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BMCC Students Showcase Research at CRSP Symposium

BMCC CRSP scholars
BMCC CRSP scholars
August 4, 2016

Eighteen Borough of Manhattan Community College (BMCC/CUNY) students participated in the second annual CUNY Research Scholars Program Symposium (CRSP) at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, CUNY, Wednesday, July 27.

The CRSP funds one-year research scholarships for associate degree-seeking students at CUNY community colleges as well as students from three CUNY comprehensive schools. Each student receives a $5,000 stipend and conducts research under the supervision of a BMCC faculty mentor. The poster presentations serve as the culminating showcase event for students who completed their research.

Helene Bach, Director of Research at BMCC said the apprentice model-based experience offers a stepping-stone to a future career in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math(STEM) research.

“BMCC is one of the most participatory schools,” said Ron J. Nerio, CRSP Co-Director. “BMCC students have an outstanding commitment to research and this program.”

The BMCC cohort was part of a group of more than 165 students participating in this year’s symposium.

“After countless hours in our BMCC core research labs and analyzing data, our CRSP students produced fantastic posters that they presented to their colleagues at the conference. The quality and caliber of the research produced by our students and their mentors is stellar and I am deeply proud of each and every one of them,” said Bach.

Among the BMCC students is Liberal Arts major Youxi Li, who spent the last year on a project exploring the limits of human memory. Li also represented BMCC during the oral presentation segment of the symposium.

“Memory plays an important role in people’s lives, but before improving memory, we have to fully understand what its limitations are,” said Li, who moved to New York City from China two years ago.

Li plans to transfer in Fall 2016 to University of California in San Diego.

During the first session of poster presentations, BMCC Science major Hilario Garcia, whose mentor is Science Professor Abel Navarro, explained to a group of students from other colleges how tea leaves might be used someday to clean up the nation’s polluted waterways.

Garcia’s study aims to use solid wastes such as spent chamomile, green tea and peppermint as filtration devices for the elimination of sodium chloride and other salts in seawater, he explained.

“There are people living in or near contaminated waterways and land, and we’re trying to find to find the cheapest ways to clean them up,” he said.

Garcia graduates in Spring 2017 and plans go to City College of New York, CUNY, and eventually pursue a doctorate degree in molecular biology.

Mathematics major Dominika Palinko, who graduated BMCC Spring 2016, moved to New York City from Hungary in 2012. In Fall 2016, she’ll be making another move, this time to San Francisco, where she will start classes at the University of California, Berkeley.

Palinko’s mentor was BMCC Science professor Shalva Tski, who worked with her to examine ground and excited state properties of atoms that are analogous to the hydrogen atom.

“Our project is to create a method to solve complicated equations, and understand exotic particles mathematically,” explained Palinko.

BMCC’s 2016 CRSP scholars included Molly Caperna, Mark Collison, Lionel Colon, Emmanuel Delgado, Aurela Dragoni, Fatine Elakramine, Rahman Farhana, Hilario Garcia, Imani Garriga, Dinara Guliyeva, Ted Hadges, Jeong Heon Kim, Youxi Li, Dominka Palinko, Shelia Sarkar, Shivron Sugrim, Norbu Tsering, Madhyama Vijayalakshman, Ziu Wing, Michelle Lo and Huang Zo.



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  • Eighteen BMCC students participated
  • Each student receives $5,000 stipend
  • Poster presentation serves as culminating showcase event

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