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Augustana Students Conduct Scientific Research Nationwide

 

This summer, senior Kelly Wong, a biology and modern foreign languages major from Custer, S.D., is completing an internship related to neuro-imaging in multiple sclerosis (MS) at Massachusetts General Hospital in conjunction with Harvard Medical School. Working alongside Dr. Eric Klawiter, Augustana class of 2000 and an assistant neurologist who specializes in MS and related diseases, she's investigating multiple sclerosis' effect on the relationship between white matter pathways and functional connectivity in the brain. In addition to working in the lab, Wong also helps set up and observe MRIs for clinical trials, is helping populate a database for MS, and is receiving training to help administer neuropsych tests to subjects.

Nineteen-hundred miles away, another Augustana student, senior Carl Hjelmen, a biology major from Garretson, S.D., is working on biomedical research related to genome sizes at Texas A&M University in College Station, Texas.Kelly Wong and Carl Hjelmen

Wong and Hjelmen are just two of 69 Augustana students who are spending the summer conducting scientific and biomedical research and/or completing internships or volunteer positions at facilities throughout the U.S. as part of the College's Summer Research Program, an initiative that places undergraduates in the field at laboratories, hospitals and study tanks throughout the U.S.

"Without question, students learn through classroom discussion, reading, papers and exams," said Rob Oliver, president. "Yet, at Augustana, we believe in another type of learning — one where students immerse themselves in their subject matter, engage in hands-on practice, explore, discover and learn for themselves. Such is the case with our Undergraduate Summer Research Program, an initiative that enables our students to work in real time alongside faculty mentors, health professionals and research scientists and offers invaluable personal, intellectual and professional experience."

Following is a list of the participating students and, where available, their mentor/advisor, project funding,  location and description of the research:

  • Bethany Ahlers, class of 2014, Marshall, Minn. Major: Biology. Mentor/advisor: Seasson Vitiello. Funding Source: NIH BRIN. Research Location: Augustana College. Project description: "Differential gene expression in the absence of the yeast vacuolar cystine transporter."
  • Ben Albrecht, class of 2014, Fargo, N.D. Major: Engineering Physics. Mentor/advisor: Nathan Grau. Funding Source: S.D. Space Grant. Research Location: Augustana College. Project description: "Fully reconstructed jets in proton-proton collisions."

Learn More

Listen to Dr. Mark Larson, associate professor of Biology, discuss Augustana's Summer Research Program on South Dakota Public Broadcasting's "Innovation."

  • Nicole Altena, class of 2014, Sioux Center, Iowa. Major: Biochemistry. Mentor/advisor: Duane Weisshaar. Funding Source: EPSCoR. Research Location: Augustana College. Project description: "Synthesis of deuterated analogs of pyrrolidinium salts."
  • Matthew Anderson, class of 2014, Sioux Falls, S.D. Major: Biology. Mentor/advisor: Paul Egland. Funding Source: NIH BRIN. Research Location: Augustana College. Project description: "Cross-species interactions in oral microbial communities."
  • Rachel Anderson, class of 2014, Belgrade, Minn. Major: Biochemistry (ACS). Mentor/advisor: Duane Weisshaar. Funding Source: EPSCoR. Research Location: Augustana College. Project description: "Synthesis of deuterated analogs of pyrrolidinium salts."
  • Jennifer Benoy, class of 2013, Saint Croix Falls, Wisc. Major: Chemistry. Mentor/advisor: Keri Tallman. Funding Source: NSF/Vanderbilt Institute of Chemical Biology. Research Location: Vanderbilt University. Project description: "Synthesis and Click Chemistry of an Alkynyl Analog of 7-Dehydroxycholesterol."

Upcoming Summer Research Presentations

  • July 18: Presentations on "Blood Vessel Stenting" by Jessie Huff, class of 2013 (mentor Karen Munger), and "Fatty Acid Interactions Leading to Potential Heart-Renal Failure" by Miranda Lommen, class of 2014 (mentor Greg Shearer).
  • July 25: Presentations on "Cancer and Immune System Cell Interactions" by Jessica Johnson, class of 2014 (mentor Jenny Gubbels), and "Protein Interactions Involved in Neurodevelopment" by Samuel Evenson, class of 2013 (mentor Jill Weimer).
  • Aug 1: Presentations on "Plant Stress Responses to Methane" by Dane Rasmussen, class of 2013 (mentor Steve Matzner), and "Oxidative Regulation in Lung Development" by Chanesse Schaefer, class of 2013 (mentor Pete Vitiello).

