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IU-MSI STEM Initiative

STEM Summer Scholars Institute 2008 Overview


The IU-MSI STEM Summer Scholars Institute began its second summer program with 22 students from ten of the 13 partner institutions. Fifty-five applications were received during early spring semester resulting in 11 students paired with Indiana University faculty members on the Bloomington campus and 11 on the Indianapolis campus. Participation doubled from last summer's inaugural program.

The Summer Scholars represented the following institutions (number from each in parenthesis): Alabama A&M University (4), Jackson State University (6), Langston University (4), Morehouse College (2), North Carolina Central University, Bennett College for Women, Tennessee State University, Xavier University of Louisiana, Indiana University-Purdue University at Indianapolis, and Indiana University Bloomington.

three female students

The Summer Scholars Institute participants began their summer experience at the Indiana University Bradford Woods Outdoor Center. The weekend was filled with activities that bonded students together into a cohesive unit prepared to engage in full-time summer research. Five members of the 2008 Institute returned for a second year; the weekend retreat was a new experience for them. A former Summer Scholar Institute participant, Byron Gipson, who also enrolled in the PhD program at Indiana University Bloomington this past January, participated in the Bradford Woods experience and served as an ambassador for the institute.

During the course of the summer, Scholars had a chance to attend the following:

  • GRE seminars
  • Wednesday lunch research seminars
  • Poster presentation skills training
  • Social events–pizza, bowling, hiking, etc.
  • The Juneteenth Celebration
  • The Indianapolis Black Expo
  • UniverSoul Circus

The summer experience culminated in poster presentations as CIC-SROP conference at Michigan State University. Students also presented their posters at the closing recognition luncheon.

A sample of their poster presentation topics includes:

  • Regulating CB2 Cannabinoid Receptor Phosphorylation
  • Presentation of Chlamydia Antigens by Reproductive Tract Epithelial Cells
  • Mans' Best Friend Works to Find New Epigenetic Therapy for Bladder Cancer
  • Glucocorticoid-Inducted Osteopososis
  • Investigation of Sensor Technology
  • Electrophysiological Recording in Basolateral Amygdala During Cocaine Self-Administration and Reinstatement in Rats
  • Development of an in vitro Model of Hyperglycemia of Diabetes
  • Antioxidant Effect of Vernonia amygdalina on Acrylonitrile-Induced Oxidative DNA Damage in Rat Astrocytes
  • Hyperinsulinemia-Induced Plasma Membrane Derangement and Cellular Insulin Resistance
  • Effect of Conjugated Linoleic Acid Supplementation on the Severity of Exercise-Induced Bronchoconstriction

Two students from the 2007 institute were enrolled at IU pursuing doctoral work. Plans for 2009 included expanding the institute to 30 participants.


2008 STEM SSI Participants

Scholar Faculty Mentor Research Campus
Aaron Slinker Joe Bidwell Physiology IUPUI
Anthony Gutierrez Stuart Warden Physiology IUPUI
Ashley Lambert Margaret Bauer Infectious disease IUPUI
Brittney Macklin Jeff Elmendorf Diabetes IUPUI
Brittanie Atkinson Ken Mackie Diabetes Bloomington
Candice Perry Barbara Hocevar Cancer IUPUI
C. Mandela Bynes Jian Xie Engineering IUPUI
Danielle Mcshan Lisa Kamendulis Toxicology IUPUI
Gennea' Quinney George Rebec Cancer Bloomington
Jarrett David Kay Connelly Nanotechnology Bloomington
LaShanna Johnson Ken Nephew Genetic Diseases Bloomington
Leslie Johnson Timothy Mickleborough Immunology Bloomington
M. Francine Stefan Flynn Picardal Environmental science Bloomington
Maurice Speights Geoffery Fox Computational Science Bloomington
Merrill Brouillette Jian-Ting Zhang Chemistry IUPUI
Nitrecus Simmons Heather Bradshaw Neurosciences Bloomington
Shabree Nicols John B. Watkins, III Diabetes Bloomington
Shanel Pruitt Raymond Johnson Infectious disease IUPUI
Teresa Demeritte James Klaunig Biochemistry IUPUI
Towanta Reese David Daleke Molecular biology Bloomington
Rochelle Howard Paul Kirk Mathematics Bloomington

Sarah Larson
Program Coordinator
IU-MSI STEM Initiative
Indiana University

Dr. Jack L. Schmit
Assistant Dean, University Graduate School
Coordinator, IU-MSI STEM Initiative