Undergraduate Chemistry Researchers Present at Mid-SURE
After 10 weeks of hard work, 16 students participating in MSU Chemistry’s REU (Research Experience for Undergraduates) program presented their findings at the Mid-Michigan Symposium for Undergraduate Research Experiences (Mid-SURE). These students were among 330 total undergraduates who took part in this summer’s university-wide REU activities—many visiting MSU from over 100 different home institutions.
Created by Professor Greg Swain in 2014, MSU Chemistry’s REU is a one-of-a-kind experience centered on the core concepts of green chemistry.
Officially titled “Cross-Disciplinary Training in Sustainable Chemistry and Chemical Processes,” this innovative REU teaches participating undergraduates how sustainability concepts might be applied across a wide range of chemistry sub-fields, including analytical, biological, inorganic, organic, and physical chemistry.
Over the summer months, undergraduates worked closely with MSU Chemistry faculty and graduate student mentors to gain hands-on laboratory experience as they designed and implemented a particular research experiment. In addition to specialized workshops and valuable networking events, students analyzed and interpreted the experimental data they collected, reviewed past research in the same area, and created a final report based on their findings.
At the end of the program, students presented the results of their studies at two community events: a university-wide research symposium (Mid-SURE) and an oral presentation organized by the Chemistry Department.
“The incorporation of green chemistry principles into research activities will equip and inspire the next generation of chemists to solve the greatest sustainability challenges facing our planet,” offered Professor Swain. “This training will benefit society through safer laboratories and laboratory practices, reduced volume and toxicity of chemical waste, and educating engaged and inspired students on how they can be better stewards of the environment in their research activities.”
This year’s participants included Cady Hale (Willamette University), Isabella Defreitas (Western Michigan University), Elizabeth Smith (Allegheny College), Lillie Purcell (Western Illinois University), Kritzia Rosado (Inter-American University, PR), Henry Thomas (Iowa State University), Anthony Zhu (Ohio State University), Rachel Goike (Albion College), and Mary O'Reilly (Truman State University. Back Row (L to R): Kolton Mehalko (Penn State University - Erie), Katie Colesa (Grand Valley State University), Marissa Zamora (Ft. Lewis College), Bradley Curenton (University of Alabama), Suvan Campbell (Andrews University) Warren Jacobs (Saginaw Valley State University), and Libby Ashby (Michigan State University).
For more information on MSU Chemistry’s REU, please visit the program website at: https://www.chemistry.msu.edu/reu/index.aspx.
For additional photos of REU students presenting at Mid-SURE, scroll below.