Andrews AFB, ME, United States
Andrews AFB, ME, United States

Bates College is a private liberal arts college located in Lewiston, Maine, in the United States. The college was founded in 1855 by abolitionists. Bates College is one of the first colleges in the United States to be coeducational from establishment, and is also the oldest continuously operating coeducational institution in New England. Originally a Free Will Baptist institution, Bates is now a nonsectarian institution.Bates College was ranked 19th in the nation in the 2015 US News & World Report Best Liberal Arts Colleges rankings. The college is listed as one of thirty "Hidden Ivies" and one of the "Little Ivies". Bates offers 32 departmental and interdisciplinary program majors and 25 secondary concentrations, and confers Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science degrees. The college enrolls approximately 1,800 students, 300 of whom study abroad each semester. The student-faculty ratio is 9-to-1.Bates is a leader of the SAT optional movement for undergraduate admission. In 1984 it instituted one of the first test-optional admissions programs in the nation. Wikipedia.

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Tefft N.,Bates College
Journal of Health Economics | Year: 2011

This paper contributes to the growing literature on the relationship between business cycles and mental health. It is one of the first applications in the economics literature to incorporate data on web searches from Google Insights for Search, and these unique data allow the opportunity to estimate the association between weekly unemployment insurance (UI) claims, in addition to monthly unemployment rates, and search indexes for " depression" and " anxiety" Results from state fixed effects models yield (1) a positive relationship between the unemployment rate and the depression search index and (2) a negative relationship between initial UI claims on the one hand and the depression and anxiety search indexes on the other. A lag analysis also shows that an extended period of higher levels of continued UI claims is associated with a higher depression search index. © 2011 Elsevier B.V.


Grant
Agency: NSF | Branch: Standard Grant | Program: | Phase: AMO Experiment/Atomic, Molecul | Award Amount: 12.00K | Year: 2016

The support of students through this award makes a substantial contribution to the education and training of future scientists. Students who graduate with a background in atomic, molecular, and optical physics acquire a broad range of knowledge and skills that enable them to contribute to progress in many areas of science and technology.

This award provides travel support for student participation in the 47th Annual Meeting of the American Physical Society Division of Atomic, Molecular, and Optical Physics (APS-DAMOP). Support is provided only for US students (students enrolled in US universities). This Conference has grown in recent years and attracts over one-thousand participants. Covering all the major areas of atomic, molecular and optical physics, this conference series is of outstanding importance to the vitality of atomic, molecular, and optical physics in the United States. This Conference offers an opportunity for students to present their research results and to interact with senior scientists primarily from the United States, but also the broader international community.


Grant
Agency: NSF | Branch: Continuing grant | Program: | Phase: EXP PROG TO STIM COMP RES | Award Amount: 360.00K | Year: 2016

The broad goal of this project is to develop and apply a suite of computational tools for studying the molecular and functional organization of the brain. To address whether circuits in a given brain area are organized as functionally diverse and heterogeneous modules despite apparent anatomical similarity, the PI and his associates will investigate the mouse olfactory bulb -- a brain structure dedicated to processing smell. Image data charting patterns of gene expression throughout the bulb will be obtained from open, digitally curated atlases (the Allen Brain Atlas (ABA)), and computationally mined to identify spatially structured motifs of gene expression. Electrophysiological recordings will also be made from slices of the bulb to directly test for the presence of organizational motifs identified in silico. These research activities will engage undergraduates extensively (the PI is a professor at a small liberal arts college), and provide them with experiences using computational approaches to study high-dimensional data sets. Additionally, the PI will promote the virtues of computational thinking and problem solving in biology through a redesign of his Introductory Neuroscience course. The new course will enlist students as practitioners in the analysis of data, and will make extensive use of open data sets from the ABA. A twin goal of the course redesign is to enhance diversity and retention in STEM disciplines through an emphasis on active, in-class learning.

