Wilmington Fellows Class of 2017

Tiffany Ernst

Tiffany Ernst

From New Jersey, Tiffany Ernst chose UNCW because of its exceptional program for Marine Biology and its concentration on undergraduate research and involvement. She is currently majoring in Marine Biology and Chemistry at UNCW and looks forward to attending graduate school next fall for a masters degree in biology, either at UNCW or abroad. She has applied for a Fulbright Grant to study in the Netherlands at Radboud University and is also applying to several other international schools. Tiffany is currently involved in undergraduate research in the MAPLE Lab under the direction of Dr. Heather Koopman. She recently finished her honors thesis project in marine biology on the presence of glucose transporter 4 in the acoustic lipids of bottlenose dolphins and has completed a DIS project quantifying melting points of complex lipids taken from the acoustic fats and blubbers of deep diving odontocetes. With this spring as her final semester, Tiffany is completing another DIS in marine biology to explore advanced topics in marine lipid chemistry and analysis. Beyond her passion for science, Tiffany is active in Wilmington’s art community with particular interest in creative writing and spends every remaining minute outdoors. She recently finished a 2-year term position as a student board member for the National Collegiate Honors Council and, upon graduation, will complete 3rd year as a committee member for the NCHC Partners in the Parks program. Tiffany is always excited to take on new challenges and looks towards her future in graduate school and the academic adventures that lie ahead. 

Recent Accomplishments: Fulrbight Scholarship recipient, Gamma Sigma Epsilon member, Fulbright applicant,  Board Member for the National Collegiate Honors College, NCHC Poster Presentation Award Winner

Katherine Hoffman

Katherine Hoffman

Originally from southern Maryland, Katie came to UNCW to pursue her lifelong goal of becoming a marine biologist and protector of the ocean. As a Marine Biology major with a minor in Music, Katie has been an active campus member in many facets. She performed as principal flutist in UNCW’s Chamber Winds and Symphonic Winds ensembles, served as Vice President of the Women in Science and Engineering organization, completed a DIS in Dr. Will White’s lab, studied abroad in Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands, and is now finishing her Honors thesis in Dr. White’s lab. Her Honors project focuses on the ecology of fear and how the fear of predation affects the spatial decision-making of a foraging guppy. She plans to present her findings at the Benthic Ecology Meeting this April in Myrtle Beach, SC. Katie spends the majority of her free time in the water, whether it be diving, swimming, or just a relaxing day at the beach. She was recently accepted into the graduate program at College of Charleston and plans to begin her master’s degree there in the fall of 2017.

Mary Jaskowiak

Mary Jaskowiak

Mary Jaskowiak is an Environmental Science major from the Chicago area. Her academic career has been dedicated to becoming an expert in water resources and improving water quality. Through research with Dr. Larry Cahoon, Mary has developed methods of tracking human waste in natural waters with optical brighteners, which are found in laundry detergents. She successfully defended her thesis on the topic and is now working to commercialize her methods. In Spring 2017, she won the BB&T Leadership Symposium’s social good entrepreneurship contest, providing her with seed money to produce kits that utilize the methods she has developed.  In addition to academics, Mary was very active in Catholic Campus Ministry. As president of this student organization, she organized a trip to see Pope Francis, organized a public lecture featuring the president of the Vatican Observatory, coordinated the installation of two rain gardens, and served as the CCM liaison for the Student Sustainability Network. She served on the College of Arts and Sciences Dean’s Student Leadership Council her senior year. Over the summers, Mary interned with Friends of the Fox River and the North Carolina Coastal Federation, worked for MarineQuest, and volunteered at Airlie Gardens.

Recent Accomplishments: BB&T Leadership Symposium winner, Ahuja Academy of Water Quality Undergraduate Research Fellowship, Crews Scholarship, UNCW Excellence in Engagement Award, Brown Merit Scholarship, American Groundwater Trust Scholarship

Danielle Siegert

Danielle Siegert

Danielle is in her final semester working towards a double major in Marine Biology and Oceanography with a minor in Chemistry. She is finishing her honors thesis in Rob Condon’s Biological Oceanography lab, monitoring water quality and the microbial community in the Cape Fear River following Hurricane Matthew. She completed a Directed Independent Study (DIS) in 2014 using the Cape Fear River as a model to investigate the sinks of terrestrial dissolved organic matter. For the NOAA Hollings Program, she focused on quantifying carbon storage in seagrass meadows in Padilla Bay, Washington. Danielle also works in the Honors Office and as an Undergraduate Research Ambassador. When not working in the lab or completing graduate school applications, she enjoys backpack camping and traveling.

