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Thursday, August 24, 2006
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Ohio University graduate student wins competitive research award

ATHENS, Ohio (Aug. 24, 2006) -- Ohio University graduate student Olivier Collin has won a "Fonds québécois de la recherche sur la nature et les technologies" (Québécois Fund for Research on Nature and Technologies) scholarship, designed to promote research in the natural sciences, mathematics and engineering.

Photo by Rick Fatica"I was really happy to have received the award," said Collin, who is completing a doctorate in chemistry and biochemistry. "It will make my last year easier, making it easier to finish up research and my dissertation. Also, it is good for my future career to show that I am able to get external funding."

One of only three recipients of the award in chemistry, Collin has proven himself an outstanding researcher. He is listed as co-inventor on a provisional patent for an add-on to existing mass spectrometry instruments that improves their ability to identify proteins. He has also published in the peer-reviewed Journal of Forensic Sciences, and other publications are forthcoming. 

The scholarship, sponsored by the province of Québec for Québec residents, is worth about $24,000 (U.S.) and will pay for Collin's last year of study. Collin received a bachelor's degree in chemistry from McGill University in Montréal.

"It was nice to see him get rewarded. He really deserves it," said Glen Jackson, assistant professor of analytical chemistry and Collin's adviser. "He's been amazingly productive in the lab, and he helps the department out a lot, training students on how to use the instrumentation in the department and he helps maintain the instrumentation."

It was this laboratory environment that drew Collin to study at Ohio University. "In selecting schools, Ohio University came to be my first choice because it was the proper size and environment that would allow me to do what I wanted to do as far as research," he said. "I've been allowed the opportunity to do hands-on work on several different instruments which gives me a lot of exposure and experience, in contrast to a bigger school where I wouldn't have had a chance to get as much hands-on work because they would have had a technician. That's one of the biggest advantages I saw to a small, relatively close-knit department."

Collin's dissertation is tentatively titled "Dynamic collision-induced dissociation: A new fragmentation method for tandem mass spectrometry applied to peptides and samples of forensic interest." He hopes to start a postdoctoral position after he graduates in 2007.

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Media Contact: Assistant Professor of Analytical Chemistry Glen Jackson, (740) 517-8456 or jacksong@ohio.edu

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