Summer Research

Summer Research Projects

This summer more than a dozen of our Biology students were involved in research projects in the lab, at Merry Lea, and in Kenya.  Click on the links below to learn more about their findings.



Dr. Kristopher Schmidt and Martin Banda (’15) employed classical genetics techniques using the soil nematode C.elegans to identify new genes controlling nervous system development.  Research Poster




Leah Amstutz, (’16), Ali Fretz (’13), Will Kanagy (’14), Mandy Schlabach (’14), Ellie Schertz (’15), and Josh Yoder (’14) took a 3 week class in Kenya with four Kenyan colleagues taught by Ryan Sensenig.   Four of the GC students stayed for 2 extra weeks of research examining the effects of fire and elephant browsing on whistling thorn tree (Acacia drepanloboium) growth patterns. Check out their blog here.  Research Poster.  Research Poster II




Theo Kuchar (’16) worked with Dr. Andy Ammons this summer on the behavioral genetics of honey bee aging.  Theo was able to isolate a gene known to affect aging in bees, stoned B (stnB), that exhibited differential gene structure between larval and adult honey bees.  This difference may be important to processes of aging in honey bees.  During this research, Theo learned both molecular biology lab techniques and the basics of honey bee field research/beekeeping. Research Poster.




Tessa Yoder, a junior biology and environmental science double major from Goshen, Ind., and Aaron Kauffman, asenior molecular biology and biochemistry major from Goshen, Ind., worked with retired Professor of Biology Stan Grove to test activities and develop protocol for growing multiple strains of algae.  Check out the Algaetown Facebook page.  Research Poster.   Research Poster IICheck out the Algaetown U-tube video.



Lab June 2013

Suman Bhandari, a 2013 graduate who majored in molecular biology and biochemistry from Goshen, Ind., is workedwith visiting Adjunct Professor of Biology Richard Manalis and Jessica Davila, a Goshen College molecular biology/biochemistry and mathematics double major, to research fundamental aspects of learning and memory by recording muscle contractions observed in a frog’s nerves.  Research Poster.




Aradhana Roberts, a 2013 graduate from Mussoorie, India who double majored in biology and environmental science, worked with Assistant Professor of Sustainability and Environmental Education Dr. Jonathon Schramm to identify and prioritize emerging invasive plants at Merry Lea Environmental Learning Center of Goshen College.  Research Poster.