Advanced Math/Science Research Update

by Dr. April Burch, Director of the AMSR program

January 15, 2013

Since our last update, Berkshire School hosted student researchers from Belmont Hill, and all-boys prep school outside of Boston, for a 1-day mini-symposium on Student Biomedical Research. The goal was to foster collaboration, communication and community outreach with our students.  AMSR students Liza Bernstein '13, Sissi Wang '13, Lars Robinson '13, Elsie Guevara '13, Ernest Yue '13, and Nate MacKenzie '14, gave short talks about their work in the new Bellas/Dixon Math and Science lecture hall. The talks were followed up by break-out sessions where Belmont Hill students described their research projects and students discussed commonalities between the projects and future goals.

The second semester of AMSR started with some terrific news. The AMSR program was awarded a grant from The Chinchester Dupont Foundation for the purchase of an EVOS fluorescence microscope.  This piece of equipment will expand the types of experiments and analyses that can be done by AMSR students this and future years.  The microscope should arrive shortly, and Dr. Burch has invited everyone to stop in for a look next time they are on campus. 

One new, exciting project that is underway in the winter season of AMSR in the afternoons is being spearheaded by Elif Kesaf '14.  Elif is from Turkey and seeks to identify novel viruses of non-pathogenic strains of Legionella bacterium from travertines in Pamukkale. In collaboration with Dr. Sunny Shin at the Perlman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, she will be working to isolate viruses of this bacterium with the hope of identifying new agents to combat Legionnaires' disease caused by a pathogenic form of Legionella.

Look for more news from Dr. Burch in the next issue!

Green Ribbon School
Posted 05/06/2013 05:45PM


Science teacher Peter Kinne accepts the award on behalf of Berkshire School at the State House in Boston on May 13. Pictured: Ursula King, Chairman of the Secretary's Advisory Group on Energy; Richard Sullivan Jr., Secretary, Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs; Mark D. Sylvia, Commissioner, Department of Energy Resources and Lisa Capone, Deputy Director MA Department of Energy Resources


Berkshire Named Green Ribbon School

Award Honors Schools and Districts for Reducing Environmental Impact and Costs; Improving Health; and Offering Environmental Education

Berkshire was named a Green Ribbon School by the Department of Education last month, one of 64 schools in the nation and one of only 10 private schools. The award honors schools and districts for “exemplary efforts to reduce environmental impact and utility costs, promote better health, and ensure effective environmental education, including civics and green career pathways.” (US Department of Education)

Click here to read more.

“Today’s honorees are modeling a comprehensive approach to being green,” said Secretary of Education Arne Duncan. “They are demonstrating ways schools can simultaneously cut costs; improve health, performance and equity; and provide an education geared toward the jobs of the future. In fact, the selected districts are saving millions of dollars as a result of their greening efforts. And the great thing is that the resources these honorees are using are available for free to all schools."

"This is an extraordinary achievement for a school our size and a great honor to Berkshire and its students who have made a commitment to sustainability a part of the campus culture," said Interim Head of School Pieter Mulder. 

Click here to read more about Sustainability initiatives at Berkshire.

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