Port student organizes top event at UW-Superior

A Port Washington woman is one of two students who have organized Science Fest at the University of Wisconsin-Superior for the past three years.     

Senior biology majors Samantha Wells, a 2014 graduate of Port Washington High School, and Jessica Buelow got involved with the event when they joined the Students of Science Club as freshmen and became co-chairmen of the festival as sophomores.     

Science Fest, the largest student-organized event at the school, attracts between 1,000 and 2,000 people each year.     

This year, 1,200 people braved snow on Saturday, April 14, to attend the event that featured 35 student-run science exhibits and 18 community-sponsored displays.     

Science Fest isn’t the only place Buelow and Wells have excelled. Their academic achievements at UW-Superior have garnered attention and both received a Swenson Family Scholarship, which covers the cost of tuition and books.     “Jessica and I met each other in our first biology class, and we’ve been friends ever since,” Wells said.     

Each is busy with senior capstone research projects involving bees. Buelow is studying the potential of using bees to detect cancer in humans and Wells is studying the health of honeybees.     

“I’m collecting data on a parasite that lives harmlessly in bees to see if it may be a red flag indicator of diseases or environmental issues that are causing bees to die,” she said.     Wells has been accepted to the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities School of Public Health, which she will attend for two years and then plans to apply to medical school to become a neurosurgeon.



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