DUBUQUE, IOWA (June 10, 2020)  Fifteen University of Dubuque students will spend their summer researching topics ranging from surveying how habitat and landscape can impact snake populations to analyzing heavy-metal impurities present in cosmetics as part of the Joseph and Linda Chlapaty Summer Research Fellowship.

In its ninth year, the competitive fellowship helps prepare talented undergraduate students across all disciplines for graduate or professional school.

"The Joseph and Linda Chlapaty Summer Research Fellowship provides students with the opportunity to engage in one-on-one research with University faculty members and enhance their professional competence through a variety of group activities such as post-graduate school examination preparation, communication skill-building, and professional networking to position themselves for success in post-graduate studies and careers,” said Mark Sinton PhD, director of the Joseph and Linda Chlapaty Summer Research Fellowship.

Fellows will commit 400 hours of work on their research over a 10 week period during the summer. They will each receive a stipend of $4,500 and an additional $500 for research-associated supplies or travel costs. Fellows are required to present their research results during the following academic year at a local, regional, or national conference.

“The Joseph and Linda Chlapaty Summer Fellowship creates an incredible opportunity for talented undergraduate students to conduct scholarly research with a faculty scholar-mentor, to prepare for graduate entrance exams, and to build a network of professional contacts. We are grateful to Joe and Linda Chlapaty for their investment in these undergraduate students,” said Jeffrey F. Bullock, president of the University.

The following students were named 2020 Chlapaty Fellows:

Madison Bowers, a junior biology major from Mineral Point, Wisconsin

Project: Analyzing Health Effects of Microplastics by Isolating from Freshwater Systems to Caenorhabditis elegans

Advisors: Kelly Grussendorf PhD, assistant professor of biology, and Adam Hoffman PhD, associate professor of environmental chemistry and head of the Department of Natural and Applied Sciences

Levi Buchholtz, a senior environmental science major from Belmond, Iowa

Project: Surveying How Habitat and Landscape Affects Snake Populations

Advisor: Gerald Zuercher PhD, professor of biology and vertebrate ecology

Josie Coglianese, a senior chemistry and biology double major from Savanna, Illinois

Project: Identification of the Catalytic Amino Acid Residues in Potato and Mushroom Tyrosinase

Advisor: Mark Sinton, PhD, assistant professor of natural and applied sciences

Zach Elias, a junior biology major from Bettendorf, Iowa

Project: Base Editing Outcomes on GBA-Park Mutation L444p in Parkinson’s Disease

Advisor: Kelly Grussendorf PhD, assistant professor of biology

Megan Gille, a senior human health science major from Stockton, Illinois

Project: Anaplasmosis Causing Bacteria, Anaplasma phogocytophilum, in Ticks

Advisor: Kelly Grussendorf, PhD, assistant professor of biology

Lyndy Holdt, a senior biology and environmental science double major from Davenport, Iowa

Project: Impacts of Hydrologic Change and Flooding of the Mississippi River on Riverine Turtle Nesting and Population

Advisor: David Koch PhD, associate professor environmental science

Katelyn Howe, a junior biology major from Clinton, Iowa

Project: Analyzing Heavy Metal Impurities Present in Cosmetics: Foundations and Eye Products

Advisors: Amandeep Arora, PhD, assistant professor of chemistry, and Lalith Jayawickrama, teaching specialist

Megan Kennedy, a senior biology major from Asbury, Iowa

Project: Characterization of Two Freezing-Induced Genes From Aplectrum hyemale by Heterologous Expression

Advisor: Rasika Mudalige-Jayawickrama, PhD, associate professor of natural and applied sciences

Sally Lambie, a senior chemistry and biology double major from Yokota Air Base, Japan

Project: Building an Inexpensive Tensile Strength Testing Instrument

Advisor: Mark Sinton PhD, assistant professor of natural and applied sciences

Kathleen Messino, a junior biology major from McHenry, Illinois

Project: Fast Track Gene Evaluation Method for Functional Characterization of Orchid Genes

Advisor: Rasika Mudalige-Jayawickrama, PhD, associate professor of natural and applied sciences

Joshua Nsenga, a senior biology major from Oshkosh, Wisconsin

Project: Investigating the Expression of the Lipogenesis Gene Adipose Acyl-CoA Synthetase in the Parasitoid Wasp Leptopilina boulardi

Advisor: Adam Kleinschmit, PhD, associate professor of biology

Livi Schutz, a senior chemistry major from Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin

Project: A Survey of Antibiotic Bioaccumulation in Worms

Advisor: Mark Sinton, PhD, assistant professor of natural and applied sciences

Zachary Simanski, a senior biology major from Brambleton, Virginia

Project: Prevalence of Antibiotic Resistant Genes in Dubuque’s Catfish Creek Watershed

Advisor: Adam Kleinschmit, PhD, associate professor of biology

Reegan Sturgeon, a senior biology major from Molalla, Oregon\

Project: Determining the Prevalence of Tick-borne Relapsing Fever (TBRF) Causing Bacteria, Borrelia miyamotoi

Advisor: Kelly Grussendorf, PhD, assistant professor of biology

Isaiah Williams, senior environmental science major from Bowie, Maryland

Project: Monitoring the Impact of Land Use and Water Quality

Advisor: Adam Hoffman, PhD, associate professor of environmental chemistry and head of the Department of Natural and Applied Sciences

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