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FSU student's poster recognized

August 30, 2010

FROSTBURG, Md. - Mitra Karimian of Frederick, Md., an undergraduate ethnobotany student at Frostburg State University, won an honorable mention for the Julia F. Morton Award for her poster "Analysis of Dulcimer Makers in Appalachia" at the International Society for Economic Botany Meeting in Xalapa, Mexico.

Karimian began the project on the dulcimer, a folk instrument prevalent in Southern Appalachia, as part of the Ethnographic Field Techniques course at FSU. She conducted ethnographic research on dulcimer makers throughout the region, documenting preferences for specific tree species based on tonal quality, as well as other factors such as convenience, price and availability.

She also acquired background information about dulcimer makers, including how they acquired and developed their skills, and examined lineages of dulcimer making, and the relationships between makers and musicians.

The goal of the research was to preserve cultural knowledge around the folk craft, document tree species vital for cultural traditions and promote sustainability in resource use.

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Sunshine Brosi, Thomas Berry, Nathan Beeman, Steven Darrow, Elizabeth Deasy, Lauren Fetzer, Christopher Massimino and Carson Sommerlatt also contributed to the project.

The contest was for students or young professionals with five years or less post-doctoral experience. More than 60 posters were presented at the meeting.

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