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Experiences & Opportunities


Esther Penick

Associate Professor of Biology; Chair of Neuroscience

2 East South Street

Galesburg, IL 61401-4999



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There are ample opportunities to enhance your studies in neuroscience through independent research, off-campus study, and internships. In fact, all Knox students undertake an experiential learning project as part of their education. These programs are integral to a Knox education, teaching you how to apply your skills in real world situations.

Research and Creative Work

Many of our majors -- and minors -- pursue College Honors or other research and creative projects. Some even present or perform their work at national and international conferences. Here are a few recent projects:

  • "Techniques for Studying Introvert Regeneration in Themiste lageniformes (Phylum Sipuncula): A Fluorescent and Scanning Electron Microscopy Study," Hatim Mustafa Mustaly '13.
  • "The Effects of Painful Stimuli on Genital and Subjective Sexual Arousal in Dyspareunic, Masochistic, and Typical Women," Victoria Agnieszka Klimaj '13.
  • "Gd-DTPA Enhanced in vivo Imaging of Xenopus laevis Development Using an Ultra-Compact MRI," Kelli Rae Huebner '13.
  • "An Investigation into the Role of Estrogen Receptors in the Modulation of Synaptic Transmission within the Nucleus Accumbens," Jacquelyn Mares '11.
  • "An Examination of a Rat Model of Pediatric Depression and the Long-Term Effects of Administering Chronic Treatment of Paroxetine to Juvenile Rats," Kathryn Nellett '11.
  • "The Effects of Oral Contraceptives on Olfactory Senstivity and Pheromonal Perception," Katy Renfro '11.

Study Abroad

Knox offers you plenty of opportunities to begin exploring the world while still a student. Almost 50% of Knox students participate in study abroad and consider their studies abroad to be the highlight of their college experiences. Recent study abroad programs attended by neuroscience students include:

  • University of St. Andrews, Scotland
  • University of Magdeburg, Germany
  • University of Copenhagan, Denmark

Internships and Off-Campus Research

There's no better way to explore the possibilities of life after Knox than internships.

In past years, Knox neuroscience students have conducted off-campus research at the Burdenko Neurosurgery Institute, Russia; Lobatse Mental Health Hospital, Botswana; Northwestern University (Alzheimer's Research); and Medical University of North Carolina (Multiple Sclerosis research). Other recent internships and off-campus research include:

  • Medical assistantship, University of Michigan, working on stem cell research -- axonal guidance during neural development. Andy Prendergast '07.
  • HHMI medical assistantship (HHMA), University of Wisconsin, Madison, working on animal models of epilepsy. M. Leanne Lilly '06.
  • Internship with Dr. Marc Katchen, Central Illinois Neurosciences, Galesburg, Illinois, working with deep brain stimulation as a mechanism for treating Parkinson's patients. Javid Malik '05 and Erin McCune '03.

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Printed on Thursday, April 19, 2018