Research In Science and Engineering at Rutgers
Meet the RiSE 2012 Alumni

Michelle Banas
The College of New Jersey

Role of Fas ligand-receptor interaction in neuronal apoptosis

"My future goals have become clearer through my work in the lab and interaction with lab members and professionals."

Orlando Barbosa
University of Puerto Rico, Mayagüez

Characterization of Reactive-Like Astrocytes on Different Surfaces

Co-participant in REU in Cellular Bioengineering

Joseph Batts
Clemson University

Biogeography of biotransformation of halogenated organic contaminants in temperate, sub-arctic, and tropical environments

RiSE Associate and participant in the REU in International Environmental Sciences

Stephan Bien-Aime
Ramapo College

Crystallization growth rate of melted droplets of ibuprofen and polyethylene glycol 3350

"The RiSE faculty and staff were constantly available for our multiple questions and inquiries. They made us a priority."

Co-participant in the REU in Structured Organic Particulate Systems

Mary Carter
Montclair State University

Identification of novel factors that interact with Selenoprotein P 3'untranslated region (3'UTR) and determination of contributes of processivity


Andrea Casuras
Ursinus College

A method to detect "happy" organic volatiles in human perspiration


Kevin Chavez
Stony Brook University

Imatinib mesylate (Gleevec) in combination with CSAA: Cancer Inhibition through the manipulation of cellular metabolism

"The talks and workshops gave a great perspective on what it takes to achieve a Ph.D. and the career paths one can follow afterwards."

Jonathan Colon
University of Puerto Rico, Mayagüez

Characterization of blend uniformity and drug concentration using NIR spectroscopy in a continuous mixing process

"I learned how to work independently and as part of a team, design experiments, write scientific reports and present scientific information."

Co-participant in the REU in Structured Organic Particulate Systems

Katterin Colon
New Jersey City University

Activation of inflammatory pathways by dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT) and its derivatives: Potential link to neuroinflammation in Alzheimer's disease

"RiSE has confirmed my research interests and now I am highly motivated to pursue a Ph.D."

Co-participant in Ernest Mario School of Pharmacy Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship (SURF)

Amber Fairley
Grambling State University

Aging-associated defects in DNA damage repair affects reprogramming into induced pluripotent stem cells

"I learned so much in the 10 weeks that I was at Rutgers that I almost feel like an expert."

Bintou Fisiru
University of Pennsylvania

Dissolution of Polymer Films in Simulated Saliva

Co-participant in the REU in Structured Organic Particulate Systems

Erica Harris
University of Maryland-College Park

Surface topography influences stem cell morphology and lineage commitment

 "The RiSE program is the main reason that I am planning to pursue a PhD."

Derek Holyoak
University of Connecticut

Theory-based double-pulsed electroporation microdevice for effective cellular manipulation

"I performed numerous laboratory techniques, learned about a field I never knew existed, made life-long friends, and had one of my most enjoyable summers ever."

Co-participant in REU in Cellular Bioengineering

Finterly Hu
Rutgers University

The Biotransformation of Halogenated Compounds in New Jersey River Sediment

RiSE Associate and participant in the REU in International Environmental Sciences

Joan Kuchie
New Jersey City University

Elucidating the loss of the pre-coat gene by observed selection pressures of the DNA-B genes


Modupe Kuti
New York University

Measuring the viscosity of calcium alginate particles at different shear rates and concentrations

"My time here has definitely been a great learning experience, especially because this is the first time I have done research."

Co-participant in the REU in Structured Organic Particulate Systems

Nilsa La Cunza
New Jersey Institute of Technology

Identification of regulatory factors that control the development of interneurons

"RiSE was a life changing experience that opened my eyes to new professional paths. Socially, I was able to interact with a diverse group of driven students and make lifelong friends."

Co-participant in REU in Cellular Bioengineering

Alejandra Laureano
University of Puerto Rico, Río Piedras

Valproic Acid regulates astrocyte proliferation, cell cycle machinery and histone acetylation

"I learned a great deal that has helped me in my academic and professional growth. RiSE provided faculty mentors who are knowledgeable and very willing to help undergraduate students."

Crystal LeBlanc
Belmont University

Evaluating the effects of the BTB-zinc finger protein Promyelocytic Leukemia Zinc Finger on BW5147 lymphoma cells

"The weekly seminar classes gave me a forum to talk freely about my research, any problems I was having, and current research news. The GRE class provided me with an excellent skill set. In addition, the lunch talks and enrichment seminars provided me with advice that I will definitely use in the following years."

