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Joy Pawirosetiko: Student Showcase at BNL Day-Friday, April 4

by ericarunsamerica on April 1st, 2014

Hey Stony Brook!

If you haven’t already heard, this coming Friday is BNL Admitted Students Day, to be held in the Wang Center from 10am to 11:45pm. It’s a day when admitted high school students and their families will visit campus to learn more about some of the exciting research and opportunities we offer here at SBU!

One such student is B.S Biology and MBA Healthcare Management dual-major Joy Pawirosetiko! Currently a senior here at SBU, Joy will be showcasing her studies on the long- and short-term effects of Roundup™ and fertilizer on earthworms, research that she conducted as a student in Dr. Sharon Pochron‘s Earthworm Ecotoxicology Laboratory class. For more info on this Sustainability Studies Program course, please see one of my pervious posts, “Digging for Answers.”

Joy was born in Paramaribo, Suriname, and moved to New York in 2001, graduating from Lindenhurst High School in 2010. Here at Stony Brook, she serves as President of the Commuter Student Association and participates in the Undergraduate Student Government. In her free time, Joy can be found with her nose in a book, traveling the globe, and testing out new activities–like indoor rock climbing (which she reports is harder than it looks)!

Recently, I interviewed this dynamic student to learn more about her Sustainability Studies Program research on earthworms. Excerpts from our conversation follow:

Erica Cirino (EC): I am really interested in learning more about your research! Could you sum it up for us, exactly what it’s all about?

Joy Pawirosetiko (JP): Farmers and growers desire for thriving earthworm populations because [earthworms] are a good indicator of soil health. Earthworms tend to internalize ecotoxins that are introduced to the soil through products such as pesticides, herbicides, and fertilizers. [My] study examined whether the addition of Roundup™ and fertilizer by many farmers and growers end up harming or hurting the earthworm population, and additionally harming or hurting plant growth.

EC: Wow, so great that you could research such an important topic! How would we grow food if not for earthworms? How would we have trees and plants and air to breathe? Could you please discuss your results?

JP: [My] results supported the hypothesis regarding the negative effect of Roundup™ on earthworm health and the positive effect of fertilizer on earthworm health. Weeding type (Roundup™ vs. hand-weeding) had short-term effects while fertilizer type (fertilizer vs. no fertilizer) did not. Fertilizer type had long-term effects while weeding type did not. This study could ultimately help farmers and growers maximize earthworm health, soil health, and plant growth.

EC: Awesome stuff. How did you like the Earthworm Ecotoxicology Laboratory class, may I ask?

JP: Taking classes with Dr. Pochron has always been such a great experience, and the lab is great. [Dr. Pochron is] definitely one of my favorite professors on campus.

EC: Though I’ve never taken a class with her personally, I have heard very positive things about her from other students as well. What makes her classes special?

JP: Dr. Pochron teaches in a way that makes normally difficult material more accessible. Both classes I’ve taken with her also required for a group presentation, an invaluable experience that is necessary beyond the classroom. Not only does she teach the class in an entertaining way, but she also provides advice and assistance for matters outside of the classroom. She encourages students who take her class to be proactive about their academic career. She stresses taking up opportunities and trying out for programs. She believes in the importance of research and is willing to help students who seek her assistance.

EC: So glad you could be a part of the Sustainability Studies Program even though you are not a major or minor in our program! We are so happy to have you conducting this important research. Do you plan on continuing working in a laboratory post-graduation?

JP: After I finish my B.S. I intend on finishing my MBA and expect to graduate by May 2015. After graduation I might look for a job as a lab technician, or something that still allows for research. I’m still a little unsure about my future plans, but it would preferably involve something in biology or healthcare (I think: you never really know where life will take you).

Be sure to stop by the Wang Center on Friday to take a peek at Joy’s research!

It is students like her that make a difference. 

Joy, you are right; we don’t know where life will take us. But, it certainly seems like you are headed in a positive direction! Congratulations! #supergreenstatus for you, my friend.

peace. love. run.



PS. Joy was selected as URECA’s April Researcher of the Month!

From → Erica

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