NIH welcomes 50 young scientists to year-long medical research scholar program

News Release

Monday, June 10, 2019

The National Institutes of Health has selected 50 students for the 2019-2020 Medical Research Scholars Program (MRSP). The year-long research training program allows medical, dental, and veterinary students to pause their university studies to live and conduct basic, clinical, or translational research work on the NIH campus in Bethesda, Maryland. The scholars begin their fellowship in July 2019. 

“The NIH Medical Research Scholars Program attracts the brightest talent from across the country. These scholars are the future leaders in American medicine,” said Thomas R. Burklow, M.D., director of the MRSP.                  

The 2019-2020 class was selected from over 130 applicants. More about the scholars:

  • The 50 participants who were accepted consist of 48 medical and two dental students.
  • The participants represent 39 U.S.-accredited universities.
  • The class consists of 10 second-year, 39 third-year and one fourth-year student.
  • Forty-six percent of participants are female.

The selected participants receive mentored training and will conduct research in areas that match their personal interests and research goals. For this class, interest in the fields of oncology and neurology was strong, with additional areas of robust interest including otolaryngology (research on causes of deafness and novel treatments for head and neck cancer), immunology, genetics, ophthalmology and urology, among others. The training experience forms the core of the program and allows these future clinician-scientists to carry out research across the full spectrum of science in the interest of improving public health. The scholars work with an advisor who provides guidance on creating a career development plan and on selecting an NIH research mentor. Mentors are fulltime NIH investigators with basic, clinical or translational research programs. Over the course of the academic year, MRSP scholars participate in courses, journal club seminars, a structured lecture series and clinical teaching rounds at the NIH Clinical Center. They also present their research to the NIH community and at national and international professional conferences.

The MRSP is supported by the NIH and other partners via contributions to the Foundation for the National Institutes of Health (FNIH). More than 310 students have completed the MRSP program since its initiation in 2012.

“My research experiences have convinced me that I want to pursue a career as a scientist. I know that the NIH MRSP will provide me with the tools I need to incorporate basic and translational research into my future career as a physician scientist,” said Maxwell Lee, an incoming 2019-2020 MRSP scholar from Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine. “I’m excited to be paired with a mentor and lab that share my interest in a creative, enriching, and driven research practice.”

Meet this year’s scholars:

  1. Reinier Alvarez, FIU Herbert Wertheim College of Medicine, Miami
  2. Dara Baker, The George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences, Washington, D.C.
  3. Annah Baykal, University of Oklahoma College of Medicine, Oklahoma City
  4. Benjamin Bernard, University of Missouri - Kansas City School of Medicine
  5. Catherine Cai, Saint Louis University School of Medicine
  6. Alexander Cartron, University of Maryland School of Medicine, Baltimore
  7. Esha Chebolu, University at Buffalo, Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, Buffalo, New York
  8. Huanwen (Alvin) Chen, University of Maryland School of Medicine, Baltimore
  9. Lynn Daboul, Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine of Case Western University
  10. Owen Dean, University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry, Rochester, New York
  11. Andrea Diaz, UCLA David Geffen School of Medicine 
  12. Brittany Glassberg, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York City
  13. Omar Glover, East Carolina University School of Dental Medicine, Greenville, North Carolina
  14. Abbey Goodyear, Florida State University College of Medicine, Tallahassee
  15. Fady Guirguis, Western University - College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific, Pomona, California
  16. Yannis Hadjiyannis, Ohio State University College of Medicine, Columbus
  17. Jeremy Huckleby, University of Illinois College of Medicine at Peoria, Peoria
  18. Jun Jeon, Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia
  19. Lauren King, University of Virginia School of Medicine, Charlottesville
  20. Sundus Lateef, West Virginia University School of Medicine, Morgantown
  21. Alisa Lee, University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine, Philadelphia
  22. Maxwell Lee, Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine of Case Western University 
  23. Daniel Lichtenstein, State University of New York Upstate Medical University College of Medicine, Syracuse
  24. Christina Marcelus, State University of New York Upstate Medical University College of Medicine, Syracuse
  25. Francis May, Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine of Case Western University
  26. John McVey, Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine of Case Western University
  27. Raul Membreño, UT Health Sciences Center San Antonio, Long School of Medicine, San Antonio
  28. George Mo, State University of New York Downstate Medical Center College of Medicine, Brooklyn
  29. Armin Mortazavi, Georgetown University School of Medicine, Washington, D.C.
  30. Byron Mui, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York City
  31. Katherine Myers, Wake Forest School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, North Carolina
  32. Chiadika Nwanze, University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health, Madison
  33. Luke O'Connor, Touro College of Osteopathic Medicine - New York City
  34. Layne Raborn, Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center School of Medicine in New Orleans
  35. Matthew Rohn, Sidney Kimmel Medical College at Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia
  36. Emily Rose, Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine of Case Western University
  37. Adrian Rosenberg, Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, Chicago
  38. Mark Shapses, Sidney Kimmel Medical College at Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia
  39. Moaz Sinan, Wayne State University School of Medicine, Detroit
  40. Ranuka Sinniah, Michigan State University College of Human Medicine, East Lansing
  41. Ai Phuong Tong, University of Washington School of Medicine, Seattle
  42. Domingo Uceda, Indiana University School of Medicine, Indianapolis
  43. Nithya Vijayakumar, University of Michigan Medical School, Ann Arbor
  44. Stephanie Walker, University of Kansas School of Medicine, Kansas City
  45. Alex Wang, State University of New York Downstate Medical Center College of Medicine, Brooklyn
  46. Catherine Wang, University of Southern California Keck School of Medicine, Los Angeles
  47. Kathryn Wrobel, Rush Medical College of Rush University Medical Center, Chicago
  48. LeAnne Young, Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine of Case Western University
  49. Johnathan Zeng, Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine of Case Western University
  50. Yvette Zou, Dartmouth University Geisel School of Medicine, Hanover, New Hampshire

About the Foundation for the National Institutes of Health (FNIH): The Foundation for the National Institutes of Health creates and manages alliances with public and private institutions in support of the mission of the NIH, the world’s premier medical research agency. The Foundation, also known as the FNIH, works with its partners to accelerate biomedical research and strategies against diseases and health concerns in the United States and across the globe. The FNIH organizes and administers research projects; supports education and training of new researchers; organizes educational events and symposia; and administers a series of funds supporting a wide range of health issues. Established by Congress, the FNIH is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) charitable organization. For additional information about the FNIH, please visit fnih.org.

About the National Institutes of Health (NIH): NIH, the nation's medical research agency, includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. NIH is the primary federal agency conducting and supporting basic, clinical, and translational medical research, and is investigating the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit www.nih.gov.

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