Four Brooklyn College students have been named Fulbright Canada Mitacs Globalink Interns, a program that would normally send them across the country’s northern border to conduct research with university professors for the summer. This year, the internships will be virtual due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Still, the students are no less excited about their projects.

Senior Carina D’Urso, a CUNY Baccalaureate for Unique and Interdisciplinary Studies student, will be working with a professor at Toronto’s York University on a project titled, “How Should Liberal Arts Education be Transformed? Perspectives and Responses From North America, East Asia, and Western Europe.”

D’Urso is combining studies in the arts, education, and social change for her CUNY Baccalaureate. The William E. Macaulay Honors College student already has diverse experiences, including being a student curator at the Morgan Library & Museum, an intern at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and a member of the Macaulay Theater Club.

She plans to become an educator, hoping to teach through an artistic lens, and says she is particularly fascinated by the ways in which museums, community organizations, and schools connect.

“As a member of CUNY’s interdisciplinary studies program, I was thrilled to learn that I would be studying international models of the liberal arts in higher education,” says D’Urso. “I am passionate about the role that revolutionary and experimental models of education play in shaping the didactic experiences of students. As an aspiring educator, these issues are of great importance to me.”

Junior Levi Satter, a psychology major, will be conducting research with a professor at Western University in Ontario using transcranial direct-current stimulation to understand how people experience timing and rhythm and how that impacts cognition and behavior. The work will be done with the university’s Music in Neuroscience Lab, part of the psychology department’s Brain and Mind Institute.

Satter is working toward a career in neuropsychological research, and he is trying to explore the field so that he can make an informed decision on where to specialize.

“Music existed before language. Research further shows that it can be used therapeutically to reduce symptoms in people with Parkinson’s disease,” he says. “I couldn’t be more excited. Understanding fundamental cognitive processes is the coolest part of psychology.”

Senior Hafsa Fatima, another Macaulay Honors College student, who is double-majoring in art and psychology, will be working on a project that is a collaborative undertaking between the University of Ottawa, Lancaster University, and University of Montreal. The research considers the fundamental question of what counts as knowledge (and its channels and representatives) in contemporary societies and asks how nonreligion and the nonreligious are positioned in relation to knowledge.

Junior Marwa Islam, a chemistry major who is also in the Macaulay Honors College, will be working on a project that seeks to use ultraviolet LED disinfection to purify water.

“In developing countries, clean water in many locations is limited. Many people living in these situations have to walk for miles. For others, water is available but polluted, which leads to different diseases and sometimes severe conditions,” says Islam, an aspiring physician who wants to improve the health conditions in underprivileged communities. “As someone whose family came from Bangladesh, I feel very passionate about this issue. Researching UV-LED disinfection as a water purification method allows me to learn more about a possible solution to this problem.”