Danielle Berish '14

     Undergraduate research has brought Danielle Berish experiences that she would not have otherwise had. During the Summer Danielle studied the decay of the top quark using the Compact Muon Solenoid (CMS) detector at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) with Dr. Matthew Bellis. The LHC is the world’s largest particle accelerator that is located at the European Center for Nuclear Research (CERN). In the LHC, proton beams are accelerated to high energies and then collide at one of the four particle detectors located around the accelerator, like CMS.

     Danielle has been given the opportunity to be part of an analysis group that consists of undergraduates, graduate students, postdoctorals, and professors across New York. The goal of the group is to measure the likelihood that a top-antitop pair will result from a proton-proton collision. Danielle plans to present her research on campus at the Summer Scholars Research Symposium on September 27th. She also hopes to present her research off campus at the April 2014 meeting of the American Physical Society. The analysis group Danielle is working with hopes to get a paper published when they are done with their research. Working with the group on a worldwide experiment, Danielle has learned many problem solving methods and material that she would have not learned in the classroom. It has also helped her discover what she wants to do after she graduates from Siena.

     Danielle believes that “students should pursue undergraduate research and creative activity because it is a great learning experience. There are several benefits to research and I strongly believe that it creates linkage to major field concepts, careers, graduate school and the like. It gives students the opportunity to see what is happening in their field first hand. It gives them an idea of what is out there after undergrad at Siena College and it gives them a chance to try out several things so that they can decide what they want to do.”