Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Support the Pre-medical Sciences Club Service Project

The Pre-medical Sciences Club is sponsoring a volleyball tournament for Monica Primary School in Tanzania. Monica Primary School is a K-12 school in the Kihonda providence. One hundred percent of the funds raised will directly help the children living in this region. About $50.00 US dollars can cover tuition and supplies for a year for a child attending the school. The impact of an educated child has a widespread affect in this region. The education of one child not only changes his or her life, but can change of the lives of his/her family and/or village. For more information, contact the Pre-medical Sciences Club.

Monday, November 10, 2014

Tri-Beta Biology Honor Society Welcomes New Members

Rho Chi Chapter, Beta Beta Beta, Bloomsburg University, October 26, 2014
New members of Beta Beta Beta (Tri-Beta) Biological Honor Society pose for a picture following their induction ceremony on October 26, 2014. Beta Beta Beta (Tri-Beta) is a society for students dedicated to improving the understanding and appreciation of biological sciences and extending boundaries of human knowledge through scientific research. Since its founding in 1922, more than 175,000 persons have been accepted into lifetime membership, and more than 430 chapters have been established throughout the United States and Puerto Rico. The mission of Tri-Beta is: 1) to stimulate scholarship; 2) to disseminate scientific knowledge; and 3) to promote biological research. To fulfill this mission, the national organization of Beta Beta Beta recognizes the accomplishments of outstanding individuals and chapters and publishes a national journal, BIOS. The induction ceremony was led by current officers: President, Adam Kulp; Vice-President, Blake Shoemaker; Secretary, Katie Hawkins, Historian, Jacob Morton, and Treasurer, Katie Sue Geissinger. Dr. Marianna Wood was the featured speaker and addressed “Foraging in chipmunks and the value of basic research.” The initiates were also congratulated by Dr. Lincoln, Interim Dean of the College of Science and Technology, and were honored at a reception with family and friends. Check out the Tri-Beta Bulletin board outside HSC 99 for photos and highlights.   


Regular Members: Katlin Aunkst, Carrie Barry, Chris Bastardi, Kahli Castagnera, Kira England, Brooke Esbenshade, Sean Hartzell, Jade Heisman, Kerri Horwath, Natalie Mayo, Corey McKenna, Lexie Mendall, Leah Miller, Philip Mosolino, Sharon Pitcavage, Jean-Nicole Place, David Strawn, Shelby Weikel, Season Whitenight, Jennifer Young
Associate Members: Josie Pervola, Samantha Rodrigues, Morgan Strong
Graduate Member: Alan Belles
Current Members: Catlin Bagenstose, Danielle Bordner, Kent Cooper, Katherine Geissinger, Katherine Hawkins, Sarah Hower, Brendon Juengst, Emily Kossifos, Adam Kulp, Ashita Mittal, Elaine McCauley, Jacob Morton, Blake Shoemaker, Julio Valencia-Velez, Anthony Vendetti, Chelsea Wenner, Jonathan White, Sandra Zelonis
Graduate Members: Benjamin Carlucci, Zane Hoover, Jessica Willis

2014-2015 Tri-Beta Officers, Bloomsburg University Chapter

Dr. Amber Pitt Receives a Wild Resource Conservation Grant

Dr. Amber Pitt was awarded a Wild Resource Conservation Grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources to examine the effect of land use regimes on hellbender habitat and population persistence in Pennsylvania. Hellbenders are giant, aquatic salamanders native to the eastern United States, including Pennsylvania. They are considered indicators of water quality and are sensitive to habitat disturbances and alterations. Their populations have declined dramatically throughout their range. This research will help determine how land use is affecting hellbender habitat and populations in the Susquehanna River drainage in Pennsylvania.