Michael Little
Montclair State University

Regulation of liver and kidney efflux transporters during inflammation

Co-participant in Ernest Mario School of Pharmacy Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship (SURF)

Jordan Martinez
The College of New Jersey

Characterization of the 23 C. elegans RhoGAPs and their GTPase specificity

"This program has taught me how to think critically like a scientist and develop more advanced problem-solving skills. I recommend the RiSE program to anyone considering a future in research."

Jose Martinez
Cornell College

Synthesis of 3,5-di(di-t-butylphosphinomethyl)aminobenzene Iridium Pincer Catalyst

"I met a range of people who inspired me to do well in and outside the lab. I also met friends with whom I will keep in close contact."

Desiree Matias-Lopez
University of Puerto Rico, Río Piedras

Asymmetric hydroamination of unactivated alkenes with simple amines

"Now I know that I want to attend grad school because I have seen more closely how my life will be for five years."

Bridget Mendoza
Northern Arizona University

Investigating male fertility within caenorhabditis species


Coleen Nemes
Marist College

Fabrication and characterization of silver nanoparticle arrays for organic photovoltaic cells

"I applied to this program looking to get a taste of what is to come in graduate school. I got what I hoped for and so much more."

Kevin Ortiz
University of Puerto Rico, Mayagüez

Temperature Profile Determination for a Roller-Compacted Ribbon using a Thermal Camera

"RiSE not only taught me how to do research, but so much more. I learned how to work on a mini proposal, a project presentation and a poster. The GRE preparation course gave me an idea of what to expect from the actual exam."

Co-participant in the REU in Structured Organic Particulate Systems

Maria Pietri-Babon
University of Puerto Rico, Mayagüez

A comparison of the dehalogenation rates of the persistent organic pollutants hexachlorobenzene and hexabromobenzene

Co-participant in the REU in International Environmental Science

Andres Ramirez
Cornell University

Exploring the link between emotion dysregulation and emotional reactivity

"In addition to facilitating my engagement in an enjoyable research project, RiSE also encouraged opportunities for vital self-realization and assessment of academic and career goals."

Ixtli-Nitzin Sanchez
San Jose State University


Co-participant in the DIMACS Institute Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU)

Imani Sanders
University of Maryland-College Park

Development of an in vitro model of the peritoneum to analyze the growth of adhesions

"In ten weeks, I learned more than in any lecture hall. I also developed friendships with the other RiSE students that will maintain strength over the years."

Co-participant in REU in Cellular Bioengineering

Shelby Swiggum
Ripon College

The role of acetylcholine in learning and neurogenesis

"I had the opportunity to do things that I otherwise would be unable to do at my home institution. Additionally, I am happy that I was able to meet so many great people."

Patricia Sylvestre
SUNY-Binghamton University

Using Law of Life Essays to Identify Indicators of Anxiety in School-Age Children

"As a first generation college student of African American descent, I am elated that programs like RiSE exist to assist in our journey towards higher education."

Stephanie Tse
Bryn Mawr College

Synthesis, characterization and in vitro degradation studies of ampicillin-based poly(anhydride-amide)

"RiSE is a great and well balanced program offering resources, insights, and a vision into the future of graduate work."

Taylor Vega
University of California-Berkeley

Behavioral and Histological Consequences in Adult after the intrauterine HuD depletion

"I worked closely with my lab's graduate student and applied newly learned skills with old and new knowledge to create an atmosphere conducive to learning."

Samjit Walia
The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art

Determination of Numerical Integration Techniques for 3D Population Balance Models Describing Continuous Multicomponent Wet Granulation Processes

"I gained many new professional contacts while growing as a person and evolving my mindset to prepare for life in graduate school."

Co-participant in the REU in Structured Organic Particulate Systems

Elizabeth Wilson
Lafayette College

Mechanism of VGF's antidepressant effects

"I was able to learn new procedures in the lab and now feel prepared to enter a world of research. My mentors, everyone in the lab, as well as my peers all taught me so much."

Justin Womack
University of Wisconsin-Madison

Association of anti-PSMA liposomes to endothelial cell analogues for targeted antivascular chemotherapy

Co-participant in REU in Cellular Bioengineering

Isaiah Woodson
Louisiana State University

Fabrication and Analysis of Thick Film Composite Piezoelectric Materials

"RiSE gives a great balance of research in addition to a highly beneficial seminar class and GRE Prep class. I highly recommend applying!"