Of the myriad genes whose differential expression might demarcate distinct brain subregions, one can typically only test a small and idiosyncratic set in a single experiment, potentially missing important contributors to regional heterogeneity. Our first aim addresses this issue by analyzing the densely cataloged, whole-genome expression maps of the ABA to investigate the zonal molecular organization of the olfactory bulb. We will cluster gene expression profiles obtained from the ABAs in-situ-hybridization experiments to identify candidate spatial modes (e.g. patchy, periodic, dorsomedial) of expression in the bulb. Our subsequent aims are centered around the collection of a densely sampled electrophysiological map of olfactory bulb principal neurons using in-vitro whole-cell slice physiology. Each recorded cell will be spatially registered to the same virtual bulb, and represented as a high-dimensional feature vector of physiological properties; these data will be clustered as above to test for physiologically distinct subregions, as well as for correspondences between gene space and physiological space. We will use this same approach to directly and comprehensively investigate the degree to which sister and non-sister mitral cells (i.e. sharing a common glomerulus vs. not) are physiologically different.


Grant
Agency: NSF | Branch: Standard Grant | Program: | Phase: ARCTIC SYSTEM SCIENCE PROGRAM | Award Amount: 337.23K | Year: 2014

Oceanographers and paleoclimatologists use various proxies to study the past history of ocean temperature and salinity. Many of these are recorded in the marine sediments, but sedimentation rates are so small that the time series that can be estimated from them only resolve changes that occur on decadal time scales or longer. When clams and other bivalves grow, they incorporate, in their shells, geochemical signatures from the water in which they live. They also lay down growth rings, like tree rings, in their shells. By studying the chemistry of adjacent rings in long-lived clam shells the principal investigators (PIs) of this project expect to be able to reconstruct the annual temperature and salinity variations of near surface waters in a region offshore of northern Norway. They will focus their efforts on the Medieval Warm Period (1000 AD to 1200 AD), the Little Ice Age (1200 AD to 1850 AD), and the modern era (1850 AD until the present). The resultant histories of temperature and salinity variation will be useful for understanding how the ocean conditions changed during these known periods of climate variation and for validating or constraining climate models.

The PIs? immediate goal is to reconstruct annual hydrographic variability during key climate intervals within the last millennium along the strategically located Arctic islands of Ingoy and Rolvsoy. They will hindcast changes in annual sea surface temperature (SST) and sea surface salinity (SSS). They will also establish the baseline variability in the marine radiocarbon reservoir effect. The modern near-surface oceanography along the islands is influenced by the physical properties of the Norwegian Coastal Current, while the relatively deep hydrographic conditions predominately depend on Atlantic inflow. Pilot data from the study site demonstrate a strong link between shell-based records and regional SST/SSS conditions. Hence, Ingoy and Rolvsoy seem situated in an ideal location to study marine climate change during the late Holocene. Hypotheses and objectives have been developed to test the relative influence of dominant climate modes on the regional oceanography near northern Norway during the last millennium.
Objective 1: Develop near-surface annual shell-based records (master shell chronology and isotopes) to reconstruct regional hydrographic variability (SST and SSS) along the northernmost coast of Norway during intervals of the Medieval Climate Anomaly, the Little Ice Age, and for Modern Climate.
Objective 2: Develop relatively deep-water (200 m) annual shell-based records (master shell chronology and isotopes) for the last 100 years to characterize the role of the North Atlantic Current on hydrography at the site.
Objective 3: Establish a decadal record of the surface marine radiocarbon reservoir effect since AD 1600 to estimate changes in source water contributions at Ingoy.
Objective 4: Estimate the relative influence of the winter North Atlantic Oscillation, the surface Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation, and the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation on regional hydrography (at Ingoy) and shell-based records.

An international partnership for studying Arctic marine climate change will be developed with colleagues from the Akvaplan-niva (Norway), Iowa State University (ISU) and Bates College (Maine). Outreach, public engagement, and dissemination of the results will be accomplished through engagement of two K-12 teachers in the field work, through classroom interactions with K-12 students, through a K-12 teacher workshop, through citizen-based science (via interactions with native Norwegians at Ingoy), and via a photo-journalist who will join the PIs for one field season. At least one female PhD student and approximately five undergraduate students will be supported by and involved with the project. The PIs will use data and ideas developed in this project for several courses at ISU and Bates College relating to climate change, paleoclimate and oceanography. PI Wanamaker will facilitate a public lecture series on climate change at the Ames Public library and continue to act as co-chair of Edwards Elementary Science Night, which has impacted > 1,000 students and community members since 2012.