BAHS Sophomores Honored for Academic Performance

Phi Kappa Phi is the nation’s oldest, largest, and most selective honor society that recognizes and promotes academic achievement in all fields of higher education. Each year, the Bloomsburg University Chapter of the Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi presents awards to exceptional students on the basis of their academic performance in the freshman year. This year, eight BAHS students were among those honored by the Society. Receiving the award at a ceremony on November 7, 2014 were current BAHS sophomores: Hanan Ben Nacef (Health Sciences), Aubrey Cole (Health Sciences), and Andrew Denisenko (BS Biology and Russian), Amy Lavella (B.S Health Sciences), Shaidy Moronta (Biology), and Samantha Sharo (Medical Imaging), Derek Stahl (Medical Imaging), and Mallory Tomaschik (Health Sciences.) The ceremony featured a panel discussion by BU upperclassmen on "Enriching the College Experience." Panel participants included BAHS seniors, Bryce Foster and Sean Hartzell. Bryce shared his study abroad experiences in Madagascar, while Sean discussed his research projects that he conducted with Drs. Corbin and Pitt.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Pre-medical Science Club members check out Primary Care Day!

Members of the Pre-medical Sciences Club traveled to Penn State College of Medicine, Hershey, PA on October 4 for their Primary Care Day 2014.  The program included panel discussions on admissions, primary care medicine, and medical student life. Students also had the opportunity to participate in patient encounters and clinical workshops. Among the offerings were sessions on newborn exams, joint injections, pelvic exams, and skin biopsies.  The program ended with a guided tour of Penn State College of Medicine. Pre-medical Sciences Club members who attended are: Katie Mullen, Eric Elliot, Vincent Yaeger, Alex Schlack, Gabriella Bonchack, Jonathan Perez, Andrew Denisenko, Ali-reza Mobarakl, and Daniel Deignan.  Katie and Daniel reported that the day was very rewarding, and in particular they enjoyed the overall environment of the medical school and learning about primary care.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Effects of university buildings on migratory bird populations

This fall, Martina Drew (BS Biology) worked with Drs. Pitt and Corbin to lead a team of researchers to document the number of bird mortality events due to collisions into campus building windows. Student researchers including graduate students Alan Belles, Linda Tucker Serniak, and Jamie Shinskie, and undergraduate students Kent Cooper and Gabrielle Byzcek gained experience surveying for birds and evidence of bird-window collisions. This research is part of an international effort to assess the effects of college and university campuses on migratory bird populations and is being conducted in collaboration with researchers from an extensive network of colleges and universities throughout North America as part of the larger Ecological Research as Education Network Bird-window Collision Project (https://sites.google.com/a/augustana.edu/eren-bird-window-collisions-project/home). In addition to participating in the international, collaborative research project, the researchers will also evaluate the effects of Bloomsburg University buildings on migratory bird populations in order to provide data that can lead to making campus buildings more bird-friendly.

Join the BAHS Club!

The Biology and Allied Health Club is an academic and social club that sponsors trips, engages in volunteer activities, hosts speakers, and offers informative sessions ranging from how to apply to graduate schools to  internship opportunities. So far this semester, the group has sponsored a “Meet the Professors Night,” participated in the Breast Cancer Walk, conducted a clean-up at nearby Kocher Park, presented information at Career Day and held a bake sale in Hartline Lobby. Anyone interested in the biological and allied health sciences is welcome to join.  The next meetings are at 7 pm in Hartline G40 on Tuesday, November 11 and on Wednesday, December 3. For more information, check out the bulletin board on the first floor of Hartline or contact any officer. Leading the BAHS clubs this year are pictured above from right: Historian: Bryce Foster; Public relations Officer: Jill Andrews; Treasurer: Justin Vandermolen; President: Dana Frobese;  Secretary: Emily Kossifos; Vice-President: Sarah Hower; and Public Relations Officer: Elaine McCauley. Drs. Venditti and Hess are the BAHS Club Advisors.

