Ashland University Science Scholars Program

Contact Us

Questions concerning the AU Science Scholars program can be directed to:
Dr. Perry Corbin
Professor of Chemistry
pcorbin@ashland.edu
419.289.5269

Science Blog

AU Alumna Joins Bone Marrow Transplant Lab

 Following her graduation last December, AU Alumna Lexi Butterbaugh Roberts (Biology, ’20) joined the Department of Pediatric Hematology and Oncology at the University of Michigan as a research lab technician. The focus of her lab is to better understand what causes graft versus host disease (GvHD) following a bone marrow transplant. Mice are used as a model organism to study this disease, and the laboratory director is particularly interested in the role of a novel long non-coding RNA sequence in acute GvHD. While at Ashland, Lexi was a member of the AU Honors Program as well as being a Choose Ohio First Scholar. How did your time at Ashland prepare you for the future? The research skills that I developed in my independent research as well as in my classes at AU definitely helped prepare me for the skills I need in this position. For example, my cellular biology class taught me proper aseptic techniques when working with tissue cell culture, and this is now a skill I use every day. My lab also often extracts bone marrow and harvests spleens from mice, so I was thankful that my labs at AU previously exposed me to these types of intricate tasks. In addition to these technical laboratory skills, the emphasis from AU professors to learn how to read primary research articles was especially helpful. I was so thankful that my professors at AU helped me develop the skills needed to more easily read and comprehend primary research articles because I have been able to gain so much new knowledge in my new field of research in this way. What did your research as an undergraduate at Ashland focus on? For two years of my undergraduate experience, I conducted independent research with Dr. Mason Posner. Dr. Posner’s...Read more

AU Grad Puts Medical Skills into Practice in Kenya

Dr. Meghann Fitzpatrick Burns (Biology ’17) is living her dream of working as a physician following her graduation from Liberty University College of Osteopathic Medicine. Currently fulfilling her residency as an OB/GYN in Bowling Green, Kentucky, Dr. Burns (Meg) recently had the opportunity to serve her final medical school rotation working in the maternity ward of Tenwek Hospital near Bomet, Kenya with Samaritan's Purse. About her experience in Kenya, Meg finds it difficult to summarize briefly but offered a number of reflections about her experience: “The first couple of days in the hospital consisted of basically just trying to get my bearings. Several Kenyan general interns (they spoke English extremely well) and two full time American OB/GYNs worked there. Every morning we saw up to 25-30 patients on rounds. Occasionally there would be 2-3 women to a bed in labor. When they were fully dilated, they would move to a different room on beds with plastic coverings separated only by a sheet hanging from the ceiling in between. Pain medications were not an option and as soon as they delivered, they got up, went to rinse off, and go back to the shared bed. The afternoons were typically spent either doing C-sections or other surgeries. Though I did several for practice, vaginal deliveries were typically performed by nurse midwives.” Meg adds: “Typically, I assisted in surgeries and c-sections. During my third week I was with one of the American attendings and she traded places with me at the OR table. I can only imagine how big my eyes were when they handed me the scalpel and I started my very first c-section as the primary surgeon. I did this one other time and assisted several more before leaving. In a single month I saw two cases...Read more

AU Alumna publishes her research and continues studies at Wright State University

AU forensic biology and toxicology alumna Maria Kern (’20) is the author of a recent paper on her Honors’ Thesis research, titled “Buyer beware: Inexpensive, high cadmium jewelry can pose severe health risks.” The paper was published in the journal Science of the Total Environment, and reports the results of extractions that Maria performed to determine how much cadmium could be released if jewelry containing as much as 90% cadmium by weight is mouthed or swallowed. Her results show the potential for serious hazards from this jewelry. The paper was co-authored by Dr. Mallorie Boron, who had previously done work on the potential of high cadmium to release cadmium when disposed of in landfills, and Dr. Jeff Weidenhamer, who supervised the work. Maria has kept busy in the past year, just graduating with a Master’s degree in Toxicology from Wright State. This program focused on Leadership in science, and she found that it greatly improved her leadership, communication, writing, and presentation skills. Maria offered some comments on her experience at Ashland.
What was the most valuable aspect of working on your research project? The two most valuable aspects of this research project were the technical skills and the confidence that I gained from completing the project. I learned so much over the course of this project about how to conduct research in the lab, develop timelines, set deadlines, record data for later use, and how to combine everything into a paper that was eventually published. I also learned many technical skills specific to laboratory methods, instrumentation, data analysis, quality control, and even cleaning that will be used throughout my entire career as a scientist. Upon completing the project, I gained much more confidence in myself and...Read more

