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Natural Science and Mathematics Blog

Date: Apr 2014

Students taking a computer graphics class presented their final projects to members of the Mount community. Two students worked together to create an animation that included three key parts: the who, the what, and the where. The judges had a little friendly competition to see which person could guess correctly the who, the what, and the where of each animation. Dr. Brian Heinold, an assistant professor of Mathematics and Computer Science, won the grand prize!

Each team did very well and we wish each of them the best of luck with these projects!

CS_Senior_Project1

CS_Senior_Project2

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Assistant Professor of Chemistry, Dr. Chris Bradley, has recently received two grant awards for the 2014-2015 year. Two pieces of equipment have been obtained through these awards, a UV-visible Spectrometer and a Potentiostat, that will aid in enhancing the educational and research experiences in green and renewable energy science.

The funding for the UV-visible Spectrometer is provided by The John J. Leidy Foundation. This instrument is an important piece of equipment for use in laboratory courses and undergraduate research in the Division of Chemistry. The spectrometer could impact the studies of more than 500 students annually over the next 15+ years. The funding for the Potentiostat is provided by the Spectroscopy Society of Pittsburgh. This instrument, too, is an important piece of equipment in the Divison of Chemistry. The Potentiostat could impact the study of more than 500 students annually over the next 15+ years.

Congratulations to Dr. Bradley and the Chemistry Department for receiving these prestigious awards!

The Solar Power Charging Station and Exhibit has finally open for students inside and near the COAD Science building on main campus. The 8-feet tall solar panel array protects and provides shade for students while they're using the station. Students can charge just about anything using this station, including mobile phones and laptops. This charging station can generate a maximum of 1.6 kilowatt hours, which is enough to power 50 laptops or 300 mobile phones! This station was especially handy during the brief, yet unexpected, power outages that occurred in January.

This project wouldn't have been possible without the collaborative effort of the Mount's Environmental Stewardship and Sustainability Committee, Constellation, the Development Office, President Thomas H. Powell, and the School of Natural Science and Mathematics.

Read the full article here https://www.msmary.edu/about-the-mount/news-and-events/news-archive/2014/4-09-2014SolarChargingStation.html

Solar Power Charging Station

 

Solar Charging Exhibit

Carly Lay Geronimo, a 2011 graduate from the Mount, is a rising third year graduate student in the Molecular Biology Program at Princeton University. Last June, she joined the lab of Dr. Virginia Zakian, her advisor, and is studying telomerase regulation using budding yeast as the model organism.

Recently, she received a National Science Foundation (NSF) Graduate Research Fellowship award, which provides funding for Carly Lay for three years. Over 14,000 students apply and only 2,000 students are given awards. For more information about the program visit http://www.nsfgrfp.org/).

When asked about her research, Carly Lay replied with the following statement: "For my research project, I am investigating the role of the Pif1 DNA helicase as a negative regulator of telomerase using the budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae as the model organism. Telomerase is a specialized enzyme whose essential function is to maintain telomeres, which are the physical ends of eukaryotic chromosomes. In cells that lack telomerase activity, telomeres progressively shorten with each round of DNA replication, and when the telomere reaches a critical length, most cells senesce and die. Thus, telomerase regulation is imperative for proper maintenance of the cell because misregulation can lead to replicative senescense, apoptosis, and compromised genome integrity. Pif1 is an important negative regulator of telomere length because Pif1 is the only helicase in yeast that has been shown to directly and catalytically inhibit telomerase. Therefore, the main objectives of my research project are to determine how Pif1 gets recruited to telomeres and to elucidate the mechanism behind Pif1 inhibition of telomerase."

We congratulate Carly Lay on this prestigious award and we expect many great things from her in the future!

Faith in Psychology hosted a speaker, Dr. Margaret Laracy, to discuss the topic of "Faith in the Professional World of Psychology". She spoke about how her Catholic faith has shaped her career as a practicing psychologist, both as a professional in the working world and clinically as a psychologist. There was a great turn out for this event in Laughlin Auditorium!

Dr. Laracy is pictured above with two students who attended the event. She is currently in private practice at Vital Sources in Frederick, MD and is part-time assistant professor at the Institute for the Psychological Sciences in Arlington, VA.

 
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