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Biology and Environmental Science News

Senior Biology major Neill Baker (pictured with his father) has been accepted into the Peace Corps to work on Coastal resource management projects in the Philippine Islands for 27 months. In June, Neill will begin his journey with 3 months of pre service training in Manila where he will receive orientation to the culture and language, after which he will begin projects such as coral reef management working with the National Parks as well as governments on both the local and district level.

Neill’s interest in the Peace Corps program began in 11th grade when he took a geography class with a professor who had friends traveling the globe with the Peace Corps. This had always appealed to him and after learning more about the Peace Corps through classes and personal research he decided to apply. Stevenson University professors Dr. Keith Johnson and Dr. Tracey Mason are Peace Corps alumni and were instrumental in answering any questions and helping Neill with the application process. Neill is very excited to get away for a while and explore the world while he is still young. Everyone here at Stevenson wish him the best with this experience!

Environmental Science senior Peter Hoblitzell was named MAC Commonwealth Men’s Tennis Player of the Week for the first week of the season. Peter’s excellent performance in both singles and doubles got him four wins in four games during their two matches this past week. Currently Peter is playing No. 2 Singles and No. 1 doubles for the Mustangs. Since October, Peter has posted the best record on the team at 8 wins with only 2 losses. Way to go Peter!

Alumni Kelsea Cole (BIO ’15) has accepted an offer to pursue a Doctorates of Physical Therapy at the University of Maryland, School of Medicine. The Physical Therapy program at University of Maryland has been around for over 50 years and continues to be one of the top programs in the nation. In 2002 the program developed into an entry level DPT program for students with a bachelor’s degree. The program gives candidates experience in the University’s cadaver lab as well as clinical hours to best prepare graduates for real world experience. To find more information about the program, visit their website here. Best of luck to Kelsea through this tough program!

Adjunct Professor and research advisor Dr. Matthew Tucker is a co-author on a paper that was just published in the Journal of Parasitology and Vector Biology titled, Evaluation of cytosine DNA methylation of the Biomphalaria glabrata at shock protein 70 locus after biological and physiological stresses. In this study, the researchers measured DNA methylation levels of the heat shock 70 protein in the snail Biomphalaria glabrata, which is a host for the parasitic flatworm Schistosoma mansoni. The study found changes in methylation levels which may have implications for the transmission of this parasitic disease. You can find the full paper here


Sarah Sauthoff (BIO '09), PA-C, is currently working as a Physicians Assistant for LifeBridge Health. She has recently been recognized by her patients and coworkers as Northwest Hospital’s SuperStar employee. The award is given to employees who show their dedication to their position through positive attitude, excellent custom service, and a strong work ethic. Sarah is one of a handful of recipients to be recognized across the entire practice. Congratulations Sarah!

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