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Seven Students Win Awards at Statewide Biomedical Research Conference

August 14, 2017

During the 2017 Idaho INBRE (IDeA Network of Biomedical Research Excellence) Summer Research Conference in August, seven University of Idaho students took home prestigious awards for their presentations on their summer research in the INBRE program. The conference brought together upward of 220 students, faculty, and staff from 11 institutions of higher education in Idaho. This included 125 undergraduates, who competed in three categories.

An INBRE Fellow is an undergraduate working full time in an established academic biomedical laboratory for 10 weeks at one of 11 Idaho higher-education institutions. Four UI Fellows took home awards:

Voted for by students:

  • First Place: Emily Kizer, Coeur d'Alene, senior, biology — Project titled “Saccharomyces Yeasts to Combat Fungal Pathogens of Humans," Paul Rowley’s lab

  • Second Place: Gabryel Conley Natividad, Moscow, sophomore, biological engineering and computer engineering — Project titled “Neurochi Virtual Reality Simulator of The Cerebrospinal Fluid System,” Bryn Martin's lab

  • Honorable Mention: George May, Cle Elum, Washington, senior, microbiology/pre-med — Project titled “The Effects of the Gut Microbiota in Diabetic Enteric Neuropathy,” Onesmo Balemba’s lab

Voted for by faculty and staff:

  • First Place: Michael Elder Waters, Cottonwood, senior, biology — Project titled “The Effect of Garcinia buchananii Stem Bark Extract on Inhibitory Junction Potentials (IJPs) in Porcine Descending Colon,” Onesmo Balemba’s lab 

An industry intern is an undergraduate working 10 weeks in an Idaho business or government lab. One UI industry intern took home an award:

  • Second Place: John McAlpine, Niwot, Colorado, junior, chemical engineering and biochemistry — Project titled “Gamma-Induced Radiation Chemistry of Phenyl-derivatized TODtA,” Idaho National Laboratory

A STEM transition trainee is an incoming freshman working full-time during the summer in an established laboratory at the University of Idaho, Idaho State University, or Boise State University. The 12 students selected for this opportunity were able to get a head start on university life and biomedical research. The opportunity is a partnership between Idaho STEM Action Center and the Idaho INBRE program. The Idaho STEM Action Center connects STEM education and industry to ensure Idaho’s long-term economic prosperity and envisions a future where Idaho produces a STEM competitive workforce by implementing their education programs. Two UI STEM transition trainees took home awards:

  • Honorable Mention: Aurora Rosin, Meridian, freshman, computer engineering — Project titled “Combining Tensile Strain and Collagenase for Collagen Fiber Alignment,” Nate Schiele’s lab

  • Third Place: Kyle McCain, Idaho Falls, freshman, computer engineering, “MRI Based Biomarkers for Characterization of ALS,” Bryn Martin's lab

About the University of Idaho

The University of Idaho, home of the Vandals, is Idaho’s land-grant, national research university. From its residential campus in Moscow, U of I serves the state of Idaho through educational centers in Boise, Coeur d’Alene and Idaho Falls, a research and Extension center in Twin Falls, plus Extension offices in 42 counties. Home to more than 12,000 students statewide, U of I is a leader in student-centered learning and excels at interdisciplinary research, service to businesses and communities, and in advancing diversity, citizenship and global outreach. U of I competes in the Big Sky Conference. Learn more: