Being a full time chemistry major at Southern Nazarene University can be a challenging experience. Sophomore Mickey DeMarzo has not only taken on this challenge, but added the dimension of playing football for the Crimson Storm as well.
While DeMarzo admits balancing the heavy workload that comes with his major while playing football as an offensive lineman has not been easy at times, he said it has been worth every minute of it.
“I love the game of football and I enjoy learning science,” said DeMarzo. “It is very beneficial as well because with the workload being much greater, it gets me used to the work ethic I will need when I go to pharmacy, medical, or graduate school - whichever I choose to apply to.”
Even though DeMarzo was originally recruited by SNU primarily to play football, and enjoys the game, he said his heart lives in the land of academia, especially in the Science Division. Born in Anchorage, Alaska, DeMarzo’s family lived in Lima, Peru during most of his early childhood before moving to Searcy, Arkansas. Throughout much of his life, DeMarzo said he has been attracted to studying the sciences because of his desire to know the “why” behind the way things work.
“The science behind every action that happens, from a microscopic level to overall body functions, is absolutely fascinating to me,” he explained. “I could not have picked a more interesting area in which to be educated.”
This past summer DeMarzo had the opportunity to conduct some cutting-edge research as part of the SNU Summer Research Experience. Funded by an Oklahoma NASA space grant, his research group focused on metal nanoparticles and their possible antibacterial properties.
“Basically, we have optimized different synthesis of nanoparticles and tested these nanoparticles for antibacterial properties using different types of bacteria,” said DeMarzo.
During his time thus far at SNU, DeMarzo said he has experienced a tremendous amount of spiritual and intellectual growth in his life and credited the investment of his professors for that growth. Furthermore, he expressed his gratitude for the alumni and friends of SNU who continue to support the Division through the Campaign For The Sciences. DeMarzo said he believes their investment will help to strengthen the Division over time by attracting outstanding students who will receive the first-class instruction they need to pursue careers in the science or medical fields.