PUC physics student Shalynn Romano received the top student presenter award for outstanding research at the International Conference on the Application of Accelerators in Research and Industry (CAARI) this summer in Fort Worth, Texas. The conference included professional research physicists, and Romano’s award was in a category typically reserved for graduate students.
“To be recognized for research at a professional level while being an undergrad student was a great accomplishment,” says Romano. “It made me feel like anything was possible with hard work and confidence.”
Romano conducted her award-winning research at her summer internship at Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee, one of the premiere experimental research facilities in the world. The subject was the energy exchange of charged particles. Although her research team included several other students and physicists from educational and scientific institutions around the world, Romano was named first author on the presentation of their findings due to her extensive work and commitment in the lab.
“She is very motivated and focused, which has helped her as a researcher,” says PUC physics professor Vola Andrianarijaona, one of Romano’s collaborators on the project. “This is very important, because in research you are the teacher of yourself.”
Although CAARI was only Romano’s second experience presenting research findings at a scientific conference, she impressed many professional researchers with both her enthusiasm and the breadth of her knowledge.
“The conference opened doors for more future opportunities and professions,” she says. “It will provide more opportunities in the future to demonstrate my ability to achieve things at a professional level.”