High school students gain opportunity to conduct summer research at MTSU through Project SEED

Teachers nominated Helene Hamo, left, of Stewarts Creek High School and Edgar Lozano of Central Magnet School for Project SEED research roles at MTSU this summer. (MTSU photo by Randy Weiler)

Photo courtesy of MTSU News 

Local high school students Helene Hamo, 17, and Edgar Lozano, 16, have spent their summer conducting chemical research in an MTSU Science Building lab.

After they were nominated and selected as Project SEED recipients, Hamo and Lozano were given the opportunity to work with MTSU graduate students and Department of Chemistry chair Greg Van Patten.

In addition to discovering potential career paths, recipients receive a $2,500 fellowship and learn fundamental laboratory skills and analytical methods during the program.

An important feature of Project SEED is its emphasis on career development and its motivation of students to pursue higher education in the natural sciences.

Hamo will be a senior at Stewarts Creek High School in Smyrna, Tennessee. Chemistry teacher Kevin Vaughn nominated her. Lozano will be a senior at Central Magnet School. Advanced Placement chemistry teacher Julie Mullane nominated Lozano.

The two are working under Van Patten investigating nanomaterials called “quantum dots.” Together, the team will be working on making and studying new types of quantum dots, which have been identified as candidates in next-generation solar cells, lasers, energy storage devices and quantum computers.

To learn about Project SEED opportunities at MTSU for 2017, contact Van Patten by calling 615-898-2956 or email Greg.VanPatten@mtsu.edu.

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To contact News Editor Amanda Freuler, email newseditor@mtsusidelines.com

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