Grant
Agency: NSF | Branch: Continuing grant | Program: | Phase: PETROLOGY AND GEOCHEMISTRY | Award Amount: 136.26K | Year: 2016

The movement of magma through the Earth, or magma transport, is an important agent of mass and heat transfer within the Earth. The efficiency of magma transport controls the separation of planets into different phases after their formation, the scale and frequency of volcanic eruptions, and the behavior of the planetary crust during mountain building. In turn, how far and how fast magma travels from its source before it hardens and the violence of volcanic eruptions are controlled by viscosity, the measure of magmas resistance to flow. Viscosity is one of the most variable physical properties in geological processes and its magnitude depends on temperature, chemistry, and on the magmas content of volatiles like water, carbon dioxide, and fluorine. Viscosity is subject to change rapidly in response to processes such as the formation of crystals or bubbles in the magma. These processes can cause chemical and thermal changes, leading to temperature and viscosity feedbacks in magmas. Modeling and understanding of geologic processes at all scales therefore requires accurate quantitative determination of magma transport and thermal properties. This can be done experimentally, by a combination of low- (<1000°C) and high-temperature (>1000°C) viscosity measurements and high-temperature (up to 1500°C) heat capacity measurements on the same suite of samples at atmospheric pressure.

For a suite of silica-undersaturated aluminosilicate melts that are analogs for highly-alkalic mafic magmas, the PI and Bates College undergraduate students will quantify the effects of (1) Na-K mixing, of (2) Al/(Al+Si) ratio, and of (3) fluorine on viscosity and heat capacity. The effects of fluorine on viscosity and heat capacity of such melts are especially important to consider as fluorines abundance correlates positively with the abundance of potassium and has a relatively high solubility at atmospheric conditions. This has implications for the transport behavior of terrestrial magmas that are nominally degassed with respect to other volatiles that are not significantly soluble at atmospheric pressure (e.g., water and carbon dioxide) and also for Martian magmas, which are thought to originate from the melting of a more fluorine-rich source relative to Earth. The results will be modeled using configurational entropy theory, which relates the timescale at which structural changes occur within a fluid (e.g., magma or melt) to the probability of these structural rearrangements. The results from this research will contribute to a better understanding of the chemical controls on viscosity and heat capacity, which in turn allows the construction of better predictive models of magma movement and emplacement in the Earth, and of lava eruption and flow at the Earths surface.


Grant
Agency: NSF | Branch: Standard Grant | Program: | Phase: FIELD STATIONS | Award Amount: 24.95K | Year: 2015

Bates College, in partnership with the Hurricane Island Center for Science and Leadership, is granted an award to coordinate the research and training efforts of a network of Gulf of Maine (GOM) field stations. Historically, the GOM was one of the worlds most productive marine ecosystems. However, in August 2014, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration announced that the cod population had plummeted to 3% of what is considered to be a sustainable population size, indicating the commercial extinction of cod in the GOM. In addition, the Gulf of Maine Research Institute and others recently reported that the GOM is warming faster than 99% of the worlds oceans, suggesting that the Gulf could serve as a living laboratory for rapidly changing marine ecosystems. At least 20 field stations collect environmental data in the Gulf of Maine. Of these, 10-15 operate on a small scale, with limited faculty, staff and equipment. Most emphasize undergraduate education and some place a high priority on engagement with diverse coastal communities. Individually, these stations cover limited geographic ranges; together, they cover the distance from Nantucket to Nova Scotia. Furthermore, their combined data sets document fine-scale conditions across a wide range of natural systems, and across decades of place-based observation and research. The central purpose of this award is to strategically leverage the research and training capacity of small field stations as a coordinated network. Its successful implementation will foster synergies and innovation, with the potential to yield significant findings on near-shore conditions in the Gulf of Maine, and to contribute to a larger understanding of environmental change in coastal waters.

This award allows a network of small GOM field stations to do the strategic planning necessary to implement shared research and training goals. Planning activities will include two multi-day meetings for all station directors, scientists associated with field stations, and three scientific advisors. Outcomes of this phase will include a summary of knowledge gaps and research priorities; equipment needs; teaching and training recommendations for students and citizens; and a data management strategy. During the second phase of the project, directors from the three lead stations-the Bates College Coastal Center at Shortridge (http://www.bates.edu/harward/bates-morse-mountain-shortridge/), the Hurricane Island Center for Science and Leadership (http://www.hurricaneisland.net/ ) and the Bowdoin Scientific Station at Kent Island (https://www.bowdoin.edu/kent-island/)-will produce a ten-year strategic plan for the network, identifying actionable items for implementation based on prior meetings. A business planning workshop will inform the strategic planning efforts. A final report will detail priorities, action steps, and the specifics of shared research and training programs.