Gloria Meiers

Gloria Meiers

Gloria came into UNCW as an undecided major with a love for a variety of subjects. She ended up double majoring in Psychology and French. She participated in an Art and Philosophy Study abroad summer session in Florence and Paris and a French study abroad semester in Paris. She has played soccer since the age of four and has also participated in multiple triathlon/biathlon events. She has a passion for photography and all types of music and plays the piano and oboe. Gloria chose UNCW because of the opportunity of the Wilmington Fellows Program and the strong Psychology department. She has become involved on campus through research in a Psychology lab, Psi Chi, the International Student Organization, the Office of International Programs, the English as a Second Language Program, and intramural soccer. She most recently completed her Honors thesis on the subject of child witnesses of intimate partner violence. She will be returning to UNCW next year to complete her Master’s in Psychological Science.

Recent Accomplishments: Semester in France with focus on French immersion (language, culture, and art), Phi Eta Sigma induction, Research assistant for Dr. Caroline Clements, attended the Association for Psychological Science conference in New York City, presenting a research poster, was elected vice-president of the International Student Organization, is a mentor and orientation leader for international students.

Nicholas Sterling

Nick Sterling

Nick's academic interests include physics, mathematics, and philosophy, and he enjoys rock climbing and snowboarding. He chose to go to UNCW because he found the greatest breadth of opportunity here. During his time here he has developed an interest in the two cornerstones of modern physics, namely, quantum theory and general relativity, as well as avenues for their unification and their implications for our philosophical understanding of the nature of space and time. In the summer of 2017, he spent his time engaged in research at the Jefferson Laboratory national accelerator facility working on simulations. The primary goal of these simulations was to aid in detector development for an experiment that aims to deliver a precision measurement of the lifetime of the eta meson. A precise measurement of the eta lifetime will yield important implications for chiral symmetry breaking in quantum chromodynamics, the theory of the strong force. He is also currently working on an Honors thesis that intersects physical theories, such as relativity, with philosophical analysis to inform and refine the notions of space and time.
Madeleine Cutrone

Madeleine Cutrone

Madeleine is currently a Biology major hoping to pursue a career as a physician. She has given much of her time as a volunteer at a free clinic and envisions herself someday providing healthcare as a primary care physician to underserved communities in rural North Carolina. She has worked as an undergraduate researcher for nearly two years in Dr. Kinsey’s biochemistry lab, and in her last semester before graduation, she is completing an honors thesis studying the effects of caffeine on skeletal muscle substrate utilization. She enjoys mentoring and has spent time as an Honors Mentor and Undergraduate Teaching Assistant. Madeleine has always found a passion in healing, both through healthcare and music. She enjoys leading her a cappella group as music director and plays the piano in her free time.

Ashley DeMey

Ashley DeMey

Originally from Bolivia, NC, Ashley traveled to Brest, France this past summer to learn techniques that helped her to analyze data for her Honors thesis, "The effects of ocean acidification on the gonadal development of the Eastern oyster (Crassostrea virginica)," which she successfully defended last semester. She graduated this past December magna cum laude with a B.S. in Biology and minors in Chemistry and Psychology with University Honors and Honors in Biology. She graduated in December 2016 and will begin at the College of Veterinary Medicine at NC State and will start there this fall.

Jin-Si Over

Jin-Si Over

Jin-Si graduated early in December 2016 with a B.S. in Geology and a minor in Oceanography. Jin-Si has been involved in Dr. Andrea Hawkes' Sea-level Lab (Honors thesis and DIS) at UNCW and has participated in a REU for Climate Change at Old Dominion University (2015), and is a 2015 NOAA Hollings Scholar where she did a project in Hawaii. She worked at the University Learning Center as a tutor, was an Undergraduate Research Ambassador, and a recipient of the Senior Medallion Cornerstone Award. In her free time Jin-Si (also known as "Unicycle Girl" on campus) volunteers at the Fort Fisher Aquarium and skates at the Wilmington Ice House.

Recent accomplishments: graduation, Senior Medallion recipient, NOAA Hollings scholarship recipient, REU at ODU

Juliet Taylor

Juliet Taylor

Graduated Summer 2016. Currently in graduate school at Duke University.

Suzanne Zeid

Suzanne Zeid

Graduated Fall 2016. Currently in graduate school at North Carolina Sate University.

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