Mattea Keister grew up in Arvada, Colorado, where she attended Ralston Valley High School. She is majoring in biochemistry. She joined Dr. Lisa Timmons lab in August 2016 where she started working on an unusual form of gene silencing that was observed in transgenic strains of Caenorhabditis elegans. The findings are reminiscent of genetic imprinting mechanisms in humans and may illuminate unintended consequences of genetic manipulation. The goal is to use biochemical and genetic approaches to uncover the underlying mechanism for this form of silencing. Mattea plans to continue her education in an MD/PhD program with the goal of pursuing biomedical research.
Zachary Wood is from Eureka, MO where he attended Eureka High School. He is majoring in chemistry with a minor in mathematics. In November of 2015, Zach joined Professor Misha Barybin’s research laboratory where he has been engaged in undergraduate research at the interface of organometallic and materials branches of chemistry. As a Beckman Scholar, Zach will work toward gaining important quantitative insight into tuning electronic characteristics of organometallic molecular wires with the goal of designing new nanoscale materials relevant to applications in organic electronics. He plans to pursue a Ph.D. in chemistry and, embark on a research career in the chemistry of functional materials.