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Capstone Projects

Tasty Tunes

Mon, 12/03/2012 - 14:16
Abstract: The senses of hearing and tasting are being paired together more and more as the subject becomes more popular, bringing musicians and chefs closer together. This study will determine the optimal music to play in a particular restaurant and show how well that music stimulates a customer’s palate. A farm-to-table restaurant will be the place of research where music that complements the food will be played on four different nights and customer surveys will measure the differences in taste and customer enjoyment between four different music genres. The data will be used to prove that the optimal music really does make food and the time spent more enjoyable. The results may lead to be very beneficial to dining room managers, restaurant owners, chefs, and musicians who perform in the hospitality industry in their efforts in matching food and dining with music.
Access: Yes
Literary Rights: On
Major: Culinary Arts and Service Management
Year: 2012
Authors: Kelsey Jones

Do Adirondack Farmers Perceive Aquaponics as a Solution to the Lack of Year Round Out of Season Local Food?

Sun, 12/02/2012 - 23:59
Abstract: Several different factors contribute to the farmers of the Adirondacks inability to produce sustainable, fresh, local food out of season. This study will provide a comprehensive literature-review-based overview of modern day farming, aquaponics, local food sheds, and the farmers associated with Adirondack Harvest and Green Circle. This capstone seeks to determine via surveys if aquaponics is a solution to the challenges Adirondack farmers face today in their lack of year round productivity. The consensus of this capstone will determine if aquaponics is a solution to the challenges Adirondack farmer’s face regarding the lack of local out of season food for the residents of the Adirondack region.
Access: Yes
Literary Rights: Off
Major: Culinary Arts and Service Management
Year: 2012
File Attachments: Aquaponics Capstone
Authors: Ashley Rokjer

Can Restauranteurs Successfully Influence Guest Behavior By Using Facebook?

Sun, 12/02/2012 - 20:55
Abstract: Facebook is a form of social media used by millions on a daily basis. Restauranteurs’ ability to use Facebook to influence guest behavior, build a connection, and receive comments could potentially benefit their restaurants. This study was conducted on Facebook, sending surveys to my “friends,” discovering how restaurants’ Facebook pages are affecting them. Seeing how my study was based on Facebook it was appropriate to only conduct the surveys on this form of social media. The goal was to find if restauranteurs could attract more customers to their restaurant by influencing guest behavior on Facebook. This will prove if using Facebook is a worthwhile marketing tool. People interested in this topic will become more knowledgeable about this form of social media from a business perspective and the Facebook company could benefit from this study as well. This study will give recommendations to restauranteurs on how to make their restaurant “stand out” on Facebook.
Access: Yes
Literary Rights: Off
Major: Culinary Arts and Service Management
Year: 2012
Authors: Joshua Werksman

A MULTI-SCALE EVALUATION OF THE EFFECTS OF FOREST HARVESTING FOR WOODY BIOFUELS ON MAMMALIAN COMMUNITIES IN A NORTHERN HARDWOOD FOREST

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 16:19
Abstract: Forest harvesting and subsequent effects on forest structure have been shown to influence mammalian community assemblages and the abundance of individual species, however less attention has been paid to the implications of how harvested timber is used. This is particularly relevant in the Northern Forest, where a considerable portion of the forest harvesting is used to produce biofuels. Biofuels harvesting typically involves the process of whole-tree chipping which may lead to a dramatic reduction in the amount of woody material in the form of slash and coarse woody debris (CWD) left in harvested stands. The goal of our study was to assess the effects of biofuels harvesting on forest structure and subsequent effects on mammalian community structure and abundance. To address this goal, we focused on a ~35 Ha area of partially-harvested northern hardwood forest in the northern Adirondacks, New York. To sample mammals we used a combination of Sherman traps and track plates established at two scales across stands within this area. Our results showed that the response of small mammals to changes in forest structure is both species and scale specific. At the individual trap scale, CWD, slash, and understory cover were important drivers of the occurrence of individual species of small mammals. At the larger “grid” scale, small mammal relative abundance was driven by canopy cover and the density of woody stems. Our results indicate that the current harvesting practices used for biofuel production in the Adirondacks are unlikely to result in declines in abundance of common small mammal species. However, the retention of some slash post-harvest may be beneficial to some species, thus foresters may want to include slash retention when developing silvicultural prescriptions.
Access: Yes
Literary Rights: Off
Major: Environmental Sciences, Fisheries and Wildlife Science, Natural Resources Management and Policy
Year: 2012
Authors: Cody Laxton, Alisha Benack, Danielle Ball, Scott Collins, Sam Forlenza, Richard Franke, Stephanie Korzec, Alec Judge, Connor Langevin, Jonathan Vimislik, Elena Zito

