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!

What We're Doing: It Must Be Senior Week
Posted 05/22/2014 05:26PM

From Mrs. Bjurlin:

Mr. Mulder opened things up at the 2014 Senior Dinner with a warm, upbeat welcome, remarking on how the evening marked the beginning of our celebration of their success as a class and reminding them that, "In just three short days, each of you will join more than five thousand Berkshire School alumni from across the country and around the world.  This is a talented, passionate, and loyal group, which will be made even stronger when each of you join their alumni ranks.  What is certain, and what will grow ever stronger with each passing day, is that all of you share a deep and enduring affection for this place and this school.  In talking with many of our young alums who have gone before you, it is clear that for many of them, the friendships they forged at Berkshire…and the relationships they built with the faculty…that these bonds will be the strongest of their educational, personal, and professional lives."

Later,  the four senior leaders: Sam Perkins, Sydney Beldock, Matty Wieczorek and TJ Adams gave touching speeches, showing appreciation for everyone at Berkshire who made their success possible and commemorating one of the last few times they'd all be together this way.

Mr. Bullock spoke, sharing his hopes for the Sixth Formers as we usher them into alumni-land, gave a quick Latin lesson (alumnus, alumni, alumna, alumnae), and ultimately announced the class reps, Sam Perkins (Class Chair), Jake Grant (Class Agent), and Emily Hubbard (Class Correspondent).

After my quick introduction, Kendall Coyne '11 spoke to the students about her time at Berkshire and about the many places that Bears have shown up for her since then.  

Read an excerpt of her speech here.

Yearbook contributors Merit Glover, Michelle Jung and Max Miller read their yearbook dedications to Dr. Wu, after which there was an elephant-like stampede for their yearbooks and mugs, a surprise gift from the Alumni Office.

Read their dedications here.

Some students posed for pictures with Kendall and her medal, while many asked her to sign their yearbooks. 

See a slideshow of the evening here:


We are so proud of this graduating class, and we can't wait to celebrate their future successes when we welcome them home again, as alumni. This evening was a perfect way to honor them at the start of this celebratory week.

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