Sun and SURF: Amherst Researchers Stay for Summer

by Bill Sweet

For an increasing number of Amherst College students, summer isn’t the time to get away; it’s the time to get cracking on their research.

Soon after Commencement and Reunion, students representing numerous disciplines in the sciences and humanities come back to campus to dig deeper.

At a geology lab in the Beneski Earth Sciences Building, Mollie McDowell ’14 has been crushing, grinding, burning and testing soil sediment from Ireland, for a research project with Professor Anna Martini.

“We both wanted to fill in some data gaps that I didn’t have time to fill in during the year,” McDowell said.

About 100 students—undergraduates and recent graduates doing postbaccalaureate research—are staying at Amherst for the summer. They are funded by several programs, including the Summer Science Undergraduate Research Fellows Program (SURF), the Gregory S. Call Student Research Program (SRP), individual academic departments, and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Tutorials, among others.

Mollie McDowell ’14 in the lab Mollie McDowell ’14, summertime researcher

Yvonne Green ’17 is 2016 Beinecke Scholar

Submitted on Monday, 5/9/2016, at 10:09 AM

Yvonne Green

Yvonne Green ’17, Amherst’s 2016 Beinecke Scholar, plans to use the scholarship to pursue her goal of becoming a history professor.

The Albuquerque, New Mexico, native is among 20 college juniors receiving the scholarship.

Our Stories: The Humans of Amherst College

Submitted on Monday, 9/28/2015, at 12:25 PM

Humans of New York, the slice-of-life photoblog that has inspired a number of homages and parodies, has a counterpart at Amherst with its own campus-based spin.

Amherst is a small, tightly knit community, but sometimes students get so focused on their studies that they can lose sight of their peers, said Eugene Lee '16, the current caretaker of Humans of Amherst College, a photoblog accessible through Tumblr and Facebook.

Gone in 100 Seconds: A Historic Look at Pluto

Field Telescope in New Zealand

by William Sweet

This summer three Amherst students traveled to the other end of the world to glimpse the other end of the solar system.

Carolina Carriazo '18, Jason Mackie '17 and Aaron Resnick '16, on an internship with the Southwest Research Institute, trekked to New Zealand and Australia to spend 100 seconds watching Pluto block a distant star, affording once-in-a-lifetime views of the dwarf planet’s atmosphere.

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Scholars Around the Globe: the 2015 Fulbrights, Carnegie and Gates

Submitted on Friday, 6/19/2015, at 2:26 PM

This year, ten graduates of the Amherst College Class of 2015, and two graduates from 2014, will travel abroad to teach English or conduct research projects through Fulbright Fellowships. Two students have been named alternates, meaning they may yet receive Fulbright offers.

In addition, two Amherst graduates have been selected as Junior Fellows with the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, and one has been awarded a Gates Cambridge Scholarship.

Future Food: Students are “Hooked on Aquaponics”

Submitted on Tuesday, 5/12/2015, at 9:15 AM

Plans for the greenhouse by Bill Sweet

Right outside of Amherst College’s dining hall, a new student club is exploring what just might be the future of food.

This spring, the Hooked on Aquaponics club has been constructing a greenhouse outside of Valentine Dining Hall. Their ultimate goal is to have a self-sustaining, soil-free aquaponics operation raising fish and plants.

Senior Thesis Performance Highlights Racial Injustices

Bryce Monroe '15
Bryce Monroe '15 rehearses his senior thesis performance The Lower Frequecies.
See more photos on Flickr.

“This is me telling a story based on my experience as a young black man in America,” says Bryce Monroe '15 of his senior thesis performance in theater and dance. Titled The Lower Frequencies and inspired by Ralph Ellison’s 1952 novel Invisible Man, Monroe's one-man play aims to shed light on the realities of racism in America through a series of powerful, witty and tragic vignettes.