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Scholar Highlights For Week Ending July 5, 2013

October 1, 2013

Castle gardens

Charmiah Amie

The past week has been better than the last. I was able to escape the anxiousness I was feeling in Germany and regroup. This past weekend I traveled to Spain to see another GSTEM scholar. Spain was very refreshing for me. It was a very nice energy in the cities I visited and I was able to see some beautiful landmarks and scenery. I am very glad I decided to travel to this location, it was probably one of the best experiences ever.

Kevona at Cathedral

Kevona

Kevona Belcher 

Most of the time was spent making excel spreadsheet of the data we collected and also listening to a presentation of on of the PhD students that works here, presentation. His presentation was about 2 hours long and we had to listen to him give it repeatedly, in Spanish.

Kierra Brown

On Friday after coming back from research I went down to the other room to help prepare food for the braai we were having for our program. A traditional braai in South Africa has chicken and sausage as the main meats, then a spicy bean mixture called chakulaka, green salad, garlic bread, and pop a white maize dish. Preparing the food for the braai was stressful and hard

Niwa Coleman

Every weekend that goes in South Africa I think that its the best I will ever have, until the next one comes by. I had a wonderful weekend full of many native South African Activities. After a long week of reading my literature searches, my friends In the IES program and I had a briee in my flat on Friday night. At the briee, a traditional South African cookout, we served chicken, sausage, salads, and other small sides. Also, my roommate from South Africa cooked some traditional south African dishes for everyone to enjoy.

Jasmeka Colvin

And just like that, it’s been over a month since my time here in Spain. I learned this Spanish expression “tiempo vuela” meaning time flies! Since my last journal entry I have been busy slaving away in the lab.

Rachel Delsarte

This week was very intensive regarding the daily work I have to complete in the lab. It was filled with learning how to set up my experiment on my own, completing the actual experiment, and then analyzing the data I collected. Although some of the work was monotonous and tedious, I am enjoying the project very much because it is challenging me to research topics on my own so that I able to fully understand my tasks.

Kameron Duncan

clock tower

Working in the laboratory has become even more routine for me.  At time, I am the first one entering and one of the last to leave. This week, our test for various salt concentrations in salmonella washes has been a challenge. Six days have been dedicated to the project; three days more than expected.  My mentor is persistent in making sure I learn a ton and leave with a flood of valuable results. In our search to capture these results however, we find a healthy diligence.

Tayler Elam

Today marks 22 days having been abroad in Costa Rica.  Within three weeks I have visited 7 provinces, 4 beaches, 3 national parks, 2 historical museums, 1 coffee plantation, 2 pig farms, a dairy factory, and have traveled up the entire western shore of Costa Rica along the Pacific Ocean.  I have seen an abundance of agriculture and species variation during my stay.  This Sunday I will be going on my next and final field trip to Peñas, Costa Rica.  In order to reach the campground I will have to go on a 5 hour hike through the forest to get there.

Asha Farmer

This week in London has been very relaxed. Throughout the entire week, it has been more so reflective than any other. I think it’s because we are half-way through the trip, and I’m beginning to realize that I need to real take in and absorb every moment as much as I can. This past weekend we went with some of Syundai’s cousins out in North London, which was a different experience. The culture of the people really does change depending on the area you’re in. We also discovered a type of food they call “rubbush food.” It is basically equivalent to our view of junk food, except not only did it include cheeseburgers and chips (their word for fries), it included Middle Eastern food.

Kalah Haley

Week six in Australia has been quite uneventful.  It’s been challenging to get my friends to go on adventures with me.  They are all on vacation (or holiday as they call it) but no one wants to do anything with me.  I still have not been to see any koalas or kangaroos.  I tried to get a group of friends to go with me to see the annual winter whale watching in Gold Coast but no one wants to go.  Next time I go out of the country I intend to have a better plan of what I’m going to do and who I’m doing it with.

