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Biology & Environmental Sciences Department Student Success Stories

Recent Student Success Stories of our Wonderful Undergraduate Students
Female student in scientific lab

Molly Lorenz

Molly graduated in 2014, double majoring in Biology and Forensic Science and minoring in Chemistry. As an undergraduate, she held internships at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Yale University, and Gilead Sciences. She also worked extensively as a laboratory assistant for cellular biology, within the Biology Department, and several courses in the Chemistry Department. During her senior year, she additionally co-taught an after-school forensics program in New Haven. Since graduation, she has been working at IsoPlexis Inc. as an Associate Biologist, focusing on cancer immunology and single-cell cytokine secretion.


Lauren Kirchner Biology Student

Lauren Kirchner

Lauren graduated Cum Laude in 2015 with a B.S. in Marine Biology and minors in Psychology and Theater. She is a recipient of the 2015 Herbert F. Wright Outstanding Biology Student Award and the 2015 Theatrical Excellence in Collaboration Award. She served as President of Honors Student Council, Assistant Director for the Theater Program, Flute Rank Leader in the Chargers Marching Band, and a Success Mentor at the First Year Success Center. She was also a member of the Honors Program, Alpha Lambda Delta Honor Society, Alpha Phi Omega Petitioning Group, Admissions Team (A-Team), and concert band. While at UNH, Lauren studied abroad in the Bahamas and conducted Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship (SURF) research. She received a Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) Fellowship through the National Science Foundation (NSF) where she worked at University of Southern California and Wrigley Institute for Environmental Studies. Lauren completed an honors senior research thesis on the sublethal toxicological effects of fluoxetine in zebrafish. She presented this research in progress at the 2015 Northeast Regional Honors Council Conference. In Fall 2015, Lauren will begin a Ph.D. program in Integrative Biology at Florida Atlantic University.

 Dylan Haenel

Dylan Haenel

Dylan graduated from UNH in May 2015 with a B.S. in Biotechnology with a minor in Chemistry and Sustainability. He worked in Dr. Eva Sapi's Lyme disease research team looking for a new alternative antimicrobial agent to treat the morphological forms of Borrelia burgdorferi. He presented part of his research at the International Lyme and Associated Diseases Society (ILADS) held at Philadelphia in 2015 and for the Honors undergraduate showcase hosted by University of New Haven in 2015. Currently he is writing his papers on Lyme to later be published for the use of the greater Lyme disease scientific community. After a short time off from school, he plans to go to graduate school.

 Sierra Rocco

Sierra Rocco

Sierra graduated Summa Cum Laude in 2015 from the Honors Program with a B.S. in both Marine Biology and General Biology and a minor in History. During her senior year she conducted thesis research on the genetic variation of Crepidula fornicata in Long Island Sound and was a co-recipient of the Herbert F. Wright Biology and Environmental Science Award. Sierra was very involved during her time at UNH, namely as a member of the Admissions Team, Marine Biology Club, and Alpha Lambda Delta Honor Society. She served on the Biology Club executive board for three years, and for the 2014-2015 academic year served as a Resident Assistant for the Office of Residential Life. Beginning in the Fall of 2015 Sierra will be attending the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University.

 Danielle Perry

Danielle C. Perry

Danielle Perry graduated with a B.S. in both Environmental Science and Marine Biology with a minor in Sustainability Studies. While at UNH, Danielle was in the Honors Program, president of the Marine Biology Club for two years, and resident assistant of the Marine Biology Living Learning Community for three years. During the summer of 2013, she completed a SURF project researching salt marsh vegetation and its impact on the reproduction of the salt marsh snail, Melampus bidentatus. The following summer, she participated in a Research Experience for Undergraduates in Monterey Bay, California studying macroalgal blooms and their effect on salt marsh plant survival. She presented her research at the SACNAS and Western Society of Naturalists conferences as well as at the international meeting of the Association for the Sciences of Limnology and Oceanography in Granada, Spain. Danielle will be attending the University of Rhode Island in the fall of 2015 as part of the Biological and Environmental Sciences Ph.D. program specializing in Ecology and Ecosystem Sciences.  

 Jai Rathore

Jai Rathore

Jai started his Masters degree this Spring at NYU School of Engineering in Biomedical Engineering. He is specializing in Biomaterials, with a focus on research in tissue engineering. Soon he will pick between a thesis or a research project. 
His previous work included briefly working on pancreatitis with Dr Edwin Thrower at the VA/Yale Lab doing a lot of primary cell culture. Later Jai was involved with microbiology/wet chemistry testing water filters for microbiological/chemical contaminants. 

Male student holding a basin of small fish  

Michael Smircich

The co-recipient of the 2014 Herbert F. Wright Outstanding Biology Student Award, Michael has been accepted into the M.S. program at the University of Connecticut. He has accepted a full time graduate assistantship in the lab of Eric Schultz, where he will be conducting an analysis of the diet and condition of early-stage fishes over a time series in order to assess the impact of zebra mussel invasion. In addition, Michael presented his research thesis on the effects of internal tag size on fish at the Southern New England American Fisheries Society 2013 Summer meeting.

