Over 10 weeks this summer, Katie Bus ’11 is conducting intensive research at the University of Delaware’s College of Earth, Ocean, and Environment. Her participation was made possible in part through support from Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU), a competitive program that allows undergraduates to conduct research in any area funded by the National Science Foundation.
Bus is growing two kinds of algae in different levels of nitrates and measuring how it affects the photostress, or exposure to intense illumination, of the algae. She is a biology and environmental studies major at HWS, and finds this work combines her two fields of study very well.
“The project I am working on incorporates environmental impacts on the growth of algae, which can then be used to predict how different levels of nitrate affect other species and the food chain,” she says.
When Bus is not researching, she attends weekly workshops and seminars to supplement what she has learned in the lab.
“The experience here has been amazing. I have learned a lot about the research that goes on at this campus and the different areas of research that still need to be explored. I have also learned that experimenting with living organisms takes a lot of time and patience!”
Bus will study abroad in Queensland, Australia during the fall semester and, upon graduation, she plans to pursue graduate studies in marine biology.