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The Elmira College Eta Sigma chapter of the Beta Beta Beta (TriBeta) national biological sciences honor society recently hosted the 2022 annual district convention for the northeastern-1 (NE-1) region. Undergraduate students from colleges and universities across the northeastern United States presented their research, including three Elmira College students.
The convention featured a keynote address by Dr. Marie Bechler, Assistant Professor of Cell and Developmental Biology at SUNY Upstate Medical University. Dr. Bechler's talk, which was entitled, "It's a wrap: Exceptional cells that coordinate signaling in the nervous system," focused on her exciting work in dissecting the mechanism of myelin sheath formation in the central nervous system.
The majority of the convention centered around four student research talks and eleven student research poster presentations. Their diverse topics included the impacts of herbicides on microbial communities, RNA interference in both beetles and C. elegans, modulation of locomotion in tardigrades, and CRISPR-Cas9-mediated gene editing. Elmira College student presenters included Ryan Hardy '23, Catherine Smugereski '22, and Paige Stilts '23. In addition to EC's cohort, students and faculty in attendance hailed from Hofstra University, Trinity College, Dominican College of Blauvelt, Ithaca College, Mercy College, and SUNY Potsdam.
The NE-1 district convention is typically held annually at a different college each year. Due to the pandemic, Elmira College also hosted the 2021 convention online. TriBeta honor society members and research award winners are encouraged to present their research at either the annual district convention or the biannual national TriBeta convention. Elmira College's Eta Sigma chapter of TriBeta was established in 1960 and inducts new undergraduate student members annually.