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Chemistry student to conduct multiple sclerosis research at Ohio State University

May 30, 2012
 Amanda Buchberger
Amanda Buchberger
EAU CLAIRE — A University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire senior will spend much of the summer seeking success on the campus of Ohio State University.

Amanda Buchberger, a chemistry major from Portage, will participate in Ohio State's Summer Undergraduate Course Creating Excellence in Scientific Study (SUCCESS) program. Buchberger will spend nine weeks doing research beginning June 11.

"I will be doing student-faculty collaborative research on multiple sclerosis," Buchberger said. "We were given a list of professors with their research interests and this caught my attention. I just recently learned that a past family member had been plagued by this disease."

Buchberger is a member of the UW-Eau Claire Honors Program. Dr. Jefford Vahlbusch, associate professor of German and Honors Program director, said Buchberger's selection for the Ohio State program demonstrates that the Honors Program mission, focusing on intellectual, personal and professional development, is working.

"Amanda's academic work inside and outside the Honors Program, her collaborative research experiences and her own tenacious drive to learn have clearly prepared her to compete at a national level," Vahlbusch said.

Buchberger said research she has done at UW-Eau Claire with Dr. James Phillips, professor of chemistry, during the past year helped pave the way for her acceptance into the Ohio State program.

"He took me under his wing," Buchberger said of Phillips. "He allowed me to blossom." Their research on the structural and energetic properties of molecular complexes was presented earlier this year at the National Conference on Undergraduate Research at Weber State University in Ogden, Utah.

Buchberger said the scientific research was not the only thing she learned about during her work.

"My research is extremely independent" Buchberger said. "I have learned a lot about myself in the process."

Buchberger said she will use what she has learned at UW-Eau Claire to help her this summer at Ohio State University. Buchberger said the opportunity provided by the SUCCESS program will help her decide between attending medical school or a research-based graduate school.

"I am very excited for this experience," Buchberger said. "I am very lucky to have so much support around pushing me to do my best. I know that without them I would have never gotten as far as I have."

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