Presentations begin at Noon in room 100 of the Gilbert Science Center.

  • Claire Bestul, class of 2014, Faribault, Minn. Majors: Biology & English. Mentor/advisor: Carrie Hall. Funding Source: NIH BRIN. Research Location: Augustana College/Oklahoma. Project description: "Coevolution and arms race between insects and Wolbachia."
  • Jackson Buchanan, class of 2015, Mendota Heights, Minn. Majors: Biology & Chemistry. Mentor/advisor: Steven Matzner. Funding Source: Augustana Research & Artist Fund/NSF. Research Location: Augustana College. Project description: "Effect of Stem Flexing on Common Bean Hydraulic Properties/Methane Uptake by Methanotrophic Bacteria in Grassland Soils."
  • Audrey Burkart, class of 2014, Monument, Colo. Majors: Engineering Physics & Math. Funding Source: NSF-REU. Research Location: Colorado.
  • Tim Burwitz, class of 2014, LeMars, Iowa. Majors: Physics & Math. Mentor/advisor: Eric Wells. Funding Source: NSF. Research Location: Augustana College/Kansas State University. Project description: "Two-color pump-probe adaptive femtosecond control with image based feedback."
  • Tara Cummiskey, class of 2013, St. Peter, Minn. Major: Biology. Mentor/advisor: Steven Matzner. Funding Source: Augustana Research & Artist Fund/NSF. Research Location: Augustana College. Project description: Effect of Stem Flexing on Common Bean Hydraulic Properties/Methane Uptake by Methanotrophic Bacteria in Grassland Soils."
  • Morgan DePerno, class of 2015, Sioux Falls, S.D. Major: Biology. Mentor/advisor: Daniel Howard. Funding Source: NIH BRIN. Research Location: Augustana College/Oklahoma.
  • Paige DePerno, class of 2015, Sioux Falls, S.D. Major: Biology. Mentor/advisor: Daniel Howard & Carrie Hall. Funding Source: The Nature Conservancy. Research Location: Augustana College. Project description: "Vibrational communication in Nicrophorus."
  • Samuel Evenson, class of 2013, Sioux Falls, S.D. Major: Biology. Mentor/advisor: Jill Weimer. Funding Source: NIH BRIN. Research Location: Sanford Research. Project description: "Protein interactions involved in neurodevelopment."
  • Evan Gardner, class of 2013, Sioux Falls, S.D. Majors: Chemistry & Spanish. Mentor/advisor: Barrett Eichler. Funding Source: EPSCoR. Research Location: Augustana College.
  • Emily Grandprey, class of 2014, Windom, Minn. Major: Biology & Psychology. Mentor/advisor: Kristi Egland. Funding Source: NIH BRIN. Research Location: Sanford Research. Project description: "Novel protein interactions in cancer cells."
  • Neal Gregerson, class of 2012, Sioux Falls, S.D. Majors: Chemistry (ACS) & Physics. Funding Source: SciScholars/Society of Chemical Engineering Fellowship. Research Location: Momentive Specialty Chemicals, Houston Novel Thermostat Resin Technologies.
  • Eric Habbe, class of 2014, Rapid City, S.D. Majors: Biochemistry & Spanish. Mentor/advisor: Barrett Eichler. Funding Source: EPSCoR. Research Location: Augustana College. Project description: "Synthesis of electropositive extended pi-conjugated materials for incorporation into porphyrins for solar cells."
  • Coral Hanson, class of 2013, Andover, Minn. Major: Communication Disorders. Funding Source: NSF REU. Research Location: University of Minnesota. Project description: "Behavioral & Cognitive Sciences research program."
  • Alyce Haugan, class of 2012, Brandon, S.D. Major: Biology. Mentor/advisor: David Bader. Research Location: Vanderbilt University.
  • Garret Heiberger, class of 2015, Hartford, S.D. Major: Biochemistry. Mentor/advisor: Barrett Eichler. Funding Source: EPSCoR. Research Location: Augustana College.
  • Carl Hjelmen, class of 2013, Garretson, S.D. Major: Biology. Mentor/advisor: Dr. J. Spencer Johnston. Funding Source: NSF REU. Research Location: Texas A&M. Project description: "Using genome sizes to analyze divergent selection in Belonocnema treatae."
  • Brian Hokeness, class of 2014, Rushmore, Minn. Major: Biology. Mentor/advisor: Daniel Howard. Funding Source: SPUR (Sanford Research). Research Location: Augustana College/Oklahoma. Project description: "Landscape ecology of endangered N. americanus."
  • Jade Hovet, class of 2015, Bemidji, Minn. Major: Chemistry. Mentor/advisor: Barrett Eichler. Funding Source: Augustana College Chemistry Department. Research Location: Augustana College.
  • Jessie Huff, class of 2013, Apple Valley, Minn. Major: Biology. Mentor/advisor: Karen Munger. Funding Source: NIH BRIN. Research Location: USDSOM/Avera Res Inst/V.A. Project description: "Blood vessel stenting."
