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McNair Feature Scholar: Meet Emily!

Emily Schulz, Cohort 19
Emily Schulz, Cohort 19

       Emily Schulz is studying psychology and neuroscience and plans to graduate in May 2019. She grew up on a small family-owned dairy farm in Edgar, WI. Emily works as a tutor for psychology courses and as a lead housing specialist. In her free time, she enjoys playing with her kitten, biking, and baking.  

       For her McNair research, Emily has been working with Dr. David Jewett in the psychology department. The research involves rats which are given access to a sucrose solution for 12 hours of the day and just water for the remaining time. This increases the rats’ endorphin (opioid) function. The rats are trained to discriminate naltrexone, which is an opioid antagonist to the mu, kappa, and delta opioid-receptors, from saline in an operant choice procedure. Once the rats learn this discrimination a kappa-opioid receptor agonist is used to help discern which opioid receptors are active or most active in this paradigm. 

       Emily is interested in drugs, behavior, and mental health disorders. She hopes to study drugs that treat mood disorders in the future and is currently applying to graduate programs in this area.