Hastings College biology students win awards at district conference

Hastings College students received awards at the North Central 2 District Conference hosted by the College’s Pi Omicron Chapter of Beta Beta Beta (BBB), a honor society for biology students, this past weekend near Omaha, Nebraska.

Students from seven colleges or universities presented their research. Five Hastings College students presented, with three students receiving Johnson Awards.

Liz Tidwell from Littleton, Colorado won first place for Best Poster Presentation for her work titled “Conversion of Phosphatidylcholine to Phosphatidic Acid using Phospholipase D for Human alpha-a Glycine Receptors Studies.” Tidwell’s work was from a summer Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) at Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

Michelle Ross from Columbia, Missouri placed third for the Johnson Award for Poster Presentation. Ross’s research originated in her fall Botany course, which was on “Determining the Effects of Euphorbia esula on Native Plants Germination and Growth.”

Anthony Cloyd from Omaha, Nebraska earned an Honorable Mention for his project on “Impact of DNA Repair Genes on Cytotoxicity of Gemcitabine.” His work was from a REU at the University of Nebraska Medical Center Eppley Institute in Omaha, Nebraska.

In addition, the Pi Omicron Chapter of BBB was recognized as one of the top chapters in the nation for its programming over the 2015-2016 academic year with an Honorable Mention for the Bertholf Award for chapter excellence.

Research Grants Funded
Earlier this academic year, several Hastings College students had fully-funded research proposals through the BBB national office.

Ross and Nathaniel Teetzel from Omaha, Nebraska, were awarded a grant for $123 for researching whether leafy spurge contains components that may have allelopathic effects on native grass germination and growth.

Kim Spartz from Hastings, Nebraska, and Alex Meeker from Aurora, Colorado, received a $211 grant to investigate antimicrobial properties of local plants on two different bacteria species.

Peyton VanWinkle from Kearney, Nebraska, was awarded $500 from BBB and a $1500 fellowship from the NASA Space Grant Consortium for her research of the effects on early embryonic development of zebrafish in response to exposure to graphene and graphene oxide.

Hastings College is a private, four-year institution located in Hastings, Nebraska, that focuses on student academic and extracurricular achievement. With 64 majors and 15 pre-professional programs, Hastings College has been named among “Great Schools, Great Prices” by U.S. News & World Report and a “Best in the Midwest” by The Princeton Review. For more, go to hastings.edu.

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