Annual Science Research Day Draws Record Number of Entries

June 16, 2011

When some 300 students, faculty and staff participated in this spring's 21st Science Research Day at Brooklyn College, they set a new record for the annual event: They presented 137 research posters on topics in such fields as biology, environmental science and psychology — a record high.

"Each year it gets bigger and bigger," says Florence Kempner, program coordinator for the Minority Access to Research Careers Program. "I remember when we began two decades ago, we hung posters along the hallway in Ingersoll Hall and set up a table of snacks and drinks in one small room."

This year's event, held in May, reveals the continuous growth of the program. The 137 posters were displayed across three adjacent rooms, each one packed with presenters, judges and other visitors, and broke last year's record of 116 posters.

Entries were classified in eight categories and split into three divisions: graduate, undergraduate and high school. The biology and environmental categories drew the largest number of projects, with 39 each. Next was psychology, with 21, followed by physics (11), computer science (10), chemistry (8), health and nutrition sciences (6) and speech (3).

A combination awards ceremony and luncheon followed the presentations, filling the room with proud winners and their enthusiastic supporters.

Judges named the first- and second-place winners:

Graduate Division

Tied for First Place:

  • Chemistry: "Ruthenium Nanoparticles Supported on Poly (4-Vinylpyridine) as Catalyst for Hydrogenation of Aromatics and Evidence for Dual Site Mechanisms," presented by Minfeng Fang with mentor Professor Roberto A. Sánchez-Delgado;
  • Psychology: "Generalization and Sequential Understanding of Novel and Familiar Events in Children with Cognitive and Language Delays," presented by Tashana S. Samuel with mentor Associate Professor Laraine McDonough.

Tied for Second Place:

  • Environmental: "Cloning and Expression of a G-Protein Coupled Estrogen Receptor in a Vocal Teleost," presented by Lilja Nielsen with mentor Assistant Professor Paul Forlano;
  • Health and Nutrition Science: "The Effect of Dietary Fat on Carbohydrate Response Element Binding Protein in a Rat Model of Fatty Liver and Insulin Resistance," presented by Yu-Fu Kuo with mentors Kenneth Axen and Professor Kathleen Axen.

Undergraduate Division

First Place:

  • Environmental: "Revisiting Lead in New York City Tap Water," presented by Bushra Wazed with mentor Assistant Professor Zhongqi Cheng.

Second Place:

  • Biology: "Structural Analysis of the Protein Kinase Domain in Myosin III," presented by Gabby Saadia and David Yaich with mentor Associate Professor Shaneen Singh.

High School Division

First Place:

  • "Carbon Dioxide Compensation and Local Tree Populations in Bushwick, Brooklyn," presented by Kevin Ribot and Jacob Torres (Academy of Urban Planning High School).

Second Place:

  • "Cytochrome B Sequences Identify Dried Marine Vertebrates Sold in Chinatown, NYC," presented by Ishmael Akahoho and Marcia Foster (Brooklyn Academy of Science and the Environment), with mentor Susan Pell (Brooklyn Botanic Garden).
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