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BRCC students to present biological research findings, May 4

studentsStudents at Baton Rouge Community College (BRCC) will present a variety of biological research findings at a semester research forum, Thursday, May 4, from 3 p.m. to 4:30 p.m., in the foyer of the Cypress Building on BRCC's Mid City campus.

Fifteen students enrolled in BRCC's Introductory Microbiology class will present findings from their research that took place along the Louisiana Gulf Coast and in Louisiana soil, as part of an international effort to find antibiotic producers.

In 2013, Mary Miller, Ed.D. - BRCC Associate Professor of Biology, Undergraduate Research Coordinator, Academic Assessment Chair - wrote a proposal to develop a relationship between BRCC and the Small World Initiative (SWI) at Yale University. BRCC was among the first of six community colleges nationwide, and the first institution in Louisiana to partner with the program. The international effort now includes 170 participating schools, 35 states, Puerto Rico, and 12 countries. The program seeks to increase retention in STEM degrees while exposing students to real research projects. SWI transforms a traditional classroom laboratory into an engaging and exciting activity that allows students to contribute to the world-wide health crisis of antibiotic resistance.

Seven BRCC students in the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Bridges to Baccalaureate Research Scholars program will present results from their participation in research at Louisiana State University in various biomedical topics, including: gene regulation, joint disease, language impairment, thoil-acrylate polymerization, food pathogen detection, hydrogens, and emphysema. These students were selected through an interview process and were then interviewed by professors at LSU to participate in research projects. Their projects have been showcased at the Annual Biomedical Research Conference for Minority Students in Tampa Bay, Fla., the Summer Undergraduate Research Conference at LSU, and at the LSU Discover Day.

The public is invited to attend to learn about the novel research projects conducted by BRCC students. All 22 students will present their research as a poster presentations, and will be available to address questions and provide ideas for future research.

Refreshments will be served.

Selected students from Dr. Miller's previous classes have attended and presented at the American Society for Microbiology (ASM). This prestigious conference is the largest microbiology conference in the world. Last year, participants received the honor of hearing Bill Gates speak in Boston, Mass., and shared their findings with the scientific community. This academic year, four students have been selected to present their work at the ASM conference in New Orleans - June 1-5, where they will meet Jo Handelsman, the former Associate Director for Science at the White House and founder of the SWI.