21 November 2002 -- Cathleen G. Garrigan of Shamokin, Pennsylvania, will be honored as the Eberly College of Science student marshal during fall commencement ceremonies on 21 December 2002 at the Penn State University Park campus.
A biology major with a concentration in genetics, Garrigan was chosen to represent her class as student marshal because of her outstanding academic record. During her undergraduate years at Penn State, she earned a 3.98 grade-point average and was on the dean's list every semester.
"I was very surprised and flattered to be chosen as student marshal for the Eberly College of Science," Garrigan said.
In addition to her achievements in class, Garrigan received the Evan Pugh Scholar award and was elected a member of the Phi Beta Kappa honors society.
During undergraduate research on campus with Andrew Clark, adjunct professor of biology, Garrigan and another student conducted an independent research project on sperm competition in the fly species Drosophila melanogaster. Garrigan bred various strains of male flies in a specific sequence to identify those strains whose sperm had increased offensive or defensive capabilities. After she identified those strains, she looked for a correlation between factors on the Y chromosome and the increased capabilities of the sperm. Garrigan also helped perform research at the Department of Behavioral Genetics at the University of Pennsylvania and she worked on the Melanin Concentrating Receptor Hormone Project with Tularik, Inc., in San Francisco, California.
After graduation, Garrigan plans to move to San Francisco to work in the biotechnology industry before moving on to law school.
A graduate of Southern Columbia High School, Garrigan will be accompanied at graduation by her parents, Frank and Catherine, and her brother, Frank W. Garrigan. She has selected Mitch Price , instructor of biology, to be her faculty escort for commencement exercises at the Bryce Jordan Center.
"I thought many of the professors at Penn State were excellent. However, Dr. Mitch Price, the professor walking with me at graduation, definitely shaped my college career. His lectures were so entertaining and fun that they really made me want to pursue biology as a career," Garrigan said. "Anyone can lecture on a subject, but it takes a special talent to make complex topics both easy to understand and personally relevant."