Symposium Showcases Medical Student Research

student poster winners lined up smiling
Serchuck Award winners for poster presentation included: (top row l-r) Piers Klein, Martin Ma, Alex Olson, Steven Miyawaki, Macie Gettings, Jonathan Song, Evelina Ragutshteyn, and Opemipooluwa Adedeji. (Bottom row l-r) Louis Werner, Jonah Kaziyev, Joshua Lepson, Maria De Leon, and Kristen Segars. Missing from photo: Matthew Kang and Heejoo Kang.


The annual Medical Student Research Symposium, sponsored by the Medical Student Research Program, was held on Monday, Jan. 29, in Hiebert Lounge. On display were posters representing the research undertaken by 75 medical students, 48 of whom participated in the Medical Student Summer Research Program (MSSRP) during the summer 2023, as well as students engaged in the Learn, Experience, Advocate, Discover and Serve (LEADS) research track and longitudinal research programs, third- and fourth-year research electives and the MD-PhD program.

Assistant Dean of Research Matthew Layne, PhD, noted the that the number of symposium participants has significantly increased over the past two years.

“It was impressive to see the breadth of the research areas: basic science, clinical, translational, public health, medical education and combinations of those,” said Layne, who oversees the Medical Student Research Program.

Medical school Dean and BUMC Provost Karen Antman, MD, said the symposium reflected the school’s greater emphasis over the past two years on the importance and benefits of student research to a medical education.

“You will develop relationships with people who do research, and you will be the collaborator who will actually make translational research work,” she said.

student presenters lined up smiling
Medical students selected to present their research at symposium included (l to r): Anne Li, Rose Zhao, Eric Sung, Claire Stover, Joy Ha and Daniel Sconzo


Six students were selected by faculty on the Medical Student Research Steering Committee from submitted abstracts to present their research at the symposium: Anne Li, Joy Ha, Claire Stover, Daniel Sconzo, Eric Sung and Rose Zhao.

Rose Zhao speaking at podium
MD-PhD student Rose Zhao presents her research at the student research symposium


Fifteen students were selected by a panel of 16 faculty judges spanning a range of departments and programs to receive Serchuck Awards as the top research poster presentations. The award honors the late Jerome Serchuck, a longtime MSSRP donor who passed away in March 2023.

Award winners included: Opemipooluwa Adedeji, Kristen Segars, Evelina Ragutshteyn, Jonathan Song, Steven Miyawaki, Alex Olson, Matthew Kang, Joshua Lepson, Jonah Kaziyev, Macie Gettings, Maria De Leon, Liang (Martin) Ma, Piers Klein, Louis Werner and Heejoo Kang.

The MSSRP offers mentored research for BU medical students during the summer between the first and second years of medical school. The competitive program offers a stipend supporting seven weeks of in-depth research with labs at the school and Boston Medical Center. Applications for the summer, 2024 program are due Feb. 16 and the program runs from May 22 – June 27. Information can be found here.

LEADS students are competitively selected in the fall of the first year of medical school and work with BU faculty mentors on research projects over their initial two years. MD-PhD students pursue dual degrees and their program includes extensive research and clinical experience.