Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Job searching and career advice

It is that time of the year when many of you are looking for job opportunities and career advice as you prepare to step out into the "real world".  This is a perfect time to take advantage of the resources of the Ashland University Career Development Center.  The staff at the CDC is trained to help you identify job opportunities, develop your resume and interview skills, and even help you find career opportunities if you are unsure of what you want to do.

This Wednesday (Feb 24th) the Career Center will be hosting the Ashland University Career Fair from noon - 4 pm in Upper Convo.  This is a fantastic opportunity for graduating seniors and alumni to meet with potential employers and graduate school representatives.  There will also be information about internship opportunities available whether or not you are graduating this Spring.  This event is for current students in any class (freshman-senior) and for alumni.

You should dress in professional business attire and bring multiple copies of your resume.  You can do some research on the companies and schools that will be participating here.  WIL Research laboratories will be at the fair and very interested in meeting Ashland science majors.  Feel free to call the CDC if you have any questions at 419-289-5064.

Check back for more career advice in the coming days and weeks.  Good luck with your searches.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Chemistry Professor Receives Grant for Student Research

Dr. Perry Corbin, associate professor of chemistry, has received a $146,000 National Science Foundation research grant from the Organic and Macromolecular Chemistry Program. Funds will be used to support collaborative research with Ashland University students during the summer, including student stipends for summer research. Studies will continue throughout the school year. A dynamic light scattering instrument will also be purchased to characterize the nanoparticles that Corbin and his research students will prepare. This instrument will, likewise, be used in various laboratory courses throughout the chemistry curriculum.

The work to be carried out by Corbin and his students builds upon previous research that was funded by a start-up grant from the American Chemical Society Petroleum Research Fund. Specifically, Corbin and his students are interested in the chemical synthesis of calixarene- and resorcinarene-core star homopolymers and related star-block copolymers, with a current interest in the development of star block copolymers that assemble into micelle (soap-like) aggregates in water. These and related polymers and aggregates have potential for use in a variety of applications, including their use as nanoscale drug-delivery devices. Dr. Corbin notes: “Research experiences are very critical to a science student’s education. These experiences give students a chance to build upon what they learn in the classroom.”

Students currently working on the project this semester include Zachary Il’Giovine (biochemistry), Heather Bensinger (toxicology), and Tiffany Weaver (chemistry). Graduating senior Katherine Moga (chemistry education, chemistry) also continues to work on the project this semester and will be presenting results of her work in March at the Spring 2010 National Meeting of the American Chemical Society in San Francisco, California.

More Summer Research Opportunities

Summer Research at Lake Erie's Stone Laboratory

Research Experience for Undergraduates Deadline: February 24 (Wednesday!)
In Stone Lab’s Research Experience for Undergraduates Scholarship Program, you can learn how to conduct real, in-the-field research while using scientific equipment, exploring the Lake Erie islands, and collecting important data to help solve Lake Erie’s most pressing problems.

Choose from one of several focus areas, including:
• Entomology, the study of insects
• Limnology, the study of inland waters
• Ornithology, the study of birds
• Fisheries
• Biological collections curation

Summer Research in Polymer Science

The NSF REU site for Polymer Science and Polymer Engineering at The University of Akron will again accept applications for the summer of 2010. This year’s stipend amount is $7,000. The deadline for applications is March 15, 2010. The program is primarily for undergraduate students who are currently sophomores or juniors. The application should include the attached form, official transcript(s), 2 letters of recommendation, and a letter of intent (background, area of interest, career goals) sent to Marj Riccardi (mericca@uakron.edu).

Summer Research Opportunity for Minority Students

Marshall University’s Biomedical Sciences graduate program is pleased to announce its 2nd Annual Summer Research Internship for Minority Students (SRIMS) to take place the summer of 2010. Applications from undergraduate minority students who have NOT graduated by August 2010 will be considered.

The program is nine weeks of graduate-level research in the field of biomedical sciences. Participants will receive formal research training while expanding their learning experience through workshops, seminars on current topics, mentoring and use of state-of-the-art core facilities.