Brittany Jackson

Week five has come to an end so quickly; I want time to slow down! I feel like there is still so much I want to see! Tonight we are going to Barcelona and I am super excited. I have heard that it’s much different being in a bigger city, which I got a taste of in Madrid, but I think Barcelona will be even better! 

Syundai Johnson

My third week in the lab was great. I was able to do my experiment on my own. I had not been the greatest at mounting the fishes on the slides and taking pictures, but this week I did everything very well. One of the highlights of my week was being able to watch my mentor perform a very important step in the procedure. Our entire project is focused around learning more about a disease called Cln2, so in order to do that we infect zebrafish with the disease.

Jasmine and DeShawn

Jasmine & DeShawn

Jasmine Mason

This past weekend was by far my best weekend in Córdoba, and it was followed by a great week. On Friday, I met Miah at the train station and practiced my tour guidance skilled as I led her to my house. The more of Córdoba I showed her, the more blessed I felt. I did not know much about Córdoba before applying for the G-STEM program… now, I am positive I ended up in the best possible place for me to do research this summer. 

Albryona Pope

For this week’s journal entry in addition to doing a brief overview of my week I thought that I would answer some of the questions listed in the G-Stem handbook about the culture differences and what I have learned about the scientific method. One of the questions in the G-Stem handbook “Discuss the differences in the culture that you are living in compared to home, and your thoughts on these differences.” From the month that I have lived in Madrid I have noticed that the Spaniards as a people are much more relaxed tan Americans. They do what they want at the speed that they deem fit. In the United States people are so caught up in the hustle and bustle of life. Whether we are going from class to work to studying to hanging out with friends and family, we are constantly going never taking a moment to relax.

Gabrielle Richardson

This week in lab, I began with FACS acquisition of the RAW cells I had been culturing in lab.  After collecting all of the information about the cells with FACS, I began to do Flow Jo Analysis comparing the statistics of the different antibody markers we used. I got some relatively interesting results. Through this experiment, I was able to not only phenotype the cells I was working with but also figure out which antibodies worked well with the cells. I plan on working with the RAW cell line throughout the rest of my time here to learn more about them.

Lydia Ruffner

Next weekend we will be going to Paris and then the following week to the Harry Potter Studio tour. WE have also made a habit of going to brunch on Sundays or to the park to have a picnic. The weather has been really nice since we have been here. Almost like summer in DC. The people in my lab are saying this is quite unusual for London, but I’m glad I will actually have summer weather.

DeShawn fence

DeShawn

DeShawn Samad

The first exhibit I went to was one of their temporary exhibits about the brain and how the brain works.  The entrance was full of wires to make it seem like you are in the main work center of the brain.  The exhibit had an area for basic information about the brain as well as how the brain controls each of our senses and emotions.  The second exhibit we went to was about the body and how the body works.  It had a special activity for every possible body part you could think of.  I like this exhibit because it was not just about the bones and muscles like most body exhibits but it went through the different body systems and other things that make the human body so amazing and different from other animals.

Marlissa Stalling

Every day that I come to the laboratory, there is always a radio station on playing Spanish and American music. I feel that this radio helps liberate everyone’s minds from the intensive lab work. Particularly on one day in lab, I noticed that radio station was playing a lot of American music than usual. At first I thought I was overthinking this but the next day I came into the laboratory the radio was still playing American music. I thought that this was very strange because since I’m in a primarily Spanish-speaking country, I did not expect to hear American music being played

Chelsea Straughn

The week started off with our traditional brunch at this amazing restaurant called the Breakfast Club. After last Sunday’s brunch we all wanted to come back. Surprisingly the week started off with excellent weather! Instead of the usual windy gloomy skies, it was 80 degrees and sunny. I was excited to finally feel the summer heat again. After brunch the Spelman students and I went to Camden Market. Camden Mart is an area with a lot of vendors, restaurants, and shops. When we first arrived at the market I became a little overwhelmed because it was so crowded and shops everywhere!

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