A Land Management Plan for the Gottemoeller Family Farm

Thu, 12/06/2012 - 09:58
Abstract: Private landowners own property that is used for a variety of purposes. A management plan can help them realize their goals. This management plan focuses on two main goals. One is to maximize the sustainable out put of black walnut and other quality hardwoods. The other is creation of quail habitat to increase the carrying capacity of bobwhite quail on the farm. Using aerial photos and field visits, the property was divided into ten different management units. Some units have a forestry focus and others have a quail habitat focus or both. A Wildlife Habitat Appraisal Guide was used to evaluate the existing habitat and to identify which elements need to be improved. Peer reviewed research and agency technical expertise were used to identify which practices will improve the limiting elements for quail habitat. A Forest Plan developed by a professional forester with the Missouri Department of Conservation was incorporated into the farm Management Plan.
Access: Yes
Literary Rights: On
Major: Environmental Sciences
Year: 2012
Authors: Adam Gottemoeller

The Effect of Temperature and pH on the Growth of Variable-leaf Milfoil (Myriophyllum heterophyllum)

Tue, 12/04/2012 - 18:03
Abstract: A fundamental part of invasion biology is the prediction of the potential spread of nonindigenous species (NIS). This is due to the negative ecological, economic and human-health effects that NIS may cause. Variable-leaf Milfoil (Myriophyllum heterophyllum), a highly invasive NIS to the Northeast, is native to southern U.S. states from Florida to New Mexico, and has since spread to North Dakota and southwestern Quebec without becoming invasive to those areas. Variable-leaf milfoil is invasive to the Adirondacks in northern New York State and is spreading at a rapid pace. This study questions whether temperature and pH have an effect on the growth of Variable-leaf milfoil. In this laboratory experiment, the growth of 80 Variable-leaf Milfoil fragments was examined in warm (33.1275°C) and cold (23.135°C) temperatures, combined with 10 pH treatments. Fragments showed increased growth in cold water when compared to the warm temperature treatment, and no relationship was shown between temperature and pH treatment in relation to growth.
Access: Yes
Literary Rights: On
Major: Environmental Sciences
Year: 2012
File Attachments: CapstoneDeliverable.docx
Authors: Claire Baker

Soil and Vegetation Characteristics of High Elevation Wetlands in the Adirondack Park

Mon, 12/03/2012 - 17:14
Abstract: Wetland ecosystems are finally being understood for their true importance. Wetlands in the past were misunderstood and thought to be disease carrying burdens on our way of life; however this mentality changed during the mid-19thcentury. These ecosystems are important for biodiversity and act as natural water purification systems. This study was undertaken to help understand, the high elevation wetland characteristics. Our goals were to analyze the soils and describe the vegetation in high elevation wetlands. The soil and vegetative surveys helped define the characteristics of these ecosystems and create a better understanding of them. The combination of vegetation species that are wetland indicators were found in each site, the soil pH, and nutrients show that each site had signs of being a wetland community.
Access: Yes
Literary Rights: Off
Major: Environmental Sciences, Forestry
Year: 2012
File Attachments: FINAL Capstone Report.doc
Authors: Brandon Ploss, Sean Ayotte

