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The Lookout | February 28, 2021

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Students display talents at StarScapes

Students display talents at StarScapes
  • On December 5, 2019

By Ali Williams
A&E Editor

Students presented research from their classes and other projects at LCC’s StarScapes Nov. 25 and 26. StarScapes is an “Innovation and Creativity Showcase,” according to LCC’s website.

All students or groups of students are able to participate in StarScapes with the support of a faculty member.

Many students participate in correlation with an LCC class. Others, like members of the LCC Japanese Club, join the showcase to display what they do in meetings and bring more attention to the club.

“We have a really big club here,” third-year LCC student and Japanese Club member Danielle Sweet said. “Our club leader (Mieko Philips) thought it would be a really good idea to, not just advertise, but to show that we have something that we are continuously building as a community and giving value to LCC.”

The Japanese Club showcased some of the members’ favorite parts of Japan. A poster board of Japanese food and another of Japanese culture were on display.

Olivia Szilagyi was at StarScapes for her microbiology class on Nov. 25. She worked on her project with several classmates.

“Essentially, we went through and picked a bunch of invasive plants,” Szilagyi said. “There’s 28 plants. … We just picked based on how they looked.
“Some of them were really close to how an invasive plant looks, maybe there were some differences, but we decided, ‘Let’s pick them — let’s see if they’re invasive.’”

Szilagyi and her microbiology class tested each plant to see if it was invasive. Szilagyi said they purified the DNA and performed PCR (polymerase chain reaction). Her class sent off the DNA strands they extracted to GeneWiz, who gave the students the nucleotides.

Szilagyi and her microbiology class discovered that only seven of the 28 plants chosen were invasive.

Morgan Haggarty went to StarScapes for the first time for her microbiology class as well. Haggarty’s presentation was about the Hantavirus, something that is commonly found in Eastern countries, she said. The Hantavirus infects mice and people, but it is not curable in humans, Haggarty said.

“We do research projects throughout the class and we had to pick one of those (viruses),” Haggarty said. “I thought that this was kind of interesting.”

StarScapes is held near the end of both fall and spring semesters at LCC.