KU News Release

April 20, 2011
Contact: Emily Huckabay, Office for Diversity in Science Training, 785-864-7316

Post-Baccalaureate Research Education Program’s $1.5 million grant renewed

LAWRENCE — The National Institutes of Health has awarded a $1.5 million training grant to the University of Kansas to support students from groups that are underrepresented in the sciences and plan to pursue careers in biomedical science.

The NIH grant renews the funding of the Post-Baccalaureate Research Education Program for four additional years. PREP endeavors to increase the diversity of students entering graduate school in the biomedical sciences by providing post-baccalaureate educational experiences that enhance students’ competitiveness.

The successful renewal of the grant will allow PREP to continue to recruit minority students for more than 50 departments and programs at KU, further diversifying KU’s graduate programs with well-prepared and highly talented students.

The renewed PREP project has been expanded to support eight post-baccalaureate fellows a year with a research assistantships in the labs of KU faculty members, tuition for coursework and additional pre-professional training.

James Orr, director of the Office for Diversity in Science Training and professor of molecular biosciences, and Estela Gavosto, associate director of the Office for Diversity in Science Training and associate professor of mathematics, are co-program directors for the PREP grant. Marigold Linton, director for American Indian outreach, is co-investigator for the project.

Gavosto said that the transition from an undergraduate program to a demanding science graduate program could be a daunting experience for students who did not have the opportunity to work in a research lab and obtain the necessary preparation for graduate school. The PREP program provides this opportunity to talented students.

Orr said that for the nation to remain competitive in science research and innovation, it is necessary to reach into the human potential from all the diverse communities that constitute society.

In addition to the PREP program, the Office for Diversity in Science Training has other NIH-funded programs with similar goals that serve students at other levels of their careers. More information can be found at www2.ku.edu/~odst.

KU’s 2010-11 PREP scholars are listed below by hometown, major, degrees earned, Native American tribal affiliation (if applicable), parents’ names (when available) and high school.

From Lawrence 66046
Katrina Chervart McClure, nondegree-seeking student in ecology and evolutionary biology; bachelor’s in environmental science from KU, fall 2009; Muskogee Creek/Seminole; Lutheran High School, Rockford, Ill.

From Prairie Village 66208
Krista Marie Sanchez, nondegree-seeking student in engineering; bachelor’s in mechanical engineering from KU, fall 2010; Donald and Rebecca Sanchez; Shawnee Mission East High School.

From Benton 93512
Charley Sabe Lewis, nondegree-seeking student in ecology and evolutionary biology; bachelor’s in environmental science from Haskell Indian Nations University; Paiute/Navajo.

From Brookfield 53045
Bernadette Joann Goudreau, nondegree-seeking student in molecular biosciences; bachelor’s in economics from the University of Notre Dame; Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians.

The University of Kansas is a major comprehensive research and teaching university. University Relations is the central public relations office for KU's Lawrence campus.

kunews@ku.edu | (785) 864-3256 | 1314 Jayhawk Blvd., Lawrence, KS 66045

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