  • Amanda Johnson, class of 2014, Sioux Falls, S.D. Major: Biochemistry. Mentor/advisor: Jared Mays. Funding Source: NIH BRIN. Research Location: Augustana College. Project description: "Synthesis and evaluation of alkyl isothiocyanates."
  • Jessica Johnson, class of 2014, Sioux Falls, S.D. Major: Biology. Mentor/advisor: Jennifer Gubbels. Funding Source: NIH BRIN. Research Location: Augustana College. Project description: "Immune evasion strategies in ovarian cancer."
  • Elisabeth Jorde, class of 2012, Tracy, Minn. Major: Biology. Mentor/advisor: Carrie Hall. Funding Source: The Nature Conservancy. Research Location: Oklahoma. Project description: "Landscape ecology of endangered N. americanus."
  • Alan Julius, class of 2014, Mason City, Iowa. Major: Biology. Mentor/advisor: Jetty Duffy-Matzner. Funding Source: EPSCoR. Research Location: Augustana College. Project description: "Constructing a novel organic polymer for use in solar cells."
  • Joe Keppen, class of 2013, Sioux Falls, S.D. Major: Chemistry. Mentor/advisor: Jetty Duffy-Matzner. Funding Source: EPSCoR. Research Location: Augustana College. Project description: "Thiophene/napthalene modified dimers as chemosensors."
  • Bailey Ketelsen, class of 2014, Box Elder, S.D. Major: Biology. Mentor/advisor: Steve Chipps. Research Location: Black Hills, S.D. Project description: "Aquatic Ecology/Fisheries."
  • Kyle Knapp, class of 2014, Lakeville, Minn. Majors: Chemistry & Psychology. Mentor/advisor: Bijoy Dey. Funding Source: EPSCoR. Research Location: Augustana College. Project description: "A Theoretical study of cis-effect, IR vs. Raman activity, and intermode energy transfer process in molecules."
  • Jenna Kuhle, class of 2014, Howard, S.D. Major: Biology. Mentor/advisor: Jetty Duffy-Matzner. Funding Source: NIH BRIN. Research Location: Augustana College. Project description: "Synthesis of Novel Fungicides."
  • Jordan Kuiper, class of 2014, Sioux Falls, S.D. Major: Engineering Physics. Mentor/advisor: Bijoy Dey. Funding Source: EPSCoR. Research Location: Augustana College. Project description: "Laser-Assisted Quantum Dynamics of molecular vibrational motion and means to control such dynamics."
  • Michael LeVan, class of 2015, Tea, S.D. Majors: Physics & Math. Mentor/advisor: Nathan Grau. Funding Source: S.D. Space Grant. Research Location: Augustana College. Project description: "Fully reconstructed gamma-jets in proton-proton collisions."
  • Nodia Lippert, class of 2014, Sturgis, S.D. Major: Biology. Mentor/advisor: Cecelia Miles. Funding Source: NIH BRIN. Research Location: Augustana College. Project description: "Dynamics of nuclear migration in Drosophila embryos of different sizes."
  • Miranda Lommen, class of 2014, Sioux Falls, S.D. Major: Biology. Mentor/advisor: Greg Shearer. Funding Source: NIH BRIN. Research Location: Sanford Research.
  • Chris Lucido, class of 2014, Tulsa, Okla. Major: Biology. Mentor/advisor: John Lee. Funding Source: Sanford Cancer CoBRE. Research Location: Sanford Research. Project description: "Effects of EphrinB1 on proliferation, cell death, and anchorage independent growth."
  • Kristen Luepke, class of 2014, Courtland, Minn. Major: Biochemistry. Mentor/advisor: Mark Larson. Funding Source: SPUR (Sanford Research). Research Location: Augustana College. Project description: "Omega-3 fatty acid effects on platelet function."
  • Taylor Maier, class of 2013, Pierre, S.D. Major: Biology. Mentor/advisor: Lance Lee. Funding Source: SPUR (Sanford Research). Research Location: Sanford Research.
  • Riley McManus, class of 2015, Chamberlain, S.D. Major: Biochemistry. Mentor/advisor: Duane Weisshaar. Funding Source: Augustana College Chemistry Department. Research Location: Augustana College. Project description: "Synthesis of deuterated analogs of pyrrolidinium salts."
  • Robert Mikhayelyan, class of 2015, Sioux Falls, S.D. Major: Philosophy & Computer Science. Mentor/advisor: Drew Alton. Funding Source: S.D. Space Grant. Research Location: Augustana College.
  • Jackie Miles, class of 2012, Tea, S.D. Major: Biology. Mentor/advisor: Jennifer Gubbels. Funding Source: Augustana College Biology Department. Research Location: Augustana College. Project description: "Tumor cell/immune system interactions."
  • Jordan Mitzel, class of 2014, Crooks, S.D. Majors: Athletic Training & Spanish. Mentor/advisor: Carrie Hall. Funding SourceThe Nature Conservancy. Research Location: Oklahoma. Project description: "Landscape ecology of endangered N. americanus."
  • Courtney Moore, class of 2014, Isanti, Minn. Major: Biology. Mentor/advisor: Paul Egland. Funding Source: NIH BRIN. Research Location: Augustana College. Project description: "Cross-species interactions in oral microbial communities."
