The Synapse

Updates from the Sciences at Loyola University Maryland

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July 2021 | Issue 34

As we anticipate the start of a new academic year with students and faculty filling Knott Hall and Donnelly Science, we're excited to add some hybrid events for the rest of the summer. Join us this month and next for Hauber summer research presentations (on campus or via Zoom)! Details below or learn more at

Share your news, photos, inspiring stories, and upcoming events for a future issue. Please send any feature suggestions to Jen Sullivan at


Welcome incoming NAS Department Chairs

Please join us in welcoming the incoming Natural and Applied Sciences department chairs for 2021-22 who began their new roles on July 1:

  • Lisa Schiefele, Biology
  • Birgit Albrecht, Chemistry
  • Raenita Fenner, Engineering

Thank you to our returning department chairs:

  • Megan Olsen, Computer Science
  • W. Ethan Duckworth, Mathematics and Statistics
  • Joseph Ganem, Physics

Chairs meet regularly to discuss divisional priorities, initiatives, and programs, meet biannually with the Natural and Applied Sciences Steering Board, and oversee faculty and staff in their departments. Their dedication and hard work are integral to the success of NAS programs and we are grateful for their service to the division and university.

Hauber Summer Research presentations on July 26, August 4, and August 11

Join us for this summer's Hauber Summer Research presentations on Wednesdays, July 26, August 4, and August 11 from 1 - 3 PM. All those on campus are welcome to attend in person in the Fourth Floor Program Room (lunch will be provided from 12 - 1, registration required). Presentations will simultaneously be available via Zoom for those who wish to join remotely.

Register here to attend Zoom webinar presentations.

Register here if you will attend in person and join us for lunch (Fourth Floor Program Room, Evergreen Campus). *A variety of boxed lunches will be provided on a first-come, first-serve basis with vegetarian options. Registration is required for lunch so that we have enough for everyone! Please RSVP by the Friday before the presentation session/lunch you plan to attend.

Biology department hosts summer Laboratory Practices and Techniques (LPT) course

The Loyola University Maryland Biology Department hosted 24 undergraduate research summer interns from across the country for two one-week course sessions in Laboratory Practices and Techniques this year. This program is part of the Nathan Schnaper Summer Internship Program (NSIP) in Translational Cancer Research at the University of Maryland Greenbaum Cancer Center. Interns come from college campuses across the United States to participate in the 11-week NSIP program which provides research and clinical experiences to students interested in careers in cancer research. At the start of the summer experience, interns attend the Laboratory Practices and Techniques (LPT) course on the Loyola campus to learn commonly used biomedical laboratory techniques so they can begin their research projects in individual research laboratories at the University of Maryland with skills and confidence. Additionally, the Laboratory Practices and Techniques course at Loyola provides an opportunity for NSIP interns to get to know each other and builds a community of peers before they begin working in different laboratories for the summer.

Each year, the NSIP internship program admits one to three Loyola students. This year’s NSIP interns are Gillian Blackwood and Ally Jerrett. Additionally, several Loyola students working in biology laboratories for the summer as Hauber summer interns or volunteers were able to participate in the LPT course (John Mirachi, Kristen Battista, Maddie Valentine, and Matt Sanford). This year’s LPT course was run by four faculty members in the Biology Department: Dr. Lisa Scheifele (instructor), Dr. Christopher Thompson (instructor), Dr. Armina Kazi (instructor), and Dr. Theresa Geiman (course director and instructor). The LPT course is funded as a sub-award of an NIH R25 Cancer Training Grant through the National Cancer Institute. Loyola has been conducting the LPT course as a sub-awardee of this NIH grant since 2015. Loyola students interested in applying to the NSIP program can find out more about the program and LPT course by contacting Dr. Geiman ( or visiting the NSIP program website ( ). Applications are generally due in early to mid-February.

Lightboard Demo

Thank you to Megan Olsen, professor and chair of computer science, for the below demo of Loyola's new Lightboard technology. Attend the teaching enhancement workshop during fall welcome week to learn more.
Demo of Loyola's Lightboard


Summer Resources

Coronavirus Resources

  • Loyola Coronavirus Updates - General university information for all students, faculty, staff including reopening plans, COVID-19 dashboard, FAQs, policies, and resources.
  • Summer Student Policies - For students on campus this summer including vaccination requirements, daily symptom screening, guidelines if testing positive for COVID-19, campus services, and university protocols.

Student Support Resources

Employee Support Resources