Samantha in the lab

Samantha Roy

Samantha graduated with a B.S in both Biotechnology and Forensic Biology with a minor in Chemistry in the spring of 2013. During her time at UNH, Sam was a teacher’s assistant for both molecular biology and biochemistry. She spent two years interning and collaborating in the Biochemistry Department at the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station in New Haven, CT where she was able to gain experience as a research assistant. In the fall of 2013, Sam moved to Denver, Colorado where she was hired as a Professional Research Assistant at the University of Colorado’s Anschutz Medical Campus. Sam is currently doing proteomics research in the Skagg’s School of Pharmacy.

 Kristen Maylott

Kristen Maylott

Kristen graduated Magna Cum Laude in 2010 with a B.S. in  Biology (Biochemistry) and Forensic Science and minors in chemistry and criminal justice. While at UNH, Kristen was a member of SMILE (Students Making an Impact on their Living Environment), a representative to the Undergraduate Student Government Association and a member of the Forensic Science and Chemistry Club. Kristen completed internships with the Connecticut United for Research Excellence's BioBus and Pfizer. On the BioBus she visited 26 Connecticut schools and taught basic molecular laboratory techniques including electrophoresis, ELISA and PCR to 4th through 12th grade students. She also developed many of the protocols used on the BioBus. After graduation, Kristen relocated to Colorado where she has been employed as a research associate by Luca Technologies and SomaLogic. Kristen will be attending  medical school at Kansas City University of Medicine and Biosciences starting in the fall of 2014.


Brittany N. Wienclaw

Brittany is a double major in Biology and Forensic Science. She was able to perform her internship at the Brookhaven Laboratories. Her internship also resulted in a paper in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, USA.

Female student in a scientific lab

Christina Kling

Christina Kling is a senior at the University of New Haven majoring in biotechnology and biochemistry and a John Hatfield Scholar. She has completed two SURF projects, one on mycobacteriophage and the second on Lyme disease, which is also the focus of her honor's thesis research. She has mentored students at the Sound School, and has worked as a lab assistant for the Molecular Biology course for two semesters and as a lab and lecture assistant for the Chemistry Department for three years. She will be presenting at the Northeast Regional Honors Council Conference in April and has been accepted into Weill Cornell Graduate School of Medical Sciences for fall 2014. She plans to pursue a Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences and ultimately wants to do medical research for unmet medical needs. Christina also participated in an event where students reflected on the importance of scholarship and thanked donors. 

Julie Huston's school photo

Julie Huston

Julie Huston, a Marine Biology major, was accepted to attend the American Educational Research Association conference as part of a student fellowship. She is working to develop and test a middle school curriculum centered on marine pollution for her senior thesis research.

Female student with an "ocean in a bag" Two children playing with a seal out of water

Alexis Hudson

Alexis Hudson, a senior Marine Biology major, has been an intern at The Maritime Aquarium for the past three years. Now, Alexis is conducting a study on self-recognition by harbor seals at the Aquarium for her Senior Thesis. Click here to read more.

Female student in a scientific lab

Lauren M. Paolella

Lauren Paolella graduated with a B.S. in Biology, a B.S. in Forensic Science and a minor in Chemistry. In her senior year, she worked as an intern, and after graduation as a Research Assistant at Yale University and VA hospital in the Endocrinology and Metabolism Research Laboratory. In February, she was accepted into the University of Pennsylvania for the Biochemistry and Molecular Biophysics Ph.D. program starting in the fall of 2014.

Female student in business casual attire

Amber Bonds

Amber Bonds, a member of the Honors Program, graduated with a double major in Biology and Forensic Science. She will begin a Ph.D. program at SUNY Stony Brook this fall. Amber will conduct research on neurodegenerative diseases, with a focus on Alzheimer’s disease. As a student at UNH, she studied abroad in Spain and conducted hands-on molecular biology research.

Male student with UNH ice sculpture

Derrick Chelikowsky

Derrick Chelikowsky, a marine biology major, traveled to Washington, D.C., where he presented cutting-edge research to members of Congress about the development of the bay scallop. His findings are critically important to the multi-million dollar shell fishing industry in Connecticut. After graduation, he is continuing to work at the National Marine Fisheries Service Lab in Milford, CT in collaboration with a researcher from Syracuse University and a team from the National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration.

Male student standing behind a microscope in a lab

Bryan Neumann

A triple major in Biology, Biotechnology, and Forensic Science with a minor in Chemistry, Bryan participated in a summer internship at Gilead Sciences in Branford, CT. He is currently studying in the molecular and cellular biology Ph.D. program at Dartmouth College conducting research in genetics and the biochemistry of cancer biology. While at UNH, Bryan worked extensively as a laboratory assistant for biology courses and conducted SURF and independent research on the effects of exemestane on two-dimensional and three-dimensional breast cancer cell cultures.