Chemistry and Biochemistry

Three Students Win Awards at 2014 SciX Conference

Posted: in Analytical, Student, Oct 13, 2014

This year's conference was a great success for Dr. Paul Farnsworth's research group. 

The 2014 SciX Conference (September 28-October 3), held in Reno, Nevada, was a great success for Dr. Farnsworth’s research group.  The conference, which stands for “The Great Scientific Exchange,” is held annually at a different North American location and draws scientists from around the world. SciX is sponsored by the Federation of Analytical Chemistry and Spectroscopy Societies (FACSS).

Farnsworth attends nearly every year with one or two students. This year, because the conference was within driving distance, Farnsworth had the special opportunity to bring all five of the students in his research group: Wade Ellis, Lance Moses, Jessica Ramsey, Charlotte Reininger, and Anna Openshaw. Dr. Ross Spencer from the Physics Department and his PhD student, Matt Zachreson, attended the conference as well.

Three of Farnsworth’s students received awards in the poster competition that accompanied the conference. “Clearly the best moment was learning that my students had done so well in the poster competition” said Farnsworth. “There was a lot of stress in getting everyone ready for the meeting, and there were times that I doubted we would all be ready. It was a relief to see everyone do well, including the students who did not win prizes in the poster session.”

Wade Ellis, a graduate student, received the first place prize of $400 for his poster on “A Comparison of Rise Times Obtained Using Four Support-Gas Compositions in Ambient Desorption/Ionization Mass Spectrometry.”  Ellis said “I was surprised to win because there were many posters and presentations that I thought were much better than mine, including those from our group. It was nice, though, to be recognized for my research and presentation.” 

Lance Moses, a graduate student, and Jessica Ramsey, an undergraduate student, were each awarded a runner-up prize of $100 for their posters. Moses presented on “Characterization of Size Distributions of Laser Ablation Produced Aerosol Particles and their Relative Contributions to Ion Densities in an ICP."

Ramsey presented on “A Comparison of Ba and Ca Ion Beams in the Second Vacuum Stage of an ICP-MS.” She enjoyed the chance to learn from other scientists in her field while at the conference. “The fun part about science is the discovery,” Ramsey said. “I am so excited to get back to work on some of these new ideas.” She thanked Dr. Farnsworth and Alisa J. Edmund for their important contributions to her research.

BYU was the only school at SciX to have more than one student presented with a FACCS Student Poster Award. “My current group is exceptional,” said Dr. Farnsworth of his students. “They are bright, curious, and hard working. I think that this road trip was fun for all of us, and one that we will remember for a long time.”

Article by Jordan Wright