On June 5, Boyce Thompson Institute welcomed 39 undergraduate students from colleges across the country to experience the life of a researcher for 10 weeks.
Now in its 23rd year, BTI’s NSF funded Plant Genome Research Program (PGRP) and USDA funded Innovations in Digital Agriculture, Research Experience for Undergrads (REU) focuses on training and inspiring the next generation of scientists to help feed a growing population, while protecting the environment and enhancing human health.
Throughout the summer, student researchers will gain valuable research skills in BTI and Cornell University labs. They will also attend seminars and workshops to learn from leaders in plant science research, biological engineering, bioinformatics, and science communications. Because collaboration is a key aspect of modern science, every REU student will be partnered with a mentor in their respective research lab. Together, each mentor will lead the mentee in creating an independent project that best utilizes the student’s curiosity and drive while also contributing to the lab’s research goals. This project will be each mentee’s focus during the program, culminating with their end of summer presentation at our annual George and Helen Kohut Symposium.
Five of the REU students will be in labs that are part of the Center for Research on Programmable Plant Systems (CROPPS), which aims to integrate plant sciences, engineering and computer science to improve crops and the sustainability of agricultural management practices.
For many of the students, this is their first immersive research experience outside their university. Learning the fundamentals of lab life from their mentors and developing their professional networks will be a crucial experience to kickstart their research careers.
When research REU students aren’t working on their projects, they will attend weekly seminars by BTI and Cornell faculty, participate in a five-week Bioinformatics course, and engage with faculty, graduate students, and communications and scientific professionals. Throughout the summer, they will have a chance to engage with the local public during their science communication program and explore the beautiful Ithaca region on the weekends.
The summer research experience programs culminate with the annual George and Helen Kohut Summer Research Symposium on Thursday, August 10, from 9am-4:30pm at BTI. The symposium will be livestreamed for the public.
BTI is proud to welcome the following undergraduate researchers:
|Morgan Apolonio||UC Berkeley||Michael Gore||Sam Herr|
|Cleo Baldoumas||Middlebury College||Jennifer Thaler||Matt Barrett|
|Jillian Belluck||Brown University||Jim Giovannoni||Anna Hermanns and Vincent
|Tismark Boham||Cornell University||Joyce Van Eck||Elise Tomaszewski|
|Dahlia Bolt||NYU||April Gu||Yuan Yan and Mathew
|Sam Cassity||University of Arizona||Andrew Nelson||Kyle Palos and Xiaodan Zhang|
|Grace Coppinger||University of South Alabama||Zhangjun Fei||Hongshe Sun|
|Alexis Ellis||American University||Abraham Stroock and
|Quentin Funderburg||Williams College||Laura Gunn||Zhen Guo Oh and Bryce Askey|
|Etsub Gezahagne||College of New Jersey||Andre Kessler||Ethan Bass|
|Jack Greger||University of Arizona||Margaret Frank and Sijin Li||Wei Wei Chen|
|Tori Guarino||Florida Gulf Coast University||Laura Gunn||Zhen Guo Oh and Bryce Askey|
|Briana Hashim||Eckerd College||Maria Harrison||Elizabeth Trost|
|Abby Irish||Northern Michigan University||Li Li||Andy Lui|
|Tarif Islam||Centenary College of Louisiana||Andrew Nelson||Rebecca Murphy|
|Andrea Jones||University of Oklahoma||Andrew Nelson||Xiaodan Zhang and Kyle Palosn|
|Mike Lopez||New Mexico State University||Wojtek Pawlowski||Ruth Epstein|
|Daniela Martin Lesmes||Universidad de los Andes||Georg Jander||Georg Jander|
|Ana Mata-Acosta||University of Florida||Gaurav Moghe||Mohammad Irfan|
|Jade Milton||Kalamazoo College||Magda Julkowska||Magda Julkowska|
|Alison Norton||Cornell University||Georg Jander||Honglin Feng|
|Owen O’Reilly||Saint Joseph’s University||Aleksandra Skirycz||Pallavi Agarwal|
|Oge Okpala||UC Berkeley||Margaret Frank and Bruce Lewenstein||Rebecca Harrison and Elise
|Carter Oleckna||Florida Gulf Coast University||Katja Poveda||Chloe Cho|
|Skellie Orantes Chun||California State University, Los
|Stephane Bentolila||Stephane Bentolila|
|Van Par||Kennesaw State University||Anurag Agrawal||Amy Hastings|
|Kohl Perry||Tuskegee University||Joyce Van Eck and Chris Alabi||Ritesh Kumar, Jo Bui, and
|Kyle Procopio||Millersville University of
|Adrienne Roeder||Byron Rusnak|
|Lily Saar||Lycoming College||Li Li||Abhijit Hazra|
|Brock Salvatore||Slippery Rock University||Olena Vatamaniuk||Ju-Chen Chia|
|Justin Shade||Binghamton University||Katja Poveda||Hayley Schroeder|
|Alexzandria Sheppards||University of New Hampshire||Miguel Pinero||Alexandre Miaule|
|Isabel Smalley||University of Minnesota Duluth||Fay-Wei Li||Peter Schafran|
|Renee Smith||Connecticut College||Gregory Martin||Fan Xia|
|Evan Smith||University of Notre Dame||Fay-Wei Li||Declan Lafferty|
|Nistar Steinerman||Brandeis University||Lukas Mueller||Adrian Powell|
|Lydia Story||Wilson College||Georg Jander||Hillary Fischer|
|Eric Villasenor||Virginia Polytechnic University
and State University
|Jian Hua||Veronica Perez|
|Emily Wahlenmayer||Houghton University||Scott McArt||Maureen Page|