JCJC chemistry students present at national conference

Written By: Teresa McCreery
Email Address: teresa.mccreery@jcjc.edu
Date Submitted: 2013-08-08 08:49:54

ELLISVILLE – Three Jones County Junior College chemistry students and their organic chemistry instructor, Dr. Giselle Marks have been working with the University of Southern Mississippi and were able to present at a national conference they were attending in St. Louis, MO.   The students presented posters on their research projects they worked on in the lab of Dr. Robert Lochhead in the School of Polymers and High Performance Materials at USM. The Jones students did their “extra work” on projects connected with an anti-deposition agent that was developed in the Lochhead lab to combat oil spills in water.   Oil treated with this agent does not adhere to wildlife or the surroundings, according to their findings. 
“We are so proud of these students,” said JCJC Science Division Chair, Eric Shows. “Their participation in research programs like this one gives them invaluable experiences to apply concepts that they have learned in class to real world problems.  This is a vital component of science education and one that we are proud to offer at JCJC to give our students the best preparation possible.”
JCJC 2013 graduates, Amanda Oliver of Petal presented with Dannya Spradley of Laurel, Testing of Selected Fatty Acid Derivatives as Herding Agents for Dispersed Oil.  Oliver will be entering nursing school and Spradley has been accepted to medical school as part of the Mississippi Rural Physicians scholarship program. JCJC graduate, Sam Breeden of Bay St. Louis presented, Application and Effect of Hydrophobic Coatings on Anti-Deposition Agents. Breeden plans to study polymer science at USM. Collins’ Edaina Pickeringpresented, Thermal Responsiveness of Solutions of Selected Methyl Cellulose Derivatives, at the Society of Cosmetic Chemists (SCC) Annual Scientific Seminar. Pickering graduated from Jones in 2010 and went on to graduate from the University of Mississippi with a degree in biology. She returned to Jones this past year to complete organic chemistry and is applying to graduate school in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at USM.  Another JCJC graduate Andrew Adams of Bay St. Louis was also a former participant of the Partnership for Innovation (PFI) Grant from the National Science Foundation which was awarded to USM to establish and promote polymer science research and education with JCJC students.   Adams is close to completing his industrial engineering degree at USM and was the winner of the student poster presentation at the SCC meeting last year.  He has been working with Dr. Lochhead on the anti-deposition agent project this year, and he mentored JCJC students in the lab.

“It was a wonderful learning experience for our students, to carry out a research project, and present the results at a national scientific meeting. It gave them insight into the world of research, and its practical application in the cosmetic industry. It gave them insight into the world of research, and its practical application in the cosmetic industry,” said Dr. Marks. “It has been a great privilege to have Dr. Robert Lochhead, an internationally respected expert and leader in the field of polymer science, as a mentor throughout the past three years. His engaging teaching methods allow students to really enjoy learning. I have had students ask me when the ‘real work’ will begin; unaware of how much they have been absorbing!”
During the past three years, JCJC has been able to provide five students each with a $2000 stipend per semester, as well as valuable learning and research opportunities with this partnership.


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