Travels to Haiti, MHIRT News, SMACS & more

Br. Edward in Haiti

Br. Edward in Haiti.

Br. Edward Salgado, Biology Professor Emeritus, went to Haiti last month, to help with the Haiti Medical Missions of Memphis.





Eva Chen (left) and Elton Banks (right) in Haiti.

Eva Chen (left) and Elton Banks (right) in Haiti.

Two students, Eva Chen and Elton Brand, joined Br. Edward in Haiti over fall break. The two pictures were taken in a school for children living in a refugee camp for victim of the earthquake. The school is run by the Scalabrinin Fathers and the Dominican Sisters, who also work at the Haiti Medical Missions of Memphis’ clinic in Croix des Bouquet. In the second picture you see Elton Banks and Eva Chen along with Br. Edward and a Columbian volunteer.

Julia Hanebrink, MHIRT Program Coordinator, passed her doctoral examinations with high praise from her committee, who indicated that “they were perhaps the finest we had ever seen. The level of sophistication, analytical rigor, command of the literature and debates, and the sheer quality of exposition and argumentation evident in Julia’s responses puts her in a league of her own. Especially critical is her ability to synthesize theoretical material and secondary literature with the vast body of data she has collected in Uganda as the program coordinator and co-investigator” of the NIH MHIRT grant administered through CBU.

Duy Nguyen with AEGIS recruiter

The College Recruiter for AEGIS is shown talking with Duy Nguyen, Chemistry 2014, after the presentation.

On October 19, the CBU Department of Chemistry and the CBU Student Members of the American Chemical Society (SMACS) hosted a special Forensic Sciences presentation by Kara M. Allen of the AEGIS Sciences Corporation. Kara Allen is a College Recruiter for AEGIS, a Nashville-based full service forensic toxicology and consulting corporation. Her presentation included descriptions of summer internships and potential job opportunities at AEGIS Sciences Corporation which currently has over 700 employees. Kara Allen is also a former Memphian and Industry advisor for the CBU SMACS chapter.

SMACS officers

The 2011-2012 SMACS officers were Corey Haughey, Chris Brack, and Brent Holmes (front row); and David Kim,
Alvin Siow, Justin Edwards (President), Justin Gallagher, and Yusef Akbik (Vice-President) (back row).

The CBU Student Members of the American Chemical Society (SMACS) have been notified by the national office of the American Chemical Society that they won 2 national awards based on their activities during the 2011-2012 school year. The CBU SMACS chapter received an Honorable Mention award for chapter events and service activities. The chapter also won its second Green Chemistry Student Chapter Award. The awards will be presented at the 245th American Chemical Society National Meeting and Exposition in New Orleans in April 2013.

National Chemistry Week is an annual event that celebrates the important role of chemistry in our society through a combination of outreach and fun activities. In honor of the 25th anniversary of this event, the CBU Student Members of the American Chemical Society (SMACS) presented a number of demonstration events during the week of October 22-26.

Foaming Pumpkins demo

The Foaming Pumpkins demonstration
Click on image for picture of the Mole Day dinner.

The week began on Monday October 22 with a demonstration of Elephant Toothpaste in the lobby of Assisi Hall. On Tuesday, the fun continued with Diet Coke and Mentos in front of the Cooper-Wilson Center. On Wednesday, an unsuspecting Gummi Bear met its fate in molten potassium chlorate in a fiery redox reaction in AH 201. On Thursday, Dr. Harmon Dunathan gave an exciting presentation that included a number of chemistry demonstrations. On Friday, CBU SMACS presented Foaming Pumpkins in the Cooper-Wilson lobby at noon. The week concluded on Friday afternoon with a special demonstration event for visiting high school students. An important part of National Chemistry Week is Mole Day which is celebrated on October 23 (10/23) each year. The day commemorates Amedeo Avogadro’s important contribution to science of the number that bears his name: 6.02 x 10^23 . This year, the CBU SMACS chapter hosted a special Mole day dinner at 6:02 pm at the Spaghetti Warehouse in downtown Memphis.

Dr. Fitzgerald at the SNF meeting surrounded by CBU alums and students.

Dr. Fitzgerald at the SNF meeting
surrounded by CBU alums and students.

Dr. Malinda Fitzgerald, Professor of Biology, attended the Society for Neuroscience meeting in New Orleans, LA, over fall break week. The meeting had over 30,000 attendees. Dr. Fitzgerald was a co-author on one paper: Decrease of neuroinflammation markers in the beneficial effects of exercise in hemi-parkinsonian rats, by Ellen. Ford, Caroline C.Real, Priscilla C.Garcia, Malinda E.C. Fitzgerald and Luiz R.R. Britto. This research was funded by an NIH MHIRT grant to Dr. Fitzgerald and research was conducted at USP, Sao Paulo Brazil.


