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The Biology Undergraduate Awards Committee met last week to select this year’s Awardees. It was a tough task and required much deliberation, as all of the students did an outstanding job. Here are the awards recipients:

Kylie VanDerMolen has been awarded the Francis LeClair Award. This award is given to a senior biology major for research and academic excellence in biology with an emphasis on plant sciences. VanDerMolen was mentored by Zack Nimchuk and her thesis is called “Natural variability in clv2 phenotypes.” Congratulations, Kylie!

Sloan Fussell and Viren Baharani were awarded the Stephen Brantley Awards. These awards are given to two senior biology majors for excellence in research in molecular, cell, and developmental Biology. Fussell was mentored by Alexander Kabanov and he completed his thesis on macrophage polarization and drug delivery. Baharani was mentored by Helen Lazear and completed his thesis on viral cross-reactivity. Congratulations, Sloan and Viren!

Sebastian Nichols has been awarded the RE Coker Award. This award is given to a senior biology major for excellence in research in organismal biology and ecology. Nichols was mentored by Brian Taylor and his thesis is called “Bioinspired Navigation Based on Distributed Sensing in the Leech.” Congratulations, Sebastian!

Dan Meyers was awarded the John Couch Award. This award is given to a senior biology major with interests in plant biology or mycology who has demonstrated the highest ideals of scholarship and research. Meyers was mentored by NCBG Herbarium Associate “Van” Cotter. Congratulations, Dan!

Mark Peifer and the Biology Department gives special thanks to Amy Maddox who mentored the students writing and defending Undergraduate Honors theses, all faculty, students, and postdocs who mentored research students this year, all who evaluated written theses and talks, the Biology Undergraduate Awards Committee (Amy Maddox, Ty Hedrick, Gidi Shemer, and Steve Rogers), and, of course, Summer Montgomery who manages all things undergraduate and whose help and guidance makes our major run.

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