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Math student Emily Romero '17
Math student Emily Romero ’17 will present her research at the Anxiety and Depression Association of America conference.

Feb. 6, 2017, Mathematics major, Emily Romero ‘17, has earned the distinction of being a presenter at a conference of global leaders in mental health. This unique opportunity will give Romero the opportunity to connect with professional clinicians and researchers.

Attendance at the conference is being made possible in part by a gift from Ann Larue ’69 and her husband John. Last year the Larues, who have established an endowed scholarship for eligible mathematics and science students, made a gift to establish the Ann and John Larue Research Fund. The fund provides grant support for student research in areas of scientific inquiry and underwrites travel for attendance at regional and national conferences.

In April, Romero, who is from North Bergen, will present her research at the annual Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA) conference to be held in San Francisco. The event is expected to bring together 1,000 professionals from across the United States and around the world who want to improve treatments and find cures for anxiety, depression and related disorders.

Romero’s research findings were acquired during her summer 2016 internship at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health. Working as part of a team, she studied biostatistics and examined post-traumatic stress disorder in coronary care patients. The project compared the reactions of patients covered by health insurance, versus patients in the same population who lacked health insurance, upon admittance to an emergency room. Romero, who spent eight weeks in residence on Columbia’s iconic Manhattan campus, said she was thrilled to work with the “brightest minds in the field,” and that biostatistics is a field in which “you are truly using your skills to try to save the world.” While at Columbia, she completed courses in biostatistics and statistical analysis. “I owe everything to my teachers at Caldwell,” said Romero, who is now looking at graduate schools.

Dr. Patricia Garruto, Caldwell’s mathematics chair and Romero’s advisor, visited her at the internship site at Columbia.  “What a great opportunity it was for her, working with such talented researchers,” said Garruto. Another outcome of Romero’s experience at Columbia is that she is paving the way for other Caldwell students.   Garruto said Columbia has contacted her about additional prospective students who would qualify for internships.

Caldwell is deeply grateful to Ann and John Larue for their support for and commitment to the study of mathematics and science.