PCI is proud to be partnering with the School of Polymers and High Performance Materials at The University of Southern Mississippi to provide information on the program’s upcoming graduates. Read below to learn about our Student of the Month.

David Siefker
Degree Being Sought: Polymer Science
Undergrad Degree and Institution: University of Southern Mississippi
Research Group:Dr. Charles L. McCormick
Area of Study: Stimuli Responsive Amphiphilic Surfactants
Hometown: Meridian, MS

Give a brief synopsis of research/work being done.

Recent efforts in our group have focused on the synthesis of stimuli-responsive polymeric micelles for environmental remediation and water treatment applications.

From your current perspective, what do you see as an ideal fit for your skills, goals and career moving forward?

Receive a graduate degree in Polymer Science and work in industry as head of a research or quality control department. After working in industry, I plan to bring my experience back to the classroom to teach the next generation.

Why did you choose USM?

I was raised in Mississippi and USM has the best Polymer Science program for undergraduate studies.

Have you won any awards?

2nd Place Undergraduate Student Poster Award: “Amphiphilic Copolymers to serve as CO2 Responsive Systems for Environmental Remediation” Phillip D. Pickett, David T. Siefker, Brooks A. Abel, Charles L. McCormick, Mississippi Academy of Sciences, Hattiesburg, MS, April 2014

Who or what influenced your USM education the most?

Having the pleasure of working in the McCormick research group has had the greatest influence on my education by connecting me with real-world applications to topics learned in the classroom.

Your most profound turning point while at USM?

Attending first day of class with Dr. Rawlins and learning the diversity of a Polymer Science major. This gave me confidence that I picked the right major.

What USM memory do you treasure the most?

When I received my award for my poster presentation at MAS undergraduate symposium.

What are your plans for next year and beyond?

I plan to attend graduate school this fall and work in industry after I receive my degrees.

While at USM, what other accomplishments/activities are you most proud of?

Being able to present my research for others to review and critique.

What was one of your greatest challenges attending USM?

My greatest challenge at USM was maintaining a steady GPA while I focused on research in the lab.

Please give an interesting (personal) fact about yourself.

I enjoy playing golf and tennis in my free time. Also, I enjoy brewing beer with my brother when time permits.

To find out more about David, please contact polymers@usm.edu or call 601-266-4868.