Contact Dawn Insanalli, director of Public Relations, at (914) 637-2726 or by e-mail to email@example.com.
By Jessica Morales
Ionian Staff Writer
With a generous accolade from the National Science Foundation, some Iona chemistry students are doing more than just learning from their science textbooks. At the end of May 2009, Iona College was awarded a three-year grant totaling $157,705 from the National Science Foundation that will allow some undergraduate and graduate chemistry students to greatly expand their work in a specific research project.
The research project is entitled Project Symphony. Each student is required to contribute his or her own part in trying to find the "Role of Surfactant in Monolayer-Directed Crystallization at the Liquid-Liquid Microdroplet Interface." Chemistry professor Dr. Sunghee Lee pitched this project to the foundation's chemistry division in Nov 2008. In order to receive the grant, Lee went through an application process. During this time, the grant committee looked at Lee's program and determined the intellectual merit and broad impact of the research project.
"This is tremendous," said Lee. "It's a mutual achievement for both the students and faculty, but the students are the ones who benefit most from this." Chemistry major Remon Bebawee is one of the active student researchers with Lee and is equally excited for this NSF grant.
"Being granted an NSF grant is monumental at a small institution like Iona College because it shows the world that we are capable of producing scientific advancements as well as showing the importance of our work in the scientific community." Project Symphony is already underway and the grant will help broaden and advance the research that has already been conducted.
Chemistry major Joseph Wiener is also involved in this research project. "Dr. Lee has created a once in a lifetime opportunity for undergraduate science majors to participate in independent research," said Wiener.
"With her hard work and dedication she makes the greatest effort to spread the word about the research that goes on in Room 12 in Cornelia Hall." Lee also explained how any kind of scientific research can run up a hefty bill, which is another reason for the department's excitement. The grant will be slowly spread throughout the three years, primarily for proper equipment, supplies and stipends for the students participating in the research.
"Any science program is very expensive," said Lee. "You can't bargain when it comes to scientific equipment. Everything has to be top-notch and not secondhand." Chemistry major Loretta Geneviciute agrees with Lee in the importance of monetary support within scientific research.
"Funding is the most important part for research. One may have great ideas, but if there are no resources available those ideas remain mere dreams," said Geneviciute. "Many people may have misconceptions about chemicals and their costs; even simple chemicals are very expensive. Few ounces of a chemical substance may cost few hundred dollars." In addition to actually doing the research, another important aspect is spreading the word about the findings to show how vital this research is. A part of this grant will help fund trips for the students to travel and present their research to various peers within this field.
As Lee says, " There are many things a student can learn in a textbook, but a hands-on experience is something that will stay with them."
For questions or more information please contact:
Public Relations Office
Iona College, 715 North Avenue, New Rochelle, N.Y. 10801
Office: (914) 637-2726
Fax: (914) 637-2711
If you would like to submit information to the Public Relations Office for external publicity, please fill out the News Release Request Form. The deadline for event publicity is five weeks prior to the event.Form »