Quick facts:
• Dates for Summer 2010: June 1st – July 30th
• $3,000 stipend PLUS FREE ROOM and BOARD and ASSISTANCE with TRAVEL!
• Present results of research project at WV Summer Research Symposium
• Application deadline is March 15th, 2010
• Minority applicants only (e.g. Native American, Hispanic, African American, persons with disabilities). People of Indian decent are not considered minority in the science field. Applicant must be a US Citizen or have a green card.

Department of Commerce Internships

The Department of Commerce (DOC) has announced the availability of internships during the Summer of 2010 in its Internship Program for Postsecondary Students. These internships offer opportunities to participants for hands-on education and training related to the their fields of interest and those of the DOC.

Internships will be available in the Washington, D.C metro area; however, some internships might be available at DOC Offices and Bureaus in other locations. ORISE will accept applications for Summer 2010 through March 2010.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Upcoming talks and events

There are a number of speakers coming soon that will be of interest to our science community and beyond:

Dr. Jay Hosler from Juniata college has rescheduled his talk on the use of comic books to teach science for Tuesday, February 23rd at 4 pm in Kettering 112.

Our own Dr. David FitzSimmons, english professor and nature photographer, will be leading a presentation of live music and images of nature in "350:Images of a Fragile Earth" on Thursday, February 25th at 7:30 pm in the Hawkins-Conard Auditorium.  350 ppm is considered the highest acceptable level of atmospheric CO2.

Dr. Jamie March from Washington and Jefferson College will be here to talk about the ecology of tropical freshwater shrimp on Tuesday, March 23rd at 4 pm.  

If you are interested in going to Medical school you will want to attend an information session on Friday, March 26th at 3pm in Kettering 112.  Molly Hawke '06, a biology grad, will be here to discuss her experience at The Ohio State University Medical School.  Biochemistry major Nick Bellanco will also be there to talk about his experience applying to and being accepted to medical school.

You can learn about the newest research into whale evolution on April 6th, when Dr. Hans Thewissen from NEOUCOM comes to Kettering.  Dr. Thewissen recently published a paper in Nature that provides one of the best pictures of early whale ancestors.  His talk will be at 4 pm.

And on Thursday, April 15th we will be hosting our second environmental lecture of the semester - Richard Moseley, the retired chief of the Ohio Department of Natural Resources Natural Areas and Preserves will speak about "Preserving Ohio's Natural Heritage".  The talk is at 7:30 pm in the Hawkins-Conard auditorium.

Follow this blog or look for flyers in the halls of Kettering with additional details.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Biology professor and students secure research grant

Dr. Mason Posner and his research laboratory have been awarded three years of funding from the National Institutes of Health to use the zebrafish as a model for understanding cataract, eye lens development and lens evolution.  This new grant ($158,000) will be used to pay salaries to Ashland University students conducting summer research, as well as for equipment and supplies.  Dr. Posner and two of his students will also be using these funds to travel to Fort Lauderdale Florida in May to present their findings at an International Vision and Ophthalmology meeting.

This award is an extension of a project on lens cataracts that has been funded since 2001.  Dr. Posner and his students have already identified and characterized several genes from the zebrafish that are thought to be involved in cataracts.  This new study will use molecular techniques to turn off these genes to see how they affect lens development and function.  Because their lenses are so similar, the zebrafish is a great model for understanding what goes wrong to produce cataracts in humans, one of the leading causes of blindness.  Previous students that have worked on this project have used the experience to help gain admission to medical, dental and veterinary schools, as well as graduate schools.  Jason Dahlman '03 was the first lab alum to earn a PhD, and Mike Danko '04 the first to earn an MD.

Current members of the lab recently attended the Great Lakes Vision Research Conference in Columbus, Ohio.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Summer Internships through the Third Frontier

The Third Frontier internship program links Ohio students with internship opportunities in various high-tech Ohio companies. Students can earn up to $6000 over a 12 month period through this program.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Guest speaker to talk about science comic books

Dr. Jay Hosler, an Associate Professor of Biology from Juniata College, writes graphic novels/comic books on science topics ranging from evolution to neurobiology.  He will be speaking here in Kettering on February 9th 23rd at 4 pm in lecture room 112 on:
Optical Illusions: The argument and evidence for using comic books to teach science
Dr. Hosler gave a great, funny talk here last year, so I encourage you to check this out.  He draws a lot about bees:

NPR recently ran a story on Dr. Hosler's comic book work.  And here is his Wikipedia page.