Iowa State University McNair Program

ISU McNair Scholars Go Places!

This summer McNair Scholars had their research skills sharpened and, at the same time, contributed to projects in other institutions.


Natalie Fuentes at Harvard, Summer 2014

Natalie Fuentes  worked on research about axon regeneration in glial cells at Harvard University. She tested new protective compounds (potential future treatments for blind persons) in glial cells to see the effect of those in axon regeneration and analyzed the PTEN/AKT biochemical pathway involved in axon growth. She learned new techniques such as glial cells culture, microscopy, staining, and immunocytochemistry.

Esdras Murillo continued to conduct research with Ulrike Passe, Associate Professor of Architecture at ISU, on data acquisition systems (DAQ), collecting and evaluating data that can be used to compare and test energy building design variables.  Esdras has obtained numerous recognitions including his most recent Third Place at the Iowa NSF EPSCoR Annual Meeting Poster Competition as part of the ISU team who worked on Distributed data acquisition system design to measure indoor air stratification.  He also works on a project implementing a system to measure airflow, through testing in the Interlock Solar House.  The system is expected to reduce dependency on air conditioning.


Esdras Murillo, Third Place Poster Competition, Iowa NSF EPSCoR 2014

Ryan Hall (2014 graduate) will have his paper, “Supercritical carbon dioxide-assisted silanization of multi-walled carbon nanotubes and their effect on the thermo-mechanical properties of epoxy nanocomposites,” published in the journal Polymer.  This paper is a result of a project dealing with polymer nanocomposites  in which Ryan worked during his first year in McNair.

Cimone Wright was awarded the Iowa African American Hall of Fame 2014 Leadership Scholarship. She was recognized for her leadership in creating Project Prep the Way, an idea that stemmed from her work as a tutor for the “America Reads” program. Project Prep the Way assists Ames Community School District  teachers with class preparation.