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Derek Barisas – Fulbright Research Grant to Ireland

Name: Derek Barisas

Class Year: 2013

Hometown: Fort Collins, CO

Major(s): Biochemistry

Opportunity and Year: Fulbright Program for U.S. Students, 2013

Project Summary: I am studying the evolutionary status of North Atlantic avian fauna using population genetics.

How did W&L prepare you for this opportunity? Washington and Lee University provided me with professors and peers who care deeply about my academic, professional, and personal development; the finest quality classes that occasionally travel across the world; and the support and resources to pursue my goals.

Why did you apply for this opportunity? I felt that the opportunity and place furthered my long-term goal of entering into research medicine while providing me the opportunity to immerse myself in the strange and beautiful culture of Iceland.

Post-graduation Plans: After the Fulbright, I hope to spend a year conducting research stateside while I apply to MD/PhD programs.

Extracurricular Involvement:

Public Relations Director/ Emcee/ Deejay of WLUR; Public Relations Director of Beta Beta Beta Biological Honor Society; Member of University Shenandoah Symphony Orchestra, W&L Swing Jazz Ensemble, Men’s Glee Club, and the Bluegrass Ensemble.

Off-campus Experience:

Habitat for Humanity Volunteer and Emergency Room Volunteer at Carilion Stonewall Jackson Hospital

Research Experience:

R.E. Summer Scholar and research associate under Dr. Frederick LaRiviere studying the effects of environmental genotoxins on an rRNA decay pathway and an R.E. Summer Scholar under Dr. Erich Uffelman characterizing the pigment composition and conservation status of important cultural objects in W&L’s collection.

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