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Chemistry and Biochemistry News

Keyword: experiential learning

Biochemistry junior Austin Halterman recently completed a semester abroad in Amsterdam, Netherlands where he was able to complete several Stevenson Educational Experience requirements toward his degree. Austin worked closely with Dr. Rebecca Pisano in the Office of International and Off-campus Study and many different program directors/coordinators from CIEE (Council On International Educational Exchange), through which the program was coordinated. While in Amsterdam, Austin stayed at the Student Hotel, housing open to many people, including many other study abroad students from the US, graduate students from all over the world, people working in the city for extended stays and also tourists in town for short stays. Despite the semester abroad, Austin has stayed on track to graduate in four years and worked around the Medical College Admission Test schedule as well. For more information on study abroad opportunities, start by visiting the SU Study Abroad website.

For the first time, the Chemistry department is offering a winter term travel course. It is open to all majors and is a study of herbal medicines and remedies. This winter 13 students and two professors traveled to Quito, Ecuador. The students had two days of class time at Stevenson before departure and will spend the rest of the term in the field. From the capital of Quito the group will travel through the Andes to the Tiputini Biodiversity Station research station deep in the South American rain forest. 

Biochemistry senior, Angelica Lackey attended the 2017 American Epilepsy Society in Washington, DC this week where she presented her work with Dr. Kossoff on Ketogenic Diet Second Opinion Clinics. Her internship was conducted at the Ketogenic Diet Center at Johns Hopkins Hospital this summer, where patients learn to control epilepsy through diet. She was able to meet many of the important people who work with the ketogenic diet including famous patients, such as former U.S. ice hockey Olympic Chanda Gunn, who manages her seizures with the help of this diet.  Angelica was even was able to engage in a virtual reality experience where she was able to "walk" around in someone’s brain to map and conduct glutamate receptor binding which she said was "... incredible to say the least!" 

Biochemistry junior Joseph Acqui recently presented his research on the effects of methamphetamine on various molecular and behavioral activities and the connections between methamphetamine consumption and addiction  at the 17th Annual Biomedical Research Conference for Minority Students in Phoenix, Arizona The work leading up to the presentation was conducted at the National Institute on Drug Abuse, over the summer. Joseph also applied for and was awarded a DREAM (Diversity Resources for Enrichment, Access and Mentoring) Award, which paid for all of his expenses for his trip, lodging and expenses.

 

One of the highlights of Stevenson's First Year Seminar course is formulating a service project to bring to Mustangs Make a Difference Day. Held in conjunction with Day to Serve in the state of Maryland, it is a way for Stevenson students to volunteer and give back to their communities. First Year Seminar classes in the Department of Chemistry came up with several unique service projects. One class hosted a Be the Match bone marrow drive, a second class provided materials to make stress relief Galaxy Jars, and a third class promoted Pedestrian Awareness with a pledge to be safe campaign in conjunction with the Maryland Department of Transportation.   Whatever the project, students enjoyed the opportunity to get to know their classmates and instructors in a more relaxed setting. The teams used all of their materials to make jars, signed up 49 new potential marrow donors, and collected over 200 signatures.