Wesley College Cannon Scholar and biological chemistry student, Lily Neff, presented research at the Council on Undergraduate Research (CUR) 2017 Posters on the Hill event in Washington, D.C. on April 25 – 26th. Wesley College was the first Delaware College to be selected to participate in Posters on the Hill in 2008 and this is the fifth time a Wesley poster has been selected.
Posters on the Hill is an undergraduate poster session held on Capitol Hill, allowing Congress members to see the value of a college education firsthand by interacting with students from across the United States. The event, which started in 1996, involves a highly competitive selection process, as only 60 participants are chosen each year out of hundreds of submissions.
“Lily’s project was an amazing example of student research having a real world impact on the College,” said Professor of Chemistry and Associate Dean of Interdisciplinary/Collaborative Sponsored Research, Dr. Malcolm J. D’Souza. “Her project improved safety and saved the College more than $12,000.”
Neff’s poster “Inventory platform manages chemical risks, addresses chemical accountability, and measures cost-effectiveness,” helped develop best practices for chemical laboratory safety and for chemical management accountability, by implementing the freely-available online platform, Quartzy. The platform was integrated within the department’s existing storage and handling protocols and facilitated the digital tracking and dispersal of Wesley’s hazardous waste inventory.
In addition to an improved safety and documentation consciousness, greater productivity and efficiency to monitor chemicals and their associated contaminants were witnessed. This helped reduce Wesley’s environmental footprint. In addition to the safety and storage benefits, there was a financial benefit; specifically, there was an annual savings balance of $12,381.53 (August 2015 to August 2016) on a total billing invoice amount of $48,878.78. Neff was mentored by Dr. D’Souza and Adjunct Chemistry Professor and Laboratory Supervisor, Kristopher Roeske.
The College acknowledges federal and State support from the NIH-NIGMS-INBRE, NSF EPSCoR, NSF S-STEM and the NASA DESGC programs.
Slider Picture from left to right: Academic Research Grants Administrator Emily Wood, Roeske, Neff, Dr. D’Souza, STEM Program Assistant Vernetta Knight, Vice President Academic Affairs/Provost Dr. Jeff Gibson, Assistant Director of STEM Initiatives Dr. Kevin E. Shuman and Professor of Mathematics Dr. Agashi Nwogbaga.
Visit Wesley’s flickr page to see more photos of the trip.