March 2007 Volume 3, Issue 6

Bio and Chem garner $60K award from merck Institute for Science Education

The College of New Jersey was recently selected by the Merck Institute for Science Education (MISE) and the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) as one of 15 colleges and universities nationwide to receive an award for undergraduate research. TCNJ is in the company of competitive institutions such as Truman State University, University of Richmond, Wellesley College, and the  University of Wisconsin in receiving this award. 

Merck Logo

The Merck/AAAS Undergraduate Science Research Program is a competitive program available in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico. Launched in 2000 as a national competition, the 10-year, $9 million initiative is funded by MISE and administered by AAAS. The program is open to qualified institutions in the United States and Puerto Rico that offer an American Chemical Society-approved program in chemistry and confer 10 or fewer graduate degrees annually in biology and chemistry combined. 

AAAS LogoThe award provides the College with $60,000 for joint use by the biology and chemistry departments to engage students in research. The program, led by Chair of Biology Marcia O’Connell and Chair of Chemistry Georgia Arvanitis, will offer five students each summer for three years the opportunity to work collaboratively with faculty members from both the biology and chemistry departments.

The department has already confirmed which faculty members the students will be collaborating for research. Miriam Segura Totten from the biology department will work with Donald Hirsh of the chemistry department. Sudhir Nayak from the biology department will collaborate with David Hunt from the chemistry department. Additionally, students will work with Anna Maria Soto, a biochemistry faculty member. 

“Our strategic aspirations are to provide one of the best public undergraduate educations in the country in the sciences,” says Dean of the School of Science Jeff Osborn. Certainly winning this research award will help both the biology and chemistry departments reach that goal.