Forensic Sciences Foundation 2016-17 Student Travel Grant Winners


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The Forensic Sciences Foundation (FSF) is proud to announce the winners of the “FSF Student Travel Grant Award” essay contest:  Catherine O. Brown, MSFS, Student Affiliate/Criminalistics; Claire M. Cartozzo, MSFS, Student Affiliate/Criminalistics; Clare M. Fried, BS, Student Affiliate/Criminalistics; Nicole M. Novroski, MS, Student Affiliate/Criminalistics; Julia R. Prince-Buitenhuys, MA, Student Affiliate/Anthropology; Beatriz A. Pujols, BS, Student Affiliate/Criminalistics; Kelly A. Sauerwein, MA, Student Affiliate/Anthropology; and Robert H. Stein, BS, Student Affiliate/Criminalistics.

The Student Travel Grant will assist with travel expenses in attending the American Academy of Forensic Sciences 69th Annual Scientific Meeting in New Orleans, LA. The FSF Board of Trustees is pleased to approve the travel expenses, not to exceed $1,500 per student, for eight students this year.  A complimentary meeting registration is included with the $1,500 grant for travel expenses.

The 2016-17 FSF Student Travel Grant Committee was comprised of Paula C. Brumit, Chair (Odontology), Carl R. McClary, (Questioned Documents), and Paul Messner (Jurisprudence).

Catherine O. Brown, MSFS

Catherine O. Brown, MSFS

Catherine Brown is a graduate of Arcadia University with a bachelor’s degree in Biology.  Catherine then obtained a master’s degree in Forensic Science from Arcadia University, focusing on Forensic Biology through research in protein mass-spec applications for seminal fluid detection.  In recognition of the academic achievements Catherine had made in the graduate program, she was awarded the Fredric Rieders Award for Excellence in Forensic Science.  Currently, Catherine is working toward her doctoral degree in Biological Sciences at the University of Denver, conducting research funded by the Department of Defense at the Center for Forensic Science Research & Education.

claire_cartozzo

Claire M. Cartozzo, MSFS

Claire Cartozzo studied Biological Sciences at Louisiana State University before moving to Richmond, VA to attend Virginia Commonwealth University’s (VCU) Master of Science in Forensic Science program.  While in the program, she studied both forensic biology and anthropology. Currently, she is perusing a doctoral degree in the Integrative Life Sciences program at VCU. Her research focuses on DNA extraction from waterlogged skeletal remains and developing post-mortem submersion interval estimation methods.

Clare M. Fried, BS

Clare Fried is from Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.  She received her Bachelor of Science degree in Forensic Science from Penn State University in 2014.  Clare is currently finishing her Master of Science in Forensic Science degree at Cedar Crest College in Allentown, Pennsylvania, where she is completing research in the area of fire debris analysis.

Nicole M. Novroski, MS

Nicole M. Novroski, MS

Nicole Novroski is a fourth year PhD candidate under the guidance of Dr. Bruce Budowle at the University of North Texas Health Science Center (UNTHSC).  She is native to Canada, where she completed her bachelor’s degree in Forensic Science and Biology at the University of Toronto.  She then worked with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police in Northern Alberta before moving on to the University at Albany, State University of New York (SUNY) to complete her master’s degree in Forensic Molecular Biology.  Following graduation in 2011, Nicole spent some time at the NYC Office of Chief Medical Examiner, Department of Forensic Biology as a criminalist.  She left in 2013 to pursue her studies at UNTHSC.  Since joining the Budowle lab at UNTHSC, she has had the opportunity to work on a variety of forensically related projects including novel swab testing, whole genome mitochondrial DNA analysis, and large population studies focused on short tandem repeats (STR) sequence variation using massively parallel sequencing.  Nicole has also been selected to present her research at national and international conferences.  Her dissertation focus is in STR DNA mixture de-convolution using massively parallel sequencing.

Julia R. Prince-Buitenhuys, MA

Julia R. Prince-Buitenhuys, MA

Julia Prince-Buitenhuys is a doctoral student and Presidential Fellow in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Notre Dame. She received her MA in Anthropology from California State University, Chico and her BA in Anthropology at University of California, San Diego.  Julia interned in forensic anthropology at the Harris County Institute of Forensic Sciences in 2015 and worked for the Stable Isotope Preparation Laboratory at California State University, Chico from 2012 to 2016.  Her research is based in forensic anthropology and bioarchaeology, specializing in osteological and isotopic methods.

Beatriz A. Pujols, BS

Beatriz A. Pujols, BS

Beatriz Pujols was born and raised in Puerto Rico.  She moved to Pittsburgh, PA in 2012 to attend Duquesne University and participate in their Forensic Science and Law Masters Program.  Beatriz obtained her bachelor’s degree in Biology with minors in Biochemistry and Psychology in May of 2016. She is currently working on a Master of Science in Forensic Science and Law degree.  She has participated in internships with the Pittsburgh Bureau of Police and Cybergenetics and has completed research in the field of DNA.  Beatriz is a Student Affiliate of the Criminalistics Section at the American Academy of Forensic Sciences and is thrilled to have been accepted to present a poster of her research at the upcoming 69th Annual Scientific Meeting.

Kelly A. Sauerwein, MA

Kelly Sauerwein, MA, is a PhD candidate in the Anthropology Department of the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.  She received her BA from Tulane University and her MA from Texas State University.  Her dissertation focuses on the impact of cognitive biases on the perception and assessment of decomposition and the postmortem interval.  Her current research interests include taphonomy, biometrics, and spectrometry.

Robert H. Stein, BS

Robert H. Stein, BS

Robert Stein is in his final year at Virginia Commonwealth University.  He is working on a Master of Science in Forensic Science degree and concentrating in Forensic Chemistry/Trace Analysis.  His research combines trace chemistry and forensic anthropology to help advance methods in human identification.  After completing his master’s degree, he wants to pursue doctoral work in anthropology.