in the Anti-Apartheid Movement"
David Rothenberg (2011)

"I ain’t Marchin’ Anymore: An Exploration into Protest, Music, and the College Campus"
Paul Halliday (2009)

"Welcome to Your World: The College Student's Guide to the New Millenium"
Emma Raviv (2008)
Philosophy and Economics

"Elected by the Media: The Portrayal of Barack Obama to the American Public"
Rachel Rosen (2009)
History and Government and Politics

"The American Welfare State"
Nicholas Rupkey (2009)
Government and Politics

"Comparative Study of German, Soviet, and American WWII Propaganda"
Lauren Dudley (2007)
Government and Politics

“Gender, Politics, and Class in the Middle East: Locating the Fight for Women’s Rights in Historical Materialism”Rayyan Ghuma (2007)
Criminology and Criminal Justice

"’…with unabated fury.’ A Vision of Civil War Battles: Antietam and Gettysburg”
Tom Decker (2006)



Cindy Caviglia (2006)
"Heya Hon': A Linguistic Analysis of Baltimorese"

Nicki Green (2005)
Government & Politics and American Studies
“A Feminist Critique of the Harry Potter Series”

Brianna Johnson (2008)
Linguistics and Psychology
“Christianity and Linguistics in The Chronicles of Narnia"

Jason Moskowitz (2005)
Sociology and Spanish (minor)
“Post-Apocalyptic Theory in Stephen King's The Stand



Keystone Projects range from performances to papers, but all reflect the abilities of our students to do strong research and analysis.



Honors Humanities
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