Luis Ruuska | April 7, 2017
The University of Notre Dame is sending nine students abroad to address pressing global development challenges through research as part of a grant with the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), managed by the Notre Dame Initiative for Global Development (NDIGD).
Partnering with host organizations on four continents in seven countries, the nine Notre Dame students will complete research projects throughout 2017 and 2018. The students and their research projects are as follows:
Tracy-Lynn Cleary, a doctoral student in the Department of Chemistry will travel to Kenya to develop a paper analytical device (PAD) that has the capability of detecting low quality oxytocin in an affordable, safe, and field-friendly manner to be implemented in birth clinics around the world. She will be supported by Marya Lieberman, a professor of surface chemistry.
Jenna Davidson, a doctoral student in the Department of Biological Sciences will travel to Indonesia to study which mosquito vectors are present in Indonesia and their associated behaviors, as well as what arthropod-borne viruses are being transmitted by mosquitos. She will be supported by Neil Lobo, a research associate professor of medical entomology.
Lauran Feist, an undergraduate senior student in the Departments of Political Science, Economics, and Romance Languages will travel to Argentina and Brazil, to study the comparative power of governors in the two countries and their role in shaping public policy outcomes. She will be supported by Scott Mainwaring, the Eugene and Helen Conley Professor of Political Science.
Catherine Flanley, a doctoral student in the Department of Biological Sciences will travel to Brazil to join a laboratory group, which is developing sandfly age-related gene-expression markers so that researchers can more accurately estimate the age of field caught sandflies. These age markers will allow researchers to determine the efficacy of plant-derived, glycoside-baited traps in decreasing the longevity of field sandfly populations, frequent carriers of visceral leishmaniasis, which they hope will reduce transmission rates. Flanley will be supported by Mary Ann McDowell, an associate professor of immunoparasitology and vector biology.