GSLMU's 5th Annual Graduate Summit

The Graduate Students of LMU (GSLMU) invite you to the 5th Annual GSLMU Grad Summit that will take place this Friday, April 8, 2022 from 4:30-6:30 p.m. This special event will consist of a research showcase from current graduate and professional students made during their time at LMU and honor leaders with the Student EXP Awards and first-ever Arrupe DEI Graduate Award. 


Ahmanson Auditorium 

RSVP Here.


Graduate Student Summit Presenters 2022: 

1. Shayne Yano (Bellarmine College of Liberal Arts)

"Hidden Christians and Non-Churches: Indigenized Christian Practices in Japan"


Hidden Christians and Non-Churches: Indigenized Christian Practices in Japan I propose to present a 5-minute video that I will create, in the style of an educational YouTube video, in order to present the research that I have done on Christian traditions in Japan for my Graduate Theology thesis project. My research focuses on two case studies of Christian traditions in Japan which are institutionally separate from Western missionary churches (what some scholars have called “indigenous” Christian traditions). These two traditions, the Kakure Kirishitan (“Hidden Christians”) and the Non-Church Movement, have both interpreted Christianity in ways that make sense within their own historical and cultural contexts. Through these indigenous Japanese Christian traditions, I seek to challenge our familiar American notions of what “proper” Christian belief and practice looks like and even our assumptions regarding what “religion” ought to be. Through this project I hope to give a voice and proper agency to “unofficial” and indigenized ways of practicing Christianity. Japanese Christian communities have forged their own religious practices that force us to expand our understanding of what it means to be Christian and what Christianity can look like in the lives of everyday people. The focus shifts away from church authorities and dogmatic proclamations, thus empowering and recognizing the authority of lay practitioners to make their own meaning from the Christian tradition.

2. Tamara Ramsay (Bellarmine College of Liberal Arts)

"Pride and Prejudice’s Feminist Influences in the 21st Century: Fan Fiction’s Revision of Austen’s Marriage Endings”


Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice has sold over 20 million copies worldwide since its original publication in 1813 and has been touted as one of the greatest romance novels to have been written. In my paper, I argue that Pride and Prejudice is not a romance novel, and I make the claim that Jane Austen, as a romantic novelist, cannot be a feminist because of the way she mistreats women characters as well as their storylines. Although academia often struggles with the validity of fan fiction as a scholarly source, in order to support my claim, I draw from the diverse collection of fan fiction published in the past 20 years to mend Austen’s mistakes in Pride and Prejudice and therefore make it the iconic, romantic, feminist novel that we as readers deserve. While focusing specifically on only works that aim at altering the original story, or continuing after the ending of Pride and Prejudice, I am able to prove that Austen’s views constricted women and altered their constitution. Through the exploration of various fan fictions, I prove that not only is fan fiction a valid form of scholarly work, but it rectifies Austen’s work, expanding and altering the ending so that Elizabeth Bennet and other characters receive a conclusion fitting of their narrative.

3. Passion Lord (School of Education)

"The Hindrance and Progress of College Remediation on Academic Success of Community College Students"


While community colleges' primary goal is to have students transfer and be prepared for the rigor of a four-year institution, that has not always been the case. Remedial courses' purpose was to improve basic English and math skills and prepare students for college-level work. However, the data reveals that remedial classes are not preparing students but hindering their process. Minority students who take remedial coursework at a community college often matriculated from low-performing high schools. This paper will focus on California's Community College's response to remedial courses by passing the AB 705. While some progress has been made regarding remedial courses' effectiveness, there are still problems, and changes colleges can make internally to strengthen AB 705 and stop remedial classes from prolonging a student's undergraduate career.Keywords: AB 705, community college, remedial courses, and transfer rate.


4. Enrique Magdaleno and Emily Bishop (School of Education)

"We’re Queer, But is our Safety Here?: Examining the Conditions Necessary to Preserve the Safety of Queer Educators."