Conservation Research: Status of hellbender salamanders in the Susquehanna River Drainage

This summer and fall, BU graduate student Jamie Shinskie and Sean Hartzell (B.S., Biology, natural history option) worked with Dr. Amber Pitt to lead a team of undergraduate and graduate student researchers to assess the habitat and distribution of hellbenders (Cryptobranchus alleganiensis) in the Susquehanna River Drainage. Hellbenders are large, long-lived, aquatic salamanders that inhabit high quality, highly oxygenated, fast flowing streams and rivers in the eastern United States. They are sensitive to siltation, sedimentation, and chemical contaminants within streams, and as a result, habitat degradation has resulted in precipitous declines in hellbender populations throughout their range. Hellbenders are currently being considered for listing as a federally endangered species. Student researchers including graduate student Linda Tucker Serniak and undergraduate students Ryan Smolock, Kent Cooper, and Michael Baade gained experience collecting hellbender environmental DNA (eDNA) samples and evaluating the within-stream habitat upon which hellbenders rely. This research will 1) reveal the current distribution of hellbenders in an area that has undergone dramatic land use changes, 2) allow for the elucidation of the main drivers of population decline and extirpation, and 3) provide valuable information that can be used to inform management and conservation decisions.

Monday, November 3, 2014

Biology Club Cleans-up Kocher Park

Biology and Allied Health Club members and Dr. Corbin headed to Kocher Park near Lightstreet, PA for a clean-up on Saturday morning, October 25.  The Frank W. Kocher  Memorial Park offers 7 acres to explore nature adjacent to Fishing Creek. The park offers public access to Fishing Creek, locations to launch canoes and kayaks, and a picnic area. The park is a joint project of the Columbia County Conservation District and the Fishing Creek Watershed Association. The Biology and Allied Health Club has participated in Kocher Park work days for the past several years. Thank you Biology and Allied Health Club for serving our community!

Ali Hussain Earns Award at the Annual Undergraduate Research Symposium in the Chemical and Biological Sciences

On Saturday, October 25, 2014, Ali Hussain, a B.S. biology major, pre-medicine option, attended the 17th Annual Undergraduate Research Symposium in the Chemical and Biological Sciences, which was held at University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC) and sponsored by the National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS). The Symposium was well attended with 246 abstracts and 276 undergraduate student presenters. The event consisted of morning and afternoon poster sessions, workshops on Professional Communication and Ethics for Scientists, and a plenary talk by Dr. David Asai from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) entitled “Transition States, Hilde Mangold, and You.” Ali presented a poster entitled “Differential Methylation of GNG7 in Normal B6 Mouse Tissues,” on the research that he and Jeffrey Dailey have done in the laboratory of Dr. William Schwindinger. His presentation was very well received and he was awarded the second place certificate in his poster group.

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Road Trip to Johns Hopkins!

Drs. Kipe-Nolt and Nolt and thirteen BAHS majors headed to the Johns Hopkins Hospital Schools of Medical Imaging in Baltimore on October 24, 2014. Johns Hopkins offers medical imaging programs in radiography, nuclear medicine, and diagnostic medical sonography. MI majors making the trip are at right: Devin Jenkins, Emily Eddinger, Sabrina Sholtes, Jessica LaValva, Matthew Derkits, Derek Stahl, Maisie Orendorf, Cole Sexton, Lindsay Gehman, Derek Tripp, Kaitlin Juran, Sarah Vital, and Olivia Mulvaney. Devin Jenkins reported that she really enjoyed the visit to Johns Hopkins and liked the city of Baltimore. The highlight was the visit to the radiography department. She reports that their tour and visit to the hospital was very well-organized and the food was good, too! 

BAHS Students and Faculty Tackle Biology Trivia

Tri-Beta biology honor society hosted Biology Trivia in October. BAHS faculty, alumnus Frank Schaeffer, graduate students and undergraduates gathered for pizza, prizes, and a good time. Trivia questions ranged from genetics and molecular biology to botany and taxonomy. Something for everyone! Bragging rights this semester go to the team of Ross Adamek, Samantha Rodrigues, Dr. Brubaker, and Jessica Willis, who claimed victory. Thanks to all who came out to play Biology Trivia. Hope to see you next semester!


Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Tri-Beta Biology Honor Society

The Tri-Beta Biology Honor Society is off to a busy start this semester. The group tutors each Thursday from 5 pm to 6 pm at ABLE, the Academic Biology Learning Environment, located on the first floor of Columbia Residence Hall. All students enrolled in introductory biology courses are invited to attend. Tri-Beta also recently held a Biology Trivia night complete with pizza and prizes. Later this semester Tri-Beta in collaboration with Kaplan is offering a variety of FREE practice standardized exams that are required for graduate and professional schools including the Medical College Admissions Test (MCAT), the Dental Admission Test (DAT), the Optometry Admission Test (OAT), the Pharmacy College Admission Test (PCAT), and the Graduate Record Exam (GRE). Tri-Beta is also planning on offering Mock Interviews for students who are applying for professional programs and graduate schools. Tri-Beta will induct new members on Sunday, October 26 at 3 pm in 108 Hartline. Dr. Marianna Wood will be the guest speaker. A reception with family and friends will follow the induction ceremony. Leading Tri Beta this year are the following officers pictured from left: Jacob Morton, historian Katie Hawkins, secretary; Blake Shoemaker, Vice-President; Katie Geissinger, treasurer, and Adam Kulp, President.  Current student members of Tri-Beta are: Caitlin Bagenstose, Danielle Bordner, Bryce Foster, Katherine Geissinger, Katherine Hawkins, Sarah Hower, Brendon Juengst, Emily Kossifos, Adam Kulp, Ashita Mittal, Jacob Morton, Myrle Newcomer, Blake Shoemaker, Julio Valencia-Velez, Anthony Vendetti, Chelsea Wenner, Jonathan White, Sandra Zelonis, Kent Cooper, Elaine McCauley, Jessica Willis, and Ben Carlucci. Dr.Surmacz is the Tri-Beta advisor.

Join us at the College of Science and Technology Career Day for a Panel Discussion with BAHS Alums!

Careers Field Trip: The Weis Center for Research

BAHS welcomes back Dr. Eric Horstick

BAHS alumnus Dr. Eric Horstick will return to BU to present a research seminar on Friday, October 10 at 4 p.m. in 178 Hartline Science Center. Dr. Horstick will discuss "Mechanisms of Behavior: Deep Brain Photoreceptors Modulate Search Behavior in Zebrafish." Everyone is welcome to attend! Dr. Horstick graduated from Bloomsburg University in 2005 with a B.S in Biology and earned his Ph.D. from the University of Michigan.  He is currently a post-doctoral research fellow at the National Institutes of Health. While on campus, Dr. Horstick will meet with students during the Biology Careers Panel, part of the College of Science and Technology's Career Day. Welcome back Dr. Horstick!


Thursday, October 2, 2014

Careers in Biology/Allied Health

Freshmen University Seminar
   Hartline G40 for MWR; Kehr Union Ballroom 3 for F


Monday, October 6                       Wednesday, Oct 8

6:30 pm                                                   6:30 pm
Mr. Kenneth Roszel                                Mr. Brian Spezialetti
Radiography                                            Medical Laboratory Science
Geisinger Medical Center                        Robert Packer Hospital
                                                                7:15 pm
                                                                Dr. William Schwindinger
                                                                Medical School
                                                                Bloomsburg University

Thursday, Oct 9                           Friday, Oct 10

6:30 pm                                                   1:00 pm
Dr. Todd Bardua                                      Biology Alumni Panel
Physical Therapy
Geisinger HealthSouth           

7:15 pm                                                   2:00 pm
Mr. Steve Uhl                                          Health Science Alumni Panel
Physician Assistant
Evangelical Community Hosp.

Great Opportunity: Free Practice Exams!

