Louisiana Tech Sigma Xi recognizes outstanding students

The Louisiana Tech Chapter of the Sigma Xi Scientific Research Honor Society recently recognized three students for exemplary achievements in academics and research.

Joseph Aubert was recognized as the Sigma Xi Outstanding Undergraduate Student. Aubert majored in Environmental Science and graduated in May. For two years, he worked with Dr. Julia Earl in the School of Biological Sciences investigating the impacts of soil on the uptake of freshwater tannins, compounds of which are toxic to aquatic organisms.

Joseph Aubert

Joseph Aubert

“Joseph has been an invaluable member of my research group,” Earl said. “He regularly volunteers to help other research students with their experiments and teach them new protocols.”

Simon Boycott and Rebecca Hodnett were each recognized as a Sigma Xi Outstanding Graduate Student.

Boycott is pursuing his master’s degree and conducting research under the guidance of both Earl and Dr. Don Shephard in the School of Biological Sciences. His research involves surveying crawfish frogs in Louisiana, a species of concern that has been missing from the state except for one location.

“Simon is very passionate about scientific communication and discusses amphibian and wildlife conservation frequently with fellow scientists and members of the public,” Earl said.

Studying for her master’s in Molecular Science and Nanotechnology, Hodnett has been conducting stem cell research with Dr. Jamie Newman in the School of Biological Sciences. She recently published a children’s book about stem cells that will be shared with children across the region.

Rebecca Hodnett

Rebecca Hodnett

“Rebecca is a great colleague and is supportive of her classmates,” Newman said. “She is an example of what can be achieved when you remain committed to your goals.”

Louisiana Tech chapter president Dr. Heidi Adams said, “These students are the epitome of what Sigma Xi represents by conducting research to advance knowledge in their respective fields while also supporting their scientific companions.”

Aubert, Boycott, and Hodnett each received a 1-year membership to Sigma Xi in recognition of their outstanding achievements.