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Participants at the Ninth Annual MERCURY Conference
MERCURY Attracts Researchers Across the U.S.
The Ninth Annual National MERCURY Conference on Computational Chemistry, devoted solely to undergraduates who are working on research projects in computational chemistry, was held at Hamilton from Aug. 1 through Aug. 3. The program offered an opportunity for undergraduates to learn about the breadth of research in computational chemistry, particularly in interdisciplinary topics and to discuss their work with other undergraduate computational chemists as well as some leaders in the field. More ...
Jack Trieu '11, Visiting Assistant Professor of Chemistry Joshua Ruppel, Eric Kuenstner '12
Researchers Attempt Sigmatropic Rearrangement
In a chemistry lab, Eric Kuenstner ’12 and Jack Trieu ’11 place a round-bottom flask on an instrument called a rotovap. With a push of a button the flask begins spinning, making the solution flow from the flask through coiled tubes. “It always makes me feel like a mad scientist,” Kuenstner laughs, and Trieu nods agreement. But the result of this seemingly diabolical processing is hardly sinister; the students are looking to find the most favorable conditions for a [2,3] sigmatropic rearrangement to occur. More ...
The Pacheia Ammos beachfront.
A Shift in Perspective
When you tell people you are spending the summer on an archaeological dig, those who have any experience with excavations begin to tell you how it will affect your daily life. More ...
Jake Zappala '12
A New Spin on Polarization
In researching and experimenting with magnetic properties, scientists use beams of neutrons with all the same spin. They ensure that the neutrons are all polarized the same way with the help of an apparatus called a helium-3 polarizer. Jake Zappala ’12 is engineering a helium-3 polarizer test system for researching the diagnostic tools used in the polarization process. More ...
Olivia Wolfgang-Smith '11
A Summer in the Slush Pile
For Olivia Wolfgang-Smith ’11, the “slush pile” of unsolicited manuscripts is only barely a metaphor. Working at the literary magazine The Missouri Review, Wolfgang-Smith pores over 30 manuscripts per week, evaluating their quality. With an Emerson grant and guidance from Associate Professor of English Tina Hall, Wolfgang-Smith is learning the production process of a highly-respected literary magazine. More ...
Jesica Lindor '12
Deconstructing the Pursuit of Happiness
Despite the constant quest to live a happy life, people in today’s complicated world are finding happiness increasingly elusive. Past philosophers have proposed how to be happy, but each suggestion is radically different. Advised by John Stewart Kennedy Professor of Philosophy Richard Werner, Jesica Lindor ’12 is analyzing philosophies on happiness through modern psychology through an Emerson grant. More ...
Danielle Lashley '13
Lashley '13 Seeks to Clone Fruit Flies
Armed with her pipette and sterile gloves, Danielle Lashley ’13 carefully transfers the solution from her test tube to the petri dishes in front of her. But the solution she so cautiously maneuvers is store-bought Juicy Juice, used to attract flies so she can work with their embryos. Lashley is attempting to clone and catalog the development of two gap genes of the common fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster, in embryos. More ...
Cameron Breslin '11
Breslin '11 Documents Ethnography Through Film
Long thought to be the most objective of artistic mediums, film is slowly being acknowledged as subjective, the camera impacting its subject matter like in any other art. In conjunction with an Emerson grant and advised by Visiting Professor of Art History Scott MacDonald, Cameron Breslin ’11 is analyzing early ethnographic documentaries to determine how accurately and objectively they portrayed their anthropological subject. More ...
Kate Harloe '12
Harloe ’12 Hunts the Roots of Hinduism
Observed from the West, Hinduism appears as a complex, heterogeneous, polytheistic amalgamation of religious practices. But just below its multifaceted interior lies a concept that Westerners understand only too well: the control of colonization. Through an Emerson grant and the guidance of Associate Professor of History Lisa Trivedi, Kate Harloe ’12 will spend the summer investigating the roots of Hinduism as well as its contemporary incarnations in Indian society. More ...
Jason McGavin '12
McGavin ‘12 Studying Destructive Protein Piscidin
Jason McGavin ’12 observes the organic balls that seem to be bleeding dye into the surrounding liquid. But what caused the destruction? In this microscopic game of Space Invaders, it is the destructive entity that is the aggressor: piscidins, a type of bacteria-killing protein found in fish. McGavin is looking at two specific piscidins and attempting to relate their destructive function to their chemical structure. More ...
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