Research

Williams is a powerhouse of scientific research and a national leader in the training of future scientists. Faculty and students collaborate on original research, contributing meaningfully to the creation of new knowledge.

At Williams, teaching and research come together in the context of a broad liberal arts education that emphasizes critical thinking and exploring questions from all sides. The college ranks near the top among liberal arts colleges in faculty research supported by the National Science Foundation, and both faculty and student research receive extraordinary support from the college.

For a look at faculty research activity and faculty-student collaborations, please see our annual Report of Science.

Students can pursue research early in their careers, and in a variety of ways. During the semester, many students spend 5-10 hours per week in labs as paid research assistants. During Winter Study in January, students can pursue independent research on campus or in the field, or collaborate with faculty members and other students. And in the summer, nearly 200 students work with faculty on campus as fully funded research fellows, and still more travel to conduct research nearby and abroad.

A sampling of current honors student research projects:

Biology:

Shayna Barbash ‘14, Professor Swoap and Professor Lynch
Effects of Group Housing and Running on Elovl3 Gene Expression and Fatty
Acid Profiles in Brown Adipose Tissue of Cold-Stressed Mice

Patrick Joslin ‘14, Professor Swoap
Fasting is Healthy? Alternate Day Fasting and Caloric Restriction Show Similar Reductions to Chronic Disease Risk Factors in Obese Male C57BL/6J Mice. 

Kelsey McDermott ’14, Professor Zottoli
Axonal abnormality may result in sidedness of escape response of Trinidadian
guppies, Poecilia reticulata

Computer Science:

Parker Finch ’14, Professor Stephen Freund
Static Coalescing of Race Checks

Joshua Geller ’14, Professor Andrea Danyluk
Black Box or Composite: Approaching Multi-Class Feature Selection

Daniel Seita ’14, Professor Andrea Danyluk
Building Sum-Product Networks

Geosciences:

Eloise C. Andry, Professor Bud Wobus
Eruptive History of Strawberry Crater, San Francisco Volcanic Field

Kalle L. Jahn, Professor  Ronadh Cox
The Sedimentology of Storm-emplaced Coastal Boulder Deposits in the Northeastern Atlantic Region

Paul de Konkoly Thege, Professor Mea Cook
Evaluating the Strength of Deglacial Bering Sea Circulation with Radiocarbon

Mathematics & Statistics

Carson Eisenach, Professor Steven Miller
“Pitching Strategies in Major League Baseball”

Vu Le, Professor Qing Wang
“Time-Series Forecasting With Many Predictors”

Faraz Rahman, Professor Bernhard Klingenberg
“Multiple Comparisons”

Neuroscience:

Kupffer Vesicle

Kupffer Vesicle

John Sanderson ’14, Professor Martha Marvin
Hspb7 Localization in Kupffer’s Vesicle in Developing Zebrafish Embryos.