October 20, 2022

Updated: 12/1/2022Special projects in NHTI's Biology and Genetics classes

CONCORD–The Biology and Natural Sciences departments at NHTI–Concord’s Community College have been busy recently with two large projects aimed to help students gain experience critical to their success at NHTI and beyond: 

Biological sciences: Know more about our SEAPHAGES program

This two-semester laboratory program, known also as Science Education Alliance-Phage Hunters Advancing Genomics and Evolutionary Science, is a discovery-based undergraduate research program designed to increase student interest and retention in the biological sciences through research.

During the fall semester of 2021, 8 NHTI Genetics students were published in the National Institute of Health’s genetic sequence database for their annotation of a phage. These students are Edmund Dillon, Lauryn Davis, Madisyn Schmanski, Kristine Hayes, Zackary Chait, Sarah Rebane, Kelvin Nguyen, and Alexia Gilardi.

In the spring semester of 2022, NHTI’s General Biology lab introduced students to the Discovery portion of the SEAPHAGES program, in which students isolate and characterize novel bacteriophages (viruses that infect bacteria). One phage isolated during this class had its DNA sequenced – and during the fall 2022 semester, the Genetics lab is now determining the gene locations and functions throughout the DNA through a process known as annotation. 

Students are breaking barriers in Biology and Natural Sciences with NH-INBRE

The IDeA Networks of Biomedical Research Excellence, funded by the National Institutes of Health, develops a coordinated network of biomedical research and research training in New Hampshire. It comprises two “lead” research-intensive institutions: the Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth and the University of New Hampshire at Durham; and “partner” primarily undergraduate institutions: Colby-Sawyer College, Franklin Pierce University, Keene State College, New England College, Plymouth State University, Saint Anselm College, University of New Hampshire at Manchester, Rivier University, and NHTI as part of the Community College System of New Hampshire.

Many NHTI students have benefited from this funding and have gone on to UNH-Manchester or other 4-year institutions to pursue a bachelor’s degree in the sciences: Lauryn Davis, Madisyn Schmanski, and Kristine Hayes were NHTI INBRE researchers during the 2021-2022 academic year and presented at the annual INBRE conference in August at the Mount Washington Resort. Former students who also presented at this conference include Alyssa Lombardi and Gabrielle L’Heureux (2018-2019). Both have since graduated from UNH-Manchester. During the pandemic, Shoshana Trudel and Connor Pelland participated with other CCSNH students in the INBRE-funded COVID Symposium held in February 2021. Shoshana is currently studying at UNH-Manchester and was also a speaker at this year’s annual INBRE conference. 

Get beyond with NHTI – Concord’s Community College

NHTI is a dynamic public institution of higher learning that provides accessible, rigorous education for students, businesses, and the community. We create pathways for lifelong learning, career advancement, and civic engagement, offering 80+ academic programs to 4,600+ students annually.

NHTI is a member of the Community College System of New Hampshire and since 1969 has been accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education, a nongovernmental, nationally recognized accrediting agency. 

Press Contact
Amber Gavriluk  |  603-230-4001  |  agavriluk@ccsnh.edu