Behavior major Jeff Walker ’08 speaks about his research titled “Does
inhibition lead to greater spike timing precision?” during the Hughes
Program in the Life Sciences Poster Session Aug. 3. Walker’s faculty mentor
is Gloster Aaron, assistant professor biology, neuroscience and behavior.
Hughes Fellows Present Summer Research
In the United States, approximately 80,000
adolescents try cigarettes for the first time each day. Psychology major
Michael Raymond ’08 was curious to know why.
a fellow in the Hughes Program in the Life Sciences, Raymond had the
opportunity to identify predictors of nicotine dependence onset in
adolescents. He spent his summer working with faculty mentor Lisa Dierker,
associate professor of psychology, on nicotine dependence research. On Aug.
3, he had the opportunity to present his findings during the Summer Research
Raymond was one of 65 summer Hughes Fellows and other summer research
undergraduates to share his work to faculty, graduate students, fellow
undergraduates and other visitors. The posters were on display inside the
Exley Science Center lobby.
“The Poster Session is always a nice opportunity for the Wesleyan community
and public to get a sense of the spirit and accomplishments of our
undergraduates’ research experiences throughout the summer,” says Michael
Weir, director of the Wesleyan Hughes Program.
major Allison Isaacs ’09 (pictured above) spent her summer conducting
research on a project titled “Exploring the Mechanism of the Feist-Benary
Reaction” with Michael Calter, associate professor of chemistry. Products of
this type of reaction include a class of compounds which are common among
pharmaceutical drugs, and hold much promise in the future of medical
treatment. Chemistry major Max Loewinger ’08 (pictured at right) also worked
with Calter on a pharmaceutical-related project titled “Asymmetric Synthesis
of Substituted, Unsaturated, Aryl-N-Ocyisoxazolidines.”
majors Evan O’Loughlin ‘08 (pictured at right) and Kepa Eizaguirre-Borreson
’08 presented their poster titled, “Mapping Gene Expression of the Scapula
in the Chick Embryo.” The students worked with faculty mentor Ann Burke,
associate professor of biology, on their experiment, which involved a study
of a chick’s development of a lateral plate.
Other projects included a study on the synthesis on Glycinol by Joshua
Porter ‘08; analyzing bacterial diversity by Andrew Burger ‘09; the
usability of an ecotype simulation program by William Warner ‘08; and
biodiversity in Middletown, Conn., by Nick Field ’09 to name a few.
Prior to the poster session, Barry Chernoff, the Robert Schumann Professor
of Environmental Studies, professor of biology, delivered a public lecture
titled “Through the Looking Glass of Ecological Analysis.” In addition,
prospective undergraduate applicants and area high school teachers were
offered laboratory tours.
Hughes Fellows are supported by a Hughes grant, awarded to encourage
participation and interest in the life sciences by undergraduates. The grant
supports summer research by a large number of Wesleyan undergraduates; in
the summer of 2006, 48 students were supported, some in conjunction with
other funding sources. The Fellowship includes a stipend and participation
in Hughes activities.
For more information on the Hughes Program in the Life Sciences Summer
Research Program go to :
The Wesleyan Connection editor