St. Lawrence University students enrolled in the Ronald E. McNair Scholars Program and the New York State Collegiate Science and Technology Program (CSTEP) recently completed an eight-week summer research internship and presented their work at the 25th-annual University at Buffalo Undergraduate Research Conference.
More than 400 college students from across the United States attended the conference in Niagara Falls, New York, to present their projects. Students also had the opportunity to hear from and meet keynote speakers such as Dexter Johnson, NASA aerospace engineer, and Allyson Hobbs, director of African American studies at Stanford University. Additionally, students met St. Lawrence alumna Elizabeth Colucci ’87, P’17, an Alumni Executive Council member who works at University of Buffalo as director of fellowships and scholarships. Colucci advised St. Lawrence students on how to find funding for graduate school and highlighted a few fellowships they might be interested in.
Seniors in attendance and their research topics presented included:
- Mark Featherston ’20, a biology and philosophy double major from Poughkeepsie, New York: “The Case for Delay of Genetic Engineering”
- Raven Larcom ’20, an art and art history and biology double major from Bethlehem, New Hampshire: “Wild Bee Species Richness and Diversity in Ornamental Gardens in Northern New York”
- Cheyenne McQuain ’20, a psychology and anthropology double major from Glens Falls, New York: “Moving Beyond ‘Powerless’ Language: Intersections of Language, Gender and Institutional Power”
Juniors in attendance and their research topics presented included:
- Makenna Burr ’21, a biology major from Forestport, New York: “Consumption Guidelines of Polluted Fish Species in Superfund Sites: Are They Being Followed by the Anglers of New York State?”
- Edwin Garcia ’21, a philosophy major from New York City: “An Analysis of the Impacts of Food Deserts on Struggling Communities”
- Valeria Hernandez ’21, an international economics-multilanguage combined major from New York City: “Determinants of Housing Prices in Southern California”
- Susan Liu ’21, a statistics and government double major from East Elmhurst, New York: “Using Cluster Analysis to Understand Long Term Viability of Cards in Clash Royale”
- Carla Martinez Perez ’21 a neuroscience major from San Juan, Puerto Rico, and Marcelo Ortiz ’21, a psychology major from Penfield, New York: “Decreasing Impulsivity in Rats: Effects of Acute Delay Exposure”
- Skylar Ratcliffe ’21, a chemistry and mathematics double major from Dickinson Center, New York: “An Expository Look into the Banach-Tarski Paradox”
- Hamidou Sylla ’21, a government major from Bronx, New York: “Guinea: What Went Wrong?”
During the three day conference, students learned about UB’s graduate school programs, networked with other McNair students and faculty, and learned about a wide variety of research projects representing many different disciplines. Students had 20 minutes for their oral presentations, and a one-hour poster session in which they communicated their projects to a broad audience.
The McNair Scholars Program, a federally funded TRIO program sponsored by the U.S. Department of Education, is designed to increase the attainment of the Ph.D. by students from underrepresented groups. McNair motivates and supports students who are underrepresented in graduate education, who meet economic eligibility requirements, and who may be the first in their families to attend college.
CSTEP, a program funded by the New York State Department of Education, focuses on increasing the number of underrepresented students who complete education programs that lead to professional licensure or certification and to careers in mathematics, science, technology, and health-related fields.