Chemistry and Biochemistry News

The Chemistry Department hosted a Meet and Greet for freshmen and transfer students. It was great to get a chance to start to get to know some of our new students! Students reported that they loved the new building, found their professors to be helpful and friendly and were generally so excited to be starting in chemistry and biochemistry at SU!

The Department of Chemistry is very excited to start the 2016-2017 year! The start of a new academic year always brings wonderful energy and excitement to campus, especially since we are starting in our new building!

More details will follow on this blog about our students, our faculty and staff, the internships and research that our students are engaged in, activities organized by our clubs, and exciting classes and laboratory experiments.

WELCOME to our new students and WELCOME BACK to our returning students. We hope you’re as excited about the upcoming semester as we are!

This summer, Biochemistry Senior, Julie Davenport is volunteering at Greater Baltimore Medical Center (GBMC) in the Emergency Department (ED). She reports that her main responsibilities include stocking the ED, as well as managing inventory of the equipment. She recently took on several projects specifically for the director of the facility. In this internship, Julie is enjoying learning more about different cases and aspects of the healthcare field.

Julie’s career goal is to become a surgical PA so this opportunity is giving her great exposure to the medical field. In her own words, “The experiences that I receive from working at GBMC will help me in my future career!”

Biochemistry senior, Kennedy Akwo, describes his summer Capstone internship:

“My internship at CVS Pharmacy involves training to become a certified Pharmacy Technician as well as assisting in the pickup, drop-off, and production of prescriptions. I enjoy working in the pharmacy and learning from pharmacists on how to be successful in the position. This internship has reinforced belief in my desire to pursue pharmacy and I couldn’t be happier.”

From Chris Zaykoski, Biochemistry Senior:

I’ve been working in Pathology at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine here in Baltimore. Our lab’s mission is to develop a reliable early detection method to find pancreatic cancer. There are no symptoms of pancreatic cancer until it has progressed to its advanced stage and metastasized to other organs. The five year survival rate is less than five percent at time of diagnosis. Within in the next decade it will become the second leading cause of cancer death in the world. The only way to improve prognosis is to detect it early but there are no current methods to detect tiny pancreatic precursor lesions.

Our lab is searching for genetic markers that may identify pancreatic cancer early. DNA is sequenced from blood, pancreatic juice, cyst fluid, and tissue to identify hot spot mutations common of the cancer. Working in a clinical research lab is very exciting. Some days I’m wearing scrubs in the hospital; other days it’s the white coat in the lab. This experience has put to test and expanded my skills from Stevenson. Working in a world renowned hospital, it is an incredible honor to learn from some of the world’s best doctors and researchers. But, it is also a daily reminder of the tough journey ahead. It will hopefully be the start to my career in medicine and an academic physician.