In a political climate marked by recent state policies targeting LGBTQ+ identities in the classroom, what do our fellow queer teachers have to say? A recent decision by the US Supreme Court in Bostock v. Clayton Country (2020) extended protections against sex discrimination in the workplace (spelled out in Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964) to include people who are either gay or transgender. But under this new federal protection, are our LGBTQ+ teachers working in conditions they deem safe? Where LGBTQ+ inclusive research focuses greatly on supporting our youth, we sought to give a voice to some of our unsung heroes - the teachers, to guide policy recommendations using their experience as a catalyst for reflection and change. Working under the lens of Queer Theory, our qualitative study used semi-structured interviews to examine and analyze the experiences of 11 participating educators, encompassing varied levels of experiences and geography to determine the following: (1) What does safety look like for queer educators? (2) What facts of school systems include and exclude their experiences? (3) What supports and policy changes do queer teachers hope to receive?

5. Dallas Garcia (School of Film & Television)

"The Moviemakers
A yearlong filmmaking odyssey from script to final product during a pandemic."


The Moviemakers Written, Directed and Edited by Dallas Garcia A year-long filmmaking odyssey from script to final product during a pandemic.Join me, as I share the highs and lows of a collaborative effort to bring a whimsically weird story to life.  I will look at how some of the safety protocols that were created due to the pandemic are good for this creative industry.  Especially in light of the deadly “Rust” shooting.Hear the behind-the-scenes of how an intensely energetic young filmmaker brought together the most talented team this side of the bluff.  Everything, from script; pre-production (COVID vaccination cards and 48-hour testing); production (6 feet apart and limited crew); to post-production crunch time to meet the final deliverable deadline.As an added bonus, I got the pleasure to work with two animators from LMU’s animation department.  They were more than up to the challenge of combining live-action with 2D hand-drawn “flourishes” to make something truly special.  I deeply enjoyed gathering the crew, consisting of SFTV’s own Film and Television Production student; plus, the cast, of incredibly gifted non-LMU actors and actress.  Together, we formed a great workplace for the entire three-day film shoot.  Listening to ideas and suggestions from my filmmaking team made for a rich, unforgettable experience.

6. Pamela Cressall (School of Film & Television) 

"Writer, Director, DP, Oh My"


Beginning graduate school during a pandemic was an incredibly difficult decision but I didn't want to put it off. I had waited too long and frankly never thought it would even happen. I turned 50-years-old during my first semester at LMU. Producing a film from script to screen was even more challenging but I made it through, and it has subsequently been nominated for several awards and it has shown at two film festivals to date. Because of the pandemic, I opted to do an isolation film so had to do everything myself. No crew. Just me. Fortunately, my amazing wife was willing to act for me and the two of us made a film that we are proud of. DUET, is about a woman who is taken over by an external supernatural entity and her struggle to break free of it. While on the surface it appears to be an abstract short horror film with vague subtext, it was my way to try and show what it is like to be a victim of domestic violence and abuse and how difficult it is to break free of it. The film is six minutes long. I would like to show as much of it as is allowed.

7. Jamison Murphy (Seaver College)

"Multi-Agent System to Monitor & Communicate Work Between Entertainers & Production Companies in Entertainment Industry"



This is a research project that concentrates on the construction of a multi-agent system that can allow entertainers and production companies to have communication and social ability to improve relationships between them. The system was constructed in Python and utilizes classes and direct methods to initialize agents and allow them to interact with the environment. The two agents are later joined together to give expected and actual results between the entertainers and the companies to show how progress is going with work. The entertainer’s goal is to maximize the most revenue that he/she possibly can to increase his/her salary for the year, and the production company’s goal is to display how much the entertainer can make with the set protocols listed on his/her contract.

8. Yael Schuster (College of Communication & Fine Arts)

“Giving voice in a world of uncertainty”



The process of making and presenting theatre gives students opportunities to develop skills in interpreting, researching, negotiating, problem-solving, and decision-making. Leading my students in extended guided physical warm-ups and improvisations while supporting their curiosity and sense of playful discovery, we work from the inside-out and the outside-in. Working with mindful awareness, aiming to develop a healthy exploration through images and gestures, all focused on finding a center. Teaching the actor about the psychology of a character and the historical, political, and social contexts surrounding the play in question, makes every examination of text and character a learning curve that the student actor will develop their tool kit and grow their artistry.