Ms. Amanda Zahumensky
Academic Department: Biology
Graduation Year: 2013
I completed research with Dr. Irene Wolf at a local acid mine drainage site to determine chaperone protein levels in the cattails found in each of the ponds. We found that cattails sampled from ponds that were more severely impacted by acid mine drainage had lower titers of heat shock proteins. This indicated that the production of these proteins, which promote proper protein folding and integrity, were impaired under adverse conditions. This might have contributed to the overall smaller size and impaired development seen in those ponds. That research was such an amazing experience and I greatly suggest any science major to get into some sort of research while they are in undergrad.
While my time at Saint Francis was a great experience, it was also challenging. Time management was a huge part of my four years, as I had to balance the time required for both my studies and volleyball. Although it was difficult, I graduated in May with honors and was so thrilled to have been able to accomplish this while I was balancing my commitments in athletics. This year, I am taking a short year off school before continuing into medical school and to become an anesthesiologist. I am very excited to start this next chapter in my life.