With a generous gift from the Arel family in 1997, the chemistry department created an endowed summer research fellowship in honor of Father Michael Custer, O.S.B. a long time faculty member in the chemistry department. This program promotes research during summers by Saint Anselm College students under the direction of faculty of the chemistry department. The award provides a student with a stipend and the opportunity to receive College housing, for a period of eight to ten weeks during the summer, by mutual agreement with your research mentor. The program is targeted at current sophomores and juniors who will carry out research projects within the chemistry department .

Father Michael was born in Lowell, Massachusetts in 1910. He entered the Benedictine community at Saint Anselm College in 1934. After receiving his bachelor's degree in chemistry from Saint Anselm in 1936 he went on to obtain his Master's degree in chemistry from the Catholic University of America.

Upon his return to the college he began teaching chemistry and as part of his research tested the milk from the abbey's dairy herd. In 1945 he was appointed Chairman of the chemistry department, at the time there was no chemistry major. By the time he stepped down as chairman, the chemistry major was established and accredited by the American Chemical Society. In 1982, the New England Association of Chemistry Teachers awarded the John A. Timm Award for the Furtherance of the Study of Chemistry to Father Michael.

After retiring from teaching he became an unofficial greeter in the admissions office, often trying to convince prospective students to become chemistry majors. Father Michael died on May 1, 2006.

Students who apply to the program must have selected a proposed research mentor and, together with their mentor, developed a research plan for the summer. The applicants will be screened and chosen based on merit and interest match by the faculty of the chemistry department. Once selected, students are expected to carry out their proposed research activities, under the direction of their faculty mentor. The culmination of this work is a written report and poster that summarizes the progress made during the summer.

Past Recipients

Listed By Year of Graduation:

2019

Nicholas Allen

2017
Kaliopi Konomi - Poster presented at Saint Anselm SOAR Science Poster Session - April 2017 & SciX - September 2016 - Elemental Characterization of Fresco Pigments, Cistern Walls, and Mortar Walls via X-ray Fluorescence Spectrometry (XRF)

2016
Chuck Dooley - Poster presented at Saint Anselm SOAR Science Poster Session - April 2016 - Microwave Assisted Syntheses for the Organic Chemistry Lab
Brianna Goddard - Poster presented at Saint Anselm SOAR Science Poster Session - April 2016 Activation of Carbon Chlorine Bonds Using Palladium (II) Catalysts
Jacqueline Kelly - Poster presented at Saint Anselm SOAR Science Poster Session - April 2015 - Analysis of Archeological Soils

2014
Katharine Lunny - Poster presented at Saint Anselm SOAR Science Poster Session - April 2014 - Archeological Samples: From Collection to Analysis

2012
Anthony Desmond - Poster presented at Saint Anselm Science Poster Session - April 2012 - Portable X-Ray Fluorescence used for In Situ Archaeological Studies and Laboratory Coin Analyses

2010
Jacqueline Cloud - Poster presented at Saint Anselm Science Poster Session - April 2010 - A Study of the Factors that Influence the Infrared Spectra of Pollens

2009
Brendan Sweeny
Timothy Bergeron

2007
Tim Thibodeau - Poster presented at Saint Anselm Science Poster Session - April 2007 - Investigation of the Surface Chemistry of YBCO Superconductors

2006
Caitlin R Jenkins

2005
Ashley Dumas

2004
Sean C McClintock

2003
Meghan Germain

2002
Sarah Lastella

2000
Angela M Genco

1999
Jonathan Mellen
David Mowbray

1998
Julio C Silva
Joel T Sweetser