Monitoring the Zebra Mussel Invasion Front: Use of New Technology

Thu, 02/09/2012 - 15:39
Abstract: Zebra mussels are invasive mollusks that are affecting the well-being of the water bodies in the United States. This study uses environmental DNA (eDNA) is a sensitive early detection system that may be useful in monitoring their spread. The purpose of this study is to determine the effectiveness of eDNA technology in identifying infested water bodies, to determine if zebra mussel DNA is in the Adirondack water bodies not known to be infested, if the water chemistry of these water bodies is favorable for zebra mussel establishment, and if the eDNA technology is transferable to an institution like Paul Smith’s College. Eighteen lakes, all in New York State were sampled, fifteen of which are located in the Adirondack Park. DNA was extracted from water and plankton samples and species specific primers were used for PCR amplification to determine if zebra mussel DNA was present. Of seven samples taken from sites known to be infested, five of these tested positive for zebra mussel eDNA. Four lakes not known to be infested within the Park also tested positive for zebra mussel eDNA. Based on zebra mussel risk parameters (water chemistry) applied to 1,469 Adirondack water bodies, less than 3% are at risk of zebra mussel establishment. However it is possible that established populations could occur at microsites that may have locally high levels of calcium and higher pH.
Access: No
Literary Rights: Off
Major: Biology, Environmental Sciences, Environmental Studies, Fisheries and Wildlife Science, Forestry, Natural Resources Management and Policy
Year: 2011
File Attachments: The Author has selected not to publish this complete work.
Authors: Alexandria Bevilacqua, John Bishop, Charles Cain, Tyler Clark, Seth Crevison, Robert Culyer, Ryan Deibler, Brian DeMeo, Jonathan Eckert, Kirsten Goranowski, Joelle Guisti, Alan Jancef, Korinna Marino, Michelle Melagrano, KaitlynNedo, Joseph Nelson, Aaron Palmieri, Cole Reagan, John Scahill, JohnathanStrassheim, Scott Travis, Sarah Van Nostrand and Sarah Vella

A Healthier Lunch Line

Mon, 12/05/2011 - 19:57
Abstract: Unhealthy eating is an epidemic in America that is passing from generation to generation. It is becoming more crucial to find ways that can change eating habits at a young age due to the influx of marketing influences. This study will show whether educational marketing or aesthetic marketing is more effective on children’s food choices. The educational marketing will be implemented by interactive taste testing with the students, while the aesthetic marketing will be done by encouraging healthy eating with various wall illustrations and posters in the cafeteria. Both sets of data will be gathered before and after to be compared for effectiveness. Schools are currently struggling to find a way to encourage healthy eating with food that is appealing to a grade school student. If the presentation of food is part of a solution, then this study can help prove that simple changes to the cafeteria setting can reinforce children’s perception of health and help fight obesity and other health issues.
Access: Yes
Literary Rights: On
Major: Culinary Arts and Service Management, Hotel, Resort and Tourism Management
Year: 2011
Authors: Amiee Derzanovich, Morgan Horwatt

Rooftop Gardens

Mon, 12/05/2011 - 19:26
Abstract: The term “local” has very little meaning, if you are surrounded by miles of asphalt and sidewalks. However, the term “rooftop garden” can have a strong and powerful meaning when the only farming space you have is the roof above you. This study seeks to determine if there is a difference between rooftop garden grown food and mass produced and transported food in visual appearance and to determine what are the consumer assumptions and perceptions about a restaurant rooftop garden. The data for this study will be gathered through the use of secondary research and surveys. This information will then be used to determine the differences between vegetables picked at peak ripeness from a rooftop garden and vegetables delivered from a large scale mass producer. In addition the consensus will be used to see if the use of a rooftop garden has any affect on a customer’s perception of an urban restaurant with a rooftop garden.
Access: Yes
Literary Rights: On
Major: Culinary Arts and Service Management
Year: 2011
File Attachments: capstone.docx
Authors: Alexander Benson