SURP Empowers Budding Undergraduate Research Scientists
What is SURP? SURP is the Summer Undergraduate Research Program, a ten week research and mentoring experience with Division of Graduate Medical Sciences faculty. The cohort is academically talented students from underrepresented and disadvantaged backgrounds who are interested in preparing for professional roles as research scientists. SURP was launched in the summer of 2010 under the leadership of Associate Provost Linda Hyman, PhD. In addition to a mentored research experience, students attend weekly science talks, participate in a journal club, go on science-oriented field trips, and present their research in a summer research symposium. The 2012 symposium will be held on Aug. 2.
In 2012 the applicant pool for SURP tripled, due largely to visibility with offices of career services, faculty advisors, NIH funded scholar programs and word of mouth. Members of the faculty admissions committee are Carol Walsh, PhD; Lisa Ganley-Leal, PhD and William Cruikshank, PhD. Faculty mentors for the 2012 cohort include: Weining Lu, MD; Barbara Corkey, PhD; Irina Zhadanova, MD, PhD; Hui Feng, MD, PhD; Daniel Remick, MD; Barbara Smith, PhD and Andrew Taylor, PhD.
In addition to acting as mentors, other GMS faculty and advanced PhD students contribute to the program by presenting their research at weekly “science talks.” On June 6, Drs. Brady and Levy-Bell, senior faculty in the Mental Health Counseling and Behavioral Medicine Program, co-led a discussion about personality factors in career planning. During the June 13 seminar, Isabel Dominguez, PhD talked about her passion for science and long-term research in Wnt signaling. Dr. Dominguez stressed that mentors are critical for students who wish to develop robust and productive research careers.
This year a journal club was added to the SURP program. Dr. Cruikshank will facilitate the club so that students gain a better understanding of the research concepts of their labs and improve their presentation skills.
Budding research scientists, LaTayia, Aaron, Clark-Atlanta University; Juan Ballester, University of Puerto Rico; Christine Doronio, Mount St. Mary’s College; Johnny Groeling, Queens College; Lydia Ruffner, Spelman College; Taylor Harris, Winston-Salem State University and Rui Soares, Boston College will have the opportunity to continue building their professional skills by participating in upcoming national conferences such as the Annual Biomedical Conference for Minority Students (ABRCMS) and the Society for Chicanos and Native Americans in Science (SACNAS).
For more information about SURP please contact Linda Zimmerman, Program Manager at 638-5704 or email@example.com.