Centre students honored by Kentucky Academy of Science
RELEASED: Dec. 7, 2006
DANVILLE, KY—Two Centre College students were honored at the Kentucky Academy of Science's annual meeting on Saturday, November 11 at Morehead State University. Bobby Cassady, a sophomore from Lancaster, Ky., and Tammy Lundblad, a junior from Richmond, Ky., received Undergraduate Research Competition awards for their projects.
Cassady was awarded first place in the zoology section. His project, entitled “Movement Behavior of the Crayfish Orconectes Juvenilis,” reported results on the study of movement behavior of the crayfish species. He conducted his research at Sugar Creek in Garrard County, Ky.
"I'm happy that I was able to represent the biology department of Centre in a positive manner," Cassady said. "I couldn't have completed this project and won this award without the help of Dr. Rob Ziemba and fellow research student Rachel Stamper [a sophomore from Danville, Ky./Paris, Tenn.]." Ziemba is an assistant professor of biology and served as Cassady's faculty mentor on the project.
"The study of movement is critical for understanding how organisms interact with each other and with their physical environment," Ziemba said. "In practice, studies such as these are very difficult, especially with small aquatic organisms. The success of Bobby's project is mainly due to his willingness to spend many hours in the field, searching for his marked animals. The extensive dataset he has generated will be useful for answering many questions concerning the ecology of crayfish."
Lundblad received third place in the cellular and molecular biology division for her research on neurons developing functionally appropriate neurotransmitters. Her presentation titled "Characterization of a Subpopulation of Neurons in the Developing Rat Cerebral Cortex that Transiently Express the Enzyme, Tyrosine Hydroxylase" was co-authored by Dr. Steve Asmus, Dowling Associate Professor of Biology and Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.
"It was amazing to place at KAS my first time ever presenting there," Lundblad said. "The cell and molecular biology undergraduate competition is very competitive, so i exceeded my expectations. I was simply hoping to get some practice at giving a science presentation and to learn what other undergraduates are doing, and I received an undergraduate award. It's pretty cool!"
Dr. Asmus was equally as excited and impressed with the award.
"I was impressed that even though Tammy gets nervous about giving presentations, she was glad to be 'forced' to give a talk at KAS to get practice," Asmus said. "She worked very hard on her presentation, and she did a great job. She fielded questions extremely well, which showed that she had thought about the research beyond just what was presented in her talk."
The Kentucky Academy of Science, founded in 1914, is an organization that encourages research and unifies the scientific interests of the Commonwealth. Its membership includes faculty and students from both public and private higher education institutions across the state, as well as many industrial professionals. In addition to the awards program, the Academy offers grants for scientific research and publishes its own scientific journal, The Journal of the Kentucky Academy of Science, in the spring and fall of each year.
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