Two almost identical awards sit next to each other, surrounded by a few toy mice in the trophy case for Tennessee Tech University’s chapter of the American Association of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.
The trophy case in Foster Hall is the only one in the nation to hold two Outstanding Chapter awards from the Washington D.C.-based organization for consecutive years.
The student chapter, which has approximately 30 members, was named the best in the nation by the association at its annual conference in the beginning of April.
The club aims to “spread the joy of biochemistry to the masses, to high school students and the community,” adviser Jeff Boles, who chairs TTU’s chemistry department, said. “I think all the hard work they’ve done is rewarding but having that national recognition by the home office in Washington is the pinnacle of success.”
Some of its achievements to earn the award include organizing a science fair project workshop for junior high and high school students in partnership with the Millard Oakley STEM Center, holding a 5K fundraising race and organizing a conference with speakers, research poster presentations and career development workshops.
With the award, the students received a $400 cash prize and another $850 to help pay their way to next year’s association conference in California.