College of Science Announces 2014 Undergraduate Summer Research Stipend Winners

The College of Science has chosen eight students to receive this year’s undergraduate summer research stipends. The selected students will earn $5,000 for 10 weeks of research with IIT faculty this summer. The stipends, funded primarily by the college’s board and alumni, allow students to gain invaluable hands-on research experience, explore their interests, and prepare for their future careers. Matthew Bauer, associate dean, senior lecturer of computer science and director of undergraduate academic advising, said, “The College of Science supports our students’ experiencing the process and innovative thinking of research with our faculty. We hope these summer experiences will spur these students into a productive career in the sciences.” All of the winners were nominated by IIT faculty.

•Pooja Agarwal (BME 3rd year) and Ben Stark, professor of biology, will examine how various contaminants such as sulfur are emitted into the environment, consequently producing numerous health risks.
•Benjamin Grimmer (CS 2nd year), along with Gruia Calinescu, associate professor of computer science, will conduct research in approximation algorithms for the graph theory problem of constructing a minimum strongly connected subgraph.
•Caleb Hamilton (AMAT 3rd year) will work with Shuwang Li, professor of applied mathematics, to test the convergence of the developing algorithms for modeling a vesicle (when a membrane forms a closed structure) in a fluid under various flows.
•Cara Karter (2nd year), with the help of Laura Hosman, assistant professor of political science, will develop a research instrument to gather baseline data measuring the population’s knowledge of global climate change, surveying current infrastructural conditions, and carrying out a needs assessment.
•David Osgood (CS 2nd year), under the supervision of Andrey Rogachev, assistant professor of chemistry, will clarify the influence of curvature of open-geodesic molecules on their physical properties and chemical reactivity.
•Jean Sebastien Seck (3rd year) with the guidance of Carly Kocurek, assistant professor of digital humanities and media studies, will assist with the groundwork necessary for the launch of the new open-access scholarly journal, the Games Research Review, which will offer reviews of new scholarly monographs in the area of game studies.
•Jahna Soomer-James (BME 4th year), along with Jean-Francois Pombert, assistant professor of biology, will work on a research project that focuses on comparative genomics and potentially harmful bio-organisms, with an emphasis on determining key factors that are involved in the evolution of pathogenicity.
•Weronika Swiechowicz (AMAT 3rd year) will work with Sonja Petrovic, professor of applied mathematics, to analyze the multimodal likelihood arising in statistics and examine a problem for numerical computations of model parameter estimators.