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American Chemical Society

Halmos College Students Present Research at American Chemical Society National Meeting

Six undergraduate students at NSU’s Halmos College of Natural Sciences and Oceanography presented research at the 251st American Chemical Society (ACS) National Meeting and Exposition held in March 2016 in San Diego, California.

ImageIPresenting at the meeting were Corey Burns (junior, biology major), Fernando Reachy-Guadarrama (senior, biology major), Alfredo Lam (sophomore, chemistry major), Safiyah Muhammad (senior, chemistry major), Sara Rodriguez (senior, double major in biology and chemistry), and Katrina Fins (senior, biology major).  

The students were mentored by chemistry faculty members Dimitrios Giarikos, Ph.D., professor; and Beatrix Aukszi, Ph.D.; Maria Ballester, Ph.D.; and Victor Castro, Ph.D., associate professors at the college. ImageII

The students will showcase their work at NSU in poster and oral presentations at the 2016 Undergraduate Student Symposium.

We are so proud of the students’ results and work ethic,” Giarikos said. “They have been diligent and kept us motivated to work with them. We’ve gotten to know these students very well, and we are so happy to see the seniors continue their education in graduate programs.”

As faculty mentors, we spent one to two years working with each undergraduate–guiding them every step of the way and teaching them valuable laboratory and research skills which will benefit them in their future careers,” Aukszi said.

ImageIIISaid Ballester: “Even though chemistry research is time-intensive by nature and requires high involvement from faculty and students, the time we spend with the students in the laboratory is valued and enjoyed.”

The students attended the national meeting with support from NSU’s PanSGA (Student Government Association), the Constellation E2 Energy to Educate Grant, NSU’s President’s Faculty Research and Development Grant, and additional aid from an ACS travel grant.

The presentations included:

  • “Synthesis and Characterization of a Bipyridine Bridged Trimetallic Ferrocene-Ruthenium-Ferrocene Photosensitizing Complex,” presented by Safiyah R. Muhammad; faculty advisor Dimitrios Giarikos, Ph.D.
  • “Biosorption of Metal Ions by Neochloris minuta and Neochloris alveolaris Alga Grown in Bristol and Nitrogen Depleted Media,” presented by Sara Rodriguez and Katrina Fins; faculty advisor Dimitrios Giarikos, Ph.D.
  • “Comparative Investigation of Student-Friendly Synthetic Routes to Prepare 2,2’-Bipyridines as Precursors for Ru-Complexes,” presented by Corey Burns; faculty advisor Beatrix Aukszi, Ph.D.
  • “Porphyrin Basicity Competition Studies of Octa Alkyl Substituted Porphyrins with H2TPP,” presented by Alfredo P. Lam; faculty advisor Maria Ballester, Ph.D.
  • “Measuring the Time Diffusion of a Colored Gas in a Small Enclosed Container,” presented by Fernando Reachy-Guadarrama; faculty advisors Maria Ballester, Ph.D., and Victor Castro, Ph.D.
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