Grant
Agency: NSF | Branch: Standard Grant | Program: | Phase: FLUID DYNAMICS | Award Amount: 164.70K | Year: 2016

Forest productivity is linked to the growth and maintenance of plant vascular systems that transport water from the soil to the leaves. These vascular systems are made up of a network of thousands of interconnected conduits smaller than the diameter of a human hair, collectively known as xylem. As plants are exposed to drought, this transport system can become dysfunctional, leading to reduced growth, and ultimately plant death. Current knowledge of the overall connectivity of the xylem network is limited, and this prevents a complete understanding of how water and nutrients are distributed through plants, and also limits the ability to predict how different species will adapt to limited water availability. The overarching goal of this project is to characterize the relationship between the three-dimensional (3D) structure of the xylem network and its function during drought in northeastern hardwood trees. The research will determine which tree species are most resilient under changing environmental conditions, establish tipping points beyond which species cannot recover from water deficits, and develop a model to predict widespread tree mortality under droughts of varying length and intensity. These data will inform conservation and timber production management by predicting shifts in tree mortality given environmental change scenarios. An online database will be created where 3D xylem models can be downloaded and then 3D-printed for use in biology and plant science classes, providing a unique, hands-on approach to learning plant functional anatomy. The project involves close collaboration between a major research university and a primarily undergraduate institution, thereby increasing undergraduate exposure to a research environment and education in STEM fields.

Xylem network connectivity is one of the least understood areas of plant anatomy, primarily due to a lack of suitable visualization tools to study the complex, three-dimensional (3D) organization of the microscopic tissues that make up xylem. Plasticity in 3D xylem network anatomy is understood even less, yet it could have significant impacts on the movement of water, nutrients, pathogens, or drought and freeze-thaw induced embolisms. Furthermore, xylem network organization should influence commonly measured xylem vulnerability curves, but a mechanistic model that describes how these curves arise does not exist. Here, the aim is to use physiological and anatomical measurements of existing adult and juvenile trees, as well as juvenile trees in a common garden drought experiment, to explicitly test a range of hypotheses regarding the influence of xylem network connectivity in four dominant northeastern hardwood tree species. Using X-ray micro-tomography, wood samples from roots, trunks, and stems will be analyzed in 3D to explore the responses of trees to environmental changes over the past 15 years within close proximity to the Long Term Ecological Research site tower at Harvard Forest. A mechanistic model will then be developed to predict xylem vulnerability and physiological tipping points for each species at two life history stages to help understand how community dynamics will shift given changed environmental conditions. This project will support the career development of a postdoctoral associate, a beginning investigator, and provide opportunities for undergraduate research, including positions in the Harvard Forest Research Experiences for Undergraduates program.


Grant
Agency: NSF | Branch: Standard Grant | Program: | Phase: | Award Amount: 791.48K | Year: 2014

An award though the Major Research Instrumentation (MRI) grant to Bates College provides funding to acquire a scanning confocal microscope with white light laser to expand teaching and research opportunities in fluorescence and interference-reflection microscopy. The confocal microscope will enhance and broaden microscopy applications available through the Colleges Imaging Center. The confocal will permit four research projects to collect novel data on a variety of important scientific questions across multiple disciplines, and be used on a semi-regular basis by five other faculty from Bates College and Bowdoin College in their research. In the classroom, confocal microscopy will become an immediate and integral tool in courses and be used in demonstrations in introductory physics and biology courses, affecting the education of more than 300 students per year. The microscope will also enhance Bates Colleges partnership with Southern Maine Community College by training and supporting the research of their faculty and students in workshop and research settings.

