Bethany Williams ('16, Marine Biology, Spanish Minor)

Bethany WilliamsWhat do you do for your undergraduate research?

I am working on my honors project in Dr. Williard's lab. The purpose of my project is to determine whether temperature affects anaerobic metabolism in swimming yellowbellied pond sliders. Turtles are well known for their anaerobic metabolism capabilities during overwintering, but few studies have addressed how temperature affects their anaerobic metabolism during exercise. Besides my honors project, I have also worked in the lab as a lab assistant. There I have gained valuable experience in different herpetological field sampling methods and animal husbandry.

What made you want to pursue an undergraduate research project?

It's a great opportunity to work alongside a professor and get experience of what a career in biology is like. Before doing this project I was considering pursuing a research career after graduation and this project confirmed that and led me to applying for graduate school.

Was doing your own research fun? Be Honest.

Yes! I really enjoyed every part of my research project. From planning it, to the execution, to sharing my findings with others, doing my own research was very fun.

It isn't required to do research as an undergrad, so what advantages do you think this experience has provided you?

Doing undergraduate research prepares you for graduate school in a way that no amount of classes can. It also looks very good on a resume as one prepares for job applications or graduate school applications.

What recognition and/or grants did you receive for your research?

I have received the King Mackerel Tournament Fellowship, CSURF Supplies grant and CSURF travel grant.

What are your plans after you receive your degree from UNCW?

After graduating this spring I will be continuing my studies at Miami University to obtain my PhD in Biology.

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