Professor Nigel Brush Retires

Also retiring at the end of the spring semester is Dr. Nigel Brush, professor of Geology. Growing up in Coshocton County surrounded by house-sized blocks of sandstone and fields speckled with flint and arrowheads, Dr. Brush developed an early interest in geology and archaeology. After graduating from West Holmes High School, he entered the Cincinnati Bible Seminary, where he earned a Bachelor of Science in English Bible, and held student ministries in Ohio, Indiana, and Kentucky. His interest in Christian Apologetics later resulted in the publication of two books: The Limitations of Scientific Truth (2005) and The Limitations of Theological Truth (2019). At The Ohio State University, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts in Anthropology and also took master's-level classes in Anthropology, he participated in the excavation of an Early Woodland (Adena) burial mound, a Late Woodland village at the Water Plant Site, and also worked in the archaeology lab with data from the Malyan Project in Iran. As a student at the University of Southampton in England, where he received a Master of Arts in Archaeological Method and Theory, he worked on a rescue excavation at Stonehenge. Dr. Brush received his doctorate in Anthropology at UCLA and worked as a research associate in the UCLA Radiocarbon Laboratory, as an accessioner in the Haines Museum of Cultural History, and participated in a UCLA field school excavation of a rock shelter in the Santa Monica Mountains above Malibu. After returning to Ohio to conduct his dissertation research, Dr. Brush surveyed a 200-square-mile area in Holmes and Coshocton counties and located some 300 rock shelters that had been utilized by Native Americans. He subsequently conducted excavations at 30 of these sites with the help of volunteers, teachers from local schools, and students from The Ohio State University, The...Read more

Contact Us

Contact Us

Questions concerning the AU Science Scholars program can be directed to:
Dr. Perry Corbin
Professor of Chemistry
pcorbin@ashland.edu
419.289.5269

Science Blog

Science Blog

AU Alumna Joins Bone Marrow Transplant Lab

 Following her graduation last December, AU Alumna Lexi Butterbaugh Roberts (Biology, ’20) joined the Department of Pediatric Hematology and Oncology at the University of Michigan as a research lab technician. The focus of her lab is to better understand what causes graft versus host disease (GvHD) following a bone marrow transplant. Mice are used as a model organism to study this disease, and the laboratory director is particularly interested in the role of a novel long non-coding RNA sequence in acute GvHD. While at Ashland, Lexi was a member of the AU Honors Program as well as being a Choose Ohio First Scholar. How did your time at Ashland prepare you for the future? The research skills that I developed in my independent research as well as in my classes at AU definitely helped prepare me for the skills I need in this position. For example, my cellular biology class taught me proper aseptic techniques when working with tissue cell culture, and this is now a skill I use every day. My lab also often extracts bone marrow and harvests spleens from mice, so I was thankful that my labs at AU previously exposed me to these types of intricate tasks. In addition to these technical laboratory skills, the emphasis from AU professors to learn how to read primary research articles was especially helpful. I was so thankful that my professors at AU helped me develop the skills needed to more easily read and comprehend primary research articles because I have been able to gain so much new knowledge in my new field of research in this way. What did your research as an undergraduate at Ashland focus on? For two years of my undergraduate experience, I conducted independent research with Dr. Mason Posner. Dr. Posner’s...Read more