  • Collin Noldner, class of 2014, Sioux Falls, S.D. Majors: Chemistry & Physics. Mentor/advisor: Bijoy Dey. Funding Source: EPSCoR. Research Location: Augustana College. Project description: "Ray-Based Simultaneous propagation of multiple wave fronts: A new method for computing reaction paths and transition states in curvilinear coordinate system."
  • Tom Norland, class of 2016, Sioux Falls, S.D. Majors: Engineering Physics & Math. Mentor/advisor: Drew Alton. Funding Source: NSF. Research Location: Augustana College.
  • Brennan Olson, class of 2013, Luck, Wisc. Major: Biology. Mentor/advisor: Kristi Egland. Funding Source: NIH BRIN. Research Location: Sanford Research. Project description: "Novel protein interactions in cancer cells."
  • Anne Pfeifle, class of 2013, Rapid City, S.D. Major: Chemistry. Mentor/advisor: Drew Alton. Funding Source: State of South Dakota & Augustana College. Research Location: Augustana College.
  • Alexis Preheim, class of 2013, Chamberlain, S.D. Major: Math & Secondary Education. Mentor/advisor: Martha Gregg. Funding Source: S.D. Space Grant. Research Location: Augustana College. Project description: "Mathematics Inquiry."
  • Dane Rasmussen, class of 2013, Aberdeen, S.D. Major: Biology. Mentor/advisor: Steven Matzner. Funding Source: NIH BRIN. Research Location: Boyce Thompson Institute, Cornell University. Project description: "Exploring Natural Epigenetic Variation of the Sadhu Retroposons."
  • Chanesse Schaefer, class of 2013, Seneca, S.D. Major: Biology. Mentor/advisor: Pete Vitiello. Funding Source: NIH BRIN. Research Location: Sanford Research. Project description: "Oxidative regulation in lung development."
  • Ashley Schmidt, class of 2014, Mitchell, S.D. Major: Biology. Mentor/advisor: Daniel Howard. Funding Source: NIH BRIN. Research Location: Augustana College/Oklahoma. Project description: "Vibrational communication in Nicrophorus."
  • Dylan Schmitz, class of 2017, Sioux Falls, S.D. Major: Physics. Mentor/advisor: Eric Wells. Funding Source: EPSCoR. Research Location: Augustana College/Kansas State University. Project description: "Adaptive femtosecond control of ethylene dissociation."
  • Dane Schroeder, class of 2014, Rapid City, S.D. Major: Biology & Chemistry. Mentor/advisor: Barrett Eichler. Funding Source: NIH BRIN. Research Location: Augustana College.
  • David Swanson, class of 2012, Saint James, Minn. Majors: Physics, Chemistry & Math. Funding Source: DOE SULI. Research Location: ORNL.
  • Ruthellen Tornberg, class of 2014, Harrisburg, S.D. Major: Biochemistry. Mentor/advisor: Jared Mays. Funding Source: SPUR (Sanford Research). Research Location: Augustana College. Project description: "Synthesis and evaluation of electron-deficient isothiocyanates."
  • Elizabeth VanErt, class of 2014, Chamberlain, S.D. Major: Biology. Mentor/advisor: Daniel Howard. Funding Source: The Nature Conservancy. Research Location: Augustana College/Sertoma Butterfly House. Project description: "Reproductive tradeoffs in the burying beetle Nicrophorus marginatus."
  • Aleksey Voznyuk, class of 2015, Sioux Falls, S.D. Major: Engineering Physics. Mentor/advisor: Eric Wells. Funding Source: NSF. Research Location: Augustana College/Kansas State University. Project description: "Image-based adaptive femtosecond control of the dissociation of NO and CO."
  • Lucinda Weaver, class of 2013, Rapid City, S.D. Major: Biochemistry (ACS). Mentor/advisor: Mark Larson. Funding Source: NIH BRIN. Research Location: Augustana College. Project description: "Omega-3 fatty acid effects on platelet function."
  • Emily Weber, class of 2014, Sioux City, Iowa. Majors: Biology & English. Mentor/advisor: Dr. Jennifer Morrell-Falvey. Funding Source: DOE SULI. Research Location: Oak Ridge National Lab. Project description: "The role of Indole-3-acetic acid production by Pantoea isolate YR343 in Poplar tree biofilms."
  • Brooke Woelber, class of 2014, Pipestone, Minn. Majors: Biology & Spanish. Mentor/advisor: Cecelia Miles. Funding Source: SPUR (Sanford Research). Research Location: Augustana College. Project description: "A comparison of blastoderm architecture in large-egg Drosophila melanogaster populations produced by direct and indirect selection."
  • Taylor Yseth, class of 2015, Sioux Falls, S.D. Major: Chemistry & Philosophy. Mentor/advisor: Jared Mays. Funding Source: Augustana College Chemistry Department. Research Location: Augustana College. Project description: "Synthesis and evaluation of electron-rich isothiocyanates."
  • Erika Zetterlund, class of 2013, Saint Cloud, Minn. Majors: Physics & Religion. Funding Source: NSF REU. Research Location: UCLA.