Dr. Fitzgerald with Kyle Summers and Melody Allensworth at the Neuroscience meeting.

Dr. Fitzgerald with Kyle Summers and Melody Allensworth at the Neuroscience meeting.

Three CBU undergraduate students presented posters in a special undergraduate poster session at the Neuroscience meeting. The first paper is entitled: Neuroprotective treatment for blast-induced vision loss by Lauren D’Surney, Biomedical Science 2013, Brendan Luon, Courtney Bricker-Anthony, Jessica Hines-Beard, Biology 2011, and Tonia Rex. This research was funded by Research to Prevent Blindness, NIH and DOD to L. D’Surney and T. Rex. The research was conducted at UTHSC, HEI. Dr. Rex is currently at Vanderbilt. The second paper is entitled: Conditioned olfactory aversion increase olfactory sensitivity in mice by Lydia Hyatt, Biology 2013, Mounir Bendahmane and Max Fletcher. This research was funded by a Neuroscience Merit Fellowship to L Hyatt and NIH To M. Fletcher. The research conducted at UTHSC, Memphis, TN. The third paper is entitled: Behavior tolerance to zolpidem and associated changed in forebrain GABA A receptor subunits by Britney T. Wright, Catherine F. Gluszek, Biochemistry 2012, and Scott A. Heldt. In addition, Jessica Schneider Biology 2014, and Eric Joe, Biology 2014, attended the meeting. CBU alums attending were Kyle Summers, Biology 2008, and Brittney Wright, Natural Science, both Ph.D. candidates at UTHSC, and Melody Allensworth, Biology 2009, and her husband, David James, Engineering 2009.


CBU Group that went on the Gulf Coast field trip.

Group that went on the Gulf Coast field trip.
Click on image for an action shot!

On the last weekend of October, Dr. Stan Eisen, Professor of Biology, Dr. James Moore, Assistant Professor of Biology, Ms. Lynda Miller, Science Lab Coordinator, and Br. Tom Sullivan, Campus Ministry and adjunct biology instructor, went with a group of students to the Gulf Coast Research Lab on a field trip.

On Tuesday, October 30, Dr. Malinda Fitzgerald, Professor of Biology, gave a 10 minute video presentation to Spain from here in Memphis for the XIV Symposio Internacional de Informatica Educativa meeting on the use of technology in the MHIRT program.

On Thursday, November 1, Br. Kevin Ryan, Natural Science instructor, visited Wooddale Middle School and made several presentations on the solar system, the planets, and the moon with its phases and eclipses.

On Thursday, November 1 at 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. in Sabbatini Lounge we had our annual Health Career Opportunities Fair. The event was anchored by the University of Tennessee Health Science Center, and we had representatives from the following programs:

  • Southern College of Optometry
  • Christian Brothers University Physician Assistant Program
  • DeBusk College of Osteopathic Medicine
  • Ross University School of Veterinary Medicine and School of Medicine
  • Union University
    • School of Pharmacy
    • School of Social Work
  • U.S. Army Healthcare Scholarships
  • William Carey University College of Osteopathic Medicine

In the evening, we had special presentations for interested students pertaining to the following programs:

  • Ross University School of Veterinary Medicine
  • DeBusk College of Osteopathic Medicine
  • Christian Brothers University Physician Assistant Program, featuring Jamee Covington and Elizabeth Schriner, two of the students in the entering class
  • U.S. Army Healthcare Scholarship
MAA Chess Tournament

Chess match between Martin Tribo and Khai Nguyen at the MAA.
Click on the image for a second picture.

On Friday afternoon, November 9, the CBU student chapter of the Mathematical Association of America (MAA) hosted its annual Chess Tournament for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in the second floor lounge of Cooper Wilson. Hotdogs, drinks, and lots of fun were served. Fred Smith emerged as the champion of the tournament.

Bowling for Uganda

Billy Hardwick’s was the place to be for CBU faculty, students and alums on Friday, Nov. 9. Beta Beta Beta hosted its annual Bowlathon for Hope North, a small community in Uganda educating and caring for children devastated by the recent civil war in that country. It was a night of triumph (TKE took the first place trophy and student Velita Thornton garnered the highest women’s average) and tragedy (Dr. TJ, normally the picture of health and agility, fell while not so gracefully attempting to throw an 8 lb bowling ball. Those over 50 were just relieved she hadn’t broken a hip.) Thanks to all faculty bowlers who risked their reputations as prickly professors to come and make amazingly low scores. A surprising number of them were actually spotted having fun. They included Drs. Maureen O’Brien and Tracie Burke (psychology), and Dr. Brendan Prawdzik (English). Also showing up with their game faces and bowling shoes were, Drs. Sandra Thompson-Jaeger, Malinda Fitzgerald and Mary Ogilvie (Biology); Dr. Johnny Holmes and Bro. Kevin Ryan (Physics); and Drs. John Young and Tony Trimboli (chemistry).