AU Grad Puts Medical Skills into Practice in Kenya

Dr. Meghann Fitzpatrick Burns (Biology ’17) is living her dream of working as a physician following her graduation from Liberty University College of Osteopathic Medicine. Currently fulfilling her residency as an OB/GYN in Bowling Green, Kentucky, Dr. Burns (Meg) recently had the opportunity to serve her final medical school rotation working in the maternity ward of Tenwek Hospital near Bomet, Kenya with Samaritan's Purse. About her experience in Kenya, Meg finds it difficult to summarize briefly but offered a number of reflections about her experience: “The first couple of days in the hospital consisted of basically just trying to get my bearings. Several Kenyan general interns (they spoke English extremely well) and two full time American OB/GYNs worked there. Every morning we saw up to 25-30 patients on rounds. Occasionally there would be 2-3 women to a bed in labor. When they were fully dilated, they would move to a different room on beds with plastic coverings separated only by a sheet hanging from the ceiling in between. Pain medications were not an option and as soon as they delivered, they got up, went to rinse off, and go back to the shared bed. The afternoons were typically spent either doing C-sections or other surgeries. Though I did several for practice, vaginal deliveries were typically performed by nurse midwives.” Meg adds: “Typically, I assisted in surgeries and c-sections. During my third week I was with one of the American attendings and she traded places with me at the OR table. I can only imagine how big my eyes were when they handed me the scalpel and I started my very first c-section as the primary surgeon. I did this one other time and assisted several more before leaving. In a single month I saw two cases...Read more

AU Alumna publishes her research and continues studies at Wright State University

AU forensic biology and toxicology alumna Maria Kern (’20) is the author of a recent paper on her Honors’ Thesis research, titled “Buyer beware: Inexpensive, high cadmium jewelry can pose severe health risks.” The paper was published in the journal Science of the Total Environment, and reports the results of extractions that Maria performed to determine how much cadmium could be released if jewelry containing as much as 90% cadmium by weight is mouthed or swallowed. Her results show the potential for serious hazards from this jewelry. The paper was co-authored by Dr. Mallorie Boron, who had previously done work on the potential of high cadmium to release cadmium when disposed of in landfills, and Dr. Jeff Weidenhamer, who supervised the work. Maria has kept busy in the past year, just graduating with a Master’s degree in Toxicology from Wright State. This program focused on Leadership in science, and she found that it greatly improved her leadership, communication, writing, and presentation skills. Maria offered some comments on her experience at Ashland.
What was the most valuable aspect of working on your research project? The two most valuable aspects of this research project were the technical skills and the confidence that I gained from completing the project. I learned so much over the course of this project about how to conduct research in the lab, develop timelines, set deadlines, record data for later use, and how to combine everything into a paper that was eventually published. I also learned many technical skills specific to laboratory methods, instrumentation, data analysis, quality control, and even cleaning that will be used throughout my entire career as a scientist. Upon completing the project, I gained much more confidence in myself and...Read more

Professor Nigel Brush Retires

Also retiring at the end of the spring semester is Dr. Nigel Brush, professor of Geology. Growing up in Coshocton County surrounded by house-sized blocks of sandstone and fields speckled with flint and arrowheads, Dr. Brush developed an early interest in geology and archaeology. After graduating from West Holmes High School, he entered the Cincinnati Bible Seminary, where he earned a Bachelor of Science in English Bible, and held student ministries in Ohio, Indiana, and Kentucky. His interest in Christian Apologetics later resulted in the publication of two books: The Limitations of Scientific Truth (2005) and The Limitations of Theological Truth (2019). At The Ohio State University, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts in Anthropology and also took master's-level classes in Anthropology, he participated in the excavation of an Early Woodland (Adena) burial mound, a Late Woodland village at the Water Plant Site, and also worked in the archaeology lab with data from the Malyan Project in Iran. As a student at the University of Southampton in England, where he received a Master of Arts in Archaeological Method and Theory, he worked on a rescue excavation at Stonehenge. Dr. Brush received his doctorate in Anthropology at UCLA and worked as a research associate in the UCLA Radiocarbon Laboratory, as an accessioner in the Haines Museum of Cultural History, and participated in a UCLA field school excavation of a rock shelter in the Santa Monica Mountains above Malibu. After returning to Ohio to conduct his dissertation research, Dr. Brush surveyed a 200-square-mile area in Holmes and Coshocton counties and located some 300 rock shelters that had been utilized by Native Americans. He subsequently conducted excavations at 30 of these sites with the help of volunteers, teachers from local schools, and students from The Ohio State University, The...Read more