Internships and Volunteer Positions

  • Christine Bielski, class of 2014, Chanhassen, Minn. Major: Biology. Mentor/advisor: Daniel Howard. Funding Source: Augustana-Sertoma Butterfly House Internship. Internship Location: Sertoma Butterfly House. Project description: "Color Preference in tropical and neotropical butterflies."
  • Bailey Jackson, class of 2013, Sioux City, Iowa. Major: Chemistry (ACS). Funding Source: American Chemical Society SciScholar. Internship Location: Milliken Chemical, Spartanburg, S.C.
  • Chelsie Peters, class of 2013, Missouri Valley, Iowa. Major: Biology. Funding Source: Henry Doorly Zoo Internship. Internship Location: Henry Doorly Zoo, Omaha, Neb. Project description: "Interactive Animal Programming and Aquarium."
  • Kelly Wong, class of 2013, Custer, S.D. Majors: Biology & Modern Foreign Languages. Mentor/advisor: Eric Klawiter. Funding Source: NIH K23 Internship. Internship Location: Harvard Medical School/Massachusetts General Hospital. Project description: "Neuroimaging in multiple sclerosis."
  • Tony Yang, class of 2014, Hugo, Minn. Major: Biology. Mentor/advisor: Dr. Troy Lund. Funding Source: University of Minnesota & Department of Family Medicine & Community Health Internship. Internship Location: Masonic Cancer Center for Health Disparities. Project description: "Studying the effects of antioxidants on G6PD deficient induced."

2012 Summer Research Presentation

RESEARCH LUNCHEONS: Throughout the summer, undergraduate researchers have presented their findings over lunch inside Augustana's Gilbert Science Center. College officials estimate each luncheon's attendance at 80-100 students, faculty members, area scientists and health professionals. In this photo, junior Emily Grandprey (left) and junior Brennan Olson (right) discuss their research on "Novel Protein Interactions in Cancer Cells" during a lunch-time presentation on Wednesday, July 11, 2012.