Morristown, N.J. (April 6, 2017) – Four CSE students demonstrated their impressive scientific knowledge at the Independent College Fund of New Jersey's (ICFNJ) Undergraduate Research Symposium at the Liberty Science Center. These students, Grace Bailey, '17, Kiersten Hendricksen, '17, Sean Mahoney, '17, and Fiorella Vasquez, '17, all spent hours developing complex research projects guided by CSE faculty members Peter Dobbelaar, Ph.D., Kimberley Grant, Ph.D, and Tara Cominski, Ph.D.
The goal of this symposium is to expose participating students to potential careers available to Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) majors, and strengthen engagement in a STEM area specific to each student. Participants are chosen through a competitive selection process as well as from scholarship recipients regulating research.
Bailey, with her project "The Determination and Analysis of the Properties of Biodiesel", was awarded fifth place at the symposium. She proposed that biodiesel derived from edible oils, including grapeseed, flaxseed, and safflower oil, could reduce the negative environmental impact of fuel. Bailey went on to suggest that these edible oils were best suited for New Jersey's climate due to lower viscosity, or thickness, properties. This could have a great impact on the research of renewable energy sources.
Bailey will continue her education at the University of California, Berkeley and study nuclear engineering.
Her fellow presenters discussed, "The Impact of Over Fertilization on Barnegat Bay-Little Egg Harbor Estuary" by Hendricksen, "The Expression of Cytokines in Blast-Induced Mild Traumatic Brain Injury" by Mahoney and "Stress Hormone Responsiveness and Perceived Anxiety in College Students" by Vasquez.
According to Regina Hartley, chair of the ICFNJ, this symposium offers "students an opportunity to pursue research in areas of interest to them" and "helps spark a lifelong journey of innovation and discovery."