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    Class of 2021 Graduates of Magis Honors Program

    Seven members of The University of Scranton’s class of 2021 graduated as members of Scranton’s Magis Honors Program in STEM, one of the Jesuit school’s five programs of excellence.
    June 9, 2021

    Seven members of The University of Scranton’s class of 2021 graduated from its Magis Honors Program in STEM. The program, which began as a pilot program in the fall of 2017, combines the development of STEM knowledge and research techniques with programing to further the students’ understanding of the impact science has on society. The University’s Magis Honors Program in STEM was officially approved as the University’s fifth honors program in 2019.

    The Magis Honors Program offers talented students a more intense, interdisciplinary experience of research in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). Courses taken over four years at Scranton combine a series of seminars on STEM and society with humanities courses. With guidance by faculty mentors, the students in the program develop, present and defend a thesis based on their individual research projects. In addition, the program requires participation in annual community service projects as well as professional development programs.

    The following members of Scranton’s class of 2021 graduated as members of the Magis Honors Program in STEM.

    Elena K. Donato, Langhorne, graduated, magna cum laude, as a biology and philosophy double major. Donato worked with faculty mentor Katherine Stumpo, Ph.D., associate professor of chemistry, on a thesis titled “Extraction of eumelanin from gray catbird feathers, and distinctions in concentration between sexes.”

    Molly K. Elkins, Owings, Maryland, graduated, summa cum laude, as a biochemistry, cell, molecular biology and philosophy double major. Elkins worked with faculty mentor Bryan Crable, Ph.D., assistant professor of biology, on a thesis titled “Analysis of the constitutive expression of the PAO1 Type VI secretion system of P. aeruginosa.” Elkins was also a member of the University’s undergraduate Honors Program and the Special Jesuit Liberal Arts Honors Program and was the recipient of the University’s full-tuition Presidential Scholarship.

    Alexander J. Kidd, Tunkhannock, graduated as a biology major. Kidd worked with faculty mentor Janice Voltzow, Ph.D., professor and chair of the Biology Department and director of the Magis Honors Program in STEM, on a thesis titled “The compressive strength of the valves of Mytilus edulis.”

    Jacob F. Myers, Blue Bell, graduated, summa cum laude, as a biochemistry, cell, molecular biology major. Myers worked with faculty mentor Timothy Foley, Ph.D., professor of chemistry, on a thesis titled “Glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase as a sensor for cellular metabolic states.” Myers was also a member of the University’s undergraduate Honors Program and the recipient of the University’s full-tuition Presidential Scholarship.

    Elizabeth R. Ridge, Southampton, graduated, magna cum laude, as a neuroscience major. Ridge worked with faculty mentor Cara Krieg, Ph.D., assistant professor of biology, on a thesis titled “1MAN size does not affect song variability in adult male house wren (Troglodytes aedon).” Ridge was also a member of the University’s Special Jesuit Liberal Arts Honors Program.

    Karlee B. Ruth, Schwenksville, graduated, summa cum laude, as a biochemistry major. Ruth worked with faculty mentor Joan Wasilewski, Ph.D., associate professor and chair of the Chemistry Department, on a thesis titled “An investigation of redox therapies through the effect of ebselen and mercaptosuccinic acid in the absence and presence of hydrogen peroxide using Saccharomyces cerevisiae as a cancer cell model.” Ruth was also a member of the University’s undergraduate Honors Program.

    Michael L. Samulevich, Shickshinny, graduated, cum laude, as a biochemistry, cell, molecular biology and philosophy double major. Samulevich worked with faculty mentor Michael Fennie, Ph.D., associate professor of chemistry, on a thesis titled “Investigating the intramolecular interactions in the formation of 2-cyano-tryptophan.” Samulevich was also a member of the University’s undergraduate Honors Program and the Special Jesuit Liberal Arts Honors Program.

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