Science Research Event
Gilbert Chavez '16 explains the research he conducted this summer.
While other students spent their summer relaxing, Gilbert Chavez ’16 focused on stress.
As part of the Summer Science Research Program, Chavez worked with biology professor Dr. Lisa Olson to study the "Psychophysiological Impact of Meditation on Stress Response," and presented his findings during the annual Summer Science Research Program poster presentation Sept. 25 in Hedco Hall.
“I spent the summer analyzing the data and organizing it, and I felt like a researcher,” he said. “It’s a responsibility to make sure I give the accurate data and I’m consistent.”
A student in the Johnston Center for Integrative Studies, Chavez’s research tied in with his emphasis of Medical Ethics: What it Means to Understand Life.
“I was very excited that I got to choose to work with Dr. Olson, and that it is easily applied to what I’m learning in other classes,” he said. “It’s helping me see exactly what I’m getting into and if I really do enjoy this type of work. It’s been really rewarding and interesting to find out trends.”
More than 25 students presented their posters during the culmination of a summer conducting research on campus and in the field. A few students, like Shane Bradner ’14, worked out of state.
“I chose to be in the South, and went to Tuskegee University in Alabama,” the biochemistry major said. “I had never been there before, and wanted a new experience.”
He worked in a laboratory for 10 weeks with rats to study the effects of greens and omega fatty acids on hypertension.
“I learned a lot from it because I worked a lot,” he said. “I’ve done previous summer research, and it’s very cool. You learn about the dedication you need, and it’s helped turn me into the scientist I am today.”
Nikita Meghani ’14 and Amanda Sawyer ’14 also conducted their research off campus, at Loma Linda University. They worked with mice with the goal of discovering how to prevent pre-term labor from occurring.
“We partnered with Loma Linda, where they had previously done a study on this topic with rats, so we furthered that study,” Meghani said.
“We put more pieces of the puzzle together for them, and did more data and research,” Sawyer said.
Dr. Barbara Murray, director of the Stauffer Center for Science and Mathematics, was impressed by the work each student put into their posters. Not only did they create posters, but they were also required to use them to help explain their research to other students, administrators, and professors.
“This group did particularly well in terms of presentations,” she said. “They gave oral presentations during the summer, and were very professional. These posters are as good as the ones you see at professional conferences, and to get to that level is pretty amazing.”
Posted: Sept. 27, 2013
Written by: Catherine Garcia