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Pfizer SOT Undergraduate Travel Award Recipients

With much appreciated support from Pfizer, SOT presents travel awards to five outstanding undergraduates each year who are presenting papers at the SOT Annual Meeting. The purpose of this award is to foster an interest in graduate studies in the field of toxicology. The Education Committee selects the recipients and is always impressed at the caliber of the applications.

Application information can be found under the award name at SOT Awards and Fellowships.
Deadline: October 9

2014 Recipients

Wesley Cai, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ

Cory V. Gerlach, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR

Lukas Gora, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI

Elaine Kuo, Stanford University, Stanford, CA

Virginia Mitchell, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT

Kia Z. Perez-Vale, University of Puerto Rico, Arecibo, PR

Ricardo Rivera-Soto, University of Puerto Rico, Arecibo, PR

Bradley Rowland, McMurray University, Abilene, TX
Kelly Schlotman, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN
Jennette Shoots, Kenyon College, Gambier, OH
Kelly VanDenBerg, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI

2013 Recipients

Amy Ashworth, Northern Kentucky University, Highland Heights, KY

Naing Bajaj, New Mexico State University, Las Cruces, NM

Adrienne R. Klinger, University of North Dakota, Grand Forks, ND

Anna Lang, Northern Kentucky University, Highland Heights, KY

Douglas J. Saforo, University of Louisville, Louisville, KY

2012 Recipients

Ashley R. Press, High Point University, High Point, NC

Darien Shapiro, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT

Qi Wang, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, North Brunswick, NJ

Brittany M. Winner, Sam Houston State University, Huntsville, TX

Frances A. Xin, St. Olaf College, Northfield, MN

2011 Recipients

Brandon Haghverdian, University of California Irvine

Jessica Hartman, University of Arkansas Little Rock

Camila Odio, Kenyon College

Viviana Vidal Anaya, University of Puerto Rico Cayey

Phillip A. Wages, Ashland University

2010 Recipients

Annie L. Carlton, Bates College

Alisha Chitrakar, Saint Peter’s College

Megan E. Culbreth, North Carolina State University

Chang Woo Lee, University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center

Sharon Ochs, Wright State University

2009 Recipients

Sherine Crawford, Medgar Evers College
Ms. Crawford is continuing her research project at Medgar Evers with Dr. Catapane and Dr. Carroll summer 2009, “taking my project to another level,” and then completing her undergraduate degree.

Trish Hoang, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Ms. Hoang received her biochemistry degree in May 2009 and the William T. and Lynn Jackson Merit Award and the highest distinction for her senior thesis. She continues working in the same lab at the university as a lab technician, investigating the molecular mechanism of human helicases that regulate DNA repair via homologous recombination. She plans to apply for graduate schools in 2010.

Kelly Krcmarik, Michigan State University
Ms. Kracmarik expects her undergraduate degree in May 2010 and is continuing the same research at Michigan State University. She is also furthering her clinical skill set by working in a hospital and retirement community. “My lab work and clinical experience greatly contribute to my aspiration as a physican scientist.” She has a bioethics publication in press summer 2009. “This opportunity was truly unique. I greatly appreciate this award.”

Cory M. Mathias, Westminister College
Mr. Mathias is attending the army medical corps officer basic course in San Antonio, Texas, Summer 2009, and then he will pursue a D.O. at the West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine.

P. Sean McGrath, Colorado State University
“I had a great experience at SOT. Everyone from Pfizer was incredibly helpful, informative, and all around great people...SOT was similarly eye opening. I had no idea the seemingly niche topic of toxicology has so much research. I can't say thank you enough for giving me the opportunity to attend.”Mr. McGrath is currently doing neurotoxicity research at Colorado State University and is interested in a career in industry researching bio-fuels or developing pharmaceuticals.

2008 Recipients

Amy DeMicco, Rutgers University
Ms. DeMicco attended the SOT meeting the year after her Pfizer Award to make an additional presentation on her research. She will begin a Ph.D. program in cell and molecular biology at the University of Pennsylvania in fall 2009.