Tri-Beta Biology Honor Society in collaboration with Kaplan is offering FREE practice standardized exams in 243 Andruss Library, the computer classroom, on Saturday, November 15, 2014 at 9 am. Students may choose from among the following exams that are required for graduate and professional schools: the Medical College Admissions Test (MCAT), the Dental Admission Test (DAT), the Optometry Admission Test (OAT), the Pharmacy College Admission Test (PCAT), and the Graduate Record Exam (GRE). The new 2015 version of the MCAT will be offered.  If you would like to take the "old" version of the MCAT, the one that will be offered now through January, please contact Adam Kulp, Tri Beta President, ack52934@huskies.bloomu.edu

To sign up for one of the practice exams, complete the form at: http://bit.ly/TriBeta
Space is limited so first come, first served. PLEASE do not sign up unless you are committed to attending as this will take a seat away from a fellow classmate. For additional information, please contact Adam Kulp or Dr. Surmacz, csurmacz@bloomu.edu

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Biology Trivia!

What year did Watson and Crick publish their landmark paper on DNA structure in Nature?  What bacterium causes Lyme Disease? The octopus is in which taxonomic class? Find out the answers to these and other random questions at Biology Trivia on Wednesday, October 1 at 6 pm in G38 Hartline. Students from all classes, freshmen through seniors (and super-seniors and graduate students!), are invited to join in the fun. In addition to a good time, there will be free pizza and goodies and prizes for the top three teams. Please sign-up outside 146 Hartline. Hope to see you there!

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Ghaith Ibrahim Defends Master's Thesis

Ghaith Ibrahim, at upper right with thesis advisor Dr. Karl Henry, successfully defended his master's thesis on Friday, September 5, 2014. Ghaith examined the role of CgGcn5, a putative histone acetyltransferase, on antifungal susceptibility and multidrug resistance gene regulation in Candida glabrata.  Ghaith graduated in 2011 from Bloomsburg University with a B.S. in biology and a minor in chemistry. As an undergraduate, Ghaith served as a student secretary and lab assistant in the Department of Biological and Allied Health Sciences and engaged in a variety of research projects.  He examined MRI noise-induced effects on the auditory nerve with Dr. Huckans, Department of Physics and Engineering Technology, and shared his results at Noise-Con 10. Ghaith’s research with Drs. Hranitz and Surmacz on cellular stress responses in blackworms was presented at a national meeting of the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology. Research on the differential expression of EphB4 and ephrin-B2 in highly aggressive versus poorly aggressive human melanoma tumor cells with Dr. Hess was presented at a regional Tri-Beta convention. Ghaith received a grant from Beta Beta Beta, the biology honor society, to support his work and it was published in the journal Bios. Ghaith’s presentation of his master’s research at a meeting of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania University Biologists earned him second prize in the graduate student division (lower photo.) Ghaith is currently employed as a scientist by OraSureTechnologis, Inc. in Bethlehem, PA, a company that develops and manufactures devices for the detection or diagnosis of HIV/AIDS and kits for substance abuse testing by law enforcement.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Apply Now for BAHS Scholarships!

Applications for BAHS scholarships for the 2014-2015 academic year are now being accepted. Application forms may be downloaded from ISIS or obtained from the Financial Aid Office, 119 Student Services Center or from the wall pocket outside Dr. Surmacz’s office (146 HSC). In addition to the application form, other requirements include an official transcript, a paragraph describing your career and educational goals, one reference from a biology faculty member and one reference from a faculty member outside biology. All materials are due to Dr. Surmacz, by 5 p.m. on Friday, Febraury 7, 2014. For more information, please contact Dr. Surmacz (csurmacz@bloomu.edu)


Biology and Allied Health Scholarship

$500 or $250

Biology (including Secondary Education Biology) and Health Science majors who are currently sophomores or juniors and have completed 12 credits in biological science courses at BU

James E. Cole Scholarship
Current BU Medical Imaging majors who will be on campus fall 2014

James E. Parsons Microbiology Scholarship
Biology and Health Science majors who are currently sophomores or juniors.  Preference will be given to students pursuing a career in microbiology, and to Medical Lab Science majors

Myrle Newcomer - Recipient of the James E. Parsons Scholarship in 2013