Lubonja’s research published in ‘Science of Advanced Materials’

Before Klair Lubonja even started classes his freshman year he was engaged in research courtesy of the Pre-College Enrichment Program, sponsored by the Department of Health Career Opportunity Programs at the UConn Health Center. As a member of Dr. Yu Lei’s lab, Klair spent the summer working with copper nanowire and single-wired carbon nanotubes in an effort to enhance glucose electrooxidation. Continue reading

Rowe Researcher: Translesional Synthesis DNA Polymerases

Summer 2012: Structure and Interactions of Translesional Synthesis DNA Polymerases

By Maciej Kosakowski, Dr. Dmitry Korzhnev, Ph.D., Dr. Irena Bezsonova, Ph.D.

During my weeks with the College Summer Fellowship Program at the UConn Health Center, I worked in a structural biology lab in conjunction with the NMR lab under Dr. Korzhnev. I assisted him on his project, which aimed to discover the specific mechanisms behind translesional synthesis DNA polymerases, or TLS polymerases for short. Continue reading

Rowe Researcher: Health in the Buduburam Refugee Camp

Summer 2012: The Socio-Political Influences on Health in the Buduburam Refugee Camp

By Gian Grant, Dr. Elizabeth Holzer

The United Nations High Commissioner of Refugees (UNHCR) recognizes that there are approximately 2.7 million refugees in the world. The UNHCR often coordinates with non-governmental organizations and asylum countries to provide refugees with services such as health care until a permanent residential situation is agreed upon. Continue reading

Rowe Researcher: Characterization of Drosophila Interacting Genes

Daniel Camacho conducting research at the Health Center.
Daniel Camacho conducting research at the Health Center.

Summer 2012: Characterization of Drosophila Interacting Genes: Elucidating the Mechanism(s) of PolyQ Toxicity in Huntington’s Disease

By Daniel R. Camacho, Ping Zhang, Ph.D.

Polyglutamine expansions are a type of genetic mutation that is responsible for several human neurodegenerative diseases, including Huntington’s disease. The pathology of these diseases involves the accumulation of proteins containing polyglutamine domains within neuronal cells, which ultimately leads to cell death. The mechanism of toxicity of these protein aggregates is currently being investigated. My work involved using the model genetic organism Drosophila melanogaster to try to elucidate aspects of polyglutamine toxicity. Continue reading

Twins run in the Honors family


  • Reese brothers
    Spencer Reese ’13 and Tyler Reese ’13

By Cheryl Cranick, Honors Program

Currently in the UConn Honors Program, of the roughly 1,600 students enrolled or who have just graduated, 22 do not just have a sibling on campus; they have a physical double. In 2011-2012, the Honors Program included eleven sets of identical twins. The presence of identical twins is not unusual for the Honors Program, which has had twins in previous graduating years. Continue reading

Honors Class Notes (Spring 2012 eNewsletter)


William Cremins ’69, ’73 is the Administrative Judge for the Waterbury Judicial District, a member of the State Judicial Review Counsel, and a member of the State Marshal Commission.


Dr. Lisa D. Brush ’85 is a sociology professor at the University of Pittsburgh. Her new book, Poverty, Battered Women, and Work in U.S. Public Policy (Oxford University Press), was named a CHOICE outstanding academic book for 2011. She was in Storrs this May to address the UConn women’s studies students at their Commencement celebration. Robert Rzewnicki ’88 is owner of the FISC Help and Information Desk at Aetna, providing business and technical support for the company’s group and health insurance underwriting and accounting operations. Continue reading

Honors Program Alumni eNewsletter (Spring 2012)

A Message from the Director

To our Honors alumni,

It is with mixed emotions that I write this Director’s Note, having just celebrated my last Medals Ceremony with Honors students and their families in the role of Director. We graduated more than 300 students, our largest number of Honors Scholars in the history of the program.

This year has brought many exciting changes, and some sad ones, as Honors said goodbye to its great friend and one of Honors’ first directors, Dr. John Tanaka, who passed away this April. But as we marked the loss of this important educator, we also paused to realize the advancements of this program under the leadership of its various directors. I am proud that I was able to contribute to its development and participate in the education and success of so many outstanding students. Continue reading

Honors celebrates scholars, faculty, and alumni at the 2012 Medals Ceremony

Hettinger, DeWalt, and Kennedy
Award winners Dr. Virginia Hettinger, Dr. Bill DeWalt, and Ms. Marian Kennedy. (Photo courtesy of Thomas Hurlbut)

The Honors Medals Ceremony is a time for the Honors Program to individually recognize each graduating Honors Scholar before family, friends, and the university community. Seniors are presented with commemorative medallions to wear at Commencement and keep as a reminder of their successful completion of a rigorous Honors curriculum. The event also celebrates the contributions of Honors faculty members and marks the accomplishments of Honors alumni, highlighting the circular relationship of educators, students, and graduates. This year, three members of the extended Honors community were recognized. Continue reading

Understanding culture makes Honors alum a musical visionary

By Cheryl Cranick, Honors Program

Building exterior
Musical Instrument Museum in Phoenix, Ariz. (Photo courtesy of the Musical Instrument Museum)

In the desert of Phoenix, Ariz., is a sprawling $250 million, 200,000-square-foot facility that blends into the arid background. But inside the walls is a collection of instruments that brings to life the world’s music. The Musical Instrument Museum (MIM), led by UConn Honors alumnus Dr. Bill DeWalt ’69, ’76, is not just a museum that displays devices for sound. MIM has a deeper mission: to create an all-encompassing sensory journey around the globe. It promises to be “the most extraordinary museum you’ll ever hear.”

Continue reading

2012 Distinguished Alumni Award: Bill DeWalt

Bill DeWalt is the founding President and Director of the Musical Instrument Museum (MIM), an expansive $250 million institution that opened in April 2010 in Phoenix, Arizona. DeWalt was responsible for assisting in the design and overseeing construction of the 200,000-square-foot building, amassing a collection of more than 15,000 musical instruments from nearly every country in the world, and assembling a team of 110 employees and 350 volunteers. He currently manages the operations of the museum, as well as its world-class theater, which offers concerts by artists from across the globe. Continue reading