Tharu Fernando, Wright State University
Ms. Fernando has continued her studies at Wright State University, finishing her Master of Science in Pharmacology & Toxicology Master of Science, with her thesis involving a comparative analysis of TCDD-induced modulation of certain mouse and human enhancers within the Ig heavy chain gene locus. She will begin a Ph.D. in Pharmacology at Weill Cornell Graduate School of Medical Sciences Fall 2009.

Yamel Perdomo, Medgar Evers College
After graduating in spring 2009, Ms. Perdomo is taking a break before continuing her studies.

Amy Yi Hsan Saik, University of Western Australia
Amy My Yi Hsan Saik is working as a research scientist at the International Medical University in Malaysia. In 2008 she conducted research at the University of Malaysia to learn more about the effect of corilagin to transforming growth factor-beta-1 on kidney function in a streptozocin-induced rat model of chronic renal failure. She continued contact with SOT scientists in Japan and Australia after the 2008 meeting.

Kelly Sullivan, Colorado State University
Ms. Sullivan spent summer 2009 at Colorado State University in a research lab studying the cross-talk between microglia and astrocytes when treated with manganese. She will be pursuing a D.V.M/Ph.D. in toxicology at Colorado State University Fall 2009.

2007 Recipients

Kay Gonsalves, Bates College
Ms. Gonsalves has finished a two year commitment with Teach for America in the Mississippi Delta teaching high school and middle school science. Fall 2009 she will begin a Master’s degree program in Public Health at Johns Hopkins University.

Lisa Koselke, Drake University
Ms. Koselke will finish her final year of pharmacy school (Pharm.D.) in 2009, including clinical rotations at a number of different practice sites, including an inpatient psychiatric unit). “I have maintained some involvement with research. I am helping a pharmacy professor with some research questions, mostly clinical research case reports and retrospective studies. I enjoyed meeting many scientists at the meeting and have not ruled out pursuing basic science research in the future.”

Anna Zimmermann, Kenyon College
Ms. Zimmerman is working for San Francisco Department of Environment in their Toxics Reduction Program, working with local businesses to reduce the use of toxic chemicals in their operations and researching the health effects of dry cleaning solvents. She held a Fulbright Research Fellowship from 2007–2008 in Beijing, China, where she was affiliated with Renmin University's Department of the Environment.

Basharat Sanni, University of North Carolina, Charlotte
Ms. Sanni is completing a Pharm.D. degree at UNC Chapel Hill Eshelman School of Pharmacy.

Sonia Talathi, University of Georgia
Ms. Talathi will be starting medical school fall 2009 at the University of Alabama Birmingham. She continued her toxicology research for another two years after attending the SOT meeting, published her work, and presented at the ABRCMS conference (2007) as well as the UGA/UCR conference in Costa Rica (2007).

2006 Recipients

Shawntay Chaney, University of Houston
Pursuing a Ph.D. at the University of Houston, Ms. Chaney is studying the toxic affects of gestational lead exposure on the developing retina. “Every summer I participate in the University of Houston Alliance for Graduate Education and the Professoriate (UH-AGEP) program which helps to encourage undergraduates to go into graduate school. As a graduate student, I mentor two undergratuates each summer and help them on research projects.”
Theresa M. Eagle Scott, Michigan State University
Ms. Scott is applying for master’s programs in forensic toxicology.
Natalie Malek Johnson, Texas A&M University
In 2009 Ms. Johnson is in her third year as a Ph.D. student in toxicology at Texas A&M University. “Thus far, my research has focused on measuring urinary biological markers of exposure to food-borne and environmental carcinogens in human populations. For the past two years (2007–2009) I have served as a NSF GK-12 fellow in a university outreach program linking higher academic education with public middle schools.”
Adelaida Segarra-Arroyo, University of Puerto Rico Cayey
Ms. Segarra is completing a Master's degree in Public Heath-Nutrition at the University of Puerto Rico Medical Science Campus.
Ryan Vaughan, University of Connecticut Storrs
Mr. Vaughan continued his research in pulmonary toxicology while an undergraduate at the University of Connecticut. He has now finished his Doctor of Pharmacy degree in 2008 and is now working as a Pharmacy Manager for drug store. “The SOT meeting definitely opened my eyes to the opportunities available. Based partly on my experience there, I do expect to move from a retail pharmacy job to a job in industry in the future.”