 

National Science Foundation

NO LONGER ACCEPTING APPLICATIONS TO THE PROGRAM

Ashland University, supported by the National Science Foundation S-STEM Program, is pleased to offer the AU Science Scholars Program. The program provides renewable scholarships to outstanding students with financial need who are majoring in a natural science discipline at AU (biology, biochemistry, chemistry, environmental science, or toxicology), who plan to pursue a career in science, and who are selected to join the program.  Students were selected to join the program in 2017-2020.   A limited number of positions are now available in the program for community college students who are transferring to Ashland University in Spring 2021 or Fall 2021.  

Features of the AU Science Scholars program include:

  1. Guidance from faculty, peer, and alumni mentors
  2. Participation in a learning community with fellow AU Science Scholars
  3. Enhanced career-preparation programming for the science field
  4. Renewable scholarships ranging in amounts from $4,000-$7,000 per year

In order to be eligible for consideration to join the Ashland University Science Scholars Program, applicants must:

  • be accepted to Ashland University prior to completing the Science Scholars Program application (see transfer student admission)
  • be a community college student who will transfer to Ashland University with junior status (minimum 60 hours)
  • have a college/university GPA of at least 3.0 
  • be a U.S. citizen, permanent resident, or refugee alien
  • declare a natural science major
  • be a full-time student once at Ashland University
  • file the FAFSA
  • complete the Science Scholars Program application--NO LONGER ACCEPTING APPLICATIONS

Science Scholars Program Activities

As part of the Ashland University Science Scholars Program, students participate in internship and career preparation workshops, attend talks given by experts in science, and travel off-campus to visit various science facilities and jobsites.  

STEM Career and Internship Videos

As part of Ashland University's S-STEM grant, as outside speakers and alumni interact with the AU Science Scholars, and as Scholars or other selected Ashland University students participate in research and internships, video interviews have been conducted for some of these activities to document and for futher use.  Examples are shared below:

Dr. Marie Southerland (graduate study in science)  Ashland University biochemistry alum Marie Southerland spoke to the AU Science Scholars about her experience as a graduate student and about preparation for graduate school in the sciences.  

Ms. Emily Law (NSF Research Experiences for Undergraduates)  Ashland University physics and math student (now alum) Emily Law spoke to the AU Science Scholars about her participation in two NSF REUs.  Her presentation was part of a workshop for the Science Scholars on possible internships in academic labs (both on-campus and off-campus).

Mr. Chris May (Director of Restoration, The Nature Conservancy, Michigan)  The Ashland University Science Scholars Program welcomed Mr. Chris May who gave a lecture about "Landscape Restoration and Conservation of Coastal Wetlands in Western Lake Erie" (VIDEO link to entire presentation).  This talk was part of the 2017-2018 annual Environmental Science lecture series, which was co-sponsored by the S-STEM program.

Dr. Ofer Reizes (Laura J. Fogerty Endowed Chair for Uterine Cancer Research, Cleveland Clinic Lerner Research Institute)  As the inagural speaker in a new lecture series that was started as part of the AU S-STEM project, the "Lab to Market Speaker Series", Dr. Ofer Reizes gave a lecture about "Clinical Problems and Drug Development for Gynecological Cancers".  The purpose of the Lab to Market Speaker Series is to expose students to how new knowledge, derived from scientific research, is brought to industry or clinic; which, in turn, results in benefits for society.  Dr. Reizes also sat for an interview in which he outlined his career path and preparation advice for students.

This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. 1643489 (DUE).

Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.