Nine Clark University students have been awarded Steinbrecher Fellowships to pursue original ideas, creative research and community service projects this summer and during the 2017-18 academic year.
The Steinbrecher Fellowship Program was established in 2006. The newest Steinbrecher Fellows are all members of the Class of 2018. They and their projects include:
- Odgerel Chintulga, who will travel to Khanbogd, Umnugobi, to work with researchers from the Mongolian National University of Life Science to evaluate and help improve the efficiency of a recently installed irrigation system and work to develop year-round sustainable agriculture. Chintulga majors in environmental science.
- Spencer Cronin, who will examine the Holocaust curriculum used in the Worcester Public Schools and conduct interviews with administrators, teachers and students to evaluate how the educational material is perceived. Cronin is a history major.
- Sherief Eldeeb, who will work with Professor Kymberlee O’Brien at the Health Psychology Lab at Worcester Polytechnic Institute this fall to test the efficacy of a mindfulness intervention with victims of trauma. Eldeeb majors in psychology.
- Alika Gillard, who will look at self-disclosure events among lesbian, gay and bisexual employees and examine outcomes associated with such events in order to gain a better understanding of the disclosure process. Gillard is a psychology major.
- Molly Gurney, who will interview members of the Kon Rak Ban Keud (KRBK, or People Who Love Their Hometown) in Thailand and examine the political capabilities of women in marginalized groups to challenge gold-mining initiatives. Gurney majors in international development and social change.
- Anthony Jreije, who will explore the politics of gentrification in Beirut. He will work with Public Works, a group of architects and urban planners; the American University of Beirut’s Neighborhood Initiative, a non-government organization(NGO) focused on improving neighborhoods; and Beirut Madiniti, an emerging secular political party, to examine the role of the state, banks and real estate developers in the transformation of the urban landscape. Jreije is a geography and economics double major.
- Charline Kirongozi, who will attend the Charleston Natural Hair Expo in Charleston, South Carolina, to learn how to develop and conduct workshops for 10-to-17-year-old girls that help promote self-confidence and combat societal prejudices that teach young black women to neglect and reject their natural hair. She will conduct similar workshops at the Boys and Girls Club of Worcester and the Congolese Community of Maine in Portland. Kirongozi majors in political science.
- Lucyna Kogut, who will “re-domesticate” a strain of wild progenitor of Aspergillus oryzae, or koji, and examine changes in toxin production, sporulation and genome evolution. She will use comparative genomics to identify genetic differences between experimentally evolved and ancestral isolates of the fungi. Kogut is a biology major.
- Erika Schaper, who will characterize the ecological niches of endemic skinks in the Philippines. Her research aims to understand the relationship between ancestral and re-evolved limb structures in skinks. Schaper majors in biology.
“The newly selected Steinbrecher Fellows are excited and passionate about the projects they will be doing,” said Deb Robertson, professor of biology and director of the Steinbrecher Fellows Program. “I look forward to the fall when they return to campus and share highlights of their work with each other and with the larger Clark community.”
Above, from left: New Steinbrecher Fellows Sherief Eldeeb ’18, Lucyna Kogut ’18, Odgerel Chintulga ’18, Spencer Cronin ’18 and Erika Schaper ’18, with Stephen Steinbrecher ’55 (center). Missing from the photo are Alika Gillard ’18, Molly Gurney ’18, Anthony Jreije ’18 and Charline Kirongozi ’18.