Jennifer and Christina

Jennifer Hendrick and Christina Brown Tran, founders of the fundraiser.

Thanks too to all alums who good-naturedly played next to former professors and current students. Joe Alfonso, Biology 2012, took top honors with the highest overall average. Sadly his team members, Kelli Jeu, Biomedical Science 2012, Catherine Gluszek, Biochemistry 2012, Madeline Reynolds, Biology 2012, and Austin Gooch, Mechanical Engineering 2012, were not so fortunate. Other young alums included Prashant Patel, Biochemistry 2012, Joe Fong, Biology 2012, David Kim, Biomedical Science 2012, Kyle Smith, Biomedical Science 2012, and Rhett Jordan, Biochemical Engineering 2012. Even some of the older alums came tottering in, i.e., David Tran, Chemistry, 2005, Christina Brown Tran, Biology 2006, and Jennifer Hendrick, Biology 2006. Incidentally, Jennifer conceived of the fundraiser back in 2005 and both she and Christina brought it to fruition that year. The rest is history. The adversity that the children of Hope North have overcome is nothing short of miraculous. It gives one pause to realize how fortunate most Americans are. What an honor it is for Tri Beta to be able to present a check of over $1,000 to the struggling community.


Science Trivia Contest

Science Trivia Contest.

On Tuesday, November 13, the CBU section of the Society of Physics Students (SPS) hosted a “Jeopardy-like” Trivia Night covering Biology, Math, Chemistry, and, of course, Physics. There were five teams of three members each including two teams from Rhodes College. A trophy was awarded to the winning team, prizes were awarded, and small refreshments were served. The first place team members were Joey McPherson, Catt Miller, and Alec Lindman from Rhodes. They were awarded the “Science Genius” trophy. The second place team members were Tiffany Corkran, Rebekah Herrman, and Lucia Pagni from CBU.


Upcoming Events

Beta Beta Beta and the Student Members of the American Chemical Society will have a joint Christmas pot luck party tentatively scheduled for Nov. 27. As always we’ll they will sing Christmas carols with Dr. Mary Ogilvie, Professor of Biology, playing the guitar and the science people doing their part with the singing. All science people are welcome.

Alpha Chi officers

Pictured are the Alpha Chi Officers: Jessica Ferrell (VP), Jada Owens (president), and Krystyna Clark (Sec/Treasurer) with their skeleton friend.
Click on the image for a picture of the Peace Pipe with Alpha Chi members.


The Alpha Chi Induction has been moved to December 2nd. Membership is by invitation only based on standing within each individual school. Invitations will be issued via email to the top 10% of the juniors and seniors in each school. Alpha Chi has finally collected enough quarters to buy a goat from Heifer International. There will be a quarter rolling party at the induction. They will start to collect for their next goal of providing chickens and other small animals again from Heifer.

On Janurary 10, we will have a Science and Engineering Discovery Day. This is an opportunity for prospective students to participate in hands on learning activities and experiments through the School of Science and the School of Engineering. The event is scheduled for January 10 at 2:00pm followed by a reception at 4:15pm. If you are interested, please contact the Admissions Office at 901-321-3205 or email You can also register for the event at

March 20-21: The Memphis – Shelby County Science and Engineering Fair is a regional Fair that is affiliated with the INTEL International Science and Engineering Fair for the high school competition and with the Broadcom Masters Competition for Middle School Students. The Fair this coming year will be will be held on March 20-21, 2013, on the campus of Christian Brothers University. The event is co-hosted each year by the CBU chapter of the Student Members of the American Chemical Society and the CBU Chemistry Department and School of Science. The high school division is for grades 9 thru 12 and accepts only individual projects; the middle school competition is open to grades 6 thru 8 and accepts both team and individual projects. The high school division winner of our Fair goes on to compete in the INTEL International Science and Engineering Fair, which was held in Pittsburgh this year. The top 10% of our middle school fair goes on to compete in the on-line phase of the Broadcom Masters competition. Our student participants come from the Memphis-Shelby county area. Our competition is open to all middle and high schools in Memphis/Shelby county, whether public or private, to students from schools that do not have science fairs, and to home school associations. We do not charge schools or students a fee to enter. For more information, please contact the Fair Director, Dr. Dennis Merat, at