Rachael Bonoan, a biology major from Tiverton, RI, has won the 2011 Biology New England South (BioNES) undergraduate research competition with a lecture entitled, "Dominance Hierarchy Formation and Its Potential Applications for Laboratory Research: Using a Model Organism, the Zebra Finch."
"My participation in BioNES proved to be an invaluable learning experience,'' Bonoan said. "The process of compiling the information and polishing the presentation for the oral competition was hard work but it was more than rewarding."
Bonoan is a student in Dr. Guillermo Paz-y-Mino-C 's laboratory at UMass Dartmouth. A member of the Class of 2013, she is a collaborator in Dr. Paz-y-Mino-C 's research on the origin and evolution of complex forms of intelligence by using bird models. Bonoan expects to graduate with a major in Biology and a minor in Spanish, and later pursue a career in health sciences.
The BioNES meeting, which took place at Roger Williams University, gathered 300 participants from UMass Dartmouth, Roger Williams University, Brown University, Tufts University, the University of Rhode Island, Providence College, Rhode Island College, Salve Regina University, the University of Connecticut and the Buttonwood Park Zoo in New Bedford.
The one-day event included faculty talks, the BioNES graduate and undergraduate student competitions, and a poster session in diverse fields: genetics, genomics, biotechnology, bioinformatics, developmental biology, molecular biology, microbiology, biochemistry, cell biology, neurobiology, evolution, behavior, ecology, biodiversity and conservation.
New England Science Public, a networking initiative among academic institutions, sponsored the BioNES meeting. Dr. Paz-y-Mino-C, assistant professor of Biology at UMass Dartmouth, and Dr. Avelina Espinosa, associate professor of Molecular Microbiology and Biotechnology at Roger Williams University, have coordinated these annual meetings since 2006.