A variety of novel research projects across multiple natural science fields, including developmental biology and toxicology, neuroscience and cell biology, physics, and chemistry, will be enabled by the confocal microscope. In particular: the molecular mechanisms underlying the development of two key structures in the zebrafish, the otic vesicle and the swim bladder, will be determined; the characterization of neurons involved in rhythmic motor behaviors will provide a comprehensive understanding of modulatory mechanisms of central pattern generator function across mollusks and other animals; the molecular photophysics of fluorophores used in localization-based nanoscopy will be examined to identify bright fluorophores with on/off switching properties that are optimal for live-cell imaging; and the optical scattering spectra of individual plasmonic gold nanorods and self-assembled nanorod clusters will be studied to determine the extent to which plasmonic effects are the source of experimentally measured nonlinear optical behavior. All proposed projects will engage undergraduate students in the lab, teach them about hypothesis-based research, and train them in critical inquiry across STEM fields. This microscope will be transformative to the research and teaching infrastructure at Bates College and in the State of Maine (an EPSCoR state).


Grant
Agency: NSF | Branch: Standard Grant | Program: | Phase: LAW AND SOCIAL SCIENCES | Award Amount: 127.86K | Year: 2016

Eyewitness identification research has examined the extent to which controllable aspects of the justice system can be modified to reduce identification errors and has generated recommendations for lineups and photospreads that reduce the rate of false identifications. Even when recommended procedures are used, however, eyewitnesses still identify innocent people. In the proposed research, we explore whether these eyewitness identification errors are shaped by brief social interactions, defined as any exchange of information between a witness and a co-witness or between a witness and a photospread administrator before the identification procedure begins. Determining whether and the extent to which brief social interactions affect eyewitness decisions -- even when recommended procedures are used -- advances our understanding of how eyewitness decisions are made and contributes to a knowledge base from which specific recommendations will emerge. These might include automated photospread procedures whereby social interactions are minimized or eliminated, and alternative methods of collecting memory information.

Brief social interactions may affect eyewitness choosing behavior through manipulation of the witnesss decision criterion so that more (or less) of a match between a suspects appearance and the witnesss memory is required by the witness before he or she is willing to make a positive identification. The critical feature of the proposed research is that we hypothesize that the decision criterion is malleable as a function of brief social interactions and even when recommended procedures are in place. Two phases of experiments are proposed. In the first phase, manipulations to co-witness behavior are tested, including the apparent ease of a co-witnesss identification and the speed of a co-witnesss identification. The final experiment in this phase tests if witnesses can accurately report whether brief social interactions have affected their identification decision. This is accomplished through the manipulation of counterfactual instructions. In the second phase of experiments, manipulations to photospread administrators are tested, including comments about the difficulty of the identification task and pressure to make an identification. As in the co-witness phase, the final experiment manipulates counterfactual instructions to determine whether witnesses recognize that social cues have affected their identification decision.


Grant
Agency: NSF | Branch: Standard Grant | Program: | Phase: IUSE | Award Amount: 632.07K | Year: 2016

The goal of this project is to implement a national professional development program that promotes the use of engaged student learning in the analytical chemistry classroom and laboratory. Each instructor will participate in a two-year process involving a national workshop, regional workshop, and site visit to the individuals campus. An online community will be developed to sustain engagement after the workshops. An education research project will examine the (1) characteristics of professional development workshops and follow-up support activities that result in effective sustained implementation of active learning, (2) ways instructors adapt the materials to suit their teaching philosophies and institutional environments, (3) impact of the implementation of active learning modules on student learning, and (4) best practices for creating an on-line community that supports sustained implementation of active learning. Formative assessment of early workshops will be used to refine and improve the strategies for later workshops and follow-up activities.

This project will promote and study the adoption of evidence-based, active teaching methods by analytical chemical faculty members. Numerous studies show that small-group collaborative learning and inquiry-based activities lead to statistically significant improvements in student learning and increased student retention and engagement, especially among women, underrepresented, and first generation college students. However, wide-spread adoption of active learning pedagogies remains an elusive goal. Intense and collaborative forms of professional development are warranted to bring about changes in teacher knowledge, skills, attitudes, and beliefs that lead to changes in classroom and laboratory instruction. This projects process of networking in person and via an on-line community will provide sustained interaction between participants and facilitators with expertise in active learning leading to a shared vision and substantive change in the teaching methods of participants. The result will be a set of professional development experiences that support sustained adoption of active learning strategies. This will lead to more effective instructors of analytical chemistry courses and